NLRB Administrative Law Judge Issues Another Social Media Decision

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On September 28, 2011, a National Labor Relations Board (Board) Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) found that an employee who was discharged for posts he made on his Facebook page was not discharged in violation of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). In Knauz Motors, Inc., Case No. 13-CA-46452 (pdf), the ALJ found that the employee's Facebook posts contained both protected and non-protected activity, but that the employee was terminated for only the non-protected activity. As a result, the ALJ refused to find that the employee's discharge was unlawful.

The decision involved two different threads on the employee's Facebook page. The first included "mocking and sarcastic" pictures and comments about a sales event at the car dealership where the employee worked. The employee was dissatisfied with the food selection for the event, which included hotdogs among other things. The employee expressed his displeasure about the food selection at a meeting prior to the event, and another employee voiced a similar complaint. The ALJ found that since more than one employee complained about the food, the complaints constituted "concerted" activity.

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