Viral VICE Tweet About NDAs Had People Maybe Being TOO Honest on the Timeline
Delete! The! Tweets!
I can bet that I’m not alone in the feeling of wanting to completely spill the tea on a terrible boss or company after leaving them for good, but couldn’t due to signing an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) or non-disparagement agreement. However, thanks to a recent memo sent out from the National Labor Relations Board, employees can now feel free to let their true feelings out.
According to Vice, the memo clarified “the ‘scope’ of a February ruling by the federal agency’s board that said employers cannot include blanket non-disparagement clauses in their severance packages, nor demand laid-off employees keep secret the terms of their exit agreements.” Jennifer Abruzzo, the General Counsel for the board, used the memo to explain that the ruling had “retroactive application,” which means that any “overly broad” non-disparagement clauses or agreements signed before February are included in those considered no longer valid in the eyes of the board.
“That blanket NDA you signed years ago to get severance? It’s void now, according to the National Labor Relations Board,” Vice tweeted, and Twitter immediately exploded with people from all types of industries airing out their dirty laundry.
There were journalists revealing that their bosses were well-known sexual predators, but no one took any action against them. Radio hosts that were told that they had to help promote Nazi-centric talk shows. Assistants to high-powered executives who had food thrown at their heads. The list goes on and on. From humorous to horrifying, it seems like everyone was glad to get these secrets off their chest.
(We won’t embed people’s testimonials here but scroll through the quote-tweets for an infuriating and also hilarious time.)
But it seems like many of those who decided to dish the dirt on Twitter didn’t read past the article’s headline—and maybe not even beyond the tweet attached to it—because, if you read the memo, Abruzzo states that even though these sorts of non-disparagement clauses are void, the provision doesn’t protect employees if they issue statements that their employers consider to be defamatory. And this ruling only applies to “overly broad” agreements and also only those made as part of an exit package, meaning other NDAs, like those employees might have signed at the beginning of their time at a company, are still in effect.
This is why it’s important to read through articles before blasting any multi-billion dollar company on social media. Let’s hope everyone knows a good lawyer!
(featured image: HBO Max)
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]