A dating website aimed at helping people have affairs is counter-suing an ex-employee after she accused the company of making her type up hundreds of fake profiles of sexy women.
Last year HRM reported on Doriana Silva's suit
alleging that she had suffered permanent wrist damage from typing thousands of fake profiles in the space of a few weeks. At the time, a spokesperson for Ashley Madison called the suit "frivolous" and "extortionary"
Now the company's parent company, Avid Life Media, is countersuing Silva, alleging that she kept confidential documents, including copies of her "work product and training materials." The company is seeking to recover the documents as well as $100,000 in damages plus legal costs.
Silva claims she held on to copies of the fake profiles she created and documents "related to the creation" of those profiles, but denies they are the property of her former employer. According to court documents, she says she turned the documents over to her lawyer to use as evidence in the proceedings.
A spokesman for the company says the documents are related to "quality assurance testing" and that allegations of ethical breaches are simply an attempt to make the company look bad. It petitioned the court to strike references to "ethics" and "unethical practices" from the statement of claim, but a judge found the references necessary to describe "the factual context in which the injuries were sustained."
Silva's claim against Ashley Madison indicates she wrote thousands of fake female profiles, which she was led to believe it was a normal practice in the industry. The amount of typing required in the space of three weeks caused wrist injuries that have prevented her from working since 2011, court documents say.
She is seeking $20 million for what she calls the company's "unjust enrichment" at her expense.
In its statement of defence, the company says Silva waited until the day after her probation period ended in June 2011 to mention her purported injuries, then took more than six months off as she sought treatment in Brazil. The company claims Silva has travelled extensively, taking numerous beach vacations and taking part in activities such as jet skiing in the past two years.
"Additionally, despite the allegation that Ms. Silva remains unable to keyboard, Ms. Silva has maintained a very active presence on the internet," the document says.