Employers May Need to Implement Social Media Employment Policies
“Social media” refers to online media that facilitates conversations via the Internet and that allows users to share in creating the media’s content. Social media examples include Facebook and Twitter. Because social media use has exploded in recent years, employers may need to address its use with specific social media employment policies.
A social media employment policy should outline the employer’s guidelines for online communications. While an employer’s policy will vary according to its industry and its company-specific goals and needs, at a minimum, a social media policy should:
• Require employees to take responsibility for what they write and to exercise good judgment. Even if an employee uses social media outside the workplace, an employee should be aware that the employer may review postings and that content published by an employee reflects not just on the employee but also on the employer.
• Require employees to protect the employer’s confidential and proprietary information. An employee who has access to a company’s confidential information should never share that information via social media.
• Require employees to respect copyright laws.