Social Media Advertising Tools And User Consent: What Are The Requirements?

Perhaps you’ve seen them, those television and radio ads that talk about the “creepy” nature of some adverting on the Internet that follows consumers across their social media. According to Pew Research, most Americans believe their online activities are being tracked and monitored. 

The fact is, most companies can and do share data with social media platforms to ensure targeted advertising reaches receptive audiences. As more tools become available and the variety of data sources grows globally, platforms and advertisers are re-examining their rights and obligations when it comes to something as simple as matching customers’ email addresses with their Facebook accounts. 

Facebook’s Customer List Custom Audiences (“Custom Audiences”) tool is one such tool that has the potential to expand an advertiser’s liability for unauthorized use of customer data. For EU customers, a German Data Protection Authority ruling requires a individual’s explicit consent to such sharing.

The Facebook Custom Audiences tool enables advertisers to create targeted advertisements to Facebook users by combining Facebook data with the advertiser’s data such as email addresses and phone numbers. To use marketing tool the advertiser must comply with the consent and privacy expectations of individuals who have provided email addresses.

Consent to Use Email Addresses

While the use and disclosure of email addresses is regulated in some countries, the U.S. does not have a uniform data privacy protection scheme. U.S. privacy rights are protected through a patchwork of laws addressed to specific types of harm, such as unauthorized access and disclosure of financial (Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), 15 U.S.C. § 1681) or healthcare-related (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) 42 U.S.C. § 1320d–2) data. While the CAN SPAM Act (15. U.S.C. § 7701 et seq.) specifically regulates email, the Act excludes communications based on a previously existing relationship. 

Importantly, for most purposes, permission of the e-mail recipient is not required. However, messages MUST contain a mechanism to request to opt-out of future email messages. If email addresses are acquired from third-party sources, such as marketing databases or social media, ensure users are given reasonable notice and choice about the use of such data.

The Federal Trade Commission endorses a market-style model of ensuring the fair use of information that allows individuals to participate in decisions on the disclosure and use of their personal information. As articulated by the FTC, the elements of this approach are notice, choice, access, security and enforcement.

Contractual Requirements of Facebook Custom Audiences 

In order to use the Custom Audiences tool, the advertiser must agree to additional terms and conditions. Facebook’s Custom Audiences terms require that the advertiser have both “all necessary rights and permissions” as well as a lawful basis to disclose and use the email addresses “in compliance with all applicable laws, regulations, and industry guidelines.” 

Recommendations

Review your Privacy Policy, Website Terms & Conditions, and membership/subscription applications to confirm the existence of a clear mechanism to opt-out of future email messages. If email addresses are acquired from third-party sources, such as marketing databases or social media, review data gathering practices, review scope of permissions granted to the sources of data and ensure users are given reasonable notice and choice about the use of such data.

Amended California Do Not Track Disclosure Law Requires Websites Disclose Do Not Track Signal Response

At the end of August, the California passed an amendment to the California Online Privacy Protection Act that will require commercial websites and services that collect personal data to disclose how they respond to Do Not Track signals from Web browsers.

AB 370, as introduced by California Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, requires a business that discloses a customer’s personal information to a third party for direct marketing purposes to provide the customer, within 30 days after the customer’s request, as specified, in writing or by e-mail the names and addresses of the recipients of that information and specified details regarding the information disclosed.

This bill, available here, would declare the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would regulate online behavioral tracking of consumers.


Socail Media, Search & Mobile Issues Discussed at ISSMM.org’s Converge2012

The Future Of Social Is Moving From Mere Participation To Analysis & Strategic Initiatives

I had the opportunity to attend and participate in Converge 2012 run by the Institute for Social, Search & Mobile Marketing. The theme was mastering the Business of Social Media. The Conference had a great selection of speakers (yours truly included) and topics that really resonated with the audience. I hope to summarize here some of the take-aways I learned at this conference.

Business Is Now Social

The last few years have seen an unprecedented shift in the adoption of social platforms for businesses to reach and interact with customers. What started as a “dipping our toes into the water” excerise has now matured into jumping in with both feet. Not surprisingly, the first few presentations of the conference focused on the effect of so much participation: greater focus on ROI. The presentations covered a lot of ground, but here are the key take aways from Day 1:

  • Businesses that fail to integrate the social channels may not exist in five years
  • Analytics are maturing in terms of both measurement tools and metrics
  • Better analytics are driving innovation by putting companies ahead of emerging issues instead of simply reacting to them
  • Creating a Social Media culture must come from the top and flow down
  • The growth of mobile platforms Is blurring the line between online and in-store experiences because of anywhere/anytime andpersonalized access

Day 1 concluded with the panel presentation in which I participated “Social Media “Venture Heaven” Money is flooding into social media, It’s time to understand why.” Key take-aways from this panel include the followig Data about the growth in Mobile:

  • As of May, 2012, mobile comprises 10% of Internet traffic, up from just 4% less than a year and a half ago
  • Mobile = ~8% of ecommerce
  • Monetization growing rapidly 79% is Apps, 21% is from ads
  • There has been a rapid increase in time spent relative money spent on ads; TV is roughly at parity while Mobile ad spend is about 1/10 of that
  • Drivers of growth in Mobile:
    • Devices
    • Platforms
    • Improved user interfaces
    • Sharing
    • More emphasis on design aestheticS

In a world of ubiquitous fast Internet,  mass blogging and micro-blogging, minute-by-minute status updates and customer complaints and recommendations, businesses need to focus on tailoring their product for their customers desires, rather that merely tolerating customer requests. Whatever device/platform customers use most will get the most attention from developers, accessory makers and potential new customers.

