Dismissal for Facebook comments

Tue 1st Sep 2015

A very recent decision of the Employment Appeal Tribunal has underlined the danger to employees of making derogatory comments about their employers on social media, in this case, Facebook. Over a period of time the employee had posted a number of different comments about his managers and the organisation for which he worked. It has to be said that the comments were pretty rude. The EAT said that he had been fairly dismissed. What is a bit surprising is that the employer had known about some of the comments for some time and only brought them up in the context of other disciplinary issues. Other comments were only found after a trawl undertaken by the HR department, so some were over 2 years old. This follows a previous EAT decision that permitted an employer to rely on old social media comments that it had specifically searched for when dealing with other disciplinary issues.

This is a reminder for employers to maintain an effective social media policy that spells out what is acceptable and what is not, together with the consequences of breaking the rules It is also salutary reminder to employees of the importance of exercising caution when posting online.

Tue 1st Sep 2015

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