Socially Aware: The Social Media Law Update - Vol. 2, Issue 2 - April 2011


In this issue: FTC Charges Google With Deceptive Practices; California District Court Holds Facebook Posts Subject to CAN-SPAM Act; Ninth Circuit Takes Sides in Battle Over Terms of Use in World of Warcraft Case; New Charge Before the NLRB; First Amendment Shields Disgruntled Ex-Employee; EU to Get Tough With Social Media Sites; Can You Shoot the Messenger?; Shaken, Not Stirred: Social Media and Alcohol Ads; and The Rise (and Possible Demise?) of Copyright Trolls.

In this issue of Socially Aware, our guide to the law and business of social media, we discuss the Federal Trade Commission’s groundbreaking proposed consent order arising out of Google’s ill-fated launch of its Buzz social network. We take a look at an ominous new decision suggesting that the CAN-SPAM Act may apply to communications within Facebook and other social media sites. We summarize an important Ninth Circuit decision regarding the interplay between contract law and copyright law in connection with online terms of service breaches. We highlight two new employment law developments that should be taken into account in drafting or updating your company’s social media policy. We report on the EU’s plans to bolster the privacy rights of social media users. We provide an overview of liability risks in the United Kingdom for online service providers hosting defamatory materials posted by others. We examine the alcoholic beverage industry’s cautious embrace of social media. We provide an update on some recent developments in the Righthaven “copyright troll” lawsuits. Finally, we provide a statistical snapshot of a typical 20 minutes in the life of Facebook. Let’s get started . . .

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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