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Facebook Posts, Info Leaks Lead to Employee Terminations

By CIOinsight  |  Posted 11-12-2010 Print
Two firings -- one of an employee posting opinions about her boss on Facebook and another of a Google employee for leaking pay info -- exemplify the challenges posed in our social-media driven workplace.

Google reportedly fired an unnamed employee who leaked a memo of the company's recent seemingly positive announcement of a 10 percent pay raise and a $1,000 bonus for all employees, according to sources who spoke with CNN Money.

The question is, what message does this send to employees? How harmful was the information the individual shared with the media? Enough to get fired over, evidently.

An unrelated firing in Connecticut involves a negative Facebook post by an employee about her manager. In early November, the National Labor Relations Board filed a complaint on behalf of a terminated employee who worked as an emergency technician for American Medical Response, an ambulance services company.

Dawnmarie Souza contends she was fired after posting critical comments about her managing supervisor on Facebook and after requesting and being denied the right for representation from her union, Teamsters Local 443, according to the complaint. Part of the case is the denial of the union assistance, but the labor board also contends American Medical Response's Internet and blogging policies are "overly broad."

The company said Souza was a problem employee with customers and that Facebook had nothing to do with the termination. But, the issue of what can and cannot be written in a Facebook post certainly makes this a potentially precedent-setting case for all companies and their social media policies.

For more, read the eWeek article Google Pay Raises, Facebook Under Fire After Employee Terminations.


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