If you are like most New Yorkers, you love social media. In fact, you may suspect that you spend too much time keeping up with your friends and family online. There is no question that Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, et al. are wildly popular and here to stay. During one period of your life, however, you should fight your social media obsession and stop posting: when you go through a divorce.
Many divorcing posters have discovered to their detriment that telling the world about their divorce on Facebook is unwise and possibly self-defeating. Why? Because even as far back as 2010, 67 percent of American divorce attorneys admitted that Facebook was their best source of negative information about their clients’ spouses.
Unfortunately, just because you have your Facebook privacy settings set for maximum protection, the information and photos you post nevertheless are far from safe. Do you realize that you do not actually own the things you post? Facebook does. So do the other outlets on which you place personal information that could easily come back to haunt you in court. Not only can these outlets divulge your information to others with legal impunity, your friends and family can innocently re-post to others who in turn re-post. The circle grows ever wider, and you have no way of knowing how many people ultimately have access to your information.
Consequently, your best strategy while going through a divorce is never to post any of the following:
- Information or photos pertaining to new romances
- Photos of a suggestive or explicit sexual nature
- Information or photos of expensive purchases you make
- Information or photos about where you go or with whom
- Information or photos of any new home you are considering moving into
The more contentious your divorce, the more you should stay off social media. Not only should you post nothing new, you should go back through your posts and delete anything that could possibly be used against you in court. Remember, while your constitutional right to remain silent applies only when you face criminal charges, you always have the right to remain silent on Facebook and other social media.