As discussed last month, confusion reigns over when employers are legally allowed to discipline employees for bashing the company (or the boss) on Facebook or other social media sites. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has ruled that certain employee comments amount to “protected activity” under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).
Now the NLRB has published a report that summarizes the outcomes and reasoning behind 14 cases it decided in the past year involving employees’ use of social media and the legality of employers’ social media policies.
According to the law firm Littler Mendelson, the decisions appear to establish the following guidelines: “An employee’s social media use is likely to be considered protected concerted activity if the comments: (a) involve the terms and conditions of employment; (b) constitute an ‘outgrowth’ of an earlier discussion about the terms and conditions of work among co-workers; and (c) involve or are directed to fellow co-workers to invite or induce further action.”
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