Social Media, the First Amendment and your Family Law Case

By December 20, 2011Divorce In Colorado

The Gasper Law Group

Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. We have all heard about them and they are frequently mentioned in the news. Recently, there was a block buster movie about Facebook, a court case about the freedom of speech and postings on social media, and stories about criminals caught because of their postings on these sites. Everywhere you turn, technology and social media seem to be there.
As an attorney, where is a fantastic place to get dirt clients and the other side? Social Media.
It is amazing what people post on social media, relatively unfiltered. Sure there is a first amendment right to the freedom of speech but that does not mean that your words can not be used to question your motives, credibility, or judgment in a custody case. As an attorney, I have used postings against the other side but it has been used as a weapon against my clients as well. If someone insists on keeping their page up during the course of a case, consider the following list Dos and Don’ts:

Do
• Say Happy Birthday to your friends
• Keep you settings private for your friends only; including pictures
• Post how great the weather is
• Post your favorite bible verse, so long as you are not male and your favorite verse is “wives submit to your husband”
• Discuss the latest sports score
• Post photos of sports events and school events (provided there is not a restraining order restraining you from these locations)
• Post photos of you playing sports or being in someone’s wedding
• Charitable events you plan to attend
Don’t Post:
• How much you hate the your spouse, the other gender, or how you got screwed
• Pictures of yourself half dressed holding your favorite glass of Long Island Ice Tea or looking in the mirror making your best sexy face
• Pictures of yourself and your new significant other with your children as a “family portrait”
• Pictures of your children nude, in the bath, holding a beer, flashing gang signs, or any type of weapon
• How someone has kidnapped your child
• How depressed and down and out you are
• How your kid is home from school again
• How you cannot handle your kid’s behavior, attitude, or how much you want to take the wooden spoon and smack them on the rear with it
• How great the bar, club, or Hookah Lounge was last night
• How drunk or high you have gotten
• How the Judge or Court has screwed you again
• How you are broke because that money sucking ex of yours got your money and is wasting it on cable and not your child
• Asking for parenting advice from a bunch of relative strangers
• How your 2 year old was being sassy and you threatened to sell him on Craigslist or any other choice in disciplining methods
• Have your significant other post on their page trashing your ex, her family or children
• Do not link any of the above to your page


Don’t Post:
• How much you hate the your spouse, the other gender, or how you got screwed
• Pictures of yourself half dressed holding your favorite glass of Long Island Ice Tea or looking in the mirror making your best sexy face
• Pictures of yourself and your new significant other with your children as a “family portrait”
• Pictures of your children nude, in the bath, holding a beer, flashing gang signs, or any type of weapon
• How someone has kidnapped your child
• How depressed and down and out you are
• How your kid is home from school again
• How you cannot handle your kid’s behavior, attitude, or how much you want to take the wooden spoon and smack them on the rear with it
• How great the bar, club, or Hookah Lounge was last night
• How drunk or high you have gotten
• How the Judge or Court has screwed you again
• How you are broke because that money sucking ex of yours got your money and is wasting it on cable and not your child
• Asking for parenting advice from a bunch of relative strangers
• How your 2 year old was being sassy and you threatened to sell him on Craigslist or any other choice in disciplining methods
• Have your significant other post on their page trashing your ex, her family or children
• Do not link any of the above to your page