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matism1
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Social Media and the News Cycle

on Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:25 pm
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The past few days have seen an eruption in controversy over various celebrities on social media, Roseanna Barr, Samantha Bee, and Bill Maher have all been in hot water for comments made online. Pressure has been put on by groups to punish these individuals (some more successful than others). There is talk about whether companies have the moral obligation to police its employees social media accounts as it’s a liability to the companies brand. Many companies have clauses now in contracts warning of certain gaffs that may result in termination. The New York times is known to has very specific rules on how its employees can operate on social media. Maggie Haberman has said she hates tweeting because its more of an extension of her job and less of her personal self.

Do companies have a moral obligation to fire such employees after mistake’s made on social media? Should companies be able to control someone’s social media to the extent that what should be a person’s personal expression becomes an extension of the companies brand?
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connollya3
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Re: Social Media and the News Cycle

on Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:24 am
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No I believe social media is someones own personal view, it would be different if these comments were made at a work event, or a tv interview, but they were made on their own personal social media account. The companies should not have a right to control someones personal social media content, because that can be seen as censorship. Everyone has the right to their own personal opinions, no matter how controversial they may seem to be.
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matism1
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Re: Social Media and the News Cycle

on Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:32 pm
But is social media really that personal? what is the difference between saying something on CNN or publihing it on their twitter feed? iis that stance absolute. what if its as somethig as reprehesible as holocaust denial or sexism. If you were Google and one of your top employees spends their nights posting antisemitic facebooks posts, does a comapmy have a moral obligation to protect its other employees?
Nasya Kampbell
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Re: Social Media and the News Cycle

on Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:05 pm
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Being part of an organization, especially one that is supposed to be prestigious, means that you embody their traits. You represent them at all times, whether you are “on duty” or “off duty.” For example, being in the military, I represent the Army, on and off duty, 24/7. I am supposed to carry myself in a way that not only encompasses professionalism, but I also have to watch what I say. I also have to watch my actions because they are a representation of more than myself. The military trains us to watch what we post on social media and such, but I feel the humane thing to do would be to watch what I post anyway. Why would anyone really want to post hateful, bigot posts that talk about minorities, others in an ill fashioned manner? However, if someone has these characteristics about them and they do these actions anyway (even glorifying drugs, violence, racism, etc) there are consequences. Now, if there can be consequences for those in the military such as getting a decrease in pay grade, dishonorable discharge, or jail time, why would the rest of the country’s major companies not follow suit? Honestly, it is not hard to not do these things. Even when I had Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, it still was not hard to represent myself in a decent humane way. No matter the social media cite, I do not feel it is an excuse to condone racism, make racist comments, etc. There is a difference between clearly having fun, and crossing the line to where you are hurting others. People forget after they start representing bigger organizations and something more than themselves that they now have a duty to behave a certain way. Do not accept that responsibility if you cannot do so.
Think of lawyers representing law firms ect. They have to abide by the same rules at all times.

With that being said, the things that happened to example, Roseanne Barr, was justice in my opinion. We also have to look at her history; she is known for, lack of a better way of putting it,
“acting out.”

There are also other alternatives to having fun, and being your free self (safely and respectfully) if you simply do not want others to see it. Make a separate account and make it private or customize the audience for certain posts, etc.

-Nasya Kampbell
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Dr. Petroski
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Accountability is key

on Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:23 am
I'd like to extend Nasya's thinking a bit further to say that while free speech is critical...and I am a HUGE free speech advocate...it does come with a certain responsibility to the larger social context. We can say what we like, but we have to recognize that there are repercussions to what we say...and sometimes that amounts to negative reactions. While Rosanne was free to say what she did...and she did so apologetically...her words were offensive. Further, ABC as a company enforced an ethical code that's been largely ignored in the past. Controversies have come and gone related to TV stars, and the show goes on. What's striking about this case was that they took swift and decisive action against offensive statements that were inconsistent with the behavioral expectations of the company. If we're thinking about what it means to be a good citizen, we need to be able to call people on behaviors and statements that are "Just not cool." So if we don't expect companies like ABC to take action and call out uncivil behaviors...where does it happen? And what are the repercussions of those calls for accountability?

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Re: Social Media and the News Cycle

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