In this new age of technology the use of social media has taken over the daily lives of people. As a society, people crave for attention and are constantly posting pictures of their daily activities including where they are, who they are with, and what they are eating each and every day. This constant posting on social media websites has become another arrow in the quiver of legal defense firms. As Judge Richard Walsh stated, “Only the foolish or uninitiated could believe that Facebook is an online lockbox for your secrets.” These social media websites have become very important impeachment tools for the opposing party. The credibility of the plaintiff will be shattered if he or she is caught on the internet running, jogging, or any other physical activities if in the lawsuit they are claiming injuries that will affect this aspect of life.
A recent case shows the ability of the defense to use these websites as evidence to impeach the credibility of the plaintiff(s). In McMiller v. HummingBird Speedway, Inc. the victim filed suit against the defendant for rear ending him during a cool down lap following a July 7, 2007 stock car race. The plaintiff alleged substantial injuries including possible permanent impairment, loss and impairment of general health, strength, and inability to enjoy certain pleasures of life. As the discovery process progressed, the defendants of the law suit discovered pictures and comments from a fishing trip and attendance to the Daytona 500 race in Florida. The Court in the case held that this information was public information and could be used in trial against the victim. The Court also allowed the defendants to receive the login information for the plaintiff to search for any other post or tweets concerning the fishing trip and racing adventure in Florida. Smoking guns such as these pictures or comments will severely affect your case. This is why it is necessary to have an experienced New Orleans attorney on your side to navigate you through these issues that can affect your case.