Social media is everywhere these days, and almost everyone is on it. People post about almost anything. So, it’s not surprising that people will put up comments about their job and their employer. But doing this can get a little tricky, depending on what the employee posts. Here are some guidelines from an attorney specializing in employment law.
1. What you need to watch.
If you put up a post that has the name of your employer in it, the company has the right to look at the post. The company has the right to protect its name, brand and reputation online.
2. What is acceptable and what is not.
As an employee, you have the right to post information about your wages, hours and working conditions. General complaints about the job and working conditions are protected under federal and state law. These laws prohibit companies from retaliating for posting such information.
However, where you could get into trouble is if you make threats online, use racial slurs or other hate speech, harass anyone, or divulge trade secrets or other confidential information. If you do, the company may be obligated to check out what you have written to make sure other employees and its confidential information are safe.
Also, if you post something about the company that is not true or misleading, the company is likely to take action against you to protect its reputation.
Conversely, you can actually get into trouble if you post something good about the company without revealing that you are an employee.
3. Can you be fired for what you post?
In a word, yes. You can be subject to disciplinary action, even termination, if you post hate speech, threats, confidential information, or something defamatory to the company online, as mentioned. In fact, a company may be required to take some action if you post any of the above mentioned things.
So, it is important to know that there are limits to what you can put online. It is always best, before posting, to check the company’s social media policy.
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