The news

Following an investigation conducted by a national newspaper, a civil servant in Liverpool was dismissed for gross misconduct, having used Government computers to mock the Hillsborough tragedy where 96 Liverpool fans died.

The issue

Although there may be advantages associated with employees being able to use social media at work, these may not outweigh the risk involved for employers.  Inappropriate comments posted on social media could seriously damage an employer's brand reputation or lead to allegations of discrimination or harassment.  It is important that employers have clear policies and procedures in place that set out their expectations of employees in relation to the use of social media and IT equipment, as well as the potential consequences of failing to adhere to these policies.