The Case For Tagging Vigilance On Facebook

The Case For Tagging Vigilance On Facebook

The many micro-surrenders of permission we make during our interaction with the social network have increasingly palpable consequences.

Stephen Fortune
  • 15 march 2011

A good measure of how integral Facebook is becoming within our lives is attested to by it’s increasing use as legal testimony. For instance, we recently learned that social networking interactions are increasingly cited as grounds for divorce.

Now another important legal precedent has been laid down in an appeals court in Kentucky.┬áIn the custody battle of Lalonde vs Lalonde, tagged photo’s showing the mother imbibing alcohol counted against her case. The mother had argued that:

“… since the photos weren’t hers, and were tagged without her permission, they shouldn’t have been admissible. However the court noted: “There is nothing that requires her permission when she was ‘tagged’ or identified as a person in those pictures.”

This is an interesting precedent to establish as regards our digital interactions with one another, but some attorneys, like Evan Brown, feel it will not be the final word on tagging:

Some instances of tagging might be part of something actionable. For example, the posting and tagging of photos in the right context might constitute harassment or invasion of privacy. Use of another’s photo on the web without permission for commercial purposes might violate that person’s right of publicity.

Switched: Tagged Facebook Photos Admissible as Evidence


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