It might not be much, but Melissa Grant is cashing in from a social media site she uses every day.
“I was like, '15 dollars, I'll take it,'” says Grant. “I got it on Saturday and deposited on Monday and it's in there.”
She’s talking about a check that Facebook is sending to some users. Yes, they're all $15, and yes, it's legit.
In 2011 a class-action lawsuit was filed against the social media giant. Facebook settled but still had to dish out $20 million because of "Sponsored Story" ads.
Whenever a user did one of the following (just to name a few):
· Liked a page
· Posted to someone's wall
Facebook would take that information and advertise it. So people who weren't even a user's friends could see where they had been and what you were doing.
“I had no clue. I just saw it was from Facebook and it was a class-action settlement,” says Grant.
So if you received the check like Grant did, Facebook used your image and likeness without your consent.
These sponsored ads can’t be found on the site anymore since the lawsuit was filed.
Grant admits she wasn't sure what to think about the check but says for 15 bucks, she wasn't worried.
“If it was bogus, the bank would just take it out,” says Grant.
There's the catch, though: users will only get the check if they submitted a claim back in 2013.
The lawsuit also led to other policy changes for Facebook. Users now have more control over how their names and images are used.