Social media is at the forefront of activity for many people, whether for personal, business or other uses. If you are in business or interact with businesses using social media, it may be helpful – and in some cases is absolutely necessary – to keep track of what you are posting and sending to others. Naturally, most of us want to ensure that what we are saying through social media is appropriate and will not subject us to negative reaction. However, that can generally be handled simply by thinking through what we are posting before we do it.
In some situations, though, it is necessary to be able to prove what we have said or sent. An investment adviser, for example, is required to maintain records of all communications to or from clients. This information may be required by auditors and may be necessary in the event of a complaint or claim made against the adviser. The same sort of thing can happen to an individual in their dealings with all types of businesses; proof of what was said can help clear up a misunderstanding or more serious problem.
Keeping track of these various forms of communication can be daunting to many of us, particularly those who are involved in a high volume of such activity. We can archive our e-mail exchanges fairly easily and know that the material is readily accessible when needed. However, it may be more challenging to keep track of all we have on Facebook or even Twitter, for example. Other forms of social media, famous for quickly disappearing, can pose huge problems in the business world if there is no proof of the nature and timing of the communication. Software is available to address these issues and if you are at all concerned about the potential need to show what you really said at any given point, it would behoove you to pursue such tools.
Bottom line: Unless you are above the law and any challenge, it is wise to not only be careful of what you might say in social media, but to keep track of what you actually did say and when. This can protect you in many ways and may actually be a legal requirement for some of us.