Our legal system at work (with an economics test after)
June 30, 2008
From an actual document I recently received, not one word made up.
Why did I get this notice package?
You may have been a Time Warner Cable subscriber at some time between January 1, 1994 and December 31, 1998 and may have been on a list of subscribers whose personal information may have been made available for sale by Time Warner Cable to other companies for marketing purposes. . . .
What is this lawsuit about?
The lawsuit claimed that Time Warner Cable sold personal information about its subscribers to other companies that wanted the information to advertise and try to sell you products and services. The lawsuit claimed that Time Warner Cable is required to tell subscribers how it collects and uses their personal information, and that Time Warner Cable failed to do so in compliance with applicable law. Time Warner Cable denies that it did anything wrong or that it violated any law, and believes that it would have ultimately prevailed at trial. . . .
What benefits does the settlement provide?
If you qualify, you may receive $5 or free services. If you choose to receive free services, here are the free Time Warner Cable services you can get. . . .
(1) One free month of any Time Warner Cable service that is available on a monthly basis and that you don't already have.
(2) Two (2) free Movies on Demand. . . .
Are there other settlement benefits in addition to the $5 of free services?
Yes. As part of the settlement, Time Warner Cable has agreed: (1) to change its disclosure to subscribers about how it collects and uses their personal information; (2) to employ a Chief Privacy Officer in charge of making sure the company complies with privacy laws; (3) to give money to two public interest groups that care about and work on privacy issues; (4) to pay the costs of sending and publishing this notice and giving out the free services and $5 checks; (5) to give money to the two Class Representatives who participated in this case for all the subscribers; and (6) to pay for the lawyers who represented the subscribers throughout this case.
Now, for some questions--and a prize offer--please read the continuation.
UPDATE: For a different view on the merits of this settlement, see the comments of Daniel L. Anderson, the attorney who represented objectors to the original settlement agreement.
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