4 Acronyms Bloggers Should Know

Limited Liability Company
“A limited liability company is a hybrid type of legal structure that provides the limited liability features of a corporation and the tax efficiencies and operational flexibility of a partnership.”
U.S. Small Business Administration: Chose Your Business Structure, Limited Liability Company

Is your blog a business? Do you hope for it be one in the future? Start now. Yes, you could hack your way through the forms on your own. Or you can pay about the same amount for a lawyer to get it right the first time.

Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation
“SLAPPs are lawsuits brought against those who communicate with their government or speak out on issues of public interest.”
Public Participation Project

Corporation X doesn’t like what you said about their restaurant in your online review. They threaten to sue. It’s a SLAPP. Can you afford the legal fees to prove they have no case? Or will you have to take down your review and walk away?

The PPP has a list of State Anti-SLAPP Laws, “Pertinent laws and judicial decisions are listed according to state.”

Electronic Frontier Foundation
“The Electronic Frontier Foundation is the leading nonprofit organization defending civil liberties in the digital world.”
EFF: About

Check out EFF’s Legal Guide for Bloggers

Federal Trade Commission
“Under the law, claims in advertisements must be truthful, cannot be deceptive or unfair, and must be evidence-based. ”
FTC: Advertising and Marketing Basics

Did you get a freebie? Is your notification clear and conspicuous? The FTC has disclosure guidelines.

Bonus phrase: Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act
“No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider” (47 U.S.C. § 230). ”
EFF: Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

“Section 230 grants interactive online services of all types, including news websites, blogs, forums, and listservs, broad immunity from certain types of legal liability stemming from content created by others.”
Digital Media Law Project: Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

Protecting you from what happens in your comment section.

Courtesy of a talk on “Keeping it Legit: Common Legal Issues Facing Bloggers” by Keith Lee, held last month at Desert Island Supply Company, hosted by Birmingham Bloggers. Mr. Lee is a lawyer with Hamer Law Group, Birmingham AL and blogs at Associate’s Mind. Any good suggestions are his. Any mistakes are mine. Neither suggestions nor mistakes were/are intended as legal advice.

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