Here’s a trend particular to the social media age: employers requesting access to applicants’ accounts during job interviews. The ACLU filed a complaint last year after applicants were asked to give their user name and password to the Maryland State Department of Corrections.
The department has since asked potential employees to login to their accounts themselves — but to allow interviewers to page through the accounts, looking at information typically only available to the user’s Facebookfriends.
Similarly, collegiate student athletes are sometimes required to allow coaches to look at their social media accounts. The athletes have been required to friend a coach on Facebook and allow the coach the same access to information as the athlete allows to his or her friends. A bill recently introduced into Maryland state legislature seeks to end that practice.
“Each team must identify at least one coach or administrator who is responsible for having access to and regularly monitoring the content of team members’ social networking sites and postings,” the University of North Carolina’s policy says. “The athletics department also reserves the right to have other staff members monitor athletes’ posts.”
Washington D.C. lawyer Bradley Shear told MSNBC that such practices are a violation of the players’ and applicants’ First Amendment rights.
“Maybe it’s OK if you live in a totalitarian regime, but we still have a Constitution to protect us,” Shear said. “It’s not a far leap from reading people’s Facebook posts to reading their email. … As a society, where are we going to draw the line?”
What are your comments/thoughts?