LinkedIn Lawsuit Again Shows Personal Relationships Can Have Commercial Value

I have argued for years that social media will help redefine and expand the right of publicity–that common-law right to control the commercial exploitation of one’s personal identity–because the entire medium is premised on users’ identities. We saw a major milestone in this regard with the 2011 decisions in Cohen v. Facebook and Fraley v. […]

Instagram Harassment Justifies a PPO

As has been extensively reported, the Supreme Court recently heard argument on a case involving threats made on Facebook, which raises the question of where the line is between free speech and criminal liability. But this is not a one-time-only issue. Courts across the country deal with the consequences of unchecked online speech all the […]

Read What You Click – Courts Are Enforcing Online Arbitration Provisions

Two courts at opposite ends of the country have upheld online arbitration contracts in recent months. I’ve previously written about the hesitance some courts have had to enforce “click-wrap” arbitration provisions unless the person has actually seen and read the terms of the agreement. As ecommerce becomes an increasingly important facet of our everyday lives, however, some courts seem […]

App Developers Get More Guidance for Complying With COPPA

After giving the mobile app industry a few years of heartburn over the breadth and ambiguity of its expanded Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule, the Federal Trade Commission has gradually begun to provide some much-needed clarity. Earlier this month, the FTC revised three portions of “Part H” in its online FAQs, which deal with how entities […]

You Don’t Have to Give in to Yelp! Bullies

Last year, a local family contacted me about a demand letter they received from a nearby business. That business had served them poorly, and they said so in a review they posted on Yelp!, the popular social media review site. As more and more companies are doing, this business responded not by improving their services or apologizing […]

Anonymous Social Media in the Workplace

One of the latest trends in social media is anonymous speech. Sites such as Secret, Whisper, and Yik Yak invite users to post without identifying themselves. The goal is to release users from their inhibitions and, according to Secret, allow “people to be themselves and share anything they’re thinking and feeling with their friends without […]

FTC: Social Media Contests Are Endorsements, Require Disclosure

“This pin motivated by my desire to win fabulous prizes.” That’s the sort of disclaimer that participants in social media contests may need to start using under a March 20, 2014 letter ruling from the Federal Trade Commission. As I’ve written and presented about before, the FTC has been very strict in recent years about […]

Drafting Social Media Policies in 2014

In addition to my litigation practice, I have been drafting social media policies for clients–and advising other lawyers on how to do so–for years now.  Are they all the same?  Is there anything new to be said? No, they’re not all the same, and yes, best practices continue to evolve along with the technology.  Earlier […]

More From The #Jury Box: The Latest on Juries and Social Media

I’m excited to report on the latest addition to the scholarship on jurors’ use of social media. As reflected in my Wassom on Social Media e-treatise, juror misuse of social media has been rampant, and courts have tried various strategies to mitigate the problem. A new article called “More From The #Jury Box” by U.S. District […]