Facebook Sues Power.com

January 5th, 2009 at 12:00 am


Facebook is suing social network aggregator Power.com for "irreparable and incalculable harm."  Power.com aims to be a portal for social networks.  It works by acting having users provide them with their information and then their system logs into the social networks without the user having to leave Power.com.   Apparently this is not a service Facebook appreciates.

Brazil-based Power.com “is offering a product that solicits, stores and uses Facebook login information to access information stored on Facebook computers without authorization and to display Facebook copyrighted material without permission.,” according to the complaint filed by Facebook in a California court.

“After discussing the issues with Power.com for about a month without reaching a resolution, we filed a lawsuit to enforce our terms of service, maintain the integrity of our site and to assure our users’ privacy and security are protected,” said Barry Schnitt, a Facebook spokesman.

Also, Facebook is accusing Power.com of spamming users using a "facebookmail.com" address and claiming that the messages are from "The Facebook Team."   

Steve Vachani, Founder of  Power.com says, “Power.com is focused on providing value-added services to social network users, and it is not necessary for us to store the user’s name and password if a site prefers that we don’t.”  Moreover, Power.com is building its own version of Facebook Connect, he said, which will be called Social InterConnect and “will allow users to freely share their account information for any site with any other site, without the host site needing to store the user name and password.”

Prior to the filing of the lawsuit, Facebook did tell Power.com to use its Facebook Connect service which allowed users to access their Facebook information through other sites without having to reveal any access information to the third party.

However, according to the complaint, Facebook blocked access from Power.com which “deliberately circumvented Facebook’s technological security measures in order to continue its unlawful practice of accessing Facebook’s computer systems without authorization.”