What are the essential elements of a social media policy?

Author: Jessica Sussman

Social media at work policies should clearly articulate the legitimate business interests sought to be protected or achieved through the policy. Additionally, social media policies should clearly set forth prohibited behavior, including the transmission of confidential information, trade secrets, and discriminatory or illegal conduct. The policy must provide definitions and guidance as to what the employer considers private or confidential. Further, while disclaimers are not required, and may not provide an absolute defense, the inclusion of express language disclaiming any intention to restrict employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) can be helpful to defend claims that the policy unreasonably restricts the employee right to engage in protected concerted activity and collective action to improve working conditions. Such policies should make it clear to employees that protected concerted activity covered by the NLRA is not prohibited by the policy.