Document Type

Article

Publication Date

5-2015

Publication Source

Computers in Human Behavior

Volume

46

Inclusive pages

123-128

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2015.01.011

Publisher

Elsevier

Peer Reviewed

yes

Abstract

In this exploratory study, we examine young adult undergraduates’ (n = 448) opinions regarding the use of social media for employment decisions, a practice that has been highlighted in the popular press and recent legal cases. Most of the young adults in our sample were not in support of this practice (only one third were), and most expressed a liberal view of what should be permissible for posting on social media without the threat of job termination (e.g., less than half believed that posting illegal sexual behavior online should result in termination). Additionally, those who were most opposed to using social media in employment decisions were older, had less self-control, were more endorsing of the hookup culture, and were more open to experience. We discuss these findings with regard to current social media/work life issues, suggesting that: (1) these opinions may affect companies and legal entities who are developing social media policies, but also (2) that young adults need to be aware that regardless of their opinions on the practice, their social media use could have long-term effects on their careers.

Keywords

Social networking, Young adults, Job terminations, Psychological characteristics, Social media

Disciplines

Industrial and Organizational Psychology | Labor and Employment Law | Organizational Behavior and Theory | Social Psychology