Cause of Streess

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CASE PROBLEM
12A

A key point this case illustrates is that participating in the young communication medium of company blogs has some potential disadvantages. A second point illustrated is that a company may need a policy to deal effectively with blogs

1. Even though the blogging policy has not yet been implemented, how well have Kincaid’s actions conformed to the tentative policy?

It looks like Kincaid’s blog could be interpreted in violating the tentative policy in one important way. The policy clauses at issue are employees cannot disclose confidential or proprietary information, and public statements cannot be defamatory, profane, libelous, harassing, or abusive. The statement about the abuses in the Chinese factory could be interpreted as fitting both clauses.

2. What steps, if any, do you think top management should take to control Kincaid’s blogs?

We recommend that Kincaid be counseled to continue with the positive statements about Genève in his blog, but eliminate derogatory comments. He might be authorized to poke mild fun at the company, but that he should eliminate his outright negative statements.

3. What relevance does this case have for the subject of interpersonal communication?

The major relevance of this case for the subject of interpersonal communication is that it deals with the effective use of computer-mediated technologies. Also the Genève case deals with the problem of open corporate communication. A company may welcome open communication, yet there are limits. A company does not want any of its employees to present a negative face to the public. However, the company might want to make positive use of blogs.
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