Editor’s Note: This article is authored by two BakerHostetler partners — an information governance practice leader and a new media, advertising, IT and privacy partner— and an associate. It is the third of a four-part series.
In our first two articles, we discussed the ways in which companies collect, analyze and use data about in connection with social media, which we have termed “social data,” for a number of important purposes, such as increasing engagement with their target audience and improving business intelligence. But for all of the potential rewards social data promise, smart companies are thinking in advance about the legal and ethical implications of collecting and using social data.
The way organizations choose to collect, use and share data can affect consumer trust. And establishing an effective and responsible social data framework actually is demonstrably good for business. Before launching into a social data initiative, companies should ensure that their proposed collection and use of social data complies with all relevant legal requirements and is consistent with their consumer’s expectations and their corporate brand. Establishing a legal and ethical framework to govern social data projects in advance can help companies avoid missteps and pitfalls, and protect their reputation in the marketplace. [Read more…]