Sardar Law Firm

Archive for January, 2011|Monthly archive page

Protecting Your Blog From Violative Content

In Technology Issues and the Law on January 2011 at 9:41 pm

One of the most important statutes to consider when discussing the legal liabilities and obligations of the social networking sites is Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Section 512(c) removes liability for copyright infringement from websites that allow users to post content, as long as the site has a mechanism in place whereby the copyright owner can request the removal of infringing content.  The site must also not receive a financial benefit directly attributable to the infringing activity.

This creates an interesting problem for most sites that allow users to post music, photos or video – from Flickr to Blogs that allow guest content.  So what are 5 simple ways to protect your blog from violating this law?

(1)  Post a legal disclaimer on  your blog.

(2)  If you are using your blog to generate revenues, including simple things such as Google Ads, do not accept content from users that have not provided releases for all the photos/videos/images/content that they are posting on your blog.

(3) Make sure that comments/content can be posted on your blog without approval.  This includes posts in the “comments” portion of your site.

by: Benish Shah, Esq. & Sheheryar Sardar, Esq., Sardar Law Firm LLC

For more information on social media law, contact: Sardar Law Firm at sardar@sardarlawfirm.com.

Follow Sardar Law Firm on Twitter:@sardarlawfirm

Follow Social Media Legalat:@socialmedia_law

 

 

 

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Assess, Influence & Evolve: 2011

In Entrepreneurs and Social Media, Social Media, Technology Issues and the Law on January 2011 at 9:52 pm

Social Media use surpassed expectations in 2010.  Goldman Sachs is now pumping money into Facebook, Maryland has a law regulating social media use by political candidates, and New York courts don’t seem to attach privacy to Facebook use.  With this, companies need to start taking social media risks very seriously, to follow the pace of  social media.  The varying forms of social media communication may differ in popularity on and off, but the existence of the social media mediums must become of paramount concern to businesses as they move forward.  Effective corporate communication must incorporate social media, and here are 3 simple steps to help ensure that your company’s social medial lawyer can help you responsibly embrace advances in social media based communication:

(1) Assess

The first step of responsible corporate communication through the social media medium is the involvement of a corporate attorney to understand and analyze the risks to your company through the usage of social media.  Without the involvement of a legal entity, the risks will not be apparent.  A corporate attorney with an understanding of social media related law & risks must assess: (1) how does this company use social media?  (2) do company employees using social media on a personal level create a risk to the company? (3) do company managers create a risk to the company through social media usage? (4) how can the company develop policies and monitoring strategies to avoid potential risks?

(2) Influence

Upon developing a thorough understanding of a company’s social media usage and therisks involved, a social media lawyer would help companies develop a place to influence the company’s social media usage.  Much like the usage of e-mails and instant-message type online discussions, social media usage can be monitored by companies when used on company laptops.  Develop a written company policy that outlines the use of social media through company computers, and by those claiming to represent the company in the online world.

Encourage your employees to be responsible when using social media such as Twitter, Yammer, or Facebook to name a few.  Read through blogs discussing your company or written by your employees.  Comment on interesting blogs or Twitter posts about your company.  Influence the online conversation on various social media platforms.  Embracesocial media by participating in it.

(3) Evolve

Remember that social media is an evolving platform, as are the risks.  With new additions to the social media world, new risks will inevitably arise.  Your company must evolve with these advances and fads, while having a well-hashed out written policy on social media as a whole.

It is critical to evolve while developing a strong and resilient social media policy.  But if you decided to assess, influence, and evolve – your company will benefit from the world of freesocial media publicity and corporate communication.

by: Benish Shah, Esq. & Sheheryar Sardar, Esq., Sardar Law Firm LLC

For more information on social media law, contact: Sardar Law Firm at sardar@sardarlawfirm.com.

Follow Sardar Law Firm on Twitter:@sardarlawfirm

Follow Social Media Legal at:@socialmedia_law


 

Maryland’s Social Media Regulation: Political Candidates

In Social Media, Technology Issues and the Law on January 2011 at 9:40 pm

The state of Maryland passed new regulations last week that stipulate the information that political candidates must disclose on all of their social media account homepages and online advertisements.  Candidates running for office in the state will be required to include an authority line on their official Twitter and Facebook pages, along with a declaration of approval and the name of their campaign treasurer.

Additionally, online advertisements that are too small to contain this information must point back to the candidate’s official campaign sites.  The authority line that candidates will be required to include on all of their social networking account homepages must, as a bare minimum, include a link to their official campaign website.

With the movement towards social media regulation, Maryland seems to be taking the first step to ensure that there is a level of transparency in the use of social media in political ventures.

For more information on social media law, contact: Sardar Law Firm at sardar@sardarlawfirm.com.

Follow Sardar Law Firm on Twitter:@sardarlawfirm

Follow Social Media Legal at:@socialmedia_law

Cyber Bullying

In Social Media, Technology Issues and the Law on January 2011 at 9:31 pm

Social networking sites make cyberbullying, a type of bullying that occurs online, easier and more public than bullying through other online activities such as email and instant messaging.  A 2009 study found that 17.3% of middle school students have been victims of cyber-bullying. Victims often experience a drop in grades, decreased self-esteem, and other symptoms of depression.

With last year’s rise in cyber-bullying, both within young adults and in the corporate environment, it begs the question: is there legal recourse?