Social media has become a hugely powerful phenomenon over the past decade, giving people the ability to share information, photographs and events with hundreds or even thousands of people online. While there are many positive effects to sites like Twitter and Facebook, unfortunately there are also some downsides that many people can be unaware of. Chief among them is the fact that almost everything you post is available publicly to people all around the world, often whether you want others to be able to see your content or not. This has led to more than a few people getting in trouble with their employees for things they have put on social media, with some even being fired for their posts.
Justine Sacco was a public relations specialist who was working for internet firm InterActive Corp. when she came to international attention for posting the racially insensitive image above. You’d think that someone working on communications would understand not to make such contentious jokes while working, but Sacoo didn’t delete the Tweet until hours after making. Eventually, the public reaction meant that she was fired.
Mike Bacsik, the former Major League Baseball pitcher, was suspended and eventually fired from his job as a radio producer after some racially insensitive comments he made on Twitter following a game between the Mavericks and the Spurs. When the result didn’t favor his team he said “Congrats to all the dirty Mexicans in San Antonio,” a remark that spurred a furious backlash and forced the radio bosses to take action against him.