Social Networking Websites

In Morning Docket earlier today, we mentioned the New York judge who denied an Occupy Wall Street protester’s requests to invalidate the subpoena of his Twitter account. Sorry bro. It probably won’t make him feel any better, but the judge’s ruling in the case might go straight to the hall of instant judicial social media classics. (It’s only a matter of time before ESPN starts showing late-night replays for posterity.)

Apparently Judge Matthew Sciarrino is savvy to the hip Twitter set. One section of the ruling is filled with some awesome hashtag usage, and an informative social media footnote for those who haven’t gotten on the bus yet….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “New York Judge #Denies Occupy Wall Street Protester’s Twitter Request”

Usually when we hear about courtroom drama stemming from social media, it’s caused by someone, you know, actually involved in the case.

Not today! This week, a judge declared a mistrial in a Kansas murder case after a pesky reporter shot and published a cellphone pic from trial. What kind of scandalous photos was the intrepid journalist taking?

The kind that almost certainly doesn’t warrant a mistrial….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Another Mistrial Declared After Modern Technology Unacceptably Intrudes into Court”

Professor Brian Tamanaha

* Professor Brian Tamanaha: “Not since 1986-1987 have law schools seen total applicant numbers this low.” Good news, or bad news? Actually, a bit of both. [Balkinization via Instapundit]

* Musical chairs: Michael Chepiga, the retired Simpson partner and erstwhile Broadway playwright, has a new and unusual job. [Am Law Daily]

* Elsewhere in job switches, the law schools at Albany and the University of Missouri (Columbia) have announced new deans. [Faculty Lounge]

* Goldman bankers don’t want to own shares in a company connected with sex trafficking. They just want to enjoy its services like normal paying customers. [Dealbreaker]

* One Chicago court seems to think it can quash the social media revolution. #goodluckwiththat [Not-So Private Parts / Forbes]

* Elsewhere in social-media news, thank God for this ruling. Otherwise, everyone we know would be fired and in jail. [WSJ Law Blog]

* If you still aren’t on Twitter, here’s another reason you should jump on the bandwagon. You never know when your boyfriend might get kidnapped in South Africa and thrown in the trunk of a car, and you have to tweet the kidnappers’ license plate so he can be rescued. [Ars Technica]

* Speaking of Twitter, this is unacceptable behavior (unless you’re a federal judge from Montana). [Fashionista]

At this point, there is a plethora of viable excuses in litigation to gain access to your opponents’ Facebook pages. Divorce, workplace discrimination, you name it, you can probably gain access somehow.

That said, most often it is defendants asking for social media access, not plaintiffs.

So we were intrigued to hear about a recent decision that allowed a plaintiff unsupervised access to the Facebook account of the man he sued for punching him in the face during a soccer game gone wrong. Why did he get access? Just for the heck of it….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Pennsylvania Judge Allows Facebook Fishing in Sucker Punch Lawsuit”

I know all you attorneys are a totally Tweet happy bunch. So I know you all can relate to the annoyance of every time you send a tweet about your iPhone, you immediately get seven new followers with names like iPhonemadness and iPhoneaddiction.

Okay, maybe not. But Twitter spam is a problem. It is not only annoying, but it also leads to computer viruses spread through the social media platform. That’s why, in order to avoid slowly going the way of the MySpace, the company has taken a drastic step toward stopping spammers.

Sue ‘em.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Twitter to Spammers: You Are SO Sued!”

Over the last several months, we have spent a lot of digital ink covering Paul Ceglia’s goofy lawsuit claiming 50 percent ownership of Facebook. In that case, we tend to believe Facebook is in the right.

But now it appears that the social media behemoth has caught its own case of silly litigation fever.

Facebook has taken legal action against the makers of a web-browsing widget that allegedly violates its terms of service. And its Biglaw attorneys may have caught an innocent internet commenter in the crossfire….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Internet Commenter to Facebook Attorneys: What We Have Here Is a Failure to Communicate”

What's the matter with you? Don't you get it?

After writing about enough jurors who get in trouble for posting about their cases online, one begins to feel like Tom Smykowski in Office Space, desperately and hopelessly trying to justify his job to the Bobs. It seems so simple, but no one seems to get it.

You can’t talk about the case on Facebook! Can’t you understand it? What is the hell is wrong with you people?!

This week, we have two more cases of idiot jurors in California and Colorado who simply could not resist going to Facebook to say, ironically, the same thing about the cases they were hearing.

What did they have to say? What kind of titillating trials were they supposed to decide while they were iPhoning instead? And more importantly, how did the attorneys in the cases respond?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “There Has Got to be a Better Way to Keep Jurors Off Facebook”

Attorneys for Facebook went on the offensive yesterday, filing a bold motion to dismiss Paul Ceglia’s lawsuit, which claims a 50 percent ownership stake in the company.

Among other things, the motion, which is a product of an extensive forensic investigation, calls Ceglia’s case “a fraud and a lie.”

I am excited to see this motion, and I hope it succeeds. Ceglia and his cockamamie lawsuit have had their day in the sun. It’s time for Mark Z. to move on to bigger and better things, like handling the company’s impending IPO and fixing the stupid Timeline, which is currently only useful for seeing exactly how terrible my friends’ tastes in music are.

Anyway, let’s look at Facebook’s extensive allegations, as well as Ceglia’s unsurprisingly oddball responses….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Facebook Moves to Dismiss Ceglia Ownership Suit”

Do you really want this guy as your boss?

If there is one golden rule in the technological age, it would likely be that you don’t share your electronic passwords with anyone. Tech companies routinely tell their customers that they will never ask for their users’ security information. Common knowledge says you shouldn’t share passwords with friends, lovers, or even family members. Because when you share that information, you might end up getting arrested for selling contraband to Iran, and your iPhone might wind up at the bottom of a canyon.

So what do you do when a prospective employer wants to login to Facebook — as you — during a job interview? Weep and gnash your teeth? Yeah, that’s what I thought…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Employers Claim Feudal Rights Over Facebook Pages”

* Yahoo! continues to try to save its fading empire… by filing a patent lawsuit against Facebook. [Dealbook / New York Times]

* Dispatch from SXSW: employing homeless people as Wi-Fi hotspots. I see no problems here. [New York Times]

* Dick Cheney has canceled a trip to Toronto. Because Canada is “too dangerous.” It’s actually kind of reassuring that the former Vice President, who drunkenly shot his friend in the face with a shotgun, is just as much of a wuss as the liberals he has mocked for the last 12-odd years. [National Post]

* It’s my jury and I’ll tweet if I want to, tweet if I want to. You would tweet too, if it happened to you. [Wall Street Journal Law Blog]

* A new United Nations report says Wikileaks suspect Bradley Manning endured “cruel, inhuman and degrading” treatment during the months he was incarcerated before his trial. The report comes just in time for the Department of Defense to completely ignore it and continue throwing the book at Manning. [Threat Level / Wired]

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