Social media presents an excellent – and often free – opportunity for businesses to engage in marketing a reach a significant number of people. This can be especially beneficial for smaller businesses that do not have a substantial marketing budget. However, before business owners launch a new social media campaign, they should always consider a few potential legal concerns involving this type of marketing.
- Copyright Infringement – One of the major aspects of a successful social media marketing campaign is content. Creating content and sharing it on social media sites often gets attention and can often significantly help search engine ranking for your business. However, creating content takes time and energy, which is something that many small business owners have little of. Therefore, it may be tempting to find content already online and share it as your own. In many cases, this constitutes copyright infringement under the law and you can face unforeseen legal liability if the original author does not want their content shared without due credit.
- Formation of a Contract – Social media marketing often involves interacting with potential customers and clients. You may offer your goods and services and the other party may agree to accept them and, in such cases, you may have a legally binding contract without even realizing it. Not all contracts must be written and signed to be enforceable, so always be careful about agreements made through social media because your business may be held to them.
- Defamation – Social media is also a platform for people to express their views to a widespread audience and these views are not always in your favor. For example, a disgruntled client may take to social media and may make false allegations against your business to punish you and try to deter other clients. On the other hand, if you say negative things about competitors to try to attract their customers, you could face potential liability for libel.
Discuss Your Concerns with a Houston Business Lawyer
Discussing the possible legal implications of a social media campaign with an experienced business attorney can help you to avoid unnecessary liability or problems. Please call The Weisblatt Law Firm LLC in Houston at 713-666-1981 today.
Attorney Andrew Weisblatt
Mr. Weisblatt has practiced continuously since becoming licensed in 1992 and has represented businesses ranging in size from one person start-up ventures to multi-national corporations employing hundreds of people in multiple countries. From 2005 through 2009 Mr. Weisblatt was in-house counsel and chief operating officer of a multi-national corporation in the steel products industry. That in-house position provided valuable insight into how businesses work and what they actually need from their lawyers – both in-house and outside counsel. Attorney Bio