Businesses often implement Social Media policies as a means to control employee social media use. Yet, these policies should be carefully crafted, as they tread upon key legal protections including: proprietary customer data; privacy; free speech; and agency law. When the business is a union shop, a whole new set of protections and issues is invoked. The evolving body of law called the common law of the shop applies to disputes between employers of unionized employees over alleged abuse of internet — now to include social media.
For a more in-depth look, read “Arbitrating Social Media Grievances,” by Patrick R. Westerkamp and Rebecca Esmi: Article_arb_soc_media_grievances042011. This article was originally published in the April 2011 issue of New Jersey Lawyer Magazine, a publication of the New Jersey State Bar Association, reprinted here with permission.