More than a million Illinois residents will receive a $ 397 payment from Facebook this week, thanks to a lawsuit over the retirement photo tagging system on the platform, which uses facial recognition. Nearly seven years have passed since the first class action lawsuit was filed in 2015, accusing Facebook of violating state privacy law which prohibits companies from collecting biometric data without informing users. Since then, the platform has faced a wide, global criticism for the use of face recognition technology, and last year Meta stopped practice completely on Facebook and Instagram. But like Vox notesthe company has not made any promises to avoid recognizing faces in future products.
Although it was first filed in Illinois, the class action eventually ended up on Facebook’s home ground, the U.S. District Court for Northern California. However, the court repeatedly rejected the numerous requests of the platform to dismiss the case and ultimately upheld the Illinois class action. Facebook tried to appeal the certification of the case to the Ninth District Court of Appeal, but was rejected. After Facebook initially agreed to settle the $ 550 million lawsuit – which at the time was the largest payout in a group online privacy case – a federal judge I responded to the blow and said the amount was too small. Finally, the company last year agree to a total agreement of $ 650 million.
The question was old for Facebook photo tagging systemthat relies on facial recognition to recognize users in photos and videos. Lawyers representing Illinois say the feature of the Suggested Labels platform violates the U.S. Biometrics Privacy Act. Every Facebook user in Illinois who posted a photo or was tagged on the platform during a certain period of time was eligible file a claim. A total of nearly 1.6 million Illinois residents are included in the settlement.
A number of Redditors said they received their settlement checks by direct deposit or by mail this week, although not all have yet received their payment. “I made mine and my wife’s at the same time and took one yesterday and the other today. That was through Zelle. ” noted one Reddit user.
Some who chose to receive a check in the mail were a little taken aback by his indescribable appearance. “Honestly, I almost threw mine away. It is sent in a brown envelope made of recycled paper. It felt just like a paper bag. I certainly thought it was spam. said Reddit user.
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