Social Media Speech Broadly Protected
Corporate Counsel Insight interviewed Denver Managing Partner Todd Frederickson for the article released on January 7 entitled “Social Media Speech Broadly Protected.” The article focused on the high volume of social media usage and the National Labor Relations Board’s protection of online speech. The board’s message to employers on the issue is that as long as the employees are talking with each other about the terms and conditions of their employment, it doesn’t matter whether it is done in a local bar, where other patrons might overhear, or on Facebook, where thousands of people around the world might see it; it’s protected. Todd explained that when this language slips into harassment or discrimination, it triggers other laws, such as Title 7 of the Civil Rights Act, that may protect the targets of this speech. Or if employees post things online that are untrue, as opposed to just voicing their opinions, they may cross the line into defamation.