A little over five years ago, TikTok, the social networking platform where users post videos ranging in length from 15 seconds to three minutes, was born. Now, I know that it’s hard to keep up with technology. But if your employee handbook doesn’t specifically reference TikTok — and I’m not just talking about your social media policy — then you, or your employees, or perhaps both, are looking for trouble.
Just ask a former flight attendant for a major airline.
According to a report from Josie Klein of The Sun (which the New York Post republished here), the flight attendant had been posting TikToks in her uniform about her work for the airline. Supposedly, these videos divulged “industry secrets, for example, that the airline doesn’t clean the plane in between flights.”
According to the flight attendant, an anonymous complaint to the airline followed. That complaint apparently led to an ultimatum from the airline for her to resign immediately, which she did.
Whether the airline acted because the flight attendant posted videos in her uniform, dished on cabin cleanliness, or did something else altogether, is unclear.
The point here from the flight attendant’s perspective is that she appears to have been oblivious that her online behavior could result in a separation of employment.
I don’t know the airline’s motivations towards the flight attendant sharing this “industry secret” — she didn’t exactly share Q4 earnings before the company released them. Perhaps, filming in uniform did her in instead.
But, with so many TikTok users trying to become the next big thing, I strongly suggest you update your confidentiality and trade secret policies to ensure that employees know not to discuss them on any social media platform — including TikTok.
You’ve got enough to worry about right now with COVID-19. The last thing you need is your confidential information going viral too.