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Performers Seek to Drop Blacklisting Lawsuit Against Meta

SAN FRANCISCO —  Alana Evans, Kelly Pierce and Ruby have informed a California federal court on Monday that they want to drop their lawsuit claiming that Meta conspired with OnlyFans to blacklist rival premium fan platforms’ talent.

As XBIZ reported, Adult Performance Artists Guild (APAG) board officers Evans, Pierce and Ruby originally filed the civil lawsuit in February 2022 against OnlyFans and its owner, as well as Instagram and Facebook’s parent company, Meta. The suit replicated claims from an earlier lawsuit filed on behalf of FanCentro in November 2021, alleging a conspiracy to engage in “tortious interference with contract and intentional interference with prospective business.”

The proposed class action, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, “accused Meta of blocking social media posts from adult entertainers who compete with artists who perform exclusively on OnlyFans’ subscription platform,” Law 360 reported.

In their motion to dismiss, the three performers “said their lawyers recently met with Meta’s counsel and were told that the company didn’t have the evidence that would back their case’s key theory,” which alleged that “their posts were filtered through a database the Meta social media sites use to flag and remove content produced by ‘dangerous individuals and organizations,’ to help curtail the spread of terrorism and violent extremism online,” Law 360 reported.

The plaintiffs now say Meta informed them that they did not have data or documents backing that theory, and that the company “found no evidence that any competitor platform was currently on the list, or had been nominated for inclusion.”

According to their motion, “based on the information Meta defendants provided, the information essential to plaintiffs’ class allegations is not available,” making further discovery efforts “futile.”

The plaintiffs also stated that Meta provided “ambiguous and incomplete responses” to their questions and were told that “there is no archived version of the blacklist, which changes over time. There’s also no automated process for making additions to the list, Meta told the performers’ lawyers, as each entry goes through a nomination and review process,” Law 360 reported. “After hearing from Meta and acknowledging the lack of data, the performers told the court that they couldn’t move forward in federal court with their federal class claims, the only basis they alleged for federal jurisdiction.”

Meta also filed a motion to the court on Monday, seeking summary judgment.

U.S. District Judge William Alsup is scheduled to hear both motions on April 24.

As XBIZ reported, in July Judge Alsup Judge William Alsup dismissed claims against OnlyFans’ parent companies, Fenix International Ltd. and Fenix Internet LLC, and against owner Leon Radvinsky, following the plaintiffs’ disavowal of allegations that wire transfers were used bribe senior Meta executives.

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