Last week my friend Keith Fletcher of the South Florida Interactive Marketing Association called to invite me to a marketing conference with an intriguing title: Social Media/Legal Mashup. He wanted me to hear Gaida Zirkelbach, a lawyer, speak about social media. A lawyer?
Keith told me that she’s fascinating and I’d learn a lot. So, I went. And she was great. My first clue was that half the room was filled with lawyers taking lots of notes. If I ever have a problem, I’ll just call Gaida fast. She’s great. I wish I had a transcript of her presentation but I took notes, too, and here they are:
· Kim Kardashian said that she’d never use Dr. Siegal’s cookie diet, and would never do an unhealthy diet like his. Dr. Siegal filed a lawsuit and you can read all about it here: Kardashian Article
· Apparently the Ann Taylor Company gave a gift to people who blogged nicely about the company. According to the FTC, you must disclose that to readers. I already knew that. A few years back we did a program for American Express auto insurance. Instead of a traditional sales letter, we used a thank you letter from a happy customer. Our creative director edited it, and we sent the writer a small gift from Tiffany’s. We also added this: “I didn’t get paid for this letter, and my original letter was edited but these are my words. The advertising agency sent me a gift from Tiffany’s to thank me.”
· Gaida (and I) encourage you to read The Digital Milennium Copyright Act.
· Gaida covered a lot of ground quickly. She told us about a woman who spoke badly of her boss on Facebook. Her boss then fired her on her blog. I’ve noticed that people talk freely on Facebook and don’t seem to think that employers or associates might read it. They will, and do!
· There was a fascinating story about Houston’s employees who were griping on Yelp. One of the bosses had gotten onto the site using someone else’s i.d. The employees sued him for “invasion of privacy”.
· Gaida urged us to manage risk in social media by putting together policies for employees. She mentioned the Communications Decency Act, and her parting words were “think before you print”. I think she meant think before you post.
Late one night I was tweeting about my sick cat, Mortimer. One of my followers said that she didn’t care about my cat, and why would I think anyone would? This was followed by a firestorm of people tweeting support for Mortimer. They probably “unfollowed” her.