This article discusses the perils of utilizing social media and how it can impact your divorce and/or custody case. Common requests for production in a divorce case and/or custody case include an exact copy of your Facebook page, Twitter feed, text messages, emails, and other social media sites. Facebook has even created a way for you to download an exact copy of your entire page to produce to counsel. Other applications have joined the bandwagon as well. Phoneview is an application that allows you to download iChat text messages to a PDF document, allowing you to read the text message conversation as one unit. Until this app was created, attorneys and clients had to take screen shots of every single text in a phone in order to turn it over to counsel.
It is all too common now for a divorce attorney to review your posts, photos, and comments to see if the information that is being posted helps his/her case. It has become easy for an attorney to introduce into evidence an email, photo, comment, or post in court.
What most people do not realize is that once an action commences, often a client will receive a notice to preserve electronic information. That means that once the action starts, you cannot take down photos, delete posts, or remove emails. You are required to preserve everything, whether it is viewable by the public or set to be private. Does this article make you think twice about what you are posting? Have you posted any comments or photos that you set to private that you would not want released in a court setting? How will this impact the way you communicate through social media in the future? Why or why aren’t you going to change the way you use social media?