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proper way to handle a situation where someone contacts your employer over a social media post.

Discussion in 'Internet & Social Media Law' started by NateHW, Mar 13, 2021.

  1. NateHW

    NateHW Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Hello, I am looking for the proper way to respond to an individual who saw a post I shared on facebook.
    Situation: I shared a post depicting what could potentially be seen to some as not appropriate. It was meant to be funny and in no way to be taken as literal or otherwise.
    A person unknown to me (never spoken to or met) sent an email to my employer after said individual went onto my facebook profile and found where I work.
    What is the best practice for repsonding to such an amazingly special individual.
    Thanks
     
  2. justblue

    justblue Well-Known Member

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    What was it you posted?
     
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    SILENCE

    SILENCIO

    The BEST thing you can do for yourself is admit to nothing, comment on nothing, and DELETE the lousy Fake Book account if you value your current employment (and the ability to seek new employment someday).

    Yes, delete the FAKE Book account and stay away from anti-social media for two years, lest you could find yourself and future prospects limited, if not CANCELED.
     
    Red Kayak likes this.
  4. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    I'd say in most circumstances you don't want to respond directly to the person complaining about your post. How you respond to your employer, however, depends on the details of what you posted, your employer's reaction, and whether your employer is a private company or a government agency.

    Know this, however: in most states a private employer is free (with limited exceptions) to fire you because of your social media posts even if the posts don't directly relate to work. Employees are fired for such posts every day. Any post that might cause a significant negative reaction among the public is one in that is very likely to result in problems with an employer. For example, posting something that you think is funny but that others may regard as racist or sexist is the kind of thing that can get the employee canned. What's funny to you may be offensive to others. It's best not to post anything even remotely questionable if you want to avoid problems at work over it. If you want to post that kind of stuff, make sure that you have your account settings set to the maximum privacy settings to ensure the general public cannot see it and make sure that the people you are sharing it with are not going to go sharing it with others. Once you make a post it gets out of your control and can come back to bite you. I simply don't use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc at all. I've never made a personal post on any social media platform because I recognized early on the danger in that. A post that might be funny and unoffensive a few years ago may be considered offensive today, and old posts come back to haunt people all too frequently.
     
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  5. NateHW

    NateHW Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Thank you all for your responses. I know now what I must do. thanks to you for fighting the good fight.
     
  6. NateHW

    NateHW Law Topic Starter New Member

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    upload_2021-3-14_10-30-48.png
    It was a picture of this, and one below it that had the forearm photoshopped into a female sex toy (Dildo) and roll up your sleeves was replaced with bend over and squeeze.
     
  7. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    I'd fire you in a heartbeat.
     
    shadowbunny and justblue like this.
  8. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    Purple you do not know should not be able to access your social media on Facebook. The privacy settings, set prooerly, would have prevented this person from learning anything about you.
    Has your employer acknowledged receipt of the complaint? If not, ignore it and move on.
     
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  9. justblue

    justblue Well-Known Member

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    In addition to the ^ people you don't know shouldn't have access to your facebook account...but Purples are the worst and you should set your profile settings barring them access. ;)
     
    army judge likes this.
  10. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    Well, I'll grant you that such a post would seem funny to some, particularly a young teen audience, what a lot of adults will see is what appears to be a post mocking covid-19 vaccination efforts. That's not a message that a business working to get through covid-19 issues and wanting to keep and attract customers or clients would want to be associated with. An employee posting such a thing can easily make his/her employer look bad to the public once the association between the employee and employer is revealed. If I got complaints of an employee posting that publicly online I'd fire that employee and make it clear in the firm's social media that the firm takes covid-19 issues seriously.

    If you haven't taken it down and made your Facebook account private, I suggest you at least do that ASAP to limit the fall out from it. Maybe your employer will tolerate one complaint on this, but should the complaints start to pile up, so too will the pressure pile up to fire you.
     
  11. flyingron

    flyingron Well-Known Member

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    I once ran afoul of a known internet bully who called my boss up to complain (he actually demanded to know our corporate attorney's identity as he claimed he was suing, which immediately caused my boss to realize the guy was a whack job to begin with). I got called in on the carpet but the sum total was "try not to antagonize people in public."

    This guy's usual threat is to threaten lawsuits and tell people to "govern themselves accordingly." Amusingly, the judge in Federal court down in Florida a few years back pretty much used the same words to him. Something along the lines of "You're in a federal court, you must govern yourself accordingly". Everybody who knew this guy bust a gut laughing at that.
     
  12. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    I don't know what happened to my internet bully. I reported the harassment to the FBI cyber-hotline and a little while after that, he went away.
     
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