U.S. District Court Magistrate Paul Grewal in San Jose, Calif. said in a ruling issued last week that the consumers could not proceed with their case because they didn't allege that they were harmed by Google.
"Plaintiffs do not allege economic injury from any dissemination -- or any dissemination at all -- or any injury in the form of loss of the plaintiffs’ ability to sell their own information or its market value," Grewal wrote last week in a decision dismissing the lawsuit. The ruling was issued "with prejudice" -- meaning that the consumers can't beef up their allegations and refile the lawsuit.
In his dismissal order, Grewal rejected the consumers' arguments that Google deprived them of the ability to sell data about themselves.
He wrote that the consumers didn't allege "the existence of a market for their email addresses and names" or "any impairment of their ability to participate in that market."
"Indeed," he added, "the named plaintiffs freely publish their names and email addresses through their work websites. If disclosure did occur, then, it would not constitute injury."
Google still faces a separate lawsuit about its prior practice of sharing app purchasers' names. That case was brought by Illinois resident Alice Svenson, who alleges that Google shared her personal information with app developer YCDroid after she purchased its SMS-to-email app for $1.77.