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Social Media Creators! Do NOT Make These Mistakes and LOSE Your Accounts!

Mistakes are a part of life. However, for social media creators, making mistakes online can mean the end ☠️ of their career. 

Believe it or not, even if a social media influencer makes a legal mistake without knowing it, they could still lose their online business and brand.

Therefore, influencers must be extremely diligent in educating themselves about Internet law ⚖️ and consulting a social media lawyer for legal advice.

Furthermore, while it’s important that content creators always adhere to the law, there are some laws and legal guidelines in particular that, if ignored, could have major consequences. In fact, many influencers don’t recognize the importance of these rules until they consult a social media attorney.

At the end of the day, the legal guidelines you follow online are not only the ones you can find in Supreme Court 🏛️ decisions. Instead, many of them rely on an expert knowledge of social media law and experience in the industry. 

Therefore, I always recommend that influencers work closely with an attorney, especially when their revenue source is dependent on their social brand.

That being said, if you’re looking for a couple quick rules to follow, I always tell my clients social media creators should NEVER

…get repeated copyright strikes ❌

Even if you are following the doctrine of fair use, there is still a good possibility you will face a copyright strike on at least one of your social platforms. Luckily, these strikes usually expire from your account after a specified period of time, such as YouTube’s 90 days 📆.

However, the real trouble arises when creators get repeat copyright infringement offenses on their accounts.

While social platforms like Instagram do state in their copyright policy 📝 that repeat offenders will face potential account termination or loss of certain features, YouTube’s copyright strike policy is most likely the most well-known.

On YouTube, three unexpired copyright strikes means the END of your channel – with no chance of reactivation. For YouTubers who depend on AdSense revenue, this penalty could mean the end of their career 😱.

Therefore, influencers should avoid using copyrighted material in their social media posts whenever possible. However, if you must use someone else’s content, be sure to abide by the doctrine of fair use, and consult a social media attorney if anything seems questionable.

Let’s face it: that One Direction song in your YouTube video is NOT 🙅‍♂️ worth losing your channel over.

…abuse hashtags and tagging on Instagram ❌

Have you heard of the term Instagram shadowban? It refers to when Instagram stops showing your posts to non-followers 👥 or limits your account’s functionality. Such limitations may include losing the ability to follow people or like posts. 

Instagram often takes this type of action against users who do not follow the app’s terms and conditions. For instance, an account that receives multiple copyright complaints or safety reports will probably face these penalties, if not account termination.

However, the social platform doesn’t only rely on their users to report when accounts break the rules. Instead, the social platform employs an algorithm that identifies accounts that are consistently breaking the community guidelines.

For example, your account may be flagged for things such as using services or bots 🤖 to enhance your likes, shares, or comments. 

Additionally, accounts often face penalties for “spammy” behavior, such as overusing the day’s or week’s popular hashtags, tagging people who don’t appear in your photos, and posting more than a time or two a day.

Therefore, whenever you use Instagram or any other social media site to earn money, you should always be well-read 👀 on the terms of use.

Unfortunately, a lack of knowledge of the platform’s rules could cost you your account or all its money-making features, such as post visibility and the ability to like others’ posts.

…ignore privacy protections ❌

A general knowledge of legal privacy protections is imperative for social media creators to a) protect themselves online and b) protect the safety and privacy of their followers.

If you haven’t already, be sure to read up on the most common privacy laws, such as the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). Penalties for failing to adhere by either of these laws could result in monetary penalties large enough to virtually bankrupt your brand 🤑.

On the other hand, there is also a ton of work to do when it comes to protecting your privacy online.

For example, did you know that your YouTube watch history and activity feed is available to the public unless you take action to hide it? Furthermore, Google is diligently tracking your activity online to present you with personalized ads. Luckily, you can disable this feature as well.

Most importantly, when it comes to protecting 🛡️ your personal safety, remember to always keep your personal information off social media. For example, hackers can easily use a picture of a driver’s license, 🎫 plane ticket, or receipt to gather enough data to break into your accounts.

Therefore, you must also be smart about passwords. More specifically, use a password generator to create unhackable passwords for your accounts. Then, always be sure to enable two-factor authentication for as many of your accounts as possible.

While a pain to some, two-factor ✌️ authentication is perhaps the most effective way to protect your social media accounts from hackers.

…make a bad deal with a multi-channel network (MCN) ❌

Finally, making a bad deal with an MCN is incredibly risky for your brand and revenue model.

While MCNs are often a great option for increasing your followers, subscriber count, and likes, you should never sign ✍️ a contract with an MCN without consulting a social media attorney first.

The best MCNs will provide you with free access to helpful websites, advertising and promotion services, and bigger and better brand deals. However, the worst MCNs can lead you to loss of revenue, long contracts, lots of pressure, and NO results.

For example, back in 2018, the multi-channel network Defy Media mysteriously 🔮 disappeared, taking a lot of creators’ money along with them. 

Unfortunately, Defy Media is not the only occurrence of an MCN going out of business. Therefore, you should always review contracts with an attorney before signing anything to ensure your safety and best interests are completely protected ⚔️.