NLRB Orders Dish to Change Social Media Policy

The National Labor Relations Board has ordered Dish Network to change its social media policy to allow employees to make disparaging or defamatory comments about their employer should they choose to. The Administrative court was particularly interested in criticizing a social media policy that could lead to union or collective activity being restrained. Eriq Gardner looks at the dispute in “Dish Network Ordered to Change Social Media Policy” in The Hollywood Reporter. Administrative Law Judge Robert Ringler’s decision can be found here.


Social Media Growing in Middle East

Social media platforms are growing in popularity in the Middle East. There have already been questions of censorship versus freedom of speech. Digital media engagement is strongest among younger demographics but is gaining steadily. As content is increasingly available on digital platforms, it is likely that other legal issues will arise. Yousef  Gamal El-Din provides more information on the changing landscape in “Social Media Giants Leap Into Arab World.”


Make Sure Your Mobile App Is FTC Regulation Compliant

It’s easier than ever to make sure that your new Mobile App is compliant with Federal Trade Commission regulations on truth-in-advertising and privacy. The FTC has published a guide, Marketing Your Mobile App: Get It Right From the Start, to help developers. You can find the guide at the FTC website and the Bureau of Consumer Protection also provides a breakdown of the guide on their website.

NY Times Social Media Blocked by China

An investigative story about the wealth of the Chinese premier’s family in The New York Times has resulted in Chinese censors blocking the newspaper’s websites and social media, including Sina Weibo which is similar to Twitter. It is common practice for the names of political leaders and their family members to be blocked on social media sites. For more details on the story, read “China Blocks NY Times Website Over Wen Report.”


New Laws Make Social Media Policies Even More Important

Given the new laws passed recently in numerous states such as New York, New Jersey, California, South Carolina, Washington, Ohio, Minnesota, Michigan, Missouri, and Massachusetts, it is more important than ever to have a clear social media policy in place in your organization. The policy must, of course, be compliant with the law and serve the best interests of company and employees alike. Elizabeth M Ebanks provides some excellent advice in her article “Have No Fear: 5 Steps to Implementing an Effective Social Media Policy.”

Social Media Adds New Spin to Old Problems

Everything old is new again on social media. Human resources departments need to take a close look at their harassment and discrimination policies in relation to the use of social media. Tom Starner provides an in-depth look at these issues here.

Employees and Employers Still Jockeying Over Freedom of Speech

There may still be loopholes for private employers to institute social media policies that limit their employees’ right to freedom of speech. Koch Industries current social media policy raises a number of questions about what a private company can or can’t do legally. Brendan Fischer’s article “Koch Social Media Policy May Be Unlawful; Employers Still Have Broad Leeway to Limit Employee Speech” points out several disturbing developments.

A Victory For Free Speech in the Philippines

As a follow up on our previous story on the Cybercrime Prevention Act, here, the Supreme Court of the Phillipines has suspended the law. Concern was raised over provisions in the law which would have seen the possibility of imprisonment for those expressing peaceful opinions on the internet through social media. Floyd Whaley’s report, “Philippine Court Suspends Contentious Internet Law”, appeared in The New York Times online edition.

Social Media and Fair Trials

Social media is posing problems for ensuring fair trials in other countries. Currently, Australia has formed a working group to study the issue. The group was formed after some Facebook pages caused concern over an on-going trial. Jane Lee and Dan Oakes examine the issue in “States to Tackle Social Media Laws After Alarm Over Fair Trial for Accused.”

Filipinos Online Freedoms At Risk

The Cybercrime Prevention Act may have far reaching negative effects on free speech on social media networks. While the new law is meant to be “a measure against hacking, identity theft, spamming, cybersex and online child pornography”, there are fears that it will be used in libel cases which are a criminal offense in the Philippines. For the full story read, “Media Groups, Filipinos Protest Tough Cyber Law”  by Hrvoje Hranjski.