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Survey: In-House Can't Handle a Social Media Crisis

Some sobering yet expected data came out of global communications research and consulting firm Weber Shandwick. According to the data, lawyers in both the U.K. and the U.S. agreed that firm reputation was a company's most valuable asset with a 91 percent agreement; and that social media greatly increased the chances of an all out-crisis (85 percent increase).

And yet, for some reason, the very same pool of lawyers seem to think that the purported social media crises they all seem to agree is a problem is not their problem, but someone else's. This illusory superiority example goes to show that even lawyers aren't immune to self-delusion.

SEC Announces $325,000 Whistleblowing Award

The SEC just announced a $325,000 award given to a former investment firm employee who blew the whistle to the SEC with specific information that allowed the federal agency to begin an investigation that later uncovered extensive fraudulent activity at the tipster's ex-employer.

Intellectual Property Highlights From the TPP Text

The full text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement was released November 5, 2015. It was many years in the running -- seven years, basically -- but the masterpiece is finally available for public scrutiny. The Agreement extends its tentacles into approximately 40 percent of the world's annual GDP and almost 1 billion people's lives. Obviously, businesses are some of its greatest proponents.

CFTC: Adopt New Security Measures, Or Else?

Congress created the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in 1974 to, alongside the National Futures Association, oversee commodities trading in this country. Since then, the CFTC's regulatory power has expanded further and further.

Last month, the CFTC greenlit the latest strap-tightening policy suggestions by the NFA: members of the NFA "should" implement stronger cybersecurity policies. f you're in the commodities or derivatives industry, get ready to make some changes.

Merger of Viagra Maker and Allergan Could Be Biggest of 2015

Share prices of Allergan exploded out of the opening bell and topped out with an almost 8 percent gain over the stock's closing. It's been a good several trading days for the Ireland-based pharmaceutical company.

The lastest jump in prices has been attributed to "preliminary friendly discussions" regarding Pfizer's proposed takeover of Allergan. If the deal goes through, it stands poised to be largest takeover deal of 2015.

When corporations break the law, individuals will be held accountable. That's the gist of a DOJ memo released this month affirming the Department's commitment to pursuing individuals for corporate wrongdoing. (It's almost like the saw the VW emissions fraud coming, or finally learned from years of criticism over their handling of Wall Street rule breaking.)

The so-called Yates memo, named after its author, Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates, marks a notable change from past practice. It sets out "six key steps" to strengthen the Department's focus on individuals when investigating corporate wrongs. Here are the highlights:

Here's a simple tip for corporate communications: don't start emails to your team with "Wuddup my n*****." In fact, don't use the "N word" at all. Ever. Especially not when you're working high up in a diversity-starved, struggling tech company.

It's not a hard lesson, but it's one that Yahoo's Jerry Shen failed to learn. Shen worked as a director of engineering and joined Yahoo after his fantasy football app was bought up by the purple, exclamatory tech company. He recently sent an N.W.A.-themed email throughout the company. It started with "Wuddup" and didn't get much better from there. Shen was fired the same day.

Fortune magazine released its annual Most Powerful Women list yesterday. The list surveys 50 successful female business women who represent $1 trillion dollars in stock and include over 27 female CEOs (with a bonus shout out to Taylor Swift).

Sadly, none of the top 50 are lawyers. But all of them have robust legal departments that would make a great home for any ambitious in-house attorney. Here are the top 3 most powerful women in America and an overview of the legal departments that support them:

We've said it before and we'll say it again: cybersecurity should be on the top of any GC's agenda. Not only is cybersecurity one of the main areas C-suite executives want their legal department to master, the costs of losing sensitive data can be massive, resulting in expensive litigation, loss of proprietary information, and reputation damage.

But how do you protect the data that's in the hand of suppliers, contractors, and the like? Don't worry, the federal government has been figuring that out for you.

Dick Costolo, the embattled CEO of Twitter, announced his exit from the company yesterday. Costolo had manned the company for the past five years, but faced increasing criticism as Twitter failed to increase its user base. Twitter co-founder and ex-CEO Jack Dorsey will replace him on an interim basis.

Costolo had long been criticized for failing to realize the full potential of the 140-words-or-less messaging platform, but his departure is still a surprise. Costolo's voluntary exit has lead to speculation as to how Twitter will evolve in his absence, or whether it will simply be sold to another tech company.