Whose Social Network Account? A Trade Secret Approach to Allocating Rights
Roger Williams University School of Law
December 10, 2012
Michigan Telecommunications and Technology Law Review, Vol. 19, p. 101, 2013
Roger Williams Univ. Legal Studies Paper No. 131
Who has the superior right to a social network account? This is the question in a growing number of disputes between employers and workers over social network accounts. The problem has no clear legal precedent. Although the disputes implicate rights under trademark, copyright, and privacy law, these legal paradigms fail to address the core issue. At base, disputes over social network accounts are disputes over the right to access the people, sometimes numbering in the tens of thousands, who follow an account. This Article evaluates the problem from the perspective of the public interest in social network use, particularly the use that blurs professional and personal roles. The Article argues that the public interest is best served by resolving these disputes under a trade secret approach.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 80
Date posted: December 12, 2012 ; Last revised: October 3, 2015
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