Ethics and Social Media: What Attorneys Need to Know

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Social media use can raise ethical concerns, both in terms of how attorneys use such sites, and the advice they provide to clients who use them. Primary traps for the unwary include:

 • Forgetting about the ethics rules, substantive law, the provider’s terms of service, and an employer’s policies relating to social media;
• Misusing or failing to use social media as a discovery or investigatory tool
• Failing to properly counsel clients on their social media use.

In this 60-minute webinar, you will learn about recent ethics opinions, court decisions, and media reports that provide guidance to attorneys on the use of social media.

Educational Objectives:

How the use of social media can implicate issues relating to:

Ethical Duties

•Criticizing judges online

•Ex parte contacts
•Conduct adversely reflecting on the fitness to practice law
•Seeking to influence a judge, juror, or other official
•Protecting client confidentiality

•When an attorney’s social media postings are subject to rules governing attorney advertising
•Dangers of identifying oneself as a “specialist”
•Duty to monitor social media profiles
•Providing legal advice on social media sites
•Establishing an attorney-client relationship on social media

 •The importance of social media as a discovery tool
 •Limits on the discovery of social media
 •Contacting an unrepresented party to view the restricted portion of a social  media site
 •Discovery of social media using agents

Advising Clients on Their Use of Social Media
 •Changing privacy settings on social media profiles
 •Removing existing social media posts
 •Adding new social media content

Researching Jurors
 •Access to public vs. private information on potential and sitting jurors
 •Deceptive means of viewing a juror’s social media profile
 •Viewing a juror’s social media posts during trial
 •Learning of and reporting potential juror misconduct

Who would benefit most from attending this program?

Practitioners in any area of legal practice will benefit.  It is equally applicable to in-house or outside counsel.

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Ms. Maura Grossman is Of Counsel at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, where she advises the firm and its clients on legal, technical, and strategic issues involving electronic discovery and information management, both domestically abroad.  Maura teaches courses on eDiscovery at Columbia Law School and the Georgetown University Law Center.  She is co-chair of the eDiscovery Working Group advising the New York State Unified Court System, and a member of the Steering Committee of The Sedona Conference® Working Group 1 on Electronic Retention and Production.  Maura served as a coordinator of the 2010 and 2011 Legal Tracks, and she is presently a coordinator of the 2015 Total Recall Track, of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Text Retrieval Conference (“TREC”), a joint government/industry/academic research project studying the application of automated information retrieval technologies to eDiscovery.  She is a prolific writer and speaker in the area of technology-assisted review.  Maura serves on the Advisory Boards of Bloomberg BNA’s Digital Discovery and E-Evidence Report and the Georgetown University Law Center’s Advanced eDiscovery Institute.  In addition to her law degree from Georgetown, Maura also holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in Psychology from the Gordon F. Derner Institute of Advance Psychological Studies at Adelphia University.