Fashion Law: Legal News Roundup

Israel’s Ban on Ultra-Thin Models

FASHION-SAFRICA-NIGERIA-BAKARE
FASHION-SAFRICA-NIGERIA-BAKARE (Photo credit: Bohan Shen_沈伯韩)

 

The Atlantic

By Talya Minsberg A new Israeli law prohibits fashion media and advertising from using Photoshop or models who fall below the World Health Organization’s standard for malnutrition. When a 14-year-old girl delivered a 25,000-signature petition this week to Seventeen asking them to curb their use of Photoshop, the magazine issued a press statement that congratulated the girl on her ambition but was conspicuously silent on changing their editorial practices.

An Impossible Conversation About the Met’s Spring 2012 Costume Institute Exhibit

Huffington Post (satire)

So, culturally and historically, the reason women care so much about fashion is that until very recently, we weren’t allowed professional, legal or vocal ways of expressing ourselves. Fashion was a way of articulating our feelings about ourselves.

Small Aussie fashion label turns George Lucas legal threat into ‘Star 
Dallas News Small Aussie fashion label turns George Lucas legal threat into ‘Star Wars‘ clothing deal.

AsianFashionLaw | Page 5
Fashion lawyers are legal experts too. Sometimes I feel as though people think I am in design studios all day twiddling my thumbs as I look at models wearing 
www.asianfashionlaw.com/page/5/

Adidas-India’s ex-MD slaps legal notice on company – Fashion United
The Adidas-saga in India seems to be taking a different turn. – Fashion India News, Network, Business Community, fashion industry, international, platform for 
www.fashionunited.in/…/adidas-indias-ex-md-slaps-legal-notic…

Facebook Marketing: Legal & Regulatory Compliance By David M. Adler, Esq.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

AllFaceBook Presents AF Expo San Francisco June 27-29, 2011

COMMERCE & MONETIZATIONFacebook Marketing: Legal & Regulatory Compliance

The use of social media for marketing and advertising purposes is one of the fastest growing areas for business and marketers. The advent of social media sites like Facebook provides the opportunity for authentic interaction and engagement with customers. Therefore, it is no surprise that it is being used as a marketing tool by companies large and small to help them achieve their strategic goals. But with every technological development and opportunity, new legal and business risks present themselves. Understanding and minimizing these risks will help you maximize the opportunities. A best practices approach to social media marketing involves having the company’s philosophy, methodology, and guidelines captured in a comprehensive written policy that is clearly and regularly communicated to the employees, and regularly updated to keep abreast of new developments, opportunities and evolving legal guidance. Attendees will learn how to identify the legal issues and develop policies and procedures to keep informed about the current technology, marketing strategies and regulatory compliance.

Everyone at AF Expo shares a belief that the Facebook experience represents a paradigm shift in the way that marketing professionals identify, engage and convert customers. In the past, marketers had to conduct research to locate customs and to determine their wants and needs. Once these were identified, you needed to convince your customers to value your brand, understand your product/service and ultimately purchase what you were selling.
Facebook changes all of these assumptions. It offers an interactive platform where customs are actively engaged in seeking out the brands they are interested in – whether individually or through trusted networks, tell brand owned what they do and do not like about their brand and tell marketers whether they are open to receiving more information. Interestingly, the platform allows marketers to continue the conversation even when the customer has nominally disengaged (through trusted networks).
Like everything else, with great power comes great risks. Facebook marketing that is thoughtful, respectful and legally compliant is extremely effective. [give examples] However, marketing efforts that fail to understand and account for the requirements to maintain legal compliance can be a fixated.
In the beginning one could poke, like and comment. But what happens when you can purchase? Facebook is rapidly becoming a platform to identify, locate, contact and transact business with consumers of goods and services, both physical and virtual, using currency that is both physical and virtual.
My presentation will identify and explain the risks for Facebook marketers, grouped  into three risk categories, “The Three Cs” of Facebook marketing:
Content
Connecting
Commerce

David M. Adler, Esq. To Speak at Socialize 2011 on Legal Issues For Social Marketers

Picture of notebook screen with Facebook and F...
Image via Wikipedia

The use of social media for marketing and advertising purposes is one of the fastest growing uses of the Internet. The advent of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn provides the opportunity for authentic interaction and engagement with customers. That’s why it comes as little surprise that these services are being used as marketing tools.  But with every technological development and opportunity, new legal and business risks present themselves. Understanding and minimizing these risks will help you maximize the opportunities for your business.

At Socialize 2011, taking place March 31 – April 1, 2011 at The New Yorker Hotel in New York CityDavid M. Adler, Esq. will provide a presentation focused on taking a “best practices” approach to social media marketing. Attendees will learn how to identify the legal issues and develop policies and procedures to keep informed about the current technology, marketing strategies and regulatory compliance. The presentation intends to cover the following issues:

IssueIntellectual Property

  • Trademarks & Brands
  • Copyright & Content

IssuePrivacy & Publicity

  • Right of Publicity
  • Endorsements

IssueUser generated content

  • positive and negative comments
  • Copyright Infringement
  • Unmasking “anonymous” posts

Issue:  Regulatory Compliance

  • FTC – Dot Com Disclosures: Information about Online Advertising
  • “Freemiums”
  • FTC – Guides for the Use of Environmental Marketing Claims
  • CAN-SPAM compliance

Issue:  Faking it

Takeaways:

  • Issue Spotting
  • Creating & Maintaining Policies & Procedures
  • Compliance
  • Continuing Education