Los Angeles – A federal lawsuit claims that websites owned
by Disney (NYSE: DIS), Warner Bros. Records and others that worked with widget advertising
firm Clearspring Technologies illegally tracked the Web surfing of site
The suit alleges that Disney and other named defendants knew that
Clearspring was, through Flash cookies, tracking the Web movements of visitors
well beyond their own sites.
Data collected on these users — such as age,
gender, race, location, sexual preference, health issues and video viewing
habits — could then be sold to third parties.
The lawsuit against Clearspring
follows similar litigation filed against rival Quantcast, and clients including
NBC and ABC, over Web tracking.
Both lawsuits cite a 2009 study by the
University of California-Berkeley that found that Quantcast
cookies deleted by users being tracked could be "respawned" without
notifying or seeking consent from them.