What are an employee’s rights regarding postings on social media sites?

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What are an employee’s rights regarding postings on social media sites?

My fiances’s co-worker posted a rude comment about a office manager on Facebook. No names were mentioned. My fiance clicked the “Like” button. Today when she got to work she was fired along with the girl that made the post. 3 other coworkers clicked the “Like” button also but they went back and clicked “Unlike” before the office manager saw it. Does the manager have to fire the other 3 people that clicked the “Like” button also?

Asked on November 5, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Alabama

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If your employor has a social networking policy and you violate it, then that and be a ground for discharge. The fact is that most companies prohibit social networking on company time or posting anything disparaging about the company.
Most states have what is called “at will employment”; this means that an employer can terminate an employee for social postings, any reason or no reason at all. That is so long as such termination does not violate the terms of an employment contract, union agreement or constitute legally actionable discrimination. Further, some states have laws which prohibit employers from disciplining their employees from certain conduct outside of the workplace and which are written broadly enough to cover online activity. Additionally, a social networking policy that is too prohibitive may be a violation of an employee’s rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The Act protects the rights of employees to engage in “concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection”. Accordingly, this section gives employees the right to speak out in an effort to improve workplace conditions (although this is not the cse in your situation).
Here is a link to an article that will explain further:
https://employment-law.freeadvice.com/employment-law/firing/social-networking-policy.htm


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