The San Jose federal court in California said that LinkedIn needs to face a law suit for using the contact list of its users to increase its user base and business.
In the Perkins et al v. LinkedIn Corp law suit, filed in September 2013, the plaintiffs are accusing LinkedIn of violating several state and federal laws by harvesting email addresses from the contact lists of email accounts and by sending repeated invitations to join LinkedIn to the harvested email addresses.
The nine plaintiffs are contending that while the users agree for the initial endorsement email, the two subsequent reminder emails sent to non-responding contacts show the users in poor light.
They said, "The only way a LinkedIn user can stop the two follow-up endorsement emails (assuming the user found out about the initial emails in the first place) from going out to the email addresses harvested from that user's external email account is for the user to individually open up each invitation from within his or her LinkedIn account (which LinkedIn has intentionally made difficult to find within the user's account) and click a button that allows the user to withdraw that single invitation."
In a 39-page decision released last week, judge Lucy Koh observed that the practice could injure users' reputations by allowing contacts to think that the users are the types of people who spam their contacts or are unable to take the hint that their contacts do not want to join their LinkedIn network.
Koh admitted plaintiffs' claims that LinkedIn violated their right of publicity but dismissed other claim that the company violated a federal wiretap law, reported Reuters.
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