Recent court document filings indicate that YouTube has become embroiled in the ongoing class-action lawsuit against the criticized former cryptocurrency platform BitConnect. This comes as the claimants argue that YouTube ”failed as a gatekeeper” to protect users from BitConnect’s advertising.
The six claimants in the case, represented by the Silver Miller law firm, contend that BitConnect was a massive Ponzi scheme
More specifically, they argue that BitConnect’s issued tokens were, in fact, unregistered securities and that the investments from new investors were funneled to existing investors to meet their expected returns. The six plaintiffs also state that they suffered personal losses to the tune of $771,000.
The BitConnect cryptocurrency exchange shut down on January 16th of this year following cease and desist orders from regulators in Texas and North Carolina. However, these most recent court documents also include YouTube as a defendant.
Supposedly, BitConnect together with affiliated entities is said to have published more than 70,000 hours of unedited content to YouTube. Moreover, these are said to have generated approximately 58 million views, exposing a large number of YouTube users to them.
The claimants argue that YouTube should have delisted and demonetized these videos, and their failure to do so has allegedly made ”countless” YouTube users vulnerable to these harmful videos, as well as inadvertently subject to BitConnect’s Ponzi scheme.
David Silver of Silver Miller clarified that the inclusion of YouTube as a defendant in the case was justified due to YouTube being liable for failing to act out against these videos. ”YouTube failed as a gatekeeper to protect its users from and warn its users of […] harm,” the document states.
Silver also indicated that YouTube’s association with BitConnect was reason enough for their inclusion in the trial, stating that ”Sometimes when you lie down with dogs, you get fleas.”
The claimants also suggest that the delisting of subversive BitConnect and BitConnect-related videos would have prevented the claimants and others from falling prey to BitConnect’s investment scheme.
In fact, a myriad of YouTube users actually released videos arguing that BitConnect was a scam and supposedly notified YouTube. This raises some questions as to why YouTube did not act – however, details on the subject are sure to emerge from the ongoing lawsuit.
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Rasmus Pihl is a writer for Toshi Times by day and an avid follower of the cryptocurrency industry by night. Rasmus holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from the Gothenburg School of Business, Economics, and Law and runs a Swedish marketing consulting firm. Moreover, when he isn’t writing for Toshi Times, traveling, working or changing the world in some other capacity, Rasmus is more than likely caught up in postgraduate studies.