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On Monday 19 Aug, 2013, we were very lucky to have a guest speaker Lawyer Malcolm Burrows give us a lecture about legal issues using social media in business and social media policy. As for my previous post, I talked about how Big W uses a facebook fan page as its social media, therefore, I will use it as an example to discuss some legal issues. Woolworths Ltd is the parent of Big W, and it has an Social Media Policy (SMP), which Big W employees should falls under.

According to a case study, Big W should encounter a similar situation; as a retailer with so many products, it is almost inevitable for a customer to find fault in a product that may lead to a complaint online, sometimes more exaggerated. Big W should always double check the contents being put on facebook fan page, and remove any misleading and deceptive information. I believe Woolworths Ltd Group takes good care of their social media judging from a past incident.

As their SMP forbids employees to speak or give information to any media without authorization, it sets a standard for employees to disclose issues even after work hours. It does not forbid personal use of social media, however, one of the legal risks for the employee is when these personal posts become an inference to one’s work.


Besides public social media, Woolworths Ltd also utilizes Association of Woolworths Employees  (AWE), which is hosted by Yammer, and also Allyours as their internal social network. There are a few issues involved in a private social network within the corporation. Discrimination, for instance is one.  Although, any dispute with the private social media is likely to cause an impact on the business, it makes each individual liable for one’s own actions.