All information on this website is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. Ninomiya Law, PLLC and Kent Ninomiya only provide legal advice to clients when there is a valid engagement agreement signed by both attorney and clients. The principal office of Ninomiya Law, PLLC is located in Round Rock, Texas. Ninomiya Law, PLLC is responsible for the content of this website.

WHAT IS CONSIDERED "SOCIAL" MEDIA?

  • ​​Social media is far more than Facebook and Twitter. It is any electronic communication that facilitates interactions between individuals regardless of the size of the audience. This includes YouTube videos, consumer reviews, article comments, forum posts, blogs, email, texts, chats, and just about everything else that is interactive on the Internet. 


HOW IS SOCIAL MEDIA DIFFERENT THAN MASS MEDIA?

  • Mass media refers to old forms of communication, such as newspapers and television news, that are primarily one-way with a small number of journalists deciding what information a large audience sees. There is very little direct interaction with the recipients of mass media and its producers. In contrast, social media puts the power in the hands of everyone and everyone has a voice. Social media is constant and immediate, while mass media is produced periodically after significant reflection by newspaper and newscast editors. As a result, social media information is more of a stream of consciousness than a factual record. This is why statements made in social media are often less factually reliable than those made in mass media.


WHY CAN'T I JUST AVOID SOCIAL MEDIA?

  • Social media took over our lives in just a few short years. Facebook and Twitter only became available to the general public in 2006. Google didn't exist before 1998. Facebook has 1.5 billion active users. On average 6,000 tweets are sent every second. There are about 3.5 billion Google searches every day. Even if you don't want to use social media, you are often forced to if you want to partake in society. Information, consumer offers, school assignments, work product, and social activity are often only available through social media. One in five couples now meet online. Three in five gay couples now meet over the Internet. Also, one in five divorces involve Facebook. Social media revolutionized business advertising. Ninety percent of consumers trust online recommendations while only fourteen percent trust mass media ads. Far from being the convenient and disposable interaction tool, social media turned out to be a permanent record of every random expression that could potentially resurface at an inconvenient point in the future. You should assume that everything you put on social media still exists somewhere and if someone looks hard enough, they could find it.​​​


​WHAT IS SOCIAL MEDIA LAW?

  • Social media law is not so much a specific area of law as much as it is a wide ranging collection of areas of law impacted by social media. The use and misuse of social media has applications in criminal law, consumer law,  business law, cyber law, intellectual property, employment law, family law, international law, immigration law, health law, securities law, and civil lawsuits. Social media law now impacts virtually every aspect of our lives. The old laws, originally designed to control mass media, are ill equipped to address the unique problems created by an evolving social media. 
  • For example, if an untrue statement is spread through social media in a way that gives it credibility and it results in harm, whose fault is that? Is it the person who first made the false statement but did not post it on social media? Is it the person who heard the rumor and first posted it online? Is it the person who reposted it and mistakenly stated that it was a fact? Is it the owners of the website that facilitated the spread of the statement? What if the original poster cannot be identified with certainty? What if thousands of people reposted it believing it was fact? What if the website owners or their servers are located in another country beyond U.S. jurisdiction? None of these questions have simple answers that apply in every situation. Social media law is constantly changing and evolving. Progress is uneven. Laws applicable to social media can vary widely from state to state, country to country, and month to month. When seeking legal advice on a social media issue, choose a lawyer who focuses on the latest developments in social media law.​ 


WHY WE FOCUS ON SOCIAL MEDIA LAW

  • Kent Ninomiya, the founding member of Ninomiya Law, PLLC, worked in the mass media as a television news anchor and reporter since the 1980s, and worked with the Internet and social media since the 1990s. He has been deeply involved with the media throughout the time that we morphed from a mass media society into a social media culture. Now, as an attorney and counselor at law, he works to protect rights in social media and educate the public about sensible social media practices. Ninomiya Law, PLLC strives to be one of the few law practices focused on social media law issues and provide its clients with a unique multi-media perspective that others without our experience and focus can offer. We believe that social media law will grow as social media use grows.

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