The Risky Side of Blogging

Marsha Moore says she was fired for blogging.

Marsha Moore says she was fired for blogging.

While the Web is transforming business and communications – forcing all of us to be more open and transparent – there are going to potholes in the road.

This is a cautionary tale about social media and how sometimes being open and honest can land you in the unemployment line. Ultimately, discretion can be your best friend. And it is important to remember: there can be serious consequences in real life to what you do online.

Just ask Marsha Moore. According to Marsha, she quit her corporate job more than a year ago to focus on her writing. In order to pay the bills, she took a part-time job as a receptionist at an exclusive London spa.

“It was a good job, I have to say,” Marsha wrote on her new blog, Write On, recently. “The environment was relaxing, my co-workers and managers were nice and all was great – except for one thing. The clients. Botox-starved, rail thin, neurotic… I can think of a thousand cliché adjectives to describe them.”

So to pass the time, Marsha started an anonymous blog called “SPAstic” and writing as Spa Slave began to rail against those snobby clients at her new job. She said she was careful not to name names.

“If it had been a full-time job in an industry where I planned to build a career, I probably would have been more cautious,” Marsha told HighTalk in an email interview. “As one who rarely entered the rarefied world of the spa, it was certainly an eye-opener and I just couldn’t resist sharing my tales.”

The blog naturally started to catch the attention of spa workers in London. How could it not? Insider gossip about the often rude, rich clients of spas would be irresistible those who worked in them. And eventually, Marsha’s bosses read the blog and realized that it was about them.

“The whole blog in general was contentious,” Marsha admitted to me. “But no one was named, it was done anonymously, and I never blogged about the facilities or the management – just the clients. I never dreamed she (her boss) would run across what I’d written.”

But then one day, Marsha was called into her boss’s office. Her boss and her boss’s business partner confronted her about the blog. Marsha admitted that it belonged to her and was immediately sacked.

“One of the dangers of blogging is that you do it in isolation, and sometimes you forget you’re putting it out into the world to be read,” she told HighTalk.

Amazingly, her bosses ordered her to delete the blog – right there and then. And Marsha, hands trembling, complied.

“Retrospectively, I still feel a wee bit guilty, but I don’t think what I wrote would have damaged business as much as she thought it would,” she wrote in her email. “I don’t really appreciate the heavy-handed way I was dealt with. Her business partner told me to, `Delete my blog NOW!’ before I left. And feeling distraught about what had just happened, I did. I’m really annoyed at myself now that I didn’t put up more of a fight.”

I’m interested to hear what other think of Marsha’s story. Have you heard of others being fired for blogging or for other social media activities online?

2 Responses to “The Risky Side of Blogging”

  1. Maaaan, you know there is such thing in the web like search engine, if you don’t, go there to understand why this post is bullshit

  2. Brilliant analysis TreafeToope. Now if your comment had any context or relevance, readers might actually be able to figure out what you’re talking about. I’ll leave it up rather than delete it to give you a chance to embellish in a more articulate manner.

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