Facebook brings in new employee rules on discussing politics and religion within the workplace

Workplace by Facebook

Facebook is introducing new rules limiting the types of discussions about politics and religion allowed within the workplace.

A leaked internal memo to employees seen by Business Insider, Facebook’s chief technology officer, Mike Schroepfer, said that the company has developed “a set of ground rules for open and respectful communication at work.”

The new rules apply to all employee communication at Facebook, including on the internal communications network Workplace. In the memo, the company also announces that they are stepping up their moderation tools on Workplace.

“These guidelines apply to all work communications including Workplace, email, chat, tasks, posters, whiteboards, chalkboards, and face-to-face. Since Workplace is where most of these discussions happen, we are investing engineering resources there. We are making it easier to report posts and comments, and those reports will go straight to a trained moderator who’ll moderate as needed. We’re also developing more tools to help proactively. Stay tuned as we explore ways to make Workplace the best place to both do work and build our community.”

Facebook has always prided itself on having an open culture – in the memo Schroepfer said

“Our openness is our superpower. But this open culture is at risk when people don’t feel safe, or respected. They can’t be themselves. They can’t do the work they came here to do. We’ve heard this from you on the Pulse survey, in focus groups, and in check-in conversations.”

He goes on to give three guidelines for open and respectful communications:

– Don’t insult, bully, or antagonize others.
– Don’t try to change someone’s politics or religion.
– Don’t break our rules about harassing speech and expression.

Read the full leaked internal memo via Business Insider.

Does your organisation govern the company intranet or are employees trusted to be respectful without rules? Join simplynetwork to discuss this and more with like-minded internal communicators.