Recent rulings by the National Labor Relations Board grant workers the right to discuss working conditions freely, whether at the office or on social media such as Facebook, without the threat of firing or retribution by the employer. The NLRB has ordered the reinstatement of workers who were fired for posting negative comments about their employer online. The board is also pushing for employers to recraft their rules on use of social media.

The NLRB's new rulings make it illegal for employers to have broad policies that discourage their employees from expressing critical views of the workplace to one another. The board has ruled that many employers' social media policies illegally block workers from exercising their rights.

Ballard Spahr labor attorney Denise M. Keyser advises employers to adopt specific social media policies rather than impose blanket restrictions. For example, a policy should prohibit workers from disclosing trade secrets or product rollout dates rather than simply tell them not to post confidential information.

Practice Area

Labor and Employment