FRIDAY 13 MAR 2009 1:46 PM


You can’t fault his enthusiasm but sometimes being ahead of the curve is more trouble than it’s worth. That’s what eBay’s corporate blogger Richard Brewer-Hay is finding out, as red tape threatens to clog up his pioneering use of social media.

As a technology trendsetter, it stands to reason that eBay would embrace social media, and so it was that Brewer-Hay began to use microblogging service Twitter to ‘live-tweet’ during the company’s quarterly earnings conference calls.

Unfortunately, despite him doing this for the past three quarters, eBay’s legal team had been aware of these disclosures. And when they found out, things changed.

Now, Brewer-Hay is obliged to post a four-part Twitter disclaimer before he starts each live-tweeting session to cover eBay’s earnings calls:

Tweet 1: “Important information about the nature of this session. Forward-looking statements and non-GAAP financial measures. Click here:”

Tweet 2: “This session will contain non-GAAP financial measures.”

Tweet 3: “The presentation of this financial information is not intended to be considered in isolation or as a substitute for GAAP financial measures.”

Tweet 4: “A reconciliation of these measures to the nearest comparable GAAP measures can be found by clicking on the following link:”

Something of a mouthful, but an admirable attempt to cram legalese into neat 140-character chunks.