The real estate website company Zillow, Inc. announced it would use Twitter and Facebook to field questions on its first quarter earnings call. The company claims that it is the first to take questions in this manner, but will continue to take questions in the traditional way - from those dialed into the call. This announcement comes in the wake of the SEC relaxing the rules related to the use of social media to comply with Regulation FD.
Regulation FD requires companies to disseminate material information about itself in a manner reasonably designed to reach the general public broadly and non-selectively. By utilizing social media as a means to receive questions, Zillow is further advancing the use of social media in corporate communications. As we wrote before, companies should tread carefully with regard to social media usage.