8 August 2022
The PFA, together with the US state of Ohio, has been appointed to lead a lawsuit against Facebook/Meta Inc. in California with a view to seeking compensation for price losses caused by the company’s misleading information to the market.
The case is based on the fact that Facebook/Meta Inc. has misled investors on a number of issues during the period of the lawsuit (April 29, 2021 to October 21, 2021), including how an algorithm change intended to increase user engagement led to misinformation and harmful content of various types became disproportionately widespread.
Additionally, despite public assurances that it applies standards of conduct equally to all users, the company built a system that exempted millions of high-profile users. This appears from an internal investigation at Facebook from 2019. The information about the company’s unwillingness to protect its users became public knowledge through investigations by journalists at The Wall Street Journal and a whistleblower from the company.
Facebook / Meta Inc.’s misinformation to the market led to a significant price drop and damage to its investors. The Federal District Court in the Northern District of California, which oversees the investor case against the company, has subsequently chosen PFA Pension and the State of Ohio (Ohio Public Employees Retirement System) to lead the case in order to seek compensation for the losses suffered by the affected investors (class action). PFA Pension will act as a so-called ‘class representative’ to represent the interests of PFA’s customers and the other investors worldwide.
PFA also has a sustainable development interest in conducting the case to ensure that Facebook / Meta inc. henceforth acts in a way that ensures a healthy life for everyone and promotes well-being for all age groups (UN Global Goal 3 on health and well-being).
“At PFA, we have a responsibility to invest our customers’ pension savings responsibly. As investors, we must be able to trust that the listed companies in which we invest our clients’ money provide timely, complete and accurate information to us and the rest of the market. Additionally, we believe that Facebook/Meta Inc., as one of the world’s largest content providers and social media, has a responsibility to uphold its publicly stated obligations to apply its standards of conduct equally to all users and to take appropriate steps to prevent proliferation of misinformation or harmful content.”Source: PFA
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