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A Friend Indeed: Do Facebook Users Really Have Privacy Rights at Work?

by on
in Case In Point

Are you joshing me? Employees post on their Facebook pages everything from photos of themselves drunk while wearing grass skirts to doing handstands in miniskirts. At last count, the 901 million Facebook users have more than 125 billion “friends.”

But, who is really your friend on Facebook? If a manager strong-arms a co-worker to get access to an employee’s Facebook page, is that an invasion of your privacy? One court recently held it certainly might be. Read on to see how this case is helping us to better define the social media boundaries and avoid the cyber landmines …

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Michael August 9, 2012 at 9:32 am

I only have family as friends on Facebook and my privacy settings are set so only friends can see my posts. So even if I say something about my employer they will never know because they can not see my page. It is none of thier business what I post on my private page.

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anonymous July 19, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Viewed as private, by the law.

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anonymous July 19, 2012 at 4:12 pm

So with Facebook changes recently, they have friend groups you can post to; family, coworkers, bosses, friends who you can trust, church folks, my association name, business contacts, etc. Therefore, if a person doesn’t post to “public” it should all be covered except when posting to “public”.

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Sandy Estrada July 19, 2012 at 9:31 pm

If you don’t want to get exposed, DON’T expose yourself.We must be responsible for all our actions.Once your thoughts are posted in the net, they are now public properties. We should learn to keep private things in the privacy of your own thoughts, where no one – not even the sneakiest person can get hold of them (in written form). Professionals ought to realize that they are damaging their employers’ reputation with their actions, posts, etc. and when they are violating company policies on ethics.

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Sandy Estrada August 9, 2012 at 10:53 pm

I don’t see why people would “unload” their frustrations with employers via facebook, etc. It’s not my idea of “social networking” but rather “anti-social and unprofessional”- even on private setting. Those who are out to discredit their employers by badmouthing them ought to give themselves a break by looking for another place to work. Maybe they are not happy with what they are doing so why waste their time? They are unworthy ingrates.

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Melanie September 20, 2012 at 12:24 pm

I agree. It is very poor judgment to criticize one’s employer on a public forum, no matter what the privacy settings are.

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