Social media is all around us. When we wake up, at work, whilst eating out... we just can't escape. It can be a wonderful thing of course and many businesses will vouch for that but what about when it goes wrong?
Danny Baker has been sacked over his latest comment made on Twitter. He has removed this from the world wide web, but has this helped? Clearly not.
A problem with social media is that it's often responsive with little time for full thought and consideration of how others may perceive your comment. We are not aiming to be a sanitised world and it's vitally important to have a mix of views and to have a right to free speech, but this cannot be open-ended. There need to be sensible parameters, especially when you are using social media in your business.
The comments are made often with little thought as to how they could be interpreted, intention aside. The other problem is that if you decide to delete a comment it's often too late. It could have been seen, retweeted, saved etc. by hundreds, thousands and millions of people. It's therefore key to get it as right as possible. It will save you embarrassment, potentially a decline in business, will reduce the reputational risk and chances of having a claim filed against you.
Businesses should have a social media policy in place dealing with what is and is not acceptable. Can your employees express opinions on behalf of the business without authorisation? Have they been trained on social media? With a clear policy in place and training to back this up, any breach can be dealt with more effectively. Policies should also be followed otherwise they are arguably worthless.
Any breaches can be minimised by having clear policies and guidance in place but if the breach has happened, the focus changes. It may expose a need for even more detailed guidance or further training needs (e.g. bullying and harassment).
Twitter users react with anger following the post with many accusing him of racism and calling for him to be sacked by the BBC.