Of all the benefits of social media, it could also lead to ethical woes in the workplace.
Much is said about the benefits of social media for businesses, but what about the drawbacks? Though we’ve long heard about the productivity drain among employees who use social media at work, a new downside is getting some attention: ethical violations.
Active social networkers in the office — those who spend 30 percent or more of their time at work participating on social networking sites — have a more tolerant attitude than their coworkers toward a number of questionable workplace behaviors, according to a new report from the Ethics Resource Center (ERC), an ethics researcher in Arlington, Va.
For example, half of active social networkers say it’s just fine to hang onto confidential work documents for possible use in future jobs. Only 15 percent of their non-social networking peers believe that’s acceptable. In addition, by a five-to-one margin, social networkers think it’s acceptable to perform less work in order to compensate for cuts in benefits or pay. They also gossip about their workplace and coworkers more often than their less social peers.
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