Ferrari Fans Sue Carmaker and Facebook for Seizing Control of their Pages

Olivier and Sammy Wasem 1 photo
Photo: We Support Sammy Wasem on Facebook
They worked countless hours to build up Ferrari fan pages that now have millions of followers, but lost everything when Facebook reportedly teamed up with the Italian sportscar maker to seize control over their creations. A Swiss father and his son are now suing the two giants as they claim the two pages they created value millions of dollars in advertising.
The lawsuit was filed in a California state court and follows earlier legal disputes in Europe that have been going on for years now.

According to the complaint filled on the 14th October, Olivier and Sammy Wasem claim to have spent countless hours adding content and managing the fans sites, Dubbed “Ferrari Fan Page” and “Formula 1 Vision”, which they say have attracted more than 16 million fans.

"Ferrari wants, Ferrari takes"

Ferrari wanted it. So, with Facebook’s knowledge and substantial assistance, Ferrari took it,” the Wasems, who live in Geneva, wrote in their complaint.

Reports are the scandal started in 2008, when the page debuted. Ferrari created its own page that allegedly wasn’t as popular and later asked Facebook to give it administrative control over the Ferrari Fan Page. One year later, the Swiss family received a letter in which they were announced “legal issues” had forced them to take over.

Facebook cut off their access entirely, four years after they created the page

Moreover, after the Ferrari-co administrator was added without permission from the Wasems, the Prancing Horse automaker started negotiating over the existing page and over creating a Formula 1 page with its original creators. Facebook cut them off the administrative rights in 2012, and ended up cutting them off their access entirely to both fan pages last year.

In their complaint, the two claim Facebook told their attorney that the Formula 1 page had been taken over by hackers and later on restored their rights. But shortly after, the Italian luxury car maker did their own complaint to the giant social network, stating the page violated its intellectual property rights. This lead to the page deactivation and all the fans were migrated to a similar page one Ferrari’s control.

They ask for millions of dollars in court

The Wasems seek at least half the value of the two pages they created, which now could be worth anywhere form $174 to more than $1,000 per fan in advertising, according to them.

As you probably already know, Facebook allows anybody to build up their fan page as long as they don’t claim to speak for the company and make clear it’s not the official page. Nevertheless, the scandal could turn out to be quite the deal for Zuckerberg’s giant social network considering it’s not the first time controversy is brought upon.
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