Managing: When Employees Vent

February 26, 2010 – In The News
Security Management

Social networking sites have become increasingly popular and useful to companies and individuals; however, employers must pay particularly close attention to the legal constraints when addressing negative comments by employees. In the case of Pietrylo v. Hillstone Restaurant Group, two employees were fired for posting negative comments about the restaurant, after their supervisor pressured an employee for her password to the site and read the postings.

Mark McCreary was interviewed regarding the legal differences between social networking sites and e-mail communications. McCreary said that because companies do not own the social networking sites, they must realize they cannot control what is posted on them. However, there are exceptions he notes, such as the posting of a trade secret. His solution was to balance corporate rights against employee rights.