I’ve often likened Facebook as a pub conversation. While the analogy is useful in describing the social aspects of online interaction, the courts in Australia take a different view.
Making comment on the decision of the Full Bench of Fair Work Australia in Linfox Australia Pty Ltd v Glen Stutsel  FWAFB 7097, law firm partners Paul Burns and Kate Jenkins state:
The Full Bench observed that the electronic form of the conversations gave the comments a different characteristic and a potentially wider circulation than a pub discussion. The Full Bench noted that employees ought exercise considerable care in using social networking sites, highlighting the fact that the relevant comments were published to a wide audience (including Linfox employees), the ease of forwarding comments on to others and the permanent nature of those comments.
Importantly for employees, Burns and Jenkins believe that courts will place diminishing weight on claims that employees were unaware of the consequences of their Facebook activities. Employees can no longer expect that their Facebook profile is their personal space to say whatever they like. Rather, they have responsibilities to behave in accordance with their corporate policy and thus protect their job.