How Free Speech and Social Media Fit Together

social media viewpointsYou’ve heard it or have seen it posted…

Someone saying they can say whatever they want, post whatever they want and no-one can do anything to them.

As if the First Amendment is their sword and shield. And you can’t do anything about it.

Freedom of speech. Three words that get thrown around and written about so often that what the expression means is more about misinformation than truth.

And misinformation can be detrimental to online professionals as they try to separate the wheat from the chaff and understand a right so important to the foundation of the United States that the founding fathers made it the first amendment to the Constitution to better clarify what rights belong to its citizens.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Source: First Amendment, U.S. Constitution

This article will specifically focus on the portion relating to speech and how this applies to the online community.

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10 Tips for Creating a Social Media Policy for Your Business

social media how toPolicy. It can be a dirty word, especially in social media communities.

Why? Poorly written social media policies restrict, deter and deaden social media engagement–the exact opposite of what businesses want.

However, great social media policies support, protect and empower high-quality engagement. It is about empowerment and trust.

As Beth Kanter writes, “Trust is cheaper than control.”

This article will explain how social media policies differ from other policies and give you 10 tips to help create an effective social media policy.

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How to Craft a Privacy Policy for Your Website

social media how toDoes your website have a privacy policy?

This article will tell you what you need to know to create a privacy policy for your website.

Why a Privacy Policy?

As online professionals and entrepreneurs, you know that collecting information on visitors to your (or your client’s) website can help tailor goods and services. It offers insight that previously could only be gathered through expensive research. Today, though, data collection can be easy and inexpensive.

But with this type of information, businesses face a daunting task of protecting the data and telling visitors and/or consumers what will be done with the information. Regardless of whether site visitors read the terms and conditions, companies can’t overlook the creation of policies that set out how such information will be used.

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Copyright Fair Use and How it Works for Online Images

social media viewpointsYou’ve heard the adage that a picture is worth a thousand words, but when that picture is protected by copyright, the picture is only worth three words: cease and desist.

OK, that’s kind of a lawyer joke. But it illustrates how protective people are about finding their images used online without permission.

Copyright laws were established not to give the author the right to deny their work to other people, but instead to encourage its creation.

Article I, Section 8, clause 8, of the United States Constitution states the purpose of copyright laws is “to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”

It’s a delicate balance between the rights of the creator and the public’s interest. When in conflict, the balance tips more heavily toward the public’s interest, which is often contrary to what the creator believes to be fair or just.

This article will cover exactly what copyright is and what it covers.

And then we’ll look at the concept of fair use as it pertains to using images online. The goal here is to better understand how to use images others create in a way that is both respectful of the author’s ownership rights and allows others to use it.

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Social Media Promotions and the Law: What You Need to Know

social media viewpointsAre you thinking of using social media contests?

Do you understand how the law could impact your activities?

Keep reading to learn more…

Why Legalities?

One of the best ways to grow your business is to give stuff away.

Whether your business is a small enterprise, a website or blog, or a large multinational company, hosting giveaways is sure to increase traffic, awareness and potential new readers or customers.

Sponsoring or hosting a giveaway comes with rules and regulations that many don’t know or understand.

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