California judge has shut down a U.K. couple’s attempt to obtain the Facebook messages of their daughter, a 23-year-old model who died in a mysterious tragedy. The judge’s decision highlights, once again, growing questions over privacy and how to handle social media after we die.
The California case turns on Sahar Daftary, a former “Face of Asia” winner, who fell 150 feet from the balcony of a luxury apartment in Manchester. Her parents had asked Facebook for her messages in the hopes they would shed light about how and why she died. But in his ruling last week, Judge Paul Grewal quashed the request after Facebook argued that turning over the messages could violate federal privacy laws.
Daftary’s mother had argued that, as the executor of her daughter’s will, she had a right to access Sahar’s Facebook account. But Facebook pointed to a law called the Stored Communications Act that forbids companies from sharing users’ emails without their permission. The judge sided with Facebook.
» via GigaOM
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