Please join us for the third in a series of webinars focusing on the intersection of social medial, law, and business. This program is targeted to legal counsel or marketing personnel in businesses that want to engage consumers through social media platforms. It will focus on the regulatory considerations surrounding social media, and advertising and marketing laws, with an emphasis on FTC issues.
Twenty years ago, the social media world we now live in was the stuff of science fiction. Today, social media is a critical business tool creating unprecedented opportunities for direct consumer interaction, brand awareness, checking the pulse of key constituents and so much more. This incredible opportunity is not risk-free, however, and is the subject of new laws, application of old laws to new situations, and a significant amount of murkiness. Fortunately, the risks can be managed by considering the issues created by social media and that begins with asking the right questions. Below is a discussion of ten important questions every business can start with to better benefit from its social media presence.
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On January 23, 2013, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) published proposed guidance to supervised institutions regarding social media use. The proposed guidance reminds financial institutions that they must comply with consumer protection laws when they engage in regulated activities over social media, but does not dwell on how an institution must comply with particular compliance obligations in the social media context. Rather, the guidance is meant to highlight the broader compliance, reputational, and operational risks that institutions should address within their risk management programs. Read More
It is increasingly common for employers to request that job applicants and employees divulge the passwords to their Facebook accounts and to other social media sites. This trend has not gone unnoticed by the media and privacy advocates, which view this practice as an intrusive violation of individual privacy. On the other hand, employers often have valid reasons to exercise oversight over social media activities, especially in financial services and other highly regulated industries where employees’ activities may be more likely to cause the company to incur liability. Read More
By: Andrew L. Caplan* and David A. Tallman
*Mr. Caplan is not yet admitted to practice; admission to the NY Bar pending.
Litigation making its way through the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California could have broad implications for the use of social media websites for marketing purposes. The central issue in PhoneDog, LLC v. Kravitz is the extent to which a company can control or limit the use of a social media account created for the company’s benefit but used by an individual employee in that employee’s name. The case illustrates the competing concerns that companies face with respect to social media marketing. Some companies may prefer to allow employees to engage with social media relatively independently in order to mitigate the risk that courts or regulatory authorities will impute employee-generated content to the company or subject the content to substantive regulation. But by doing so, companies may lose the ability to manage key social media relationships. Read More