Can the same law firm unsuccessfully bid to lead a class-action suit against a company, and then file a related derivative lawsuit against the same company? Facebook says no, requesting in a filing with Delaware’s Court of Chancery that the derivative suit filed by Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd be thrown out due to a conflict of interest, but its argument may stand on shaky ground.
Did Facebook’s ad agency, Wieden & Kennedy, lose itself in the music of hip-hop star Eminem while creating “Airplane,” a commercial for Facebook’s recently introduced Home overlay for Android? 8 Mile Style, Eminem’s song publisher, filed suit in federal court in Detroit against the social network and the agency, alleging that the ad used music from the rapper’s 2000 song, “Under the Influence.”
Facebook is appealing a ruling made last year over a dispute regarding a Facebook like as free and protected speech. After a Virginia sheriff’s office employee liked the Facebook page of his boss’ political opponent, resulting in a post on the News Feed, the man lost his job. Daniel Ray Carter, along with five other people fired from the Hampton, Va., sheriff’s department, then filed a lawsuit claiming that likes on Facebook are free speech. A judge dismissed Carter’s claims in April 2012, but Facebook is keeping the fight alive.
An Illinois woman is leading a class-action suit against Facebook, claiming that she received an unsolicited text message from the social network in February, and her lawyers are actively seeking more plaintiffs who had similar experiences.
Facebook reached a settlement with Timelines.com, which sued the social network over the naming of its profile page, according to documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The two parties agreed to settle the case out of court, but financial information was not disclosed.
Facebook and its co-defendants — banks including Morgan Stanley, the lead underwriter of its initial public offering — are seeking dismissal of a lawsuit on the grounds that the social network had no obligation to publicly disclose internal projections on how increased mobile usage and product decisions might affect future revenue.
Paul Ceglia’s lawsuit against Facebook, much like a cat, appears to be on its ninth life. Even after a judge recommended dismissing the case, Ceglia found yet another attorney to lead the fight. Joseph Alioto of California — Ceglia’s ninth lawyer — has agreed to represent the man who claims that he is the half-owner of the social network.
UPDATED: The trademark lawsuit against Facebook by Timelines.com over the social network’s use of the term “timeline” as the name of its profile design was set to kick off Monday in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois in Chicago, but Bloomberg reported Monday afternoon that proceedings would be delayed until Tuesday afternoon, or postponed until May 7 for a status conference. U.S. District Judge John W. Darrah offered no explanation for the delay, according to Bloomberg.
Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg was able to get a scheduled April 23 deposition in a civil suit against seven technology companies delayed until May 21 or 23, and now she is trying to get it quashed altogether.
Not so fast, Facebook. The social network recently gave Timeline a face lift, but it will now have to defend in court whether or not it has the naming rights over its profile product. The company is battling a lawsuit from Timelines.com., and U.S. District Judge John W. Darrah ruled recently that Facebook has not demonstrated that “timeline” is a generic enough term to own exclusively.