The Cultural, Economic and Technical Milieu of Social Media Misconduct Dismissals in Australia and South Africa

René Cornish   | Bio
Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane
Kieran Tranter | Bio
Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane


The intersection between social media activity and employment is an emerging global issue. This article examines the cultural, economic and technical milieu that has generated contested social media misconduct dismissals in Australia and South Africa. Through an analysis of 42 Australian and 97 South African decisions, it is argued that the ubiquitous, enduring and open nature of social media affects employment quite differently depending on country specific factors. In Australia, the absence of entrenched political rights has meant that employee social media use is not subject to reasonable expectations of privacy. However, there is also tolerance for a certain level of larrikin behaviour. In South Africa, the existence of enshrined rights manifests differently in the context of social media dismissal. Within a culturally diverse population with deeply fractured race relations, the decisions reveal a White minority still perpetuating dominance over a historically disadvantaged Black workforce.


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How to Cite
Cornish R, Tranter K. The Cultural, Economic and Technical Milieu of Social Media Misconduct Dismissals in Australia and South Africa. LiC [Internet]. 2020May16 [cited 2022Jun.29];36(2):17-8. Available from:

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