Monday, June 24, 2024

Top law firm conducts workshop on social media, data privacy policy

High-powered law firm Quisumbing Torres recently hosted a ?Social Media and Data Privacy Policy Making Workshop,? which was attended by legal advisers, marketers, and top executives of over 30 institutions from various industries.

Quisumbing Torres? senior associate Angela Pia Alvendia presented template provisions that each of the participants may find useful in formulating their own social media and data privacy policies
Quisumbing Torres? senior associate Angela Pia Alvendia presented template provisions that each of the participants may find useful in formulating their own social media and data privacy policies

“In line with our commitment to provide continued education to our clients and business partners, Quisumbing Torres organizes workshops and seminars with the objective to assist Philippine businesses deal with issues and challenges, in this case, in social media and data privacy, that they face in their daily operations,” shared Ramon J. Quisumbing, managing partner of the firm, who opened the workshop with his welcome remarks.

The advent of social media has tremendously benefited multinational, foreign, and domestic companies alike, as it increases potential reach and influence in an instant.

“Potential benefits increase exponentially due to amplification of social media, but, risks also increase,” warned Bienvenido A. Marquez III, head of the firm’s Intellectual Property Practice Group and Information Technology & Communications Industry Group.

“Constant vigilance and effort is required from everyone to get the returns,” he further said.

Divina Ilas-Panganiban, partner in the firm’s Intellectual Property Practice Group likewise emphasized, “With the effectivity of the Philippine Data Privacy Act, businesses are now concerned on how to comply with its requirements considering that there are no implementing rules and regulations in place yet.

?It appears that companies are very eager to abide by the law?s directives but are left guessing on how to do so in view of the delay in the issuance of the rules and in establishing the relevant implementing agency.”

'Private persons who are active in social media are considered de facto public personalities,' explained John Nery, editor in chief of Inquirer.net.
‘Private persons who are active in social media are considered de facto public personalities,’ explained John Nery, editor in chief of Inquirer.net.

During the first half of the workshop, Kensaku Takase, local partner in the Intellectual Property Practice Group of Baker & McKenzie (Japan) and Angela Pia Alvendia, senior associate in QT’s Intellectual Property Practice Group, presented legal considerations in social media and data privacy policy formulation.

“When developing a social media policy, it is important to determine at what phase a company is with regard to social media usage, both for internal purposes and external purposes. Then a company should create a policy which is relevant to such usage, and which takes into consideration existing policies,” explained Takase.

“Once the policies are developed, it is important to ensure that both developments in social media and the laws relating to social media are monitored and the policies be updated accordingly. Education of company staff on the policies and proper enforcement are also essential ,” he reminded the participants.

Alvendia, for her part, discussed practical and key considerations on preventing others from copying proprietary online content, ensuring users agree to online site terms, avoiding liability for data privacy laws, content regulations and user-generated content and handling complaints.

She also presented template provisions that each of the participants may find useful in formulating their own social media and data privacy policies.

Industry guest speaker, John Nery, editor-in-chief of Inquirer.net, shared valuable insights from an online media perspective.

“As a rule, we respect everyone’s right to privacy but at the same time we have to understand that the boundaries are shifting,” he said.

“Private persons who are active in social media are now considered de facto public personalities,” explained Nery.

To highlight the power of social media, he even illustrated that, “The debate on whether breaking news broke on our online site, the newspaper or on Twitter, has been resolved. These days, more often than not, news breaks on social media.” Nery related this learning to the potential benefits that could be gained by private companies by engaging in social media.

“Through presence in social media, private corporations are in the position to outflank standard media,” he pointed out.

Guest panelists (from left) are moderator Christina Macasaet-Acaban, partner in the firm?s Corporate & Commercial Practice Group; Melvin Calimag, Newsbytes.PH executive editor; Dir. Maria Lourdes Yaptinchay of the Department of Trade Industry?s Sector Planning Bureau / E-commerce Office; and P/CInsp Jay Guillermo, chief of the Intelligence and Investigation Anti-Cybercrime Operations and Training Division of the PNP
Guest panelists (from left) are moderator Christina Macasaet-Acaban, partner in the firm?s Corporate & Commercial Practice Group; Melvin Calimag, Newsbytes.PH executive editor; Dir. Maria Lourdes Yaptinchay of the Department of Trade Industry?s Sector Planning Bureau / E-commerce Office; and P/CInsp Jay Guillermo, chief of the Intelligence and Investigation Anti-Cybercrime Operations and Training Division of the PNP

An open forum among the audience, speakers and guest panelists further expanded the afternoon discussions on policymaking.

Included in the lineup were Melvin Calimag, executive editor of Newsbytes.PH, director Maria Lourdes Yaptinchay of the Sector Planning Bureau/E-Commerce Office of the Department of Trade and Industry, and P/CINSP Jay Guillermo, chief of Intel and Investigation Anti-Cybercrime Operations and Training Division of the Philippine National Police.

Ilas-Panganiban and Christina Macasaet-Acaban, partner in QT’s Corporate & Commercial Practice Group moderated the panel discussion.

The event is the final installment of the ?Beyond Likes and Hashtags? workshop series that was developed by the Firm’s Intellectual Property (IP) Practice Group and Information Technology & Communications Industry Group headed by Marquez.

Previous workshops covered topics on cybercrime, data privacy, online content regulation and e-commerce consumer protection.

The firm?s IP Practice Group is noted to have “a strong client base in the technology and software sector.? It was given a Tier 1 ranking by the Legal 500 Asia Pacific, which praised the group?s ?very responsive and competent? team for its ?strong internal and external professional network? that is ?arguably second-to-none in the industry.?

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