Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

Summary: Nearly half of UK companies ban Facebook and Twitter at work. Facebook can be a means for good -- if it is used properly by employers and employees alike.

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In a recent survey, it emerged that almost half of British companies block access to social media sites, like Facebook and Twitter.

The debate rages on whether denying access to social media sites 'demotivates' employees, and whether social networking distracts away from pertinent work or assignments.

The study suggests that managers are concerned for the potential of derogatory comments being posted about them, with others fear the reputation of the company could fall into disrepute, as has been seen in times gone by.

But you don't see student union's blocking access to social media sites; thankfully for the reason that social media is the foremost way to access the student demographic. Large organisations like Microsoft, Google, Research in Motion don't block access to Facebook.

Though, I bet after this past week, Google wishes it had.

On the other hand, for younger users, it is a vital communications tool -- particularly access to the chat feature and messaging features -- to send links and online pages, and to instant message with one another.

Nevertheless, though Facebook chat and messaging may well prove useful to albeit a small demographic of the ever burgeoning workforce, the surrounding news feed and status updates could serve as a distraction; personal experience taken into account.

The ban also raises questions of the social media strategy that companies are seemingly not taking advantage of.

Companies nowadays all but require a social media presence, particularly to engage with younger users who dominate sites like Facebook and other social networks. If companies are banning and blocking access to the site, one has to wonder whether they are restricting themselves from younger potential customers.

One can only hope that if Facebook is being limited in the work environment, that at least a viable and secure communications system is employed in these settings to enable collaborative access.

Alas, in many cases there is not.

With web-based email figures showing a decline in users, suggesting social media is partly to blame, and the recent email integration into Facebook, one has to question why businesses are not taking advantage of this, what is effectively, a cloud based service.

Oh wait -- it's not secure. I forgot about that one. Using Facebook for actual business means is ridiculous and reckless to say the least.

If Facebook wants to take on Microsoft (using strictly above the board tactics, may I remind you), it needs to prove that it can be an effective communications platform in the workplace.

Chat and messaging enabled, with picture tagging and the more 'fun' features turned off. Maybe that is where Microsoft and its SharePoint software has its edge.

Facebook can be used properly. It just takes trust on the part of employers, and respect taken on by employees.

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Topics: CXO, Social Enterprise

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28 comments
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  • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

    I would say that only a very small protion of employees need to have public interaction (facebook) whilst all others can stick with email and telephone. You are talking about a very narrow group Zak. Otherwise a ban seems appropriate
    Bradish@...
    • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

      @Bradish@... I don't think so at all. Every company needs a social media strategy. Everyone needs to be in on it, contributing and helping. It keeps businesses open for the public.
      zwhittaker
      • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

        @zwhittaker

        When hackers are interfering with pages right across the Facebook system including those belonging to Western Governments and Facebook moderation is pandering to extremist ideology like Nazism, it is entirely legitimate of commercial companies to restrict employee access to Facebook to those whose employment specifically requires that facility.
        Adrian_Wainer
      • "Every company needs a social media strategy"

        @zwhittaker ''' no it bl**dy doesn't apart from "get on with your work". if the facebook account is not the business one then its irrelevant - keep your personal life out of your work
        deaf_e_kate
  • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

    Let Britain be hounded for internet censorship and human rights bs now. Anyone?
    VoicesInTheHead
    • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

      I deleted this posting of mine, myself because it was in the wrong place.
      Adrian_Wainer
  • Loss of productivity and other myths

    Quite frankly, as a knowledge worker, I receive significant amount of work-appropriate information through my newsfeed. My organization allows facebook and does not take such a dark ages approach to facebook. However, those that do ban facebook should truly question the reasons why and what negative impact their ban creates.
    Your Non Advocate
    • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

      @facebook@...

      It is not a " dark ages approach " if the staff do not need to use Facebook and Facebook is being blocked by the management, because they are aware it is actually de facto a censored propaganda vehicle for Nazi type ideology.
      Adrian_Wainer
      • 3 posts to Godwin's law

        @Adrian_Wainer <br><br>Congrats.
        Bruizer
      • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

        @Bruizer Sorry, it is a fact that Facebook is a de facto censored propaganda vehicle for Nazi type ideology and that is just the reality of the situation, ( A note to the administrators, I can't see an option on Bruizer's posting to reply to it ),.
        Adrian_Wainer
      • Its a &quot;fact&quot;???

