Migrated from eDJGroupInc.com. Author: . Published: 2012-02-28 09:00:09  The other day I happened to be poking around Facebook to see if I could modify some setting.  I had not been to the Admin section of my Facebook account for some time and it was eye opening to see the different ways to involve Facebook into more aspects of my life.  Pretty soon I’ll be watching my own life like a movie on Facebook, but enough of the philosophical waxings for one day and back to the techie stuff.As I was moving onward from the account settings, I happened to see the words “Download a copy of your Facebook data” on the screen and immediately clicked back.  I thought this might be interesting, so naturally I clicked the button to see what I would get back after being a Facebook user for close to five years (I remember Skip Walter telling me at an EDRM meeting in 2007…”you have to check out this site..it’s different from MySpace, you can put apps on it:”…ever the visionary, Skip).So I clicked the button and the system told me that I would receive an email when the download was ready.  I waited just shy of two and half hours and received an email giving me a link to my archive.I received a zip file containing the directories below.As I was digging through the archives, all of the pictures that I uploaded to Facebook from my mobile device or directly from my computer were stored in nice, neat directories so I won’t spend too much time covering that angle.I opened the HTML directory which I assumed contained the most of the content.  I’m not going to provide screenshots of the content as…well….it’s private!!!  But I will describe it for our readers.The “Friends” file is a basic listing of all the people you have listed as Friends on Facebook.  It didn’t separate family or other categories (which is the one thing I like about Google+).The “Profile” file contains a text listing of what my Profile looked like at the time of the request.  This includes a listing of my family members, my education, birthday, my Groups, etc.The “Messages” file is a dump of all the messages sent and received by me.The “Wall” file contains everything that was put on my Facebook Wall including the thumbnails of the pictures and the links to the outside materials (I can do a graphic of this one just to show off the handsome mugs of Greg and Barry).One thing to note..all of the messages and wall postings sent to me in the archive were after September 2009.  As mentioned above, I’ve been a member of Facebook since the early summer of 2007.  Does that mean the data from prior to 2009 is gone from the Facebook network?  Inquiring minds want to know.Overall this was an interesting exercise which got me thinking about the eDiscovery implications.  There are some real cool technologies to collect from Facebook and other social media sites now (e.g. X1 eDiscovery, NextPoint, Hanzo) and they do significantly more from a collection perspective, such as collecting the sublinks.  At least with the archive Facebook sends, you can get an idea of the activity of a particular user without having to give a password.The questions I will pose to the attorneys and the experts in social media collection in the audience (please comment below) is:

  1. Would this process be acceptable in the context of litigation?
  2. Is there a difference between small, medium, and big cases when it comes to social media?

eDiscoveryJournal Contributor – Jason Velasco 

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