Can employers take action for complaints you’ve made online?

On Behalf of | Oct 23, 2023 | Employee Rights

Imagine scrolling through your social media feed and you feel the urge to share your thoughts about your job. You might think, “Hey, it’s my social media, I can say what I want, right?” Well, in many ways, you’re correct. You have the right to speak your mind. This right even includes talking about your job thanks to a law called the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).

The NLRA protects your right to chat with coworkers about your job, such as:

  • Pay
  • Work conditions
  • Job policies
  • Management and their decisions
  • Plans to take action

This protection does not only apply to face-to-face conversations—it extends to social media too. Thanks to the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), employers cannot punish employees who discuss or organize around work conditions online.

Some things that could get you in trouble

While you might want to vent about your boss or your job on social media, you must remember that the NLRA does not protect everything you say. For example, making damaging remarks, spreading false information or unfairly criticizing your employer’s products or services without tying your complaints to labor or workplace issues aren’t covered.

Your responsibility as an employee

So, can your boss take action if you complain about work online? The answer isn’t as straightforward as a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ If you’re posting online complaints about things surrounding work matters, you could receive protection under the NLRA. But as an employee, you also need to be aware that there is no guaranteed protection for every online activity. Posting content that crosses the line could land you in hot water. So, it’s important to understand your rights and responsibilities when discussing work issues online.

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