There are too many of them to name and discuss here. But generally, social media laws refers to privacy laws. It is very beneficial for your business to be on social media. Problems sometimes occur with respect to your customer’s privacy rights. Your customers have the right to have their private information protected. Lawmakers continue to do their best to protect customers’ private information with social media laws. However, the technology, the internet, social media in general continues to change. Lawmakers have a hard time keeping up the phase with their social media laws.
In America, there are several laws that discuss privacy concerns of your customers.
The first one is the Communications Decency Act. The purpose of the Communication Decency Act is to promote the continued development of the internet and other computer interactive services. Another purpose of the law is to preserve the free market that currently exists on the internet. However, the government also wants to encourage technology that allows parents to restrict access of their children to objectionable and inappropriate information. The law sets up a system by which social media platforms are not publishers of content, they’re a distributor of content. However, the law also allows social media platforms to control the information on their websites.
Another very interesting law is the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act or as referred to it COPPA. Generally, the purpose of this law is to prohibit businesses from collecting private information from children. The law defines children as those under the age of 13. Last year, 2019, there was a big debate on social media about COPPA. The discussion involved mostly YouTube creators who created content for children. YouTube made the decision to remove the features from these channels and to demonetized channels that provided content to children as defined by COPPA. This was very difficult for creators on YouTube of children’s content because they often relied primarily for their income on ad revenue from their channels.
Another law that’s relevant to the discussion of social media laws is the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation, it’s commonly known as the GDPR. There is no similar law in America currently, although we hear that politicians are rapidly working on draft legislation to copy the purpose of the GDPR. In general, the GDPR includes right to be forgotten provisions; those are various laws that give individuals and corporations the right to request that their personal and commercial information be deleted from internet websites. The reason for this law is that the government believes that people should not be harmed by the disclosure of irrelevant and outdated information.
Another one of the social media laws that may affect you are laws pertaining to privacy at the workplace. In America, most of these laws come from state law. In general, these laws prohibit employers from requiring the username, account password, or login credentials of job applicants for their social media accounts requiring an employee to add another employee to their friends or contact list on social media or request that employees change their privacy settings on social media. There are many more social media laws to discuss however these are some of the most important. Understanding these laws throughout will help you do a better job with your business’s online presence.