Some time in February of this year, David Fagin noticed he was suddenly being blocked from sending friend requests on Facebook after the social networking giant for whatever reason labeled him as a ‘spammer’.
When it happened again, Facebook told Fagin that he was in danger of getting his account wiped out completely to boot.
Fagin, an AOL News writer, subsequently penned an opinion piece, in which he claims being called a ‘spammer’ is humiliating, equivalent to being labeled an online pickpocket or con artist.
This morning, he announced he is suing Facebook for $1 (documents not available yet).
Fagin is clearly irked because he’s not able to directly contact Facebook’s support team:
“Some might say ‘What’s the big deal? It’s just a stupid social networking site,’” says Fagin.
“But, when you’re talking about arguably the biggest online presence the world has ever seen, one that’s currently worth more than Microsoft, and there’s no way to reach a live human being, that might be something for the FTC and/or congress to at least think about.”
I fail to see how Facebook is worth more than Microsoft, which currently boasts a market cap of $213 billion and change, but let’s not get facts in the way of a frivolous lawsuit.
“It’s not just the support issue, either,” Fagin goes on to say. “Facebook is actively contradicting their own policies. On one hand, they tell you not to ‘friend’ anyone you don’t already know. On the other, the site constantly bombards you with names of people that Facebook themselves suggests you should ‘friend’, as you already have multiple friends in common. This also runs in direct contradiction with the spammer label. If everyone on the site is only supposed to be friends with people they know, then everyone is a spammer.
According to the press release, Fagin’s AOL News story caught the opportunistic eye of NYC-based litigation attorney Gillian Overland. Having never run a company that supports some 700 million active users, Overland comments:
“I read David’s article and completely agreed. The fact that you’re dealing with a company as large and as powerful as Facebook, and their only means of public intercourse is a run-of-the-mill FAQ page? This needs to be fixed.”
And as everyone knows, suing companies for $1 is always a surefire way to get things ‘fixed’.
Or was that $1 billion?
We’ve contacted Facebook for comment and will update when – and if – we hear back.
Facebook is the world’s largest social network, with over 1 billion monthly active users. Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg in February 2004, initially as an exclusive network for Harvard students. It was a huge hit: in 2 weeks, half of the schools in the Boston area began demanding a Facebook network. Zuckerberg immediately recruited his friends Dustin Moskovitz, Chris Hughes, and Eduardo Saverin to help build Facebook, and within four months, Facebook added 30 more college networks. The original...