I don’t think anyone can speak freely on social media. I hold my tongue all the time when thinking about making a complaint or a statement on social media because I know that post will live forever and it might haunt me one day.
The same goes for broadcasters or people in high profile jobs. If you represent an employer and use social media to promote your work for that employer, everything you say and do represents them. It’s as simple as that. Political and personal views need to be left out of social media because it ultimately reflects on who is writing your paycheck. If something goes awry, that paycheck may end.
I think the golden rule for broadcasters, “If you wouldn’t say it on air, don’t tweet it” applies to everyone. We could all use that saying in a time where we want to be vocal on social media. No matter how private your settings, there’s a possibility that the world could wind up seeing what you say and it negatively affect you.
The implications for broadcasters saying something inappropriate on social media are more severe than an everyday person. The commercial implications could be that they lose a sponsorship deal for the company or themselves. If the post was political they could lose followers over having different political views. Companies who don’t share the same political views could hold it against the news agency. The ultimate goal of a broadcaster being on social media is to grow a following and promote themselves and company they work for. That could all end very quickly with just a few words on social media.
It’s a little different for celebrities. They manage their own careers and technically don’t represent a company. They could lose future jobs because of a social media situation but it’s their career and their choice. Kanye had every right to take to Twitter with his grievances against Jimmy Kimmel. He had a right to say what he did. I don’t think it is ethically wrong. He wanted to draw attention to what happened and call Jimmy Kimmel out. I think Jimmy handled the situation very professionally and didn’t take it in a negative direction to further stir the pot.