Sitting in the comfort of your home posting pictures on Facebook and Instagram, commenting on Twitter, and sharing thoughts on Tumblr, MySpace or Reddit. You may feel like your messages are private. But don’t be fooled by the solitude of your home or by privacy settings on websites. Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, you post on the Internet is private, and, as a motion in a Long Island court case Romano v Steelcase shows, anything and everything can be used against you in court. In this particular case, the defendant claimed she was so severely injured when her chair collapsed that she was limited in her activities and that the accident damaged her “enjoyment of life.” But material she posted on her public MySpace and Facebook pages appeared to contradict her claims by showing her on family trips and smiling happily outside her home in various locations. She apparently did not believe the chair company would find her postings.
The judge ordered Romano to authorize MySpace and Facebook to turn over all their historical records of her pages–including nonpublic portions and those she might have deleted. I will repeat that last part–even those she deleted. Because believe it or not, nothing is ever really deleted in the World Wide Web. Once you put something out there, it’s always somewhere and someone can find it when you may not want them to.
So what can you do to protect yourself?
At Goldstein and Bashner, we know how important the Internet has become in finding evidence, and we work with our clients to ensure they understand that everything they post can one day find itself used as courtroom evidence. If you have any questions or need a lawyer you can talk to, please contact our Long Island personal injury attorneys today.
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