Whitepages Can't Escape Privacy Suit Over Ad Displays

Law360 (April 23, 2021, 9:27 PM EDT) -- A Washington federal judge has refused to release Whitepages Inc. from a putative class action accusing it of unlawfully using individuals' names and other identifying characteristics to entice website visitors to purchase the company's services, finding the displayed data has commercial value and the challenge didn't violate the First Amendment.

Whitepages moved in February to ax plaintiff Angela Kolebuck-Utz's complaint alleging the Seattle-based company violated Ohio's right of publicity law by using people's names, likenesses, current cities, relatives and other identifying information without their written consent in its free previews advertising its monthly subscription services and background reports.

U.S. District Judge John...

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