6 Credit Card Networks Sued Over 'Bad Lists'

6 Credit Card Networks Sued Over 'Bad Lists'

SAN FRANCISCO — Half a dozen credit card networks discriminate in keeping “bad lists” that prohibit the selling of adult-oriented materials, psychic services and paraphernalia such as bongs and hookahs, according to a class-action suit filed on Thursday.

The class suit, filed by convenience store operator Abu Maisa, alleges that Google, Intuit, Square, Stripe, Flint Mobile and PayPal each incorporate a “bad list” that sets boundaries of what the operator can and can’t sell.

Abu Maisa claims in the suit, filed at San Francisco federal court, that it has been so handcuffed on the types of products it sells, it can’t even offer Penthouse magazine on its shelves for fear of risk that its accounts would be shut.

Attorney William McGrane of McGrane LLP, who filed the case on behalf of Abu Maisa, told XBIZ that the claim aims at the civil rights violations of business categories that are being arbitrarily being discriminated against because of their lawful occupation.

The suit, which includes exhibits of each of the six credit card companies’ “bad lists,” involves “attempts by many large credit card processing companies … to infringe free speech by outlawing those who are engaged in [legal businesses],” McGrane said.

“[E]ach and every other category of ‘bad lists’ are either so vaguely described as to be unintelligible or else constitute an entirely lawful business/business activity under any and all applicable federal and state laws,” the suit said, noting that the practice is contrary to California’s Unruh Civil Rights Act.

Under the Unruh Civil Rights Act, all persons are entitled to full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges, or services in all business establishments, including both private and public entities.

McGrane estimates that the six credit card companies could be on the hook for $1 billion in minimum statutory liability in the Abu Maisa claim, which seeks other class members, including those who similarly sell adult-oriented products and have been faced with the companies’ “bad lists.”

If the case is certified for class action, plaintiffs could be entitled to recover minimum statutory damages of $4,000.

View lawsuit


Copyright © 2023 Adnet Media. All Rights Reserved. XBIZ is a trademark of Adnet Media.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.

More News

CalExotics Doubles Donations to LBBC for October

For the month of October, CalExotics is doubling its donations to Living Beyond Breast Cancer (LBBC) from the sales of all Inspire collection products.

Will Ranscombe of Love Not War to Speak at RSVC

Will Ranscombe, CEO of British pleasure brand Love Not War, will speak at the Reimagine Sexuality Virtual Conference this weekend.

Conservative AGs Send Letter to Aylo About Supposed Moderation 'Loophole'

South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson, along with 25 other attorneys general largely from Republican-controlled states, sent an open letter to Pornhub parent company Aylo on Friday demanding explanations about a supposed “loophole” that allowed users to post CSAM.

The Stockroom, 'How to Build a Sex Room' Host Team Up for Limited Collection

The Stockroom has released a new limited-edition collection of bondage gear in collaboration with Melanie Rose, host of the hit Netflix show “How to Build a Sex Room.”

FSC Calls on North Carolina Governor to Veto Age-Verification Bill

Free Speech Coalition (FSC) has sent a letter to North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper, asking him to veto House Bill 8, to which a Republican legislator attached a copycat age-verification amendment.

Stalker Ex-Boyfriend Convicted of Murdering Pineapple Support Therapist Amie Harwick

The ex-boyfriend of slain Pineapple Support therapist Dr. Amie Harwick was convicted Thursday of first-degree murder for her February 2020 death.

Eldorado, Exsens Team Up for Virtual Training Event

Eldorado has joined forces with Exsens for a virtual private training event to take place Oct. 4.

Pipedream Now Shipping 'PDX Plus Shower Therapy' Strokers

Pipedream Products is now shipping its PDX Plus Shower Therapy strokers, discreetly concealed as shampoo bottles.

Leading Free Speech Groups File Brief Blasting Texas' Age Verification and Mandatory Labeling Law

Several leading free-speech groups, led by the ACLU, urged the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit on Thursday to block the Texas age verification law that requires adult websites to post anti-porn propaganda, contending that this violates the First Amendment.

Honey Play Box Debuts 'Pearl' Panty Vibe

Honey Play Box has unveiled its new Pearl panty vibe.

Show More