This case was last updated from U.S. District Courts on 12/27/2022 at 07:11:52 (UTC).

Crane v. The New York Times Company

Case Summary

On October 28, 2022, Mark Crane (“Plaintiff”), individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, represented by E. Powell Miller of The Miller Law Firm, filed a personal injury lawsuit against The New York Times Company (“NYT” or “Defendant”), seeking declaratory relief and damages for Defendant’s alleged violation of Michigan’s Video Rental Privacy Act. This case was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, with Judges Mark A. Goldsmith and Kimberly G. Altman presiding.

In the complaint, the plaintiff stated, “Defendant The New York Times Company rented, exchanged, and/or otherwise disclosed detailed information about Plaintiff’s The New York Times newspaper subscriptions to data aggregators, data appenders, data cooperatives, and list brokers, among others, which in turn disclosed Plaintiff’s information to aggressive advertisers, political organizations, and non-profit companies. As a result, Plaintiff has received a barrage of unwanted junk mail.” 

The plaintiff alleged, “During the relevant pre-July 31, 2016 time period, i.e., between March 24, 2016 and July 30, 2016, numerous list brokers, data aggregators, data cooperatives, data brokers, and others, including but not limited to NextMark, Experian, Direct Magazine, Facebook, and Infogroup (now known as Data Axle) and its subsidiary Exact Data, acting as third-party intermediaries on behalf of NYT, obtained from NYT and then disclosed to numerous other third parties the Private Reading Information of all of the subscribers and recently expired subscribers to The New York Times and NYT’s other publications.”

The plaintiff further alleged, “Notably, the Direct Magazine offering confirms that The New York Times subscriber information has been shared and supplemented, or enhanced, with third-party Experian’s demographic data prior to being rented out to third-party mailers including ‘[f]undraiser[s].’ The lists of Michigan subscribers that NYT sold, rented, exchanged, and otherwise disclosed to third parties during the relevant pre-July 31, 2016 time period included the full names and addresses of each subscriber to The New York Times.”

The plaintiff then alleged, “Although at some point NYT ceased making its ‘data cards’ available on list brokers’ publicly accessible websites (the data cards shown above are no longer publicly advertised online), NYT nonetheless continued to sell, rent, exchange, and/or otherwise disclose all of its subscribers’ Private Reading Information to data aggregators, data appenders, data cooperatives, and list brokers, among others, throughout the relevant pre-July 31, 2016 time period.”

The plaintiff additionally alleged, “To supplement its revenues, NYT rents, exchanges, or otherwise discloses its customers’ information—including their full names, titles of publications subscribed to, and home addresses (collectively ‘Private Reading Information’), as well as myriad of other categories of individualized data and demographic information such as gender and age—to data aggregators, data appenders, data cooperatives, and other third parties without the written consent of its customers.”

The plaintiff also alleged, “By renting, exchanging, or otherwise disclosing—rather than selling—its customers’ Private Reading Information, NYT is able to disclose the information time and time again to countless third parties. NYT’s disclosures of Private Reading Information and other individualized information is not only unlawful, but also dangerous because it allows for the targeting of particularly vulnerable members of society.”

Plaintiff stated one claim for the alleged violation of the Michigan Video Rental Privacy Act.

In its prayer for relief, the plaintiff requested a judgment for declaratory relief. The plaintiff also requested an award $5,000 to Plaintiff and each Class member along with prejudgment interest.

This is a summary of a legal complaint. All statements, claims, and allegations listed herein reflect the position of the plaintiff only and do not represent the position of UniCourt. Additionally, this case summary may not reflect the current position of the parties to this litigation or the current status of this case. To view the latest case updates and court documents, please sign up for a UniCourt account.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    2:22-CV-12603

  • Filing Date:

    10/28/2022

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Personal Injury - Other Personal Injury

Judge Details

Presiding Judge

Stephen J. Murphy, III

Referral Judge

David R. Grand

 

Party Details

Plaintiff

Mark Crane

Defendant

The New York Times Company

Attorney/Law Firm Details

Plaintiff Attorneys

Frank S. Hedin

Attorney at Hedin Hall LLP

1395 Brickell Ave, Suite 900

Miami, FL 33131

Gregory A. Mitchell

Attorney at The Miller Law Firm, P.C.

