Frequently Asked Questions
- Why was the Notice issued?
- What is a class action?
- What is this lawsuit about?
- Why is there a Settlement?
- How do I know if I am in the Settlement Class?
- What does the Settlement provide?
- How much will my payment be?
- When will I get my payment?
- How do I get a payment?
- What am I giving up if I stay in the Class?
- What happens if I do nothing at all?
- Do I have a lawyer in the case?
- How will the lawyers be paid?
- How do I get out of the Settlement?
- If I don’t exclude myself, can I sue the Defendant for the same thing later?
- If I exclude myself, can I get anything from this Settlement?
- How do I object to the Settlement?
- What’s the difference between objecting and excluding myself from the Settlement?
- When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the Settlement?
- Do I have to come to the hearing?
- May I speak at the hearing?
- Where do I get more information?
Why was the Notice issued?
A Court authorized the Notice because you have a right to know about a proposed Settlement of this class action lawsuit and about all of your options, before the Court decides whether to give final approval to the Settlement. The Notice explains the lawsuit, the Settlement, and your legal rights.
The Honorable Richard G. Stearns, of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, is overseeing this case. The case is called Ambrose v. Boston Globe Media Partners LLC, Case No. 1:22-cv-10195-RGS. The person who have sued is called the Plaintiff. The Defendant is Boston Globe Media Partners, LLC.Back To Top
What is a class action?
In a class action, one or more people called the class representative (in this case, David Ambrose) sue on behalf of a group or a “class” of people who have similar claims. In a class action, the court resolves the issues for all class members, except for those who exclude themselves from the Class.Back To Top
What is this lawsuit about?
This lawsuit claims that Defendant violated the Video Privacy Protection Act, 18 U.S.C. § 2710, et seq. (“VPPA”) by disclosing its subscribers’ personally identifiable information (“PII”) to Facebook via the Facebook Tracking Pixel without consent. The VPPA defines PII to include information which identifies a person as having requested or obtained specific video materials or services from a video tape service provider. The Defendant denies that it violated any law. The Court has not determined who is right. Rather, the Parties have agreed to settle the lawsuit to avoid the uncertainties and expenses associated with ongoing litigation.Back To Top
Why is there a Settlement?
The Court has not decided whether the Plaintiffs or the Defendant should win this case. Instead, both sides agreed to a Settlement. That way, they avoid the uncertainties and expenses associated with ongoing litigation, and Class Members will get compensation sooner rather than, if at all, after the completion of a trial.Back To Top
How do I know if I am in the Settlement Class?
The Settlement Class is defined as:
All persons in the United States who, from February 5, 2020, to and through May 25, 2023, have or had a Facebook account, a digital subscription to the Boston Globe, or a home delivery subscription to the Boston Globe that includes digital access and who viewed videos on Boston Globe’s website.Back To Top
What does the Settlement provide?
Monetary Relief: Defendant has created a Settlement Fund totaling $4,000,000.00. Class Member payments, and the cost to administer the Settlement, the cost to inform people about the Settlement, attorneys’ fees, and an award to the Class Representative will also come out of this fund (see FAQ 13).
In Kind Relief: Defendant will also provide in kind relief of up to $1,000,000.00 as an extension of any existing digital subscription to the Boston Globe enjoyed by the Settlement Class Member for a maximum of 7 days past its current expiration date for no additional payment.
Prospective Changes: In addition to this monetary relief, the Settlement also requires Defendant to suspend operation of the Facebook Tracking Pixel on any pages on its website that both include video content and have a URL that substantially identifies the video content viewed, unless and until the VPPA is amended, repealed, or otherwise invalidated (including by judicial decision on the use of website pixel technology by the United States Supreme Court, any federal court of appeals, a U.S. federal district court in Massachusetts, or a Massachusetts state court of general jurisdiction), or until Defendant obtains VPPA-compliant consent for the disclosure of the video content viewed to Facebook.
A detailed description of the settlement benefits can be found in the Settlement Agreement.Back To Top
How much will my payment be?
Payments to timely and valid claims were in the amount of $158.03, which is a proportionate share of the Settlement Fund. Additionally, Settlement Class Members who submitted a claim received an extension of their existing digital subscription to the Boston Globe. Instructions for how to receive this extension has been provided to eligible Settlement Class Members via email.Back To Top
When will I get my payment?
