Social Rants, Evolving Policies and Who Holds the Legal Cards


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Two stories this week expose another layer in the social onion: defining the legal rights of workers and employers, and governments.

This interesting A1 piece in the Times shows that employee gripes are, in most murky situations, a protected personal right.

But the bigger issue is whether you should post rants at all, and if you choose to, what can the employer do about it?

The best employers use social like any listening tool or an employee NPS survey. Behind online rants there’s likely either a management breakdown or an employee who’s toxic to organizational culture. Either situation requires case-by-case analysis and action one way or another.

It’s a slightly different ballgame abroad. Today a French court sided with the Jewish group pressuring Twitter to disclose the identity of authors of anti-Semitic posts, citing France’s laws banning hate speech.

It’s a point made more for policy than any legal repercussion in this individual case: French laws hold no jurisdiction over US-based Twitter so the company can choose to comply or not. (Twitter bowed to pressure and removed the posts last October.)

The Times story inspired 128 comments as of my last read – most show that people think that de facto social policy about employers and co-workers is pretty obvious stuff, more like ‘do unto others…’ than first amendment protection. A little social humanity.

How specific are you getting with your social media policy?

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Megan Boyaval
Megan is our champion – of customers, of amazing stories, of how to do it right. She brings a thoughtful, creative approach to campaigns, and knows how to sell tough concepts to a broad audience. She also understands the power of customer advocacy.


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