May 22, 2024

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A $3.7 billion UK class action against Facebook over market dominance has been dismissed — for now

A $3.7 billion UK class action against Facebook over market dominance has been dismissed — for now

LONDON (Reuters) – Facebook on Monday temporarily cleared a class-action lawsuit worth up to 3 billion pounds ($3.7 billion) over allegations that the social media giant abused its dominant position to monetize users’ personal data.

However, a London court granted the proposed plaintiffs’ lawyers up to six months for a “further attempt” at proving any losses alleged by the users.

Meta Platforms Inc (META.O), the parent company of the Facebook group, is facing a class action lawsuit on behalf of around 45 million Facebook users in Britain.

Legal academic Lisa Lofdal-Jørsen, who is bringing the case, says Facebook users were not properly compensated for the value of personal data they had to provide to use the platform.

Her lawyers last month asked the Court of Competition Appeal to certify the case under the UK’s class action system – roughly equivalent to the US class action system.

But the court ruled on Monday that Lovdahl Gormsen’s methodology for proving any losses incurred by Facebook users needed a “root and branch reassessment” for the case to proceed.

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However, Judge Marcus Smith gave Lovedal-Joorsen’s attorney six months to “present additional evidence that will lay out a new and better scheme leading to an effective trial.”

A Meta spokesperson said the company welcomed the decision and pointed to its previous statement that the lawsuit was “totally without merit.”

A spokesman for Lofdal-Joersen declined to comment.

(Reporting by Sam Tobin) Editing by Tomasz Janowski

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