About Her “Depraved Boss”: What In The World Wide Web Can I Do About It?

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Facebook has replaced the coffee break as the preferred forum for employees to vent their workplace frustrations. Unfortunately for employers, that means complaints that were once discussed among a relatively small group of co-workers can now be aired on an international scale. According to one survey, blog entries containing the terms “my job,” “my work,” and “my boss” far outnumber those on the topics of food, sports, and dating.

Employers have become increasingly concerned with determining when they can take action against an employee who posts workplace complaints to a blog or social media site. As is the case with most employment decisions, there is no bright line answer. The law is struggling to catch up with technology. There is some guidance (discussed below) that employers can rely on to evaluate the wisdom of acting on an employee’s social media post; however, given the increasing attention to the issue by the National Labor Relations Board and employee-rights organizations and the lack of clear legal guidance from the courts, employers are well served by treading lightly.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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