Ok, there is one more social-media related termination that we need to discuss.
The virtual ink had barely dried on last Friday’s post about “13 people who were fired for ignorant COVID-19 and protest social media posts” when BOOM! TMZ.com reported here that a professional soccer team had released one of its players for — get this — something his wife did on social media.
Sure enough, the soccer team in this statement, confirmed that it had learned about “a series of racist and violent social media posts” by the player’s wife. The team “strongly condemned the social posts and requested their immediate removal.” The team then announced that that the team and the player had “mutually agreed to part ways.”
One of my HR favorites, Suzanne Lucas, blogged here about the soccer player losing his job. Ultimately, she concluded that “holding someone accountable for their spouse’s posts is a road we don’t want to go down. Ever.”
I haven’t seen anything like this since the Bryan Colangelo / 76ers saga of 2018. And, even then, the circumstances are quite different.
(Do yourself a favor and read the Colangelo blog post. It will blow your mind. Suzanne, never say never.)
Ironically, the only other situation to which I can compare the soccer player losing his job is when Colin Kaepernick allegedly lost out on a QB job with the Baltimore Ravens because of his girlfriend’s tweet about the team owner. You can be your own judge on whether the tweet should have cost Colin Kaepernick his opportunity.
Ultimately, most employees are at-will and can be fired for any reason or no reason at all, including a spouse’s social media activity. But what do you think? Should an employee be disciplined up to and including termination of employment for something a spouse does on social media?
Hit me up and let me know what you think.