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  • Writer's pictureKirk Hartley

Social Media Discovery – Many Forums and Rulings – Some Examples and a Law Review

Discovery of social media information is an interesting phenomenon, and very much in the news. It seems to some that it’s about the same thing as asking to see a person’s scrapbook or photo album. Others say the on-line nature of the compilations makes this all much different.

Some recent case law is covered here by AmLaw’s Alison Frankel. The topic also is receiving scholarly attention in an area where personal actions and statements are especially likely to be relevant – workers’ compensation claiming. Law professor Gregory M. Duhl and practicing lawyer Jaclyn Millner recently posted a draft of an article (to be published in the Pace Law Review) on the use of social networking evidence in insurance and workers’ compensation litigation. The draft is available here on SSRN. The article, Social Networking and Workers’ Compensation Law at the Crossroads, provides a broad and useful summary of the issues, including some case law from outside the context of workers’ compensation. .

Social media issues of course are not confined to the US. Here’s an article addressing EU legislation on social media and privacy. It appears Europe is once again ahead of us when it comes to privacy.

Social media discovery also may apply to corporations. Communications consultants routinely urge businesses to use and manage social media when involved in major litigation, or maintaining corporate image. One can expect plaintiff’s lawyers to start asking far more questions about what corporations are doing behind the front pages of social media.

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