HENCE, IS SOCIAL MEDIA A PLACE FOR FREE SPEECH?

After reading through many of the peers’ blogs, it has definitely got me thinking a lot.

Yi Ming asked a very thought-provoking question on his post which probed me. Is it ethical for companies to actually monitor their employees’ social media movement? You can read my argument to this question here.

Many of the other peers have also mentioned that companies should come up with social media policy so as to provide clear guidelines of what the employees should and should not do on social media platforms.

Tor mentioned that it can be a powerful tool to market the company by having proper management of social media account. However, this made me wonder if by having social media policy, does it violates the “freedom of speech”? I have also asked Tor the same question in my comment.

To help clear my doubts, I have done some research.

From BusinessDictonary.com, freedom of expression(speech) is defined as the “right to express one’s ideas and opinions freely through speech, writing, and other forms of communication but without deliberately causing harm to others’ character and/or reputation by false or misleading statements”. This gives me a clearer view in how one person’s offensive comment can lead to legal actions.

However, even with “air-tight” social media guidelines, employers are still vulnerable to complaints and lawsuits (Bennington, E., n.d.). This website further explains when a company can legally terminate an employee and how an employer should prevent a legal situation around social media policy from occurring in the first place.

I believe that every employer have to set a good role model. They should know what they should and should not do in social media in order to train their employees. Furthermore, employer should always listen to the employees’ opinion and take appropriate actions so as to clear any misunderstanding.

After all, it is always good to think of the consequences before acting.


REFERENCES

Bennington, E. (n.d.). What to Do When an Employee Violates your Social Media Policy. Monster. [Accessed: 8th December 2014]

Business Dictionary. (n.d.). Definition of “freedom of expression”. Business Dictionary. [Accessed: 8th December 2014]

THE BLOGS

Lim, Y.M. (2014). Use Social Media responsibly – Be ETHICAL!!! WordPress. [Accessed: 8th December 2014]

Tor, W.S. (2014). Freedom of Speech. Ethical Issues. WordPress. [Accessed: 8th December 2014]

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