There’s a case currently making the rounds that has drawn a lot of attention to the question of whom social media accounts really belong to—employers or employees. The mobile phone website Phonedog.com is suing a former employee, Noah Kravitz, alleging that the 17,000 Twitter followers he gained while working there was the same as a customer list, and therefore did not belong to the employee.
But despite all the press it’s been getting, the Twitter case is not the first of its kind. Another recent case involved control of a LinkedIn account. Linda Eagle, was fired from Edcomm, the company she founded, which another company later bought. The new owners of Edcomm accused her of stealing trade secrets by keeping her LinkedIn account, and she responded by alleging the company misappropriated her identity. While Eagle was in charge of Edcomm, she instituted policies requiring employees to create their LinkedIn accounts using a certain template, the company claimed.