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Nintendo employee fired for blogging

Nintendo employee fired for blogging

Jessica Zenner (pictured) was fired for posting personal thoughts on her Blog, 'The Daily Weed'.

Speaking as somebody who hasn't just made a fool of himself on the internet once or twice, but has actually made a living out of posting all types of news, opinions and rumours on Bit-tech as well as a personal blog, I have to confess that I'm just a little bit worried about the news coming out of Nintendo recently.

I'm referring of course to Jessica Zenner, a 23 year old contractor for Nintendo who has been formally fired for posting inappropriate comments on her personal blog. Jessica, who posted under the pseudonym of Jessica Carr, was unaware of Nintendo’s scrutiny and thought she was protected by her right to freedom of speech.

Not so.

Zenner's blog, called "The Daily Weed", never mentions Nintendo directly but does covers a number of personal topics. According to Seattle newspaper The Stranger, these include "disputing her friends' perception that she is a pothead".

Most controversial however is the post about Zenners bosses:

"One plus about working with [a] hormonal, facial-hair-growing, frumpy [woman] is that I have found a new excuse to drink heavily...My gut tells me that this woman hasn't been ****ed in years."

The dismissal obviously again raises the question about just what is and isn't acceptable for a company employee to say in their free time. Zenner herself claims that she was never informed about the Nintendo policy on employee blogging, but a Nintendo spokeswoman claims that Jessica was "expressly discouraged from doing what she did".

What do you think? Should employees be held responsible for their output outside of the office, or should they be free to shout their opinions from the rooftops? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

25 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
DougEdey 24th September 2007, 10:47 Quote
The blog you linked to is Jessica Carr. As is the photo.
CardJoe 24th September 2007, 10:52 Quote
Jessica Carr is her pseudonym...
DougEdey 24th September 2007, 10:56 Quote
The blog is also titled wrong. The Daily Weed is a private space.

EDIT: From the article you linked the blog post in question is called
the daily weed
, not the whole blog
AcidJiles 24th September 2007, 10:59 Quote
quite ridiculous
bilbothebaggins 24th September 2007, 11:11 Quote
IF she didn't mention Nintendo she's bloody entitled to write anything she likes. That it's stupid to insult your boss in public (even if you do not state where you work or his/her name) is another matter entirely.
Bindibadgi 24th September 2007, 11:17 Quote
I do this all the time! I mean... uh...


:o
jezmck 24th September 2007, 11:19 Quote
So Nintendo have brought the connection between this blog and themselves to light. Dumbasses.
ralph.pickering 24th September 2007, 11:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jezmck
So Nintendo have brought the connection between this blog and themselves to light. Dumbasses.

Also known as the Streisand Effect...

Personally I'd always be a bit careful about what I put on email or a blog - not that my current employer is tech savvy enough to put what I write on the internet together with my real identity. Wait a minute... I've just posted about my employer under my real name. Doh! (better brush up my CV)
outlawaol 24th September 2007, 11:38 Quote
The only way i would say this is unacceptable is if she were divulging Nintendo trade marked secrets. And a "fat ass stupid co-worker" isnt one of those secrets. Nintendo has no right to do what they did. It isnt any of there dang business what she is saying about her co-worker, what the hell is wrong with people, stay out of everyones business and get a dang life.

Nothing makes me more irritated then when a corporation oversteps there bounds. I would almost take that line of "expressly discouraged from doing what she did" bit and call it harassment/threatening.

>:|
Duste 24th September 2007, 11:52 Quote
Hot.

Lol. :P
CardJoe 24th September 2007, 12:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duste
Hot.

Lol. :P

You really think so? Not my taste tbh...
mikeuk2004 24th September 2007, 13:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duste
Hot.

