Thursday, July 20, 2006

A Blogger's Ethical Dillema: Blogging at work

Do you blog at work? While your co-workers go out to lunch, read the paper or surf the internet, do you spend your time reading other blogs or update your own?

A woman in the US did and got fired because she was blogging about her co-workers. In fact if you are fired for blogging at work, people would now say that you weren't fired but "dooced" - after the woman, Heather B. Armstrong, was fired for writing about her colleagues (see her blog at http://www.dooce.com).

Today the Associated Press reported that a woman in France was suing her employer for firing her for blogging at work. (see http://apnews1.iwon.com//article/20060720/D8IVRIO01.html?PG=home&SEC=news )

So what do you think, is blogging at work no different than surfing the interent, emailing your friends, using office supplies or your business phone for personal use?

5 Comments:

At 7:06 AM, Blogger golfwidow said...

I actually believe that blogging at work is no different than writing in one's diary during one's lunch break. If she was writing about her job (like Armstrong was) and making it fairly obvious where she worked, she may have warranted firing; if, however, she was writing on her own time (breaks and lunch) about subjects other than work, they should have had no reason to dismiss her.

 
At 12:34 PM, Blogger blogRfactor said...

I agree with your point that blogging about work could warrant firing, but a person blogging at work is using his/her company's resources for personal use. Writing in personal diaries during lunch breaks etc. is equivalent to going out to lunch or reading a newspaper. I am fairly certain that at large companies, there is a certain level of latitude of the use of email and internet for personal use, but you wouldnt hear or see that in official policies or from management.

 
At 6:28 PM, Blogger ZZ OpenWeb Staff said...

I can tell you with a high degree of certainlty that using company resources, i.e. any IT system, even on your own time to cause an activity that is disruptive (like trashing teamwork, teammates, management or the company you work for) WILL get you a quick trip out the door without a leg to stand on in the courts (in the U.S.) unless some form of overt discrimination was at work. (Some getting canned and others not due to some bias.)

P.S. Good luck with your site....

The writers of ZardozZ News & Satire and the ZZ OpenWeb Portal search the web for interesting feed content and we came across your site today. We would like to invite you to add your site's url to the ZZ OpenRing blogring as your material appears interesting and aligned with our readership. If you are interested you can find further information at the ZZ OpenRing. This is not meant as spam but as an invitation. Hope you'll join us...

 
At 12:25 AM, Blogger Scooter said...

I rarely use the internet when I'm at work and with the filter they have in place I cannot even access Blogger on a work computer. I do, although occationally jot some thoughts down on paper that will eventually become a post.

As for those that have gotten fired for blogging about co-workers, I think it would have to do with the context; you never say if what the person blogged about was their co-workers was positive or negative, and if was indeed negative, I think the boss would have every right to fire someone if it was written at work or not. If you have a problem, talk behind their back like normal people, don't humiliate them where anyone in the world can see.

Scooter McGavin's 9th Green

 
At 10:31 AM, Blogger prying1 said...

I'd expect a blogger to have a bit of smarts. I guess this one didn't. Blogging about co-workers can only cause problems whether good or negative. Unless it is a company run blog about the company (CEO's are taking up blogging as PR).

Writing about your job can be amusing (See: Slightly Drunk) but on the other hand whats to guarantee that the person you trashed is not going to read it while blog surfing?

 

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