FINRA Eyes New Social Media Guidance


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  Joseph Price

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority is planning a sequel to its social media guidance as well as updates to a pair of decade-old opinions about information that firms post to their own Web sites.

The guidance may cover questions such as at what point a principal needs to review changes to so-called static content on a social media site, according to Joseph Price , senior v.p. of FINRA corporate financing and advertising regulation. It also might address certain adoption and entanglement issues such as how responsible firms are for third-party content they post on their own Web site, Price told delegates at the Securities and Exchange Commission ’s recent CCOutreach event.

FINRA’s initial guidance on social media (, 1/25 ) was notable for allowing social media to be supervised based on whether the content is “static” or “interactive.” But Price acknowledged that some in the industry felt the guidance did not go far enough to untangle thorny questions that prevent firms from letting representatives post anything more than business card information online. Allowing static posts helped, said co-panelist Robert Mooney , chief compliance officer of Wells Fargo Advisors . “But fundamentally these [social media] sites are dynamic. It’s like telling your kids, ‘You can go to the dance, but you’re not allowed to dance.’”

An industry task force assembled by FINRA on the topic is slated to meet March 10, though it’s unknown when the new guidance could be issued, Price told CR later.

--Edward Beeson

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Copyright © 2010 Institutional Investor

This article appears in: Financial Advisor Center , Business

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