        @Adrian_Wainer

        Really? Really? In your mind I am sure it is a fact. You still get Godwin's law faster than anything.
        Bruizer
    • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

      @ Bruizer who posted

      " Its a "fact"???
      @Adrian_Wainer

      Really? Really? In your mind I am sure it is a fact. You still get Godwin's law faster than anything "

      It is concrete external reality that Facebook is massively hacked and that the hackers are supporting Islamic extremism and Nazism. By the way Bruizer, have you any idea why the reply facility to your posting to which I have now replied appears to be absent, I can't see it in your posting ?
      Adrian_Wainer
  • Trust vs Respect / Employers vs Employees

    Unfortunately, for most businesses (with the exception of the extremely small) Employees don't take the time to earn trust the same way that Employers demand respect without first giving the Employee a reason to do so. It seems like we all just want to jump right into a company and have instant Trust/Respect from our colleagues, employees and employers. At some point the Employer is just going to have to take a leap of faith and put some trust in the Employee and the Employee is going to have to not screw it up.

    Dennis Edmondson
    Computing Concepts LLC
    http://www.computingconceptsllc.com/facebook-at-work
    comconcepts
    • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

      @comconcepts

      How can companies allow general access to Facebook, when Facebook is hacked and it's moderation is biased in favor of genocidal ideology like Nazism ? Most people have an Internet connection at home, they can post on Facebook from there.
      Adrian_Wainer
  • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

    Because Facebook is extensively hacked by Islamic extremists or their FTs and Facebook moderation is pro-Islamonazi, pro-Nazi and pro-Stalinist Communist, it would be entirely legitimate for companies to block access to Facebook, except with regard to workers who would have specific need to access it as part of their employee duties.
    Adrian_Wainer
    • RE: Stay safe online: 5 secrets every PC (and Mac) owner should know

      OK! But you don???t see student union???s blocking access to social media sites; thankfully for the reason that http://france-pharma.com | http://bluepillsau.com | http://edproblemsolver.com social media is the foremost way to access the student demographic. Large organisations like Microsoft, Google, Research in Motion don???t block access to Facebook.
      drumandyou
  • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

    " Facebook can be used properly. It just takes trust on the part of employers, and respect taken on by employees. "
    Zack Whittaker

    How can Facebook be used properly, when it is hacked and most people do not know it is hacked ?
    Adrian_Wainer
  • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

    " Companies nowadays all but require a social media presence, particularly to engage with younger users who dominate sites like Facebook and other social networks. If companies are banning and blocking access to the site, one has to wonder whether they are restricting themselves from younger potential customers. "
    Zack Whittaker

    People under 18 years of age should not use Facebook and young adults should discuss their Facebook activity with people outside of Facebook, who are responsible, street wise and mature people. Because Facebook is hacked by Islamists or FTs and because Facebook moderation will pander to individuals showing psychopathic traits in their relationships with ordinary decent Facebook users, Facebook can be a significant push factor for suicide.
    Adrian_Wainer
    • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

      @Adrian_Wainer "hacked by Islamists" - a bit of a racist, sweeping generalisation there, do you not think?
      zwhittaker
      • RE: Companies shouldn't ban Facebook at work: Can it be used properly?

        @zwhittaker <br><br>" Facebook is hacked by Islamists or FTs ", allthough variations of Islamism often have ideas of Arab racial supremacy built in to them, Islamism is not an inherently racial orientated ideology. Islam is not a race, it is a religious ideology. Islamism is an interpretation of Islam, please explain why you apparently believe that it is racist to disapprove of a particular ideology i.e., Islamism, when Islamists, for example, would believe that if it could bring Spain back under Islamic rule, it would legitimate to hunt down and kill every single person in Spain who would oppose that. Are you arguing that to disapprove of Nazi ideology is being racist towards German people because many Germans supported the Third Reich ?
        Adrian_Wainer