Facebook Likes Are 'Protected Concerted Activity'

Facebook Likes Are 'Protected Concerted Activity'

Think twice before disciplining employees over something they do on social media, said Mark Neuberger, of Foley & Lardner, in a recent post on the Law Perspectives blog.

“Liking” something on Facebook has now been ruled a “protected concerted activity,” said Neuberger, and employees (and their preferences) are shielded from negative ramifications. Case in point: employees of a sports bar found out their employer was underwithholding state income taxes, which affected their returns, explained Neuberger.

Employees took to Facebook to complain about these actions, including “liking” posts written by others. Two were terminated for being disloyal to the company, along with defaming it. However, the National Labor Relations Board found this an unfair labor practice, said Neuberger.

“A common mindset is if profanity is used by the employee and directed towards the company, then all bets are off and the employee should be fired,” he said. But in the age of social media it’s a lot more nuanced than that. Like it or not.

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