Ever since the SEC came out with a risk alert on social media earlier this year, one section, about testimonials, has gotten many advisors fired up. It reads, "Depending on the facts and circumstances, the use of 'social plug-ins' such as the 'like' button could be a testimonial under the Advisers Act."
According to Dan Bernstein, director of professional services at MarketCounsel, "This is a direct attack on likes. You are on notice of what the SEC's opinion is." The alert is not clear on how broad the SEC's stance on social media testimonials is, exactly. For example, it addresses liking, which impacts Facebook, but also could impact, say, retweeting on Twitter, using the +1 button offered by Google, sharing on Google+, liking and sharing on YouTube, pinning on Pinterest, to name a few.
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