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New In-House Lawyer Task: Vetting Tweets

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By William Vogeler, Esq. on June 08, 2018 6:55 AM

In-house counsel nationwide may want to start adding "tweet vetter" to their resumes.

It's not just a task. In the Twitter President era, it's a responsibility that in-house counsel have to take seriously.

To tweet or not to tweet; that is the first question in the legal analysis. The second question is, how to tweet?

How to Tweet

Chan Lee, general counsel for Sanofi in North America, knows how. His legal team approved a tweet for the company, which manufactures Ambien.

Why does that sound familiar? Because the tweet went viral in the wake of Roseanne Barr's failed excuse for her racist comment. Barr blamed it on Ambien.

"While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication," Sanofi responded.

Lee vetted it, and the rest is twistory.

How Not to Tweet

On the other end of the spectrum, we have Brent McIntosh. He has an impressive resume -- White House and Justice Department jobs -- but he has some twittery skeletons in his closet.

His tweets are coming back to haunt him. He is up for a spot as general counsel for the Treasury Department, but White House aides have flagged his tweets for being critical of the Tweeter-/Commander-in-Chief.

According to Bloomberg, McIntosh highlighted certain articles for his followers that caught the vetters' attention. Some stories favored Jeb Bush as candidate for president during the last election.

That's not how you want tweets to work. But that is probably why lawyers may start vetting the President's tweets.

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