Facebook Paid the FTC Billions to Personally Protect Zuckerberg, Lawsuit Claims
A hulking lawsuit made public this week accuses Facebook’s board of agreeing to overpay the Federal Trade Commission billions of dollars in exchange for not personally suing CEO Mark Zuckerberg over the 2018 Cambridge Analytica data leak scandal.
The consolidated lawsuit, made up of multiple complaints filed by Facebook shareholders, was made public on Tuesday, courtesy of Jason Kint, CEO of Digital Content Next, a trade association that represents roughly 80 publishers, including the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. On Twitter, Kint dubbed this the “mother of all lawsuits.”
The plaintiffs in the suits, which were filed publicly in the Delaware Court of Chancery in August, are Facebook shareholders, including pension funds for teachers, firefighters, police, nurses, judges, as well as a construction workers’ union. They accuse Zuckerberg, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, and Facebook board members Marc Andreessen and Peter Thiel of counts related to breach of fiduciary duty. They also accuse Thiel’s data analytics firm, Palantir Technologies, of unfair competition. (Disclosure: Theil secretly funded a lawsuit that bankrupted Gizmodo’s former parent company, Gawker Media.)