Jenner & Block

Client Alert: Named Plaintiff Drops Claims Against Gannett as the Definition of “Personally Identifiable Information” Under the Video Privacy Protection Act Evolves

Last week, the named plaintiff in a putative class action, Yershov v. Gannett Satellite Information Network, voluntarily dismissed his claims alleging Gannett violated the Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA), which imposes civil liability on any “video tape service provider who knowingly discloses, to any person, personally identifiable information concerning any consumer of such provider.”  18 U.S.C. § 2710(b)(1).  This is noteworthy as it comes just a year after the First Circuit concluded that the named plaintiff in Yershov had plausibly asserted a VPPA violation by alleging that, when Gannett disclosed to Adobe the title of the videos viewed on Gannett’s “USA Today Mobile App,” GPS coordinates at the time of viewing, and unique identifiers associated with a device, Gannett knew that Adobe had the ability to link that information to a specific name by name, address, and telephone number, and the disclosure of information was “reasonably and foreseeably likely to reveal” which videos plaintiff had viewed.