Payments to timely and valid claims were issued on February 16, 2024. If your claim was approved, you were sent a payment email to the email address provided on your claim form. You will have the option to elect to receive your payment by PayPal, Venmo, ACH, Zelle, or a physical check.
If you did not receive this email, or are ultimately unable to redeem your electronic payment, your payment will be issued as a physical check after the electronic payment campaign has closed.Back To Top
How do I get a payment?
To receive a payment, you must have submitted a Claim Form by October 23, 2023. As this deadline has passed, it is too late to file a claim.Back To Top
What am I giving up if I stay in the Class?
If the Settlement becomes final, you will give up your right to sue Defendant for the claims this Settlement resolves. The Settlement Agreement describes the specific claims you are giving up against the Defendants. You will be “releasing” the Defendant and certain of its affiliates described in Section 1.25 of the Settlement Agreement. Unless you exclude yourself (see FAQ 14), you are “releasing” the claims, regardless of whether you submit a claim or not. The Settlement Agreement is available through the “court documents” link on the website.
The Settlement Agreement describes the released claims with specific descriptions, so read it carefully. If you have any questions you can talk to the lawyers listed in FAQ 12 for free or you can, of course, talk to your own lawyer if you have questions about what this means.Back To Top
What happens if I do nothing at all?
If you do nothing, you won’t get any benefits from this Settlement. If you don’t exclude yourself, or “opt out,” you won’t be able to start a lawsuit or be part of any other lawsuit against the Defendants for the claims being resolved by this Settlement.Back To Top
Do I have a lawyer in the case?
The Court has appointed Philip L. Fraietta, Joshua D. Arisohn, and Christopher R. Reilly of Bursor & Fisher, P.A. to be the attorneys representing the Settlement Class. They are called “Class Counsel.” They believe, after conducting an extensive investigation, that the Settlement Agreement is fair, reasonable, and in the best interests of the Settlement Class. You will not be charged for these lawyers. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer in this case, you may hire one at your expense.Back To Top
How will the lawyers be paid?
Class Counsel’s attorneys’ fees, costs, and expenses will be paid from the Settlement Fund in an amount determined and awarded by the Court. Class Counsel is entitled to seek no more than one-third of the $5 million Settlement Benefit, but the Court may award less than this amount.
As approved by the Court, the Class Representative will be paid an Incentive Award from the Settlement Fund for helping to bring and settle the case. The Class Representative was awarded a $5,000 incentive award.Back To Top
How do I get out of the Settlement?
The exclusion deadline was August 11, 2023.Back To Top
If I don’t exclude myself, can I sue the Defendant for the same thing later?
No. Unless you excluded yourself you gave up any right to sue the Defendant for the claims being resolved by this Settlement.Back To Top
If I exclude myself, can I get anything from this Settlement?
The exclusion deadline was August 11, 2023. Anyone who filed a valid and timely exclusion will not receive benefits.Back To Top
How do I object to the Settlement?
The objection deadline was August 11, 2023.Back To Top
What’s the difference between objecting and excluding myself from the Settlement?
Objecting simply means telling the Court that you don’t like something about the Settlement. You can object only if you stay in the Class. Excluding yourself from the Class is telling the Court that you don’t want to be part of the Class. If you exclude yourself, you have no basis to object because the case no longer affects you.Back To Top
When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the Settlement?
The Final Approval Hearing was held on September 7, 2023. The Court granted final approval to the Settlement on September 8, 2023.Back To Top
Do I have to come to the hearing?
The hearing was held on September 7, 2023.Back To Top
May I speak at the hearing?
The hearing was held on September 7, 2023.Back To Top
Where do I get more information?
These FAQs summarize the Settlement. More details are in the Settlement Agreement. You can get a copy of the Settlement Agreement here. You may also write with questions to Boston Globe Privacy Settlement, P.O. Box 4276 Portland, OR 97208-4276. You can call the Settlement Administrator at 1-877-589-8089 or Class Counsel at 1-646-837-7150, if you have any questions. Before doing so, however, please read these FAQs carefully. You may also email the Settlement Administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can find additional information elsewhere this website.Back To Top