Facebook unit asks a court in California to dismiss a class-action lawsuit brought by a user
The photo-sharing service, acquired by Facebook in August, also said in a filing Wednesday that plaintiff Lucy Funes does not allege that Instagram ever misappropriated her content, but holds that the new terms transfer "valuable property rights" to Instagram by granting it a sub-licensable, transferable, non-exclusive license to content that users post through the Instagram service.
A non-exclusive license does not transfer ownership of copyright to the licensee, Instagram said in the filing. The copyright owner simply permits the use of a copyrighted work in a particular manner, it added.
The lawsuit filed in December by the Instagram user in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Francisco division, accused Instagram of violating the property rights of its users and breaching its existing terms of service.
"Plaintiff here, however, seeks special treatment: she wants to continue to use Instagram and to use this lawsuit to rewrite the terms that govern her and other individuals' use of the service," said the filing, which argued that a federal court is not the appropriate forum to resolve such a dispute.
Facebook closed its Instagram acquisition in August after receiving approvals from regulators including the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and the U.K. Office of Fair Trading.
Funes, an active users of the service, sued Instagram on Dec. 21, according to the Instagram filing. She does not appear to have discontinued her use of Instagram after Jan. 19, the day Instagram adopted the new terms that it had proposed on Dec. 20, it added.
The petitioner hence lacks standing because she could have avoided the alleged harm that she claims to have suffered by deleting her account before the new terms went into effect on Jan. 19, according to the filing.
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