Facebook “Sponsored Stories” case update: cy pres recipient will decline money from settlement that allows violations of state laws protecting minors’ privacy

We've discussed before the case against Facebook's Sponsored Stories program, which resulted in a settlement to which Public Citizen objected on behalf of a group of parents from around the country. See here for a description of our objections and the settlement. Chief among the settlement's flaws is that it allows Facebook to continue to use minors' images in ads without obtaining parental consent — in violation of the laws of California, Florida, New York, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin.

Last fall, we appealed the approval of the settlement, and today we filed our opening brief on appeal to the Ninth Circuit.

Also today, the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, one of the cy pres recipients set to receive almost $300,000 under the settlement, announced it would decline the money, citing concerns that the settlement's protections for minors' privacy are "hollow" and "meaningless." You can read CCFC's statement here. The group also filed a very helpful amicus letter in support of our appeal.

Both the New York Times and Washington Post have stories today about the case and CCFC's decision.