The Road Ends for Consumers Pursuing Amazon ‘Sidewalk’ Mesh Network Class Action

In response to the plaintiff-couple’s request to amend their complaint against Amazon, the Seattle, Wash. court overseeing the matter said that the revised allegations would not change the outcome of its previous ruling. Per an opinion issued last Thursday, Judge Barbara J. Rothstein said that the amended pleading falls short of showing injury due to Amazon’s alleged conduct of stealing their internet bandwidth for use in its mesh network called “Sidewalk.”

The case dates to last July when the aggrieved consumers filed a complaint against Amazon over the company’s mesh network program, which was designed to eliminate interstitial gaps in WiFi and allows low-bandwidth devices like outdoor security lights and smart locks better internet access.

Mary and Matthew Street pled Washington Consumer Protection Act (CPA) and Theft of Telecommunications Services claims, arguing in their most recent iteration of the complaint that “on information and belief, Amazon’s use of the Street Plaintiffs’ bandwidth through Sidewalk consumed data from the Streets’ limited Internet data allocations and also exposed them to possible overage charges for exceeding their data allocation.” 

The tabulated damages included the value of their lost internet bandwidth, time spent learning about the Sidewalk network, disabling the Sidewalk function on enabled devices, and the costs of Internet data use overages, among other things. 

Previously, the court dismissed the lawsuit as too speculative.

In declining the newly pleaded allegations, Judge Rothstein opined that the plaintiffs’ use of the qualifier “on information and belief” coupled with their failure to explain when, how often, or even if Amazon ever used the plaintiffs’ bandwidth for its own purposes, was too tenuous. Further, the court ruled that even were it to assume that Sidewalk accessed plaintiffs’ internet as claimed, they did not articulate a cognizable injury as required for constitutional standing.

Accordingly, Judge Rothstein entered judgment in Amazon’s favor and dismissed the action for good.

The consumers are represented by Tousley Brain Stephens PLLC, The Brad Sohn Law Firm PLLC, and LippSmith LLP. Amazon is represented by Fenwick & West LLP.