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Twitter Followers as Employer Trade Secrets?

Another example of why patent and copyright, and even trademark, are not the only bad types of IP: trade secret is also bad and should be abolished, along with the others, and newer and non-traditional forms of IP as well. (Other trademark and IP horror stories here.)

 Two cases of social media as trade secrets may affect one another

Do employees or employers own social media accounts?


January 12, 2012

There’s a case currently making the rounds that has drawn a lot of attention to the question of who social media accounts really belong to—employers or employees. The mobile phone website Phonedog.com is suing a former employee, Noah Kravitz, alleging that the 17,000 Twitter followers he gained while working there was the same as a customer list, and therefore did not belong to the employee.

But despite all the press it’s been getting, the Twitter case is not the first of its kind. Another recent case involved control of a LinkedIn account.


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To the extent possible under law, Stephan Kinsella has waived all copyright and related or neighboring rights to C4SIF. This work is published from: United States. In the event the CC0 license is unenforceable a  Creative Commons License Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License is hereby granted.