Top 10 times dumb people lost their job because of a stupid Facebook or social media post.
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Thanks goodness for Mark Zuckerberg. It is through the invention (and 2004 launch) of his hugely popular social media tool, Facebook, that users have been able to easily keep in touch with friends, share videos, photos and news of life experiences, engage in discourse over matters both serious and silly and engineer social plans. Indeed, Facebook, whose development was chronicled in the 2010 film “The Social Network”, has had a profound influence in changing the way we communicate and exchange information.
That’s not always a good thing, though. Facebook has come under fire for, among other things, the widening exposure of information on those who own Facebook profiles, the company’s immediate ownership claim of any photos or videos shared on the site and concerns about the security of private user data on the site. The company has navigated its way through a fair share of family public snafus, most notably the introduction of the Beacon product which shared users' purchases with their friends and the change in privacy settings which seemed to encourage users to reveal more of their data. Zuckerberg, the Facebook co-founder, chairman and CEO, made headlines in 2010 when he declared that “privacy is dead”.
For all the legitimate concerns related to Facebook, the biggest and most dangerous drawback for many is the freedom offered through its blank canvas. In a letter sent to prospective investors when the company went public in 2012, Zuckerberg lauded the limitless opportunity afforded by the tool, saying, "a more open world is a better world because people with more information can make better decisions and have a greater impact." Of course, it is that same open communication that can prove so perilous to those who don't use it in a smart, sensible manner.
Take these people, for instance. You won’t see too many ‘better decisions’ here, but their words certainly carried a great impact. In each case, the people included here had the mental capacity to hold down (at the time, anyway) a decent, respectable job - and in some cases, a downright esteemed, coveted position. Those whose Facebook misuse led to their professional downfall include an emergency responder, a radio host and even a Buckingham Palace guard.
And still, regardless of profession, all of the individuals listed here flunked a basic Facebook 101 lesson, failing to grasp the permanence and widespread accessibility of the social media tool. Their bullying, company-bashing and generally ill-advised, irresponsible posting was quickly and easily flagged by their employers, resulting in swift termination. If there's a lesson to be learned here - and there probably should be - it's that you continue to represent your workplace even outside of business hours, just as you remain visible even in the comfort of your own PC.
As these people quickly found out, Facebook giveth, but Facebook can also taketh away. Maybe next time they’ll think before they post.
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