CT Judge OK’s Facebook Joking Juror & Juror Facebook-friending

On October 5, 2011, a Connecticut federal court judge declined to order a new trial after the defendant in a tax evasion case learned that  (a) “Juror X” was posting on Facebook during trial that he “may get 2 hang someone… can’t wait” and “Guinness for lunch break” and (b) “Juror X” was Facebook-friending “Juror Y.”  

During an in camera evidentiary hearing, Juror X stated that the “hanging” comment was simply a joke and that he kept an open mind throughout the trial.  Likewise, he acknowledged that he Facebook-friended Juror Y but that they never have improper communications during the trial.

The order in United States v. Stavros M. Ganias is here.

Privacy
Don’t Let LinkedIn Follow You Around the Internet (and other privacy settings)

Have you checked your LinkedIn privacy settings? Don’t be fooled with a “I barely even used LinkedIn” attitude. Take 2 minutes. From the article below, here are the key steps: [easier if you have two screens, keep this open and then open your LinkedIn account on your second screen] 1. …

Ethics
Florida Supreme Court Allows Judges to be Facebook Friends With Lawyers But Four Justices Disagree With the Practice (“I write to strongly urge judges not to participate in Facebook”)

The Florida Supreme Court resolved a conflict between two intermediate appellate courts when it determined that a judge-lawyer “Facebook friend” relationship, alone, was not enough to warrant recusal of the judge.  The Court deemed its position was the majority position around the country.  However, four justices noted that caution, if …

E-discovery
Christopher Hopkins Discusses Social Media Discovery in 2018 at Palm Beach Bar Association

Special thanks to the Palm Beach Bar Association for inviting me to speak at the CLE, “How to Get Your Claim Move-In Ready for Trial.” Space is still available and you can sign up here. My small portion of the event was to discuss Florida social media discovery as well …