Social Media Use May Affect Your Trial Outcome
Social media gives others a window into your life, and if you’re involved in a trial, that window could result in a poorer court outcome for you if you’re not careful. Your posts and pictures could be used against you, and, because these posts can be misread easily, you could stand accused of things you actually didn’t do. While social media plays a large role in many people’s lives and businesses now, if you’re going to court, you need to be very, very careful about what you do online.
Your best course of action is to just not post anything. If you can, suspend the accounts so no one can access older posts; otherwise, set everything to private, don’t accept friend requests or followers who you don’t know, and simply stop posting for the time being (yes, even if your accounts are private). You know how emails are easy to misinterpret because they are so emotionless? So are social media posts. Emojis help only so much.
Speaking of emojis, they can actually be used against you. Suing over an accident and claiming emotional distress? That smiley face and “feeling happy” label on Facebook might serve as fodder for the opposing lawyer to claim you’re not really that distressed.
Everything Is Public
Despite privacy settings, social media is essentially public. Maybe you message a family member, and that member tells someone else, who spreads the news to more people. That could get back to someone whose page is still public, and lawyers don’t exactly limit themselves to checking only your social media pages for news about you.
Assume anything you post during this time, if you can’t stay off social media completely, is something that could make it into court. If you run a business and need to keep your Twitter account public, stick to business-related tweets only and be very cautious about the wording.
If you want more guidance on avoiding the social media trap during a trial, contact Eisenberg Law Offices. We can help you secure accounts and keep your court case moving.