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Will Liking On Facebook Get You Fired?

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bill-swift - May 9, 2012

When you click on the Like book on your Facebook account you probably don't think much about the consequences that it might have on your career. After all, unless you are surfing at work, your company should not care about what you Like, or don't like. Right?

That would be the decent thing to do, but apparently if you work for Sheriff B.J. Roberts, or someone like him, then you may want to watch what you like, or at least put all of your settings to private. Mr. Roberts choose to fire six of his workers after they had the audacity to ..... wait for it...... Like the Facebook page of the person running against him for his office. He stated at the time that they had, "hindered the harmony and efficiency of the office," according to the information on the suit.

If that sounds like BS to you, as it is unlikely that anyone would have even noticed the activity is six people were not put out of job because of it, then sadly you are alone. When five of the employees put their constitutionally protected free speech they were shot down by the judge.

The honorable Judge Raymond A. Jackson, of the Federal District Court wrote a ruling that says that liking a page is not protected speech. His reasoning was that liking was not sufficient to qualify as speech. In the ruling he said, "Simply liking a Facebook page is insufficient... It is not the kind of substantive statement that has previously warranted constitutional protection." So its not enough speech to be protected but it is enough to get your fired.

Sounds like a point of law that needs some tweaking.

While the ruling is likely to be contested, and taken to the Supreme Court in time, likely with the help of several free speech advocacy groups. So the ruling may, in time, be overturned.

Article by Katie Gatto

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