Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selzt: Follow Us (to Learn About Twitter/Facebook Changes)

Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selzt: Follow Us (to Learn About Twitter/Facebook Changes)

Facebook

Last week, Facebook published a revised version of its Promotions Guidelines. The most significant change for advertisers is that, under the new guidelines, Facebook no longer requires written approval for an advertiser to administer a promotion on Facebook through its Fan Page. As defined by Facebook, "administration" includes the "operation of any element of the promotion, such as collecting entries, conducting a drawing, judging entries, or notifying winners". It is important, however, for advertisers to keep in mind that Facebook did not revise its other requirements for promotions administered through Facebook, which include, among other things, that the promotion be conducted through a third party application. In addition to revising its Promotions Guidelines, Facebook also advised advertisers by email through their Facebook Representatives, that it has lifted its minimum spend threshold requirements. Advertisers will now no longer need to spend a minimum amount on advertising on Facebook to administer a promotion on Facebook. This, coupled with the fact that approval is no longer required, will allow advertisers greater freedom to launch promotions administered on Facebook.

Twitter

Twitter also recently updated its guidelines for use of the Twitter name, trademarks and logos. Under the new guidelines, Twitter requires that advertisers only use the current Twitter logo, Twitter Bird Icon, or one of the current Twitter buttons found here as a link to their accounts. The phrase "Follow me/us on Twitter" with the word "Twitter" spelled out or with a Twitter logo and advertiser's username should be used in advertisers' print ads. In addition, if advertisers ask consumers to "Tweet," they must include a reference to Twitter or display the Twitter trademarks in connection with the use of "Tweet" (for instance, "Tweet with Twitter").

In addition, the new guidelines prohibit the use of screenshots of individuals' profiles or Tweets without their permission. This prohibition adds to existing provisions in the Twitter Terms of Service and Twitter API Terms of Service that limit certain uses of individuals' Tweets in advertising and merchandising. For example, the API Terms of Service prohibit the use of a Tweet without permission from the user if the advertiser "want[s] to use their Tweet on a commercial durable good or product (for example, using a Tweet on a t-shirt or a poster or making a book based on someone's Tweets); or create an advertisement that implies the sponsorship or endorsement on behalf of the user."

Thus, advertisers who use social media for their advertising and promotional campaigns must not only ensure that they have the appropriate permissions for use of third party materials, but they must also keep abreast of the most up-to-date guidelines issued by the social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.

If you have any questions about either of these social media policy changes or other advertising/marketing issues, please contact Terri Seligman at 212.826.5580 or tseligman@fkks.com, Brian Murphy at 212.826.5577 or bmurphy@fkks.com, Kelly O'Donnell at 212.826.5544 or kodonnell@fkks.com, or any other member of the Frankfurt Kurnit Advertising Group.

Disclaimer. This alert provides general coverage of its subject area. We provide it with the understanding that Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz is not engaged herein in rendering legal advice, and shall not be liable for any damages resulting from any error, inaccuracy, or omission. Our attorneys practice law only in jurisdictions in which they are properly authorized to do so. We do not seek to represent clients in other jurisdictions.