San Francisco
– A federal judge has given final approval to a $9.5 million settlement over
Facebook’s controversial Beacon advertising feature, which broadcast what users
were purchasing online to their friends. Facebook denied any wrongdoing under
the settlement, the terms of which call for the company to sink at least $6
million into a "Digital Trust Fund" that will issue grants to
researchers studying online privacy.

The board of the fund will be comprised of
Facebook public policy director Tim Sparapani; Chris Jay Hoofnagle, head of the
Berkeley Center for Law & Technology; and
privacy advocate Larry Magid. noted that the class action plaintiffs’
attorneys are set to receive some $3 million of the total $9.5 million
settlement, while "only a handful of the estimated 3.6 million class
members are to receive financial damages."


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