Lol. :P

Come on, take another look man. Just because she is female, does not make her hot. :P
proxess 24th September 2007, 14:42 Quote
That comment she made of the boss was right down funny...
automagsrock 24th September 2007, 14:59 Quote
I am gonna start reading her blog all the time now. That comment about her boss was awesome.
f00dl3 24th September 2007, 15:04 Quote
The thing people need to realize is that America in particular, although any democracy, is supported by companies and organizations. While I do not support what this individual did - once you take the right of free speech on this subject, the next step is to gag you of talking of your government - then talking at all.
Faulk_Wulf 24th September 2007, 17:29 Quote
Well the catch is, and this has always been the problem. The line between free speech, libel, and slander is pretty gray.
If the poss she insulted was the one that read it, and she knew who wrote it and was offended. Then she does have the
right to take legal action or (I think) fire her. While I think that it isn't right for her to be fired for writing in her free time,
she does need to realize she did post on a public space. I had the same thing happen to me a few years back with my own
personal website. I wrote a post up about a kid in one of my classes. (In all my maturity at the time, questioning his sexuality,
his physical strength... meh you know what dumb ass high school freshmen are like, use your imagination.) I got 30 hours
community service for libel/slander (I never remember which one.) *shrugs* Live, learn, get Luvs, move on. So now I just word
my posts and such a bit more carefully. I'm all for free speech. (Like that Meyer incident? I think that's BS tazing a kid.) But
the cold honest truth is, she put her thoughts out in public where anyone could read them. And someone did and played
connect the dots. *shrugs*
ssj12 24th September 2007, 18:50 Quote
Free Speech doesnt exist anymore, slander is a form of free speech when done with a reasonable sense. There is wrong slander (Faulk how did you word your thing exactly?) which is wrong but questioning something but just calling someone a fat jack ass loser isnt bad at all, this world cares to much about feelings. >.<
completemadness 24th September 2007, 19:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeuk2004
Come on, take another look man. Just because she is female, does not make her hot. :P
shes above average :)

i don't see how this is legal, people have always insulted their bosses to their friends, if she wants to write it down in a blog for everyone to read, fine
Hell she didn't even mention ninty so no-one would have actually known what she was on about
aggies11 24th September 2007, 19:27 Quote
If she said these "bad" comments right to the face of her boss, directly, would that have been grounds for dismissal?

What if she said it to a coworker, about her boss? What if the boss over-heard? Does that change anything?


If you put something on the internet, that is publicly viewable, then you should expect that the entire public would read it.

Aggies
mikeuk2004 24th September 2007, 21:41 Quote
She should take them to an employment tribunal.
yodasarmpit 24th September 2007, 22:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeuk2004
She should take them to an employment tribunal.
And quite possibly loose, you will find most work contracts contain a section regarding not being allowed to publish defamatory remarks or information that would show the company in a bad light.
However, the company would have to prove a connection between themselves and the blog.
There was a recent case of a flight attendant blogger being fired, she didn't mention the company, but did post a photo of herself in the company uniform
Bungle 24th September 2007, 23:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by yodasarmpit
And quite possibly loose, you will find most work contracts contain a section regarding not being allowed to publish defamatory remarks or information that would show the company in a bad light.
However, the company would have to prove a connection between themselves and the blog.
There was a recent case of a flight attendant blogger being fired, she didn't mention the company, but did post a photo of herself in the company uniform
I believe your right. Seems like true freedom of speech is reserved for the unemployed:D Can't be seen to be biting the hand that feeds you. It's a shame really, I always think a little fear of your employees opinions is a healthy thing, but in this day and age where loose lips sink ships, it's understandable why the company takes the stance it does.
cebla 25th September 2007, 08:03 Quote
I think if your boss found out you posted things like that about them that you wouldn't really want to work for them any more as they wouldn't trust you at all.
MilkMan5 26th September 2007, 18:55 Quote
For me Freedom of Speech is to be able to express your thoughts, and been able to put your point across.
But, that does not give you the right to talk about work / staff / bosses or other people etc…

Why, because you don’t have permission to talk about other people – especially in a place where others can read it.
If it was a personal diary, where it’s not available for others to read, then yes.

You should always be careful about what you write (type).

So next time you decide to write (Type) about work / staff / bosses or other people, then make sure you have permission first.

I have not read her blog, but I did start, then realised that I actually have better things to do with my time.
Also, I don’t really know her, so how do I know this blog is actually even her own thoughts or writing!

I just don’t know, something smells fishy, and it’s not me - HAHA
Duste 30th September 2007, 10:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeuk2004
Come on, take another look man. Just because she is female, does not make her hot. :P

Yeah, but a female stoner who is employed at Nintendo is obviously hot, lol. :P
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