SEC likes Facebook, Twitter

SEC likes Facebook, Twitter

The Wall Street Journal: The SEC has ruled that publicly held companies may use social media sites to communicate with investors in lieu of news releases and websites as long as they inform them ahead of time.

The move was sparked by an investigation into a July Facebook posting from Netflix Inc. Chief Executive Reed Hastings, who boasted on the social-media site that the streaming-video company had exceeded one billion hours in a month for the first time, sending the firm's shares higher. The SEC opened the investigation in December to determine if the post had violated rules that bar companies from selectively disclosing information.

"An increasing number of public companies are using social media to communicate with their shareholders and the investing public," the SEC said in its report Tuesday. "We appreciate the value and prevalence of social media channels in contemporary market communications, and the commission supports companies seeking new ways to communicate."

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