How Social Networking Sites Can Get You Fired and Why?

By Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Friday, March 6, 2009

I will start with the story straight up.

Kimberley Swann, a 16-year-old girl from Clacton-On-Sea in Essex, began working as an office administrator for Ivell Marketing & Logistics at the beginning of February. She began posting short comments about her job on her Facebook profile, such as “first day at work. omg!! So dull!!”, “all i do is shred holepunch n scan paper!!! omg!” and “‘im so totally bord!!!”¬† What Swann didn’t realize is that her employer, Stephen Ivell, found her comments when he presumably discovered and accessed her profile. On Feb. 27, Ivell called Swann into his office and fired her on the spot. Ivell handed her a letter which said, “Following your comments made on Facebook about your job and the company we feel it is better that, as you are not happy and do not enjoy your work, we end your employment with Ivell Marketing & Logistics with immediate effect.”

Now what seems to be just another unusual firing, isn’t so if you have a close look at the perspectives.

1. The employer was almost prying in to Kimberley’s profile. And as she said,

They were just being nosy, going through everything. I think it is really sad, it makes them look stupid that they are going to be so petty.

Do you think she has a point?

2. Again no professional ethics lets you talk about your company to anyone. However close. There have been cases where people were fired for blogging or bad mouthing about their companies in the past.

3. Should one say, that its one of my personal opinions and I am entitled to have one or is it that even minor issues can not be taken into personal space?

4. Moreover, do we really need to know the difference between private social networking and public social networking?

There are many half baked issues which are to be answered and drawn a clear line to. What is your opinion? Write to us. We are waiting for you to put in your views in this debate.


July 11, 2009: 1:14 pm

I totally agree with action taken. I know a girl who worked for International Students House in London who sold 200 contact details of the charity’s customers to lead generating companies. She even has a friend in Apple working as Salesperson and started promising the lead generating companies for new and more lucrative leads. But the organisation didn’t take any actions as she had some info about them which would cost the charity - such as under 18 in their bar and use of celebs pics without their consent.

This girl has a friend who works for a media agency in London who claims they have rare knowledge in SEO while she once said working for is just about making sure the Home Office extend her visa in the UK and her British boyfriend trust her to marry her; after she gets what she wants she would….

These are type of things going on around us but do we really do anything about them? They are clever not putting anything on social networking sites but talking about them; something they can deny (and they will) if they get caught.

March 18, 2009: 11:17 pm

I agree with what your saying Anjan, but we are talking about a 16 year old girl in a job that isn’t her future, it should be whether she does the job well or not.


March 6, 2009: 10:13 am

hi there,

if one is so dumb as to publish publicly under their own name, then they have to suffer/enjoy the consequences.

if you have something unflattering to publish about your employer, you should post anonymously.


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