Woman Sues Facebook for $123 Million Over 'Revenge Porn' Account
HOUSTON — A Texas woman has filed a $123 million suit against Facebook and a former friend over a revenge porn-type account that featured her face photoshopped on naked bodies in pornographic scenes.
Legal news site Texas Lawyer reported that plaintiff Meryam Ali says she discovered an account posted under her name that was filled with digitally altered pictures of her face pasted on nude bodies, with at least one engaged in a sex act.
When Ali found the account in December of 2013, she reported it to Facebook and asked that it be removed. She alleges that Facebook failed to respond to her multiple complaints, and finally had to resort to the Houston Police Department to find out the culprit behind the site through a subpoena.
The police found out that the poster was a former, apparently vengeful, friend, Adeel Shah Khan. Only in February of 2014 was the account stricken from Facebook.
Claiming that the account caused her "significant trauma, extreme humiliation, extreme embarrassment, severe emotional disturbances and severe mental and physical suffering,"Ali believes that Facebook owes her 10 cents for each of its Facebook users — it has about 1.23 billion — presumably because they all may have seen her false account.
Salon reporter Andrew Leonard surmised in an article that Facebook may not have the man power to address concerns like Ali’s, pointing out that Facebook users pay nothing for the social media service. However, he notes that Facebook rakes in enough profits (three billion this last financial quarter) to beef up its support system enough to address pressing concerns like Ali’s.
Leonard writes, “Maybe it’s cheaper to deal with the occasional lawsuit as the cost of doing business, than pay the bill for an operation that responds to individual complaints on a timely — and civilized — basis.”
Facebook has yet to respond to the allegations.