Google and Viacom on Monday defeated an appeal in a nationwide class action lawsuit by parents who claimed the companies illegally tracked the online activity of children under the age of 13 who watched videos and played video games on Nickelodeon’s website
By a 3-0 vote, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia said Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc, and Viacom Inc were not liable under several federal and state laws for planting “cookies” on boys’ and girls’ computers, to gather data that advertisers could use to send targeted ads.
The court also revived one state law privacy claim against Viacom, claiming that it promised on the Nick.com website not to collect children’s personal information, but did so anyway.
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The revived privacy claim accused Viacom of reneging on a promise on Nick.com that said: “HEY GROWN-UPS: We don’t collect ANY personal information about your kids. This means we couldn’t share it even if we wanted to!”
Although the jury might find Viacom liable for “intrusion upon seclusion” if it found its alleged privacy intrusion highly offensive to the ordinary reasonable man.