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Social Network Services Management and Risk of Doocing. Comment on Kim, S.; Park, H.; Choi, M.J. “Negative Impact of Social Network Services Based on Stressor-Stress-Outcome: The Role of Experience of Privacy Violations. Future Internet 2019, 11, 137”
Department of Psychological, Health and Territory Sciences, Università “G. d’Annunzio” of Chieti-Pescara, 66100 Chieti, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 July 2019 / Accepted: 2 September 2019 / Published: 4 September 2019
In light of the recent work by Kim and colleagues about Social Network Service (SNS), examining the individual and SNS characteristics as predictors of SNS fatigue, we hypothesize to enlarge their model to the job context. SNS is a relevant issue in occupational life as employers use it to have a deeper knowledge of their employees and as a tool of corporate communication. Employees can use SNS as a social platform and as a way to express discontent. In this latter case, the organization can implement a disciplinary procedure toward employees, known as doocing. The perception of privacy violation is strictly related to the fear and awareness of doocing, which in turn can predict SNS fatigue as well. So, it could be worthwhile to extend Kim and colleagues’ model to the workplace with particular attention to the doocing phenomenon.
social network; doocing; privacy; surveillance
In their recent paper, Kim and colleagues provided a very interesting analysis of the characteristics that can affect Social Network Service (SNS) use, with particular mention of SNS fatigue and living disorders.
The authors put a light on some dark sides of SNS derived from personal characteristics such as engagement and maintaining self-reputation, and SNS characteristics such as irrelevant information overload and open reachability. All these variables should be positively associated with SNS fatigue, meant as a discomfort or stress while using SNS. SNS fatigue would be a predictor of living disorders, which, in turn, could reduce SNS use intention and this latter relation could be moderated by the experience of privacy violation.
As far as we are concerned, in this interesting model there are several variables that are relevant in a work context as well. Indeed SNS is an essential part of occupational life, from the employees’ recruitment, to selection and management processes [1
The most important and delicate dimension is the perception of privacy—it is both private and subjective to becoming a jurisdictional issue. The concept of privacy related to online data is strictly related to informational privacy [2
], which is the control of personal data. Kim and colleagues define the experience of privacy violation as the users’ concern about escapes of personal information. Privacy can also be defined as “the right of someone to keep information to themselves or at least share it only with relevant people” [3
] p. 2. This latter viewpoint can have several implications in terms of organizational digital surveillance. The current literature concerning the consequences of social network use in the workplace is mostly limited to the jurisdictional dimension. There are instead several variables that are worth considering in order to expand knowledge and improve organizational management. This comment considers one of the relevant aspects related to SNS in the workplace.
So, it is now worthwhile to introduce the meaning of the term doocing—it is the job termination caused by illicit or inappropriate behavior on social media that does not fit with corporate policies [1
]. It is exactly a boundary issue between the employee’s right to privacy and the organization’s duty to monitor [5
More specifically, it can happen that an employee posts an irrespective comment on a social network regarding his/her organization or employer or colleague. This behavior can damage the organization’s imagine and reputation, so there can be a disciplinary procedure that the organization can apply in order to avoid such incidents.
There are several variables that can predict the improper use of social networks related to one’s own job, such as low job satisfaction and engagement and a lack of organizational support, and we also imagine that living disorders—as defined by Kim and colleagues—can be related to this behavior. Moreover, the experience of privacy violation or the perception of corporate surveillance can predict the reduced use of social networks and an amount of the fear of doocing [4
]. As stated by Kim and colleagues, a living disorder can negatively affect work and learning. This assumption reflects the ambivalent perspective on technology—on the one side the personal use and abuse of new technologies can cause discomfort and stress, on the other side there are some positive impacts as well, for example online interactions can positively affect the learning process in a community of practice online [6
The model outcome in Kim and colleagues’ study was the reduced intention of SNS use. This could of course prevent doocing, but this is not the solution. In a sense, we do agree with one of the conclusive implications—users should receive education for the correct use of SNS. Moreover, the current huge amount of data and the free access to them make even more difficult the personal management of information with unpredictable outcomes in terms of data security. The large distribution and use of information is one of the most powerful and dangerous weapons within everyone’s reach [8
Also for these reasons, at present it is quite common for organizations to implement social network guidelines in their corporate policy, in order to inform employees regarding their data responsibility and to prevent the doocing phenomenon. The right distribution and communication of social network policies is the main factor that affects employees’ perceptions of termination fairness [9
]. Parker and colleagues verified the need for social media governance by the implementation of role theory and script theory [9
]. Employees will play a role based on the expectations of customers and supervisors.
To conclude, doocing is a real risk employees have to cope with, partly derived from living disorders and moderated by the experience of privacy violation or the perception of corporate surveillance.
Future studies could enlarge the model tested by Kim and colleagues in a work context, having as the outcome the awareness of doocing.