Lawsuit Over Ownership of Former Employee’s Twitter Followers Settled: PhoneDog v. Kravitz

If you have been in any of the seminars where I have presented on social media law, you have heard me say “an ounce of prevention is cheaper than the first day of litigation.” Right? Well it is true, and the context in which I said that is in reference to the lawsuit PhoneDog v. Kravitz that, according to Mashable, has now settled. I discussed this lawsuit in more detail HERE if you  would like to know more. The terms of the settlement were not disclosed but, quite frankly, anyone who understands the price of litigation knows that both parties lost in the end. That is why the takeaway is so important:

THE TAKEAWAY: Every company needs a contractual agreement that clearly states who owns social media accounts used on behalf of the company. It is that simple. Such an agreement can usually be included in an employee handbook, employment policies, or a social media policy. The cost of such an agreement will likely be cheaper than the very first day of litigation if a dispute arises over that issue.

Kravitz himself summed this up quite nicely: “If anything good has come of this, I hope it’s that other employers and employees can recognize the importance of social media … good contracts and specific work agreements are important, and the responsibility for constructing them lies with both parties.”

2 thoughts on “Lawsuit Over Ownership of Former Employee’s Twitter Followers Settled: PhoneDog v. Kravitz

  1. A friend of mine went through a major medical problem compliments of an incompetent doctor, and people he has talked to wondered why his doctor hasn’t been banned (or whatever you call it) from the medical community. The simple answer is your point above – litigation against him cost so much, previous patients always settled. Fortunately, my friend could afford to push, and they finally got a decision against the guy. Unfortunately, it didn’t stop the doctor. Fortunately, stuff the doctor openly stated in court documents led to the IRS shutting him down. So if you CAN afford to litigate, be VERY careful what you say – you never know who else might be listening or reading the court transcripts! (Or as my father, a veteran, always says, never volunteer information – it’ll bite you every time!)

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