Facebook privacy “class action” shifted from one Austrian court to another

Vienna’s commercial court has decided it’s not the right place to adjudicate a massive and unprecedented class action suit over Facebook(s fb)’s alleged breaking of European privacy law. As Network World reported on Friday, the court said the suit should be heard in a nearby court that deals with civil cases. Max Schrems, the man orchestrating the suit, told me this was because the case straddled the line between contract and data protection issues, and the court had merely decided the latter was more relevant than the former. “It’s a wholly administrative thing,” he said. 25,000 people have joined the suit, and another 20,000 have signed up to follow if Schrems decides it’s practical to expand the list.

Today in Cleantech

Zipcar continues its attack on Europe by purchasing a car sharing startup in Austria to extend its reach beyond London and Barcelona, where it has made similar acquisitions. Europeans are generally very open to sharing and with high gas prices and expensive cars there, the economics of car sharing make a lot of sense to your average consumer in Europe. For Zipcar, it’s clear that the company is going to have spend to get into the European market since there are more car sharing companies there where the trend has been around for longer. Zipcar CEO Scott Griffith also told GigaOM’s Katie Fehrenbacher that Asia is on the “medium term” horizon as a future expansion point. What does this all say about the U.S. market? It’s hard to read the tea leaves, but I think we’d all accept that once you’ve gone beyond New York, D.C., and San Francisco, the most promising future markets for car sharing may well be outside the U.S.

Students force Facebook to cough up more user data

Facebook is giving users the chance to download more of the information that it holds about them than ever before, but the small group of Austrian law students who forced the change say the social network is still holding back.