Posted by: johnocunningham | April 17, 2012

NLRB: Social Media Is a Workplace Right

A recent piece in The Law Technology News did a nice job of describing how National Labor Relations Board (the “NLRB”) rulings and interpretations of social media “rights” can affect your workplace – whether or not it is unionized.

As labor lawyers know, all employees have fundamental rights to discuss among themselves (and sometimes others) their wages, hours and conditions of employment.

Now, the NLRB’s general counsel has outlined more than a dozen cases in which social media policy interpretation and enforcement can clash with fundamental rights of association or free expression.

Among other things, employers must be careful about:

  •  Draconian restrictions on communications regarding the company or its employees;
  • Punishments for disseminating objectively false information that an employee may have believed to be true;
  • Restrictions on use of a company logo or trademarks in communications relating to wages, hours and conditions of employment; and
  • Requirements that employees obtain prior approval before referencing their employer on social media in any way.

Check out the entire piece on Law.com for more details, and be sure to check with your labor lawyer when drafting or enforcing a social media policy for your workplace!

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