Emory Bankruptcy Developments Journal


Social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are household names today. Despite the current popularity of social media, however, few courts have addressed the ownership rights in social media accounts. Fewer still have addressed whether a social media account is considered property of the estate. In a case of first impression in 2015, the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas concluded that a debtor's Twitter and Facebook accounts fell under property of the estate. This Comment argues that social media accounts should not automatically fit within the broad scope of § 541(a)(1). Rather, courts should apply a factor-driven, case-by-case analysis to determine whether social media accounts constitute property of the estate. This Comment then proposes a three-prong analytical framework to guide courts' classification of a debtor's social media accounts.