Articles Posted in Social Media and the Workplace

[WARNING: This post has some VERY foul language. Although the National Labor Relations Board may tolerate it, many of you may be offended].


 

By now, all of us have read the articles, which claim that the law permits your employees to complain about work on social media … and keep their jobs.

Well, that’s not exactly true. The National Labor Relations Act, which applies to most private-sector workplaces — both union and non-union — protects employees who engage in protected concerted activity. Protected concerted activity is where employees discuss working conditions with one another.

But, an employee who gripes alone is not protected. Also, vulgar and obscene comments are not protected.

Until now. Continue reading

Your company has set up a private LinkedIn Group. Your company, which controls who may become a member of the Group, has seen the number of Group members swell to nearly 700. Way to go! Because it’s a private group, the names of all of the group members are not generally available to the public.

Now, let’s say that the employee whom you have appointed to manage the LinkedIn Group — the one who knows all the passwords — up and leaves. And, of course, he doesn’t return the passwords. What can you do?

How about a lawsuit for misappropriation of trade secrets? Continue reading

This “invasion of privacy” question is the lynchpin of a new lawsuit from two former employees of one of the largest beer companies in the world. The complaint (available here), which began in state court, has been removed to federal court in New Jersey.

David Gialanella, reporting for the New Jersey Law Journal (full article here), summarizes the facts of the case:

A year ago, five company employees, including Nascimento and Yule, exchanged a series of text messages, apparently disparaging fellow employee Alex Davis. The messages were transmitted using their personal mobile phones, and on their own time, but Nascimento’s personal phone was linked to his company iPad through the iMessaging application, causing the messages to be stored on the iPad, according to the complaint.

Afterward, Nascimento was issued a new iPad, while the old one—with his text messages and credit card information still stored on it—was loaned to Davis. Davis discovered the text messages and complained, after which Nascimento, Yule and the others were questioned by investigators hired by Anheuser-Busch, according to the complaint.

Nascimento, Yule and a third employee involved in the messaging were terminated last September for “‘violation of corporate policy regarding use of company equipment,’” while a fourth was reprimanded, according to the complaint.

Continue reading

By now, we all must have a great story. Maybe it’s about a co-worker. Or more likely, something we read online — probably on this blog. Each of us knows about someone who, in a single careless tweet, status update, or selfie . . . lost their job.

A little over a year ago, I wrote here about Justine Sacco, a former PR Executive from IAC, which owns such online publications as The Daily Beast, Match.com, About.com, and several others. Just before boarding a flight to South Africa, Ms. Sacco tweeted: “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white.” During her flight, Ms. Sacco’s insensitive tweet was retweeted over 3,000 times and picked up by several media outlets around the world. It even spawned the hashtag #HasJustineLandedYet, which trended on Twitter during her flight. She had only 170 followers on Twitter.

As you can imagine, that tweet earned Ms. Sacco a pink slip. But, to this day, that single tweet and all of the notoriety that followed still haunts her. Continue reading

Or, as a glass-half-full kinda guy, maybe it was a good idea for an Ohio school bus driver to take a selfie on the bus holding an unopened beer bottle to her lips  and post it to Facebook. She lost her job, but, I get a blog post with great SEO potential (beer, Facebook, selfie, Kim Kardashian, hot xxx action) and a new slide for my Social Media in the Workplace ppt.

David Moye at Huffington Post has more on the bus driver oopsie here.

And, while we’re on the subject of smh social media, Continue reading

I am a true Twitter OG. Why, I remember back in the day — it was 2009 — when Connor Riley, a/k/a ‘Cisco Fatty’ a/k/a @theconnor tweeted: “Cisco just offered me a job! Now I have to weigh the utility of a fatty paycheck against the daily commute to San Jose and hating the work.”

Unfortunately for Ms. Riley, one of Cisco’s channel partner advocates read the tweet and tweeted back, “Who is the hiring manager. I’m sure they would love to know that you will hate the work. We here at Cisco are versed in the web.”

Well, it seems we found ourselves a modern day Cisco Fatty…

Continue reading

Another bartender decided to liken beer to domestic violence. It was all captured on social media. [CBS Chicago]

An employee’s caustic Facebook post about a police shooting earned her a termination…and unemployment compensation benefits. [Technology & Marketing Law Blog]

Social media users did not respond well to the Undercover Boss episode about the owner who fired a bikini bartender for not wearing a bikini. [Jezebel]

Next time you run out of toilet paper in a train bathroom, try Twitter. [Huffington Post].

Happy New Year’s Eve everyone. 

I’m going to end the year with a bathtub mint julep quick plug. Because I’m not at all subtle — bow before BlogStar! — I may have mentioned my firm’s new #SocialMedia Practice Group. And, as of last week, we now have a Twitter feed too.

If you follow me (@Eric_B_Meyer) on Twitter — and if you don’t, I will hunt you down and claw out your… — you’ve probably seen me retweeting a lot of great #socialmedia and #cyber news and nuggets coming from @DilworthSocial. So, if you want to cut out the middleman and follow @DilworthSocial on Twitter, well then, by all means…

And I’ll see you all in 2015.