Phoenix woman: I was fired over a Facebook post

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by Crystal Cruz

azfamily.com

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 10:27 PM

Updated Thursday, Feb 28 at 9:57 AM

PHOENIX -- Some of us have thought about doing what Facebook user Jessica Bibbs recently did.

Bibbs fired off a post after not getting a promotion.

It said, "This place is a joke!!! I wonder if I passed up a good opportunity by being at this place. I absolutely hate fake and lazy ppl!!! Ugh, the ones who actually work are the ones to blame??? WTF? #TwistedMinds.”

Then she was fired.

"I was crying," she said. "I was very upset."

Even though she didn't name her job in the post, the boss knew who and what she was talking about.

"For them to tell me that they're firing me over expressing my feelings on my Facebook, which is private, I don't find that fair at all," Bibbs said. "I was very upset."

While her page is private, her co-workers are her Facebook friends. They can see her posts.

Marcus Cadell is in charge of hiring and firing at Bibbs' old office at Ideal Physical Therapy.

When asked if it was true that Bibbs was fired over a Facebook post, Cadell answered, "False."

Management wouldn't go into detail about Bibbs' termination. Instead, Cadell said, "We don't terminate people on one particular thing."

Cadell would say she was let go for several reasons, one of them being unprofessional behavior with co-workers.

But just last month Cadell confirmed her co-workers voted her "Employee of the Month."

"I don't see how they [her employer] can say I had issues with my co-workers," Bibbs said.

Stephanie Fierro, with The Frutkin Law Firm, PLC, is an expert in social media, the law and the workplace.

Fierro said you could be fired over a Facebook post.

"If it's personal griping, complaints, if it would otherwise be illegal, harassment, disclosure of trade secrets, anything like that then they [your employer] may have the right to fire you for it," Fierro said.

Bibbs also thought her post was safe because she didn't name her workplace.

“If they [your employer] can trace it can back to you and they know you are their employee, it's less about their reputation and more about the conduct," Fierro said.

As for regret, Bibbs is on the fence.

"I do and I don't," she said. "I do because it got me fired. I don't because I feel like those were my feelings. I didn't mention a company’s name or any employees' names."

Experts say if a conversation would not be allowed offline, like at your workplace, that same conversation probably won't be allowed online, and could get your fired.

 

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