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Socially Aware Blog The Law and Business of Social Media

Tag Archives: Personal Information

Status Updates

Posted in Status Updates

May a lawyer ethically instruct a client to delete potentially damaging information from a client’s Facebook page? According to a new ethics opinion from the Philadelphia Bar Association, yes, so long as the information is preserved in some way, should it become relevant to the case. The opinion also determined that, under the Pennsylvania Rules… Continue Reading

Status Updates

Posted in Status Updates

Long arm of the law. A federal judge in Manhattan has upheld a magistrate judge’s ruling that Microsoft must turn over customer emails that are held in a Microsoft data center in Ireland. The key issue is whether communications kept in overseas data centers operated by American companies are beyond the reach of domestic search… Continue Reading

Status Updates

Posted in Status Updates

Going mainstream. For the first time, both Twitter and Facebook are seeing significant growth in online advertising placed by major companies for brands such as Heineken, Tide, McDonald’s, and Charmin. Major consumer products companies have long struggled with the question of how to reach consumers on their mobile devices, and right now, this appears to… Continue Reading

EU Cloud Standardisation Guidelines

Posted in Cloud Computing

In November 2012, we wrote an Alert about the European Commission’s Communication on Cloud Computing intended, it said, to “… unleash the potential of cloud computing in Europe”.  Sceptics were doubtful that the cloud industry needed much help from European regulators to thrive. Twenty months later, the Commission has begun to deliver on its key… Continue Reading

Hot Off the Press: The July Issue of Our Socially Aware Newsletter Is Now Available

Posted in FTC, IP, Litigation, Privacy, Terms of Use, UK High Court

The latest issue of our Socially Aware newsletter is now available here. Welcome to a special privacy issue of Socially Aware, focusing on recent privacy law developments relating to social media and the Internet. In this issue, we analyze a controversial European ruling that strengthens the right to be forgotten; we examine a recent California… Continue Reading

Status Updates

Posted in Status Updates

A Gallup survey found that a majority of Americans do not turn to social media when making purchasing decisions — but the survey appears to be flawed in several respects, especially because the information was gathered 18 months ago, which, let’s face it, is a virtual lifetime in social media marketing. Google has begun to implement… Continue Reading

“Do You Want to Know a Secret?” The Risks Posed by Anonymous Social Apps

Posted in Privacy

First we had social media platforms, but recently a variety of “anti-social” media platforms have emerged—well, anti-social in a sense. For years, social media platforms have encouraged (or even, in some cases, required) us to use our real identities, with the aim of building friendships and networks in the online world. But these new social… Continue Reading

Hot Off the Press: The May Issue of Our Socially Aware Newsletter Is Now Available

Posted in Copyright, FTC, Internet of Things, IP, Litigation, Privacy, SEC, Supreme Court, Terms of Use

The latest issue of our Socially Aware newsletter is now available here. In this issue of Socially Aware, our Burton Award-winning guide to the law and business of social media, we analyze a groundbreaking FTC complaint alleging deceptive practices online that could turn website Terms of Use into federal law; we summarize a U.S. Supreme… Continue Reading

French Consumer Association Takes on Internet Giants

Posted in Litigation, Privacy

Earlier this year, the French consumer association UFC-Que Choisir initiated proceedings before the Paris District Court against Google Inc., Facebook Inc. and Twitter Inc., accusing these companies of using confusing and unlawful online privacy policies and terms of use agreements in the French versions of their social media platforms; in particular, the consumer association argued… Continue Reading

European Court of Justice Strengthens Right to Be Forgotten

Posted in Litigation, Privacy

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) issued a quite surprising decision against Google which has significant implications for global companies. On May 13, 2014 the ECJ issued a ruling which did not follow the rationale or the conclusions of its Advocate General, but instead sided with the Spanish data protection authority (DPA) and found that:… Continue Reading

Snap Judgment: FTC Alleges Snapchat Did Not Keep Its Privacy and Security Promises, But Suggests Broad New Duty in the Process

Posted in FTC, Privacy

Snapchat’s recent settlement with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) generally provides a comprehensive but not groundbreaking roadmap to the FTC’s privacy and data security expectations in the mobile environment under Section 5 of the FTC Act, with two very notable exceptions: It now appears that companies are required to follow researchers’ blogs and other writings… Continue Reading

If You Host Videos on Your Website, Read This Blog Post Regarding the Video Privacy Protection Act

Posted in Litigation, Privacy

In a much anticipated decision in the class action In re Hulu Privacy Litigation, U.S. Magistrate Judge Laurel Beeler of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California has shed new light on the meaning of “personally identifiable information” (PII) under the Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA). This has important implications for companies… Continue Reading

Jerked Around? Did the FTC’s “Jerk.com” Complaint Just Turn API Terms Into Federal Law?

