Court "Comments" on Social Media Discovery
James W. Cushing, Esq. on 6/16/2015
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Law Office of Faye Riva Cohen, P.C.
In applying the above law to the social media sites at issue in the case, the Court opined that it is unrealistic to expect posts on social media sites to be confidential. In support of this assertion, the Court went further and reviewed the privacy policies for both Facebook and MySpace and demonstrated that both allow for third parties to see the information posted (who could share it with others) and all posts are seen by the sites’ administrators. The Court concluded that, based on the above, there is no reasonable expectation that a social media website user should have any expectation of confidentiality, let alone court enforceable privilege. As a result, the Court could not identify how Plaintiff’s claim for confidentiality satisfied the four factors listed above. Indeed, the Court could not say that any claim for confidentiality in this matter outweighed the benefit of discerning the truth in order to allow for the correct disposition of the litigation, for the potential for highly relevant which could impact the ultimate result of the case is significant. Based on the above, the Court ruled that Plaintiff should submit to Defendant’s discovery requests and that when there is indication that a social media site could contain relevant information, access to those sites should be freely granted.
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