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Should Posting an Inappropriate Comment Get You Fired?

Should Posting an Inappropriate Comment Get You Fired?

Remember the state representative from Kentucky who wanted to ban anonymous Internet commenters? I wonder what he'd think about this story: A teacher in St. Louis was fired for a comment he left on a news story that ran on a newspaper website. The author of the article, titled "What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever eaten? And did you like it?" was not amused by the comment (which, to be fair, was pretty vulgar) and tracked down the commenter's IP address.

After realizing the comment came from a local school, he contacted them immediately, thinking it must have come from a student. Turns out it was posted by a teacher, and when confronted about it, he resigned. The reporter is pretty unapologetic, and judging by the 16 pages of comments on the follow-up article, people have strong opinions on the subject.

When I asked, most of you thought banning anonymous comments was a bad idea. What do you think about this case?

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Deyanira1 Deyanira1 6 years
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chloe-bella chloe-bella 6 years
I live in St. Louis and, to be fair, what actually happened was that in response to "what's the craziest thing you've ever eaten?" the teacher wrote "p****" (i.e. female body part). The moderator marked the comment as inappropriate and hid the content. The teacher then immediately re-posted it. So, according to the person in charge, it wasn't so much that the comment was inappropriate as that the person kept re-posting it despite being warned that it was inappropriate. Then, the other aspect to the story was that it was coming from a school, so that had to do with the decision to report it. I still think it's a little extreme, but it's not as bad as someone getting fired over ONE inappropriate comment with no prior warning.
JuicyDumplings JuicyDumplings 6 years
Toughy. I suppose it would depend on the severity of the comment? I'm not quite sure how inappropriate this comment was since the article's title is about food...
aniline aniline 6 years
I feel this yet again proves John Gabriel's Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory: http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19/ (more NSFW language involved at the comic. :D)
tarabara1229 tarabara1229 6 years
First of all, don't you think the question is just begging for an inappropriate response? I mean...it was pretty funny (or maybe I'm just immature :-P ) Anyway, I think it depends on a case by case issue. I definitely don't think the teacher should have been fired, but I agree that using a work computer to post inappropriate comments warrants some kind of punishment. Firing seems a little too extreme for me, but hey, I'm the one who laughed at the comment, so what do I know?
glynislily glynislily 6 years
I don't agree at all about this guy being fired. I can see the school punishing him for using school resources to post this comment. But getting fired over this is crap. Teachers are people. They may teach your kids but they have every right to make inappropriate jokes in a appropriate place. What the teacher does in their off hours is none of anyone's business unless it is directly harmful to the students. (this is not one of those times.)
Captivate Captivate 6 years
The moderator did delete the comment, and the teacher reposted. Critics are being unreasonably hard on the moderator. He thought he was only reporting a student fooling around, it's not that hard to look up where the ip address comes from, and he didn't push the school to anything. It was the school's decision to fire the guy. The teacher is wasting their resources and presenting a bad image of the school that may disadvantage the school in many ways. Think broader. The acceptance of low class behavior is the last thing we need in the increasingly unprofessional, inconsiderate, and irresponsible society we live in now. Let's not defend juvenile people's right to be undeniable assholes.
staple-salad staple-salad 6 years
The internet is great in that it's a place where you can "safely" discuss ideas and opinions with a variety of people. Of course you're going to have your trolls that abuse systems that allow anonymous comments, but it's entirely possible for there to be a comment that can get you fired or physically harmed if that's not the case. I think a case like this is why we need anonymous comments. Probably shouldn't have commented from work, but in terms of the teacher leaving a comment in general (even if it was juvenile), especially when it doesn't have a name attached to it, shouldn't have gotten him fired. I mean, it's not like a student's going to google their teacher looking for contact information and find the comment.
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