Facebook improved its offer this week to end a long-running class-action suit against the company alleging that its facial recognition technology violated Illinois privacy law. Instead of its initial $550 million offer, the social media giant is now offering $650 million to users.
The richer offer comes after a federal judge was unimpressed with the company’s initial settlement, saying that while it sounds like a big figure on its face, it wouldn’t result in much money for individual users.
“You know the old sob about the portions — the food was bad and the portions were small,” U.S. District Court Judge James Donato said. “Is it really a lot? The individual payments are going to end up being $150… possibly topping out at $300, depending on how things go with the claim rate. That is a significant reduction from the thousand dollars that the Illinois legislature set as the baseline. So I’d like to hear more about why that is a reasonable settlement amount.”
While an extra $100 million doesn’t hurt, the company could’ve faced billions of dollars in fines if the case progressed any further. So even if users see some benefit, Facebook is still getting away with more than it should.
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