Name squatting & Snapchat: what can I do if someone steals my name or company name on Snapchat?

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Name squatting & Snapchat: what can I do if someone steals my name or company name on Snapchat?

In the Snapchat community guidelines, among the rules of engagement is one of particular concern for brands and organizations who may not have been quick enough to grab their usernames:

Impersonation

Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not—including celebrities, brands, or other organizations.

What is username squatting or impersonation? It’s when someone makes an account with your brand/organization name and can either remain dormant (likely because they want payment) or they can wreak havoc with conduct unbecoming.

Despite offering a cautionary note to those who violate the rules: 

If you violate these rules, we may remove the offending content or terminate your account. If your account is terminated, you won’t be allowed to use Snapchat again.

It looks like some brands and organizations are having a difficult time getting their usernames back from Snapchat squatters.

Here are some troubleshooting ideas: 

  1. Even if you don’t plan to use Snapchat in the near future, nail down your username NOW!
  2. If your name is being squatted on, contact Snapchat Support on Twitter.
  3. If that doesn’t work, try reaching out to the user. In some cases they may not realize its a brand/organization – Nike isn’t that big, right? (p.s.: I actually don’t know if their name is being squatted, but just as an example…)
  4. And if you’re not getting anywhere, maybe it’s time to think about creating a new username?

Example of other social site “username squatting” rules:

Twitter: 
Username squatting policy: username squatting is prohibited by The Twitter Rules.

Please note that if an account has had no updates, no profile image, and there is no intent to mislead, it typically means there’s no name-squatting or impersonation. Note that we will not release squatted usernames except in cases of trademark infringement. If your report involves trademark infringement, please consult those policies for instructions for reporting these accounts.

Attempts to sell, buy, or solicit other forms of payment in exchange for usernames are also violations and may result in permanent account suspension.

If your company/brand has username squatters, here are site-specific resources to help you in an attempt to reclaim your username:

***This article will be updated as Snapchats username squatting rules evolve!

Kat Macaulay, BA ADdPR BnC
Kat Macaulay, BA ADdPR BnC
Kat Macaulay is a Marketing Strategist, Writer + Speaker known for her no-nonsense approach to pretty much everything. Using data and insights, she helps organizations market more effectively to get results that matter. She's also a high-scoring instructor at Mount Royal University, where she teaches Social Media Analytics and Google Analytics + Marketing Measurement. She holds certifications from Google, as well as Facebook and is currently working toward a specialization in Marketing Analytics. When she’s not busy juggling kids, volunteering + work, she’s busy planning her retirement to Cape Breton.