Leon Tsoukernik, a regular high-stakes poker player, claims the European casino he owns, King’s Resort, has been the victim of a series of fake mobile adverts from Facebook. As such, he filed a $24 million lawsuit against the social media company.
King’s Resort boasts the top poker room in the Czech Republic, and it’s also the annual home of the World Series of Poker Europe. Tsoukernik heavily promotes his casino worldwide, including at the WSOP in Las Vegas each summer. The casino boasts the largest poker room in the entire continent, and one of the biggest in the world.
While King’s Resort offers numerous casino games, poker is its staple, and that’s due to the owner’s passion for the game. But one thing he apparently doesn’t care for is Facebook allegedly damaging his casino’s brand.
Damaging the brand’s reputation
Last month, the casino warned its mobile users that certain online casinos were using malicious mobile adverts under the King’s Resort brand to lure customers into signing up for an online gambling site. The only problem is, King’s doesn’t own an online casino. The ads read: “the best Czech casino is now online!”
“Someone who cannot be traced and therefore doesn’t even have a license to operate has decided to use our name, our casino, and advertise on Facebook,” Tsoukernik said in an interview with a Czech newspaper. “As a result, [Facebook] is helping fraudsters and takes money for it. That’s why we’re suing [them] for harm.” The casino announced on Twitter that a lawsuit for $23 million against Facebook and its founder Mark Zuckerberg had been filed.
Facebook didn’t post the ads, and this is where the lawsuit becomes interesting. The ads were posted by Facebook users, presumably a company that owns an online casino that was attempting to lure in customers via the King’s brand. So, some might argue that Facebook isn’t responsible for the actions of their users.
But the lawsuit claims King’s sent Facebook a request to remove the fake ads multiple times. Apparently, the social media giant didn’t do it. That’s what led Tsoukernik to determine filing a lawsuit was the right play.
“In other media, if we want to advertise, they require us to prove the license, trademarks for the logo and the like,” Tsoukernik said. “Even two years ago, Facebook demanded it from us, so I don’t understand how they can release such fraudulent advertising.”
King’s Casino is set to host the 2021 World Series of Poker Europe series in November. But the casino still hasn’t reopened since the May 2020 due to the pandemic.
Featured image source: Flickr