Dealing with the Dangers of Employee Blogs
To paraphrase an old adage, ignorance of blog law is no excuse. Blogs are booming. Employees are now using these Internet diaries to broadcast information and opinions worldwide. Inevitably, some of those employees will post hostile, false or confidential information about their employers and fellow employees. Did you know that laws against defamation and libel apply to blogging? Did you know that laws against invasion of privacy also apply to blogging?
Employers may legally monitor their own computer systems and also review information posted on the Internet that is open to the public or information provided to them. Because it's impossible to monitor all Internet postings, the logical approach is to investigate only where you have received a report that an employee has posted material that crosses the line of professional or permissible behavior (negative, harassing or hostile statements about co-employees, or confidential or false information about the employer).
This article appeared in the February 26, 2008 issue of the San Diego Daily Transcript.