Labor & Employment Communications & Media Constitutional Law

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Labor & Employment issues written by leading professionals.
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NLRB determines vulgar Facebook posts protected concerted activity

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) determined that Pier Sixty LLC, a New York catering service, violated federal labor law by firing an employee server after he posted a Facebook message protesting supervisory abuse...more

Social Media: Strategy and Implementation - Are you protected?

With more companies utilizing social media as a part of doing business, are you protecting yourself and your business from issues that can arise when implementing these strategies? Where do you stand legally when employees...more

Supreme Court to Decide Whether Online Threats Are Illegal

As the internet continues to swiftly transform the way we do business, shop and socialize, it also offers a new platform for those with more criminal or malicious intentions. While some of these activities are clearly...more

Facebooker–Good Citizen or Fired?

Can an employee’s Facebook post be grounds for termination? The Fifth Circuit says, “Yes.” Graziosi v. City of Greenville Mississippi, No. 13-60900 (5th Cir. January 9, 2015). A police officer posted on her Facebook page and...more

iSpy: Tracking Employees with GPS Technology on Mobile Devices

More than 90 percent of the 322 million cellular phones in use in the United States contain global positioning system (GPS) tracking devices that allow wireless carriers to obtain continuous, highly accurate information...more

The NLRB's Latest Digital Developments

Last May, we highlighted a pending National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) case where the Board requested comments on whether it should reconsider its view that employees do not have a statutory right to use employer-owned...more

Reading the NLRB Signs at the Triple Play Sports Bar

In Three D, LLC d/b/a Triple Play Sports Bar and Grille, 361 NLRB No. 31. (August 22, 2014), the National Labor Relations Board ruled that an employee “liking” a status on Facebook is engaging in protected concerted...more

Fines For Less-Than-Flattering Reviews?

Last month, a New York hotel, the Union Street Guest House ("hotel"), learned a valuable lesson in online etiquette and the power of personal reviews. The hotel inserted a clause into its wedding guest contracts that informed...more

More Reasons for Employers to "DISLIKE" Facebook

The National Labor Relations Board is at it again – wading into the social media foray, that is. In a case that has been percolating since 2011, the NLRB has ruled that an employer must reinstate an employee who was...more

Social Media Policy: It’s Only As Effective as the Social Media Training That Goes With It

With the rise of the internet and mobile technology, people are broadcasting their opinions and beliefs on social media sites. Twitter was established as an outlet for self expression… of the fewer-than-...more

The Class Action Chronicle - Summer 2014

In This Issue: - Avoiding Class Certification Through an Offer of Judgment - CLASS CERTIFICATION DECISIONS: ..Decisions Granting Motions to Strike ..Decisions Denying Motions to Strike...more

10 Tips for Creating an Effective Social Media Policy

A controversial tweet posted by a Kansas University professor last fall in response to the shootings at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C. resulted in the Kansas Board of Regents’ adoption of a revised social media policy. The...more

Airline Management Newsletter - February 2014

Ninth Circuit Upholds Strike Injunction Against Non-Union Employees - Executive Summary: The Ninth Circuit recently affirmed the decision of a federal trial court, which granted a strike injunction against...more

Court Upholds New Jersey’s Ban on Unemployment Discrimination in Job Advertisements

New Jersey’s law prohibiting discrimination against the unemployed in job advertisements – the first of a new crop of similar state and municipal laws – is constitutional, according to a recent New Jersey appeals court...more

Socially Aware - Volume 5, Issue 1 - January/February 2014

In This Issue: FFIEC Issues Final Guidance on Social Media Usage by Financial Institutions; Uncovering a Line in the Sand: Employee Social Media Use and the NLRA; Website Operators Await Final Guidance Regarding...more

Facebook: Fireable Offense or Free Speech?

The interplay between an employee’s postings on Facebook and the impact of those postings on his or her employment status is an evolving area of the law. Just last month, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of...more

Is New Jersey’s “Need Not Apply” Law Prohibiting Employers from Publishing Ads Discouraging Unemployed Job Seekers from Applying...

New Jersey’s Appellate Division last week upheld a 2011 statute (N.J.S.A. 34:8B-1) that bars employers seeking to fill job vacancies in New Jersey from knowingly publishing advertisements stating that job applicants must be...more

Refining the First Amendment Status of Social Media Activity by Government Employees

The Supreme Court’s 1968 decision in Pickering v. Board of Education allows governmental employers, including law enforcement agencies, to fire or discipline employees for disrupting operations with excessive complaining, but...more

Two Circuits Address the First Amendment Status of Facebook Activity

Two recent U.S. appellate court decisions have clarified the extent to which the First Amendment protects the social media activities of government employees. In Gresham v. City of Atlanta, the Court of Appeals for the...more

First Amendment Does Not Prevent State From Firing Employee For Derogatory Facebook Comments

Though the First Amendment affords greater free speech protections for government employees relative to those in the private sector, the speakers do not have carte blanche to insult or deride whomever they see fit. Rather,...more

Illinois Supreme Court Strikes Down Amendment to Illinois Public Labor Relations Act

As I mentioned earlier this week in discussing Performance Marketing, the Illinois Supreme Court has been a somewhat cool audience over the past ten years for constitutional claims. That’s why it was mildly surprising late...more

What's Not To Like About Protected Speech?

At the expense of sounding too corny, sometimes these issues are fascinating. As much as they are practical, from a takeaway standpoint. Back on May 8, 2012, I blogged about an interesting federal case in Virginia that...more

Is the "Like" Button Becoming a Constitutionally Protected Activity?

On September 18, 2013, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that an employee's act of clicking the "Like" button on Facebook constitutes speech protected by the First Amendment. This ruling signals an extension of...more

Public Employees’ Facebook “Like” Is The Internet Equivalent Of A Political Yard Sign

The courts are taking steps to protect communications made via social media; e.g., Ehling v. Monmouth-Ocean Hospital Service Corp., No. 2:11-cv-03305 (D.N.J. Aug 20, 2013) (holding that private Facebook posts are protected...more

The First Amendment Goes Digital – Clicking “Like” on Facebook is Speech

With around 1.15 billion members, Facebook is a massive, global forum for communicating with friends and the world. For many users, it often feels as if their news feeds are clogged with vapid comments about the weather, meal...more

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