Constitutional Law Cyberspace Headline

Google Buzz Class Action Settlement

Last night, Google sent out a “mandatory announcement” to all Gmail users in the United States as part of a legal settlement, which was authorized by the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.

The note stipulated that Google has reached a settlement in a lawsuit regarding Google Buzz, a service Google launched within Gmail in February 2010.

Shortly after Google Buzz’s launch, many Gmail users voiced their concern about potential breach of their privacy.  Google ended up being sued by a group of Buzz users, but recently reached a settlement in the case.

The terms of the settlement includes Google’s commitment of $8.5 million to an independent fund, most of which will support organizations promoting privacy education and policy on the web.  Google will also do more to educate people about privacy controls specific to Buzz.

Just because you use Gmail does not mean that you will now receive some sort of compensation based on the lawsuit brought by the group of Google Buzz users.  The Court will consider final approval of the agreement on January 31, 2011.