Social Media Law

Social Media Law - Your Rights in Social Media

Social networks have become essential parts of everyday life. Having now been an effective marketing tool for a long time, it has become apparent, time and again, how important competent legal counseling is, especially in social media.

In the following you’ll find selected sub-sections of my consultancy:

1. Copyright law and Social Media

The details are often found in the small print—Social Media platforms are no exception to this rule. Which rights are you transferring to who when posting? What copyright laws have to be taken into account? Maybe you’ve even already received a warning letter for copyright infringement?

2. Identifying of advertisement

You want to advertise on Social Media? Then you’ll have to take certain things into account!
Advertisements for example have to be labelled as such.

3. The Right to your own image
  • Unfortunately, the following scenario is all too common: Someone finds their own image on Facebook without ever having posted it.

  • The right to your own image has been violated. This right is part of the general privacy laws and can be legally enforced.

4. Sweepstakes, Facebook lotteries

Sweepstakes have long become essential marketing tools. In order to avoid claims against you, there are several things to be taken into account:

  • Sweepstakes are always free of charge (Note: Gambling has to be approved by the state!)
  • Keep the terms and conditions for participation available: Sweepstakes must be transparent
  • Make sure the respective platform allows for sweepstakes in its terms and conditions and if specific contract clauses have to be included
  • Specify the conditions of participation
  • Specify how you will treat personal data of participants
5. Ratings, especially negative ones

Customer feedback can greatly increase a business’s reputation. The exact opposite, however, can happen when negative feedback is left. In such cases it is worthwhile to examine whether rights of the business have been violated or if there may even be a claim for removal of such feedback.

As a rule, ratings are exercises of freedom of speech pursuant to article 5 of the German Grundgesetz. However, not everything’s protected by freedom of speech laws. Freedom of Speech, for instance, is exceeded if someone makes untrue claims or even expresses abusive criticism. You don’t have to accept libel, slander or insults. Someone leaving such feedback is at risk of criminal consequences.

An assessment should be made whether financial compensation claims, injunctive relief or removal claims exist.

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