Employees' Liability on Online Postings

Manila Bulletin, November 7, 2014 | Go to article overview

Employees' Liability on Online Postings


Today, comments and other postings and tweets by employees on social network sites like Facebook, blogs or other online forum are mushrooming. One may ask: Can an employee be fired or his services terminated for his online postings particularly those remarks and photos posted in his Facebook?

Let us take into account the following considerations before the aforementioned question can be intelligently answered:

1) Social networking sites, blogs, or other online forum are public and therefore many people come to know about the postings. Even if the Facebook is limited to one's circle of friends, one's friends have many other friends. And these other friends spread the postings to their friends. The cycle continues on and on. In short, the multiplier effect of one's posting is limitless;

2) To date, we have yet no law regulating the use of social networking sites by others including the use by employees of the various online postings;

3) There are normally company policies that management promulgates and it is expected that the employees comply with these company policies;

4) There are also laws governing the conduct of employees whether one is employed in the government or in the private sector;

5) For those in the government, there are laws and regulations to be considered and complied with by the government employees like the provisions of the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees (Republic Act No. 6713), the provisions of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (Republic Act No. 3019) and the provisions of the Revised Penal Code (Act No. 3815, as amended) and related special laws;

6) For employees working in the private sector, there are also laws, regulations and rules to be complied with by the employees like the provisions of the Labor Code of the Philippines, the provisions of the Revised Penal Code (Act No. 3815, as amended) and related special laws;

7) Whatever comments/remarks one posts online including on one's Facebook page is an extension of one's self and one's personality;

8) What one should refrain from saying offline should not be said online;

9) Our next elections are just around the corner and therefore political opinions and activities posted online should be carefully worded. …

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Employees' Liability on Online Postings
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