Articles Tagged with “Social Media”

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computer.jpg It has become common to hear news stories about employees who posted something on their personal Facebook, or other social media sites, and then got fired as a result of that post. Indeed, employers have, more and more, started to use social media sites as a way of monitoring their employees, even to the point of requiring passwords or access to otherwise “private” websites or submissions.

However, beginning on December 1, 2013, New Jersey will follow the growing trend in other states in enacting legislation which will bar New Jersey employers from asking employees or potential employees for access to their personal social media accounts. This comports with the recent New Jersey law enacted in 2012 which bans colleges from requiring applicants to provide social media account passwords.

This new law specifically prohibits employers from requesting or requiring employees’ usernames, passwords, or other access to personal accounts on websites such as Twitter and Facebook. Further, employees cannot even waive this right. Any waiver of this right is deemed void.
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social-media.jpg A person may be a victim of defamation when another person has said something false about her. Defamation is a generic term for libel (a defamatory statement that is written) and slander (a defamatory statement which is spoken). The statement cannot be a joke or an expression of opinion; it must be something that is capable of being proven true or false, and which is actually false. Further, the statement must actually be harmful to the victim’s reputation or have caused monetary losses. In most cases, the victim must be able to identify and quantify her actual damages, hurt feelings are often insufficient.

In order to be considered defamation, one person or entity must make false factual statements about another and communicate (or “publish”) those statements to a third party. The statement cannot be a joke or an expression of opinion; it must be something that is capable of being proven true or false, and it must actually be false. When the statement involves public figures or issues of public concern – such as with political candidates – in order to protect the open debate and discussion regarding these public figures, there must also be some malicious intent and affirmative knowledge that the statement is false.
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