Online dating just got more sketchy. Adult film star "Melissa Midwest" Harrington is suing Match.com because the site allegedly used pictures of her in fake profiles meant to entice paying members to the site. The New York Post reports that Harrington was once one of the top 10 most-searched names on the Internet, and she is now the public face of the trademark infringement case against the popular dating website.
The $4.5 billion suit was originally filed on Jan. 27 by model Yuliana Avalos. Avalos claims to have found her image “in hundreds if not thousands of fraudulent profiles," and Harrington says she has received “thousands of complaints from American romance-scam victims over the past six-plus years."
Harrington, best known for appearing in magazines such as Playboy and FHM, claims she never created an account with Match.com, nor did she provide the website with photos of herself. However, Match.com is firing back. A spokesperson representing the accused said the lawsuit is the actual fraud as it is “filled with outlandish conspiracy theories and clumsy fabrications in lieu of factual or legal basis.”
Admittedly, the lawsuit's claim that subscribers are being scammed by Internet cafe-based criminals in Nigeria, Ghana, and Russia does seem a little outlandish. But it doesn't seem to be outside a dating site's moral scope to dangle pictures of attractive men and women like carrots in front of date-hungry potential subscribers. Have you seen the pictures of the guys that are allegedly using Zoosk? Highly suspect.
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