Posted in FTC, Litigation, Privacy

The Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) announcement that it had filed a complaint against Jerk, LLC and its websites like “jerk.com” (“Jerk”) looks at first glance like a run-of-the-mill FTC Section 5 enforcement action involving allegedly deceptive practices online. But hidden in the facts of Jerk’s alleged misbehavior is a potentially significant expansion of the FTC’s use… Continue Reading

Employer Access to Employee Social Media: Applicant Screening, ‘Friend’ Requests and Workplace Investigations

Posted in Employment Law, Privacy

A 2013 CareerBuilder survey of hiring managers and human resource professionals reports that more than two in five companies use social networking sites to research job candidates. This interest in social networking does not end when the candidate is hired: to the contrary, companies are seeking to leverage the personal social media networks of their… Continue Reading

Data Protection Masterclass Webinar: Spotlight on Social Media Marketing and Policies

Posted in Employment Law, Event, Online Promotions, Privacy

Our global privacy + data security group’s Data Protection Masterclass Webinar series is turning the spotlight on social media marketing and policies in January. Please join Socially Aware contributors Christine Lyon and Karin Retzer, along with Ann Bevitt in our London office for a webinar that will examine the laws and regulations in the United… Continue Reading

New Guidance From UK Privacy Regulator on Social Networking and Online Forums

Posted in Privacy

Businesses are increasingly using social networks and online forums for marketing, recruiting, customer service, branding and PR purposes. The UK privacy regulator, the Information Commissioner (ICO), has recently published new guidance on the use of social networking and online forums. This replaces its 2007 guidance on the subject and is a helpful reminder to companies… Continue Reading

Youthful Indiscretions: California Bills Poised to Regulate Use of Minors’ Data on Social Networks

Posted in Privacy

Two bills designed to facilitate the removal of minors’ personal information from social networking sites are currently under consideration in the California State Assembly, after being approved in the upper house of the state’s legislature, the Senate, in early 2013. The first of the two bills, S.B. 501, would require a “social networking Internet Web… Continue Reading

German Court Holds Google Responsible for Its Search Suggestions

Posted in Litigation

On May 15, 2013, in a case filed against Google by an entrepreneur selling dietary supplements and cosmetics (the “Plaintiff”), the German Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe (Bundesgerichtshof, the “Federal Court”) ruled that Google must remove any defamatory suggestions generated by its autocomplete search function. The Federal Court overturned an earlier ruling by the… Continue Reading

Mobile Apps Bill Introduced in the House of Representatives

Posted in FTC, Privacy

Article courtesy of Morrison & Foerster’s Mobile Payments Practice Lawmakers in Washington, D.C., continue to show interest in understanding and developing regulatory proposals relating to mobile apps. The interest appears to be driven, at least in part, by policymakers’ concerns about consumer privacy when using mobile phones and other smart hand-held devices. The issue of… Continue Reading

European Privacy Regulator Issues Important Opinion on the Use of Apps

Posted in FTC, Privacy

On February 27, 2013, the European Article 29 Working Party (a group comprising representatives from all of the data protection authorities of the EU Member States, referred to in this articles as “WP29”) issued an Opinion on the privacy and data protection implications of the use of apps on mobile devices (“the Opinion”). The Opinion… Continue Reading

It’s Déjà Vu All Over Again: Massachusetts Allows Actions for Violation of Privacy Rights Based on Collection of ZIP Codes

Posted in Litigation, Privacy

Massachusetts appears to have followed California’s lead in opening a litigation floodgate over ZIP code collection at the point of sale. In 2011, the California Supreme Court held in Pineda v. Williams-Sonoma Stores, Inc., 246 P.3d 612 (Cal. 2011), that a retailer illegally collects personal identification information (PII) when it requests and records ZIP codes… Continue Reading

A Fistful of Data: Facebook and Profile Technology, Inc. Showdown Over the Right to Use Outdated User Information

Posted in Litigation, Privacy

As social media matures and users become more concerned about the privacy of the information they publish online, New Zealand-based search engine app company Profile Technology, Inc. and Facebook are engaged in a legal battle stemming from a dispute over the right to use certain user data. The story first came to light in October… Continue Reading

German Court Says Facebook Not Subject to German Law

Posted in Litigation

Facebook may be gaining ground in its struggle against German authorities. In a preliminary ruling, the state of Schleswig-Holstein’s Administrative Court has rejected penalties against Facebook Inc. and Facebook Ireland, stating that the social network is not subject to German law. The Schleswig-Holstein state data protection authority (the ULD) started enforcement proceedings against the social… Continue Reading

FTC Announces Important Settlement With Social Networking App and Releases New Mobile App Report

Posted in FTC, Litigation, Privacy

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced a potentially groundbreaking settlement with the social networking app Path and released an important new staff report on Mobile Privacy Disclosures late last week. The FTC’s Settlement with Path suggests a new standard may be on the near-term horizon: out-of-policy, just-in-time notice and express consent for the collection of… Continue Reading