950 W. University Drive, Suite 300

Rochester, MI 48307

Joseph I. Marchese

Attorney at Bursor & Fisher, P.A.

888 Seventh Avenue

New York, NY 10019

Philip L. Fraietta

Attorney at Bursor & Fisher, P.A.

888 Seventh Avenue

New York, NY 10019

Sharon S. Almonrode

Attorney at The Miller Law Firm, P.C.

950 West University Drive, Suite 300

Rochester, MI 48307

E. Powell Miller

Attorney at The Miller Law Firm

950 W. University Drive, Suite 300

Rochester, MI 48307

 

Court Documents

#9

(#9) CERTIFICATE of Service/Summons Returned Executed. The New York Times Company served on 12/14/2022, answer due 1/4/2023. (Miller, E.) (Entered: 12/15/2022)

#8

(#8) ORDER REASSIGNING CASE from District Judge Mark A. Goldsmith and Magistrate Judge Kimberly G. Altman to District Judge Stephen J. Murphy, III and Magistrate Judge David R. Grand. (SSch) (Entered: 11/03/2022)

#7

(#7) ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: Sharon S. Almonrode appearing on behalf of Mark Crane (Almonrode, Sharon) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

#6

(#6) ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: Gregory A. Mitchell appearing on behalf of Mark Crane (Mitchell, Gregory) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

#5

(#5) NOTICE of Appearance by Joseph I. Marchese on behalf of Mark Crane. (Marchese, Joseph) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

#4

(#4) NOTICE of Appearance by Philip L. Fraietta on behalf of Mark Crane. (Fraietta, Philip) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

#3

(#3) SUMMONS Issued for *The New York Times Company* (TTho) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

#2

(#2) NOTICE of Appearance by Frank S. Hedin on behalf of Mark Crane. (Hedin, Frank) (Entered: 10/30/2022)

1 #21

Exhibit T-Californias Reader Privacy Act Signed into Law, Electronic Frontier Fo

1 #19

Exhibit R-European Network and Information Security Agency, Study on monetising

1 #18

Exhibit Q-Joshua Brustein, Start-Ups Seek to Help Users Put a Price on Their Per

1 #16

Exhibit O-Fraud Against Seniors: Hearing before the Senate Special Committee on

1 #13

Exhibit L-Bipartisan Group of Lawmakers Query Data Brokers About Practices Invol

1 #12

Exhibit K-Letter from Senator John D. Rockefeller IV, Chairman, Senate Committee

1 #11

Exhibit J-Natasha Singer, You for Sale: Mapping, and Sharing, the Consumer Genom

1 #9

Exhibit H-Statement of FTC Commissioner Pamela Jones Harbour (Dec. 7, 2009)

1 #7

Exhibit F-The Information Marketplace: Merging and Exchanging Consumer Data (Mar

1 #6

Exhibit E-Privacy: Sales, Rentals of Videos, etc., House Legislative Analysis Se

18 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 12/15/2022
  • View Court Documents
  • Docket(#9) CERTIFICATE of Service/Summons Returned Executed. The New York Times Company served on 12/14/2022, answer due 1/4/2023. (Miller, E.) (Entered: 12/15/2022)

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  • 11/03/2022
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  • Docket(#8) ORDER REASSIGNING CASE from District Judge Mark A. Goldsmith and Magistrate Judge Kimberly G. Altman to District Judge Stephen J. Murphy, III and Magistrate Judge David R. Grand. (SSch) (Entered: 11/03/2022)

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  • 10/31/2022
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  • Docket(#7) ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: Sharon S. Almonrode appearing on behalf of Mark Crane (Almonrode, Sharon) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

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  • 10/31/2022
  • View Court Documents
  • Docket(#6) ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: Gregory A. Mitchell appearing on behalf of Mark Crane (Mitchell, Gregory) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

