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Facebook Inc. (FB): Posts are Free Speech, but Libelous?

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Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) has been involved in its share of issues involving privacy and security of personal information around the world, but it is now the platform that shows a couple of First Amendment issues – one which was decided in and administrative hearing, while the other is due to go to trial over a libel charge. These cases lead to the question of how far does free speech go when users post to an online social-network site like Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB)?

By the way, Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) stock was up more than 3 percent Tuesday, settling at $30.73 per share.

At the federal level, posts on Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) cannot get you fired from your job. Four New York employees were fired for posting negative comments about their bosses on the social-network site, but the National Labor Relations Board ruled they were unjustly fired  and that their posts constituted free speech. In the ruling, the NLRB wrote that as as long as the posts weren’t threatening or harassing anyone, employees should be allowed to post whatever they want.

Facebook Inc. (FB)On a more local level, a case involving a Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) during the 2010 election cycle is going to trial soon in North Carolina, as a campaign strategist is being sued for libel after making a post directed toward a sitting elected judge who was campaigning for the opponent of the candidate the strategist represented.

What happened?

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