Employees can be sacked for social media use, even outside of work
AFTER a long day at work keeping face and kissing butt, it can be a relief to get home, turn off the proverbial filter and relax.
But in the age of social media, public and private time is blurred.
A questionable tweet, post or comment while sitting on your couch at night can cost your job – whether it is about work or not.
That was the experience this year of one man who publicly shared a screen shot of a woman’s Tinder profile with a snide remark.
After the post attracted nasty and threatening comments towards the woman, it went viral with the hashtag “sexual violence won’t be silenced” and ended with the man being fired.
The content was not related to any workplace, employer or company and was posted outside of work hours but Johnathan Mamaril, principal and director of employment law specialists NB Lawyers, says this does not matter.
“The main rationale behind the dismissal of (this man) would have been the ability to bring the company’s reputation into disrepute, whether it was realised or not,” Mamaril says.
“The mere perception has the damaging effect already.”
Mamaril says all employers should have a social media policy but especially if they have a reliance or presence on social media, if they actively advertise through social media, if employees identifies themselves on social media as working for the company, or if employees use social media as a marketing tool for their job.
“Employers can take action against an employee for inappropriate social media use as long as they have a social media policy in place and have some type of training regarding the policy,” he says.
Another recent case was hotel manager Michael Nolan who lost his job after calling feminist commentator Clementine Ford a “sl**” on Facebook.
Ford shared a screen shot of their interaction to her 80,000 Facebook followers and tagged Nolan’s employer.
For further information please contact Jonathan Mamaril, Principal on 07 3876 5111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website www.lawyersforemployers.com.au.
Jonathan Mamaril, Principal & Director, NB Lawyers
07 3876 5111