Meta files a new complaint for selling fake customer reviews on Facebook

Meta has filed a new lawsuit in California for the use of fake reviews on Facebook, targeting a specific fake review vendor it claims sought to manipulate its systems to benefit its customers.

In the new lawsuit, Meta says that Chad Taylor Cowan, which operated as “Customer Feedback Score Solutions”, provided false reviews and comments to businesses, in an attempt to artificially boost their Facebook Customer Feedback Score. .

As Meta explains:

“Meta continuously analyzes feedback to understand people’s experiences with our technologies. As part of this work, some people receive surveys after clicking on advertisements to help them understand if the quality of the product they purchased met their expectations, if the shipping was fast and to find out more about their customer service experience. This survey data, along with other information, informs a company’s customer satisfaction score. »

Businesses that receive a significant amount of negative feedback may then face enforcement action, including advertising restrictions, financial penalties, or account deactivation.

Customer Feedback Solutions aimed to manipulate this process for the benefit of its customers.

Cowan used a network of fraudulent and hired Facebook user accounts to provide fake customer reviews in order to artificially boost customer review scores, drown out and downplay negative reviews, and avoid our app. These actions create bad experiences for people who see these ads, misleadingly influencing and misleading our community. This is also a direct violation of Meta terms, Advertising and Page policies, as well as California law.

This is the first time Meta has specifically targeted fake review sellers, though it has steadily increased its overall enforcement efforts over the past few years. Meta has also launched various lawsuits against companies selling Likes and Followers, which goes along the same lines, but criticism hasn’t been the focus – although earlier this year Amazon filed a lawsuit in justice against two companies who allegedly acted as bogus review brokers on its platform.

This may have opened the door for more enforcement action on this front, with the Amazon cases potentially acting as a legal precedent for this, and as Meta seeks to introduce more e-commerce and brand recommendation tools into its applications, it makes sense that it should take steps now to address this element.

The case will likely take some time to complete, but it will be interesting to see what court decisions emerge from these new actions against those selling fake reviews online.

Joseph P. Harris