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  • 10/31/2022
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  • Docket(#5) NOTICE of Appearance by Joseph I. Marchese on behalf of Mark Crane. (Marchese, Joseph) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

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  • 10/31/2022
  • View Court Documents
  • Docket(#4) NOTICE of Appearance by Philip L. Fraietta on behalf of Mark Crane. (Fraietta, Philip) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

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  • 10/31/2022
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  • Docket(#3) SUMMONS Issued for *The New York Times Company* (TTho) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

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  • 10/31/2022
  • DocketA United States Magistrate Judge of this Court is available to conduct all proceedings in this civil action in accordance with 28 U.S.C. 636c and FRCP 73. The Notice, Consent, and Reference of a Civil Action to a Magistrate Judge form is available for download at #http://www.mied.uscourts.gov (TTho) (Entered: 10/31/2022)

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  • 10/30/2022
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  • Docket(#2) NOTICE of Appearance by Frank S. Hedin on behalf of Mark Crane. (Hedin, Frank) (Entered: 10/30/2022)

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  • 10/28/2022
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  • Docket(#1) COMPLAINT filed by Mark Crane against The New York Times Company with Jury Demand. Plaintiff requests summons issued. Receipt No: AMIEDC-9110619 - Fee: $ 402. County of 1st Plaintiff: Oakland - County Where Action Arose: Oakland - County of 1st Defendant: Out of State. [Previously dismissed case: No] [Possible companion case(s): United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, 2:22-cv-10633-SJM-DRG, Judge Stephen J. Murphy, III] (Attachments: #1 Index of Exhibits, #2 Exhibit A-NextMarks The New York Times Mailing List, #3 Exhibit B-Direct Magazines The New York Times Enhanced Database, #4 Exhibit C-Chris Jay Hoofnagle & Jennifer King, Consumer Information Sharing: Where the Sun Still Dont Shine Univ. of California School of Law (2008), #5 Exhibit D-The New York Times, Privacy Policy, June 10, 2015, #6 Exhibit E-Privacy: Sales, Rentals of Videos, etc., House Legislative Analysis Section, H.B. No. 5331, Jan. 20, 1989, #7 Exhibit F-The Information Marketplace: Merging and Exchanging Consumer Data (Mar. 13, 2001), #8 Exhibit G-Webs Hot New Commodity: Privacy, WSJ (Feb. 28, 2011), #9 Exhibit H-Statement of FTC Commissioner Pamela Jones Harbour (Dec. 7, 2009), #10 Exhibit I-Martha C. White, Big Data Knows What Youre Doing Right Now, TIME.com (July 31, 2012), #11 Exhibit J-Natasha Singer, You for Sale: Mapping, and Sharing, the Consumer Genome, N.Y. Times (June 16, 2012), #12 Exhibit K-Letter from Senator John D. Rockefeller IV, Chairman, Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, to Scott E. Howe, Chief Executive Officer, Acxiom (Oct. 9, 2012), #13 Exhibit L-Bipartisan Group of Lawmakers Query Data Brokers About Practices Involving Consumers Personal Information, Website of Senator Ed Markey (July 24, 2012), #14 Exhibit M-Prize Scams, Federal Trade Commission, #15 Exhibit N-Charles Duhigg, Bilking the Elderly, With a Corporate Assist, N.Y. Times, May 20, 2007, #16 Exhibit O-Fraud Against Seniors: Hearing before the Senate Special Committee on Aging (August 10, 2000), #17 Exhibit P-2014 TRUSTe US Consumer Confidence Privacy Report, TRUSTe, #18 Exhibit Q-Joshua Brustein, Start-Ups Seek to Help Users Put a Price on Their Personal Data, N.Y. Times (Feb. 12, 2012), #19 Exhibit R-European Network and Information Security Agency, Study on monetising privacy (Feb. 27, 2012), #20 Exhibit S-Hann, et al., The Value of Online Information Privacy: An Empirical Investigation (Oct. 2003), #21 Exhibit T-Californias Reader Privacy Act Signed into Law, Electronic Frontier Foundation (Oct. 3, 2011)) (Miller, E.) (Entered: 10/28/2022)

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