Most employees use the Internet while at work whether on
company-issued equipment or their own mobile devices. They probably
update their LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter pages, and they may
gripe (and even blog) about their bosses, co-workers and
workplaces. Even human resources and supervisory staff may use
social media sites to research job applicants, check on current
employees, and recommend or provide an employment reference to
former employees. They may even be monitoring employees'
Unfortunately, this unregulated use of social media sites has
landed employers in hot water. And now employers have a new
authority to face regarding social media issues: the National Labor
Relations Board (NLRB), the federal agency charged with protecting
employees' rights to engage in union-related activity. The NLRB
officially has taken a hardline stance toward matters concerning
employers' responses to employees' use of social media sites.
Social media and the workplace
Numerous state and federal courts have weighed in on myriad
issues relating to employees' use of social media sites. Courts
have imposed liability on employers because employers use social
media sites to evaluate applicants or make employment decisions
with respect to current employees based on protected categories,
such as race, color, religion, age, disability, sex (including
pregnancy and identity), sexual orientation, marital status,
national origin, ancestry and...
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