Montana House committee rejects employee social media protections

2013-03-18T18:15:00Z 2013-03-18T18:15:14Z Montana House committee rejects employee social media protectionsThe Associated Press The Associated Press
March 18, 2013 6:15 pm  • 

HELENA – A House committee has rejected a measure aimed at protecting the social media privacy of employees and job applicants.

Senate Bill 195 would have prohibited an employer from requesting usernames and passwords.

The measure had overwhelmingly cleared the Senate.

State Sen. Anders Blewett of Great Falls said it would protect employees’ personal lives from unwarranted intrusion. The Democrat says employees already have access to plenty of public information on their employees or applicants.

In 2009, the city of Bozeman dropped a policy of requesting such social media information after public outcry over the issue.

But opponents argued the measure limits an employers’ ability to monitor behavior, including for security reasons.

It was tabled by the Republican-led House Business and Labor Committee on Friday, a day after a Thursday hearing.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(3) Comments

  1. BobbyLee
    Report Abuse
    BobbyLee - March 20, 2013 8:30 am
    What is shocking is that we come to a point where this is even considered to be normal! It's a very basic invasion of privacy. If an employer does not have the wherewithal to determine if an employee is good for the company than that employer and its resident managers are greatly incompetent. The House is surely not going to let this protection pass. Primarily, the First Amendment is clearly being abused here by threatening an employee that if they ever opinionate themselves against an employer they can refused hire or even fired. It's nothing more than a sign of weak, incompetent management - which, btw, we are already seeing at the UofM. University Dining Service employees have, in the past, been verbally warned never to 'gossip' about their workplace out of hours. Seriously? Is this the direction we are heading? Where a few supremely incompetent and grossly ignorant managers get to govern our thoughts? Stifle personal freedoms? And, moreover, hinder progress? Because it is free thought that is the catalyst to progress, not something more akin to the oppressive life in North Korea! Unbelievable! This is MONTANA d*mmit!
  2. getuptodate
    Report Abuse
    getuptodate - March 20, 2013 7:32 am
    So apparently republicans don't stand for personal freedoms, just the expansion of power that businesses have
  3. montanamuralist
    Report Abuse
    montanamuralist - March 19, 2013 11:51 am
    yup...they want good moral people at a low price who are not acting out online. Oh who will work for many years without a pay increase like at the state!!!
Missoulian Civil Dialogue Policy

Civil Dialogue Policy for Commenting on

We provide this community forum for readers to exchange ideas and opinions on the news of the day. Passionate views, pointed criticism and critical thinking are welcome. Comments can only be submitted by registered users. By posting comments on our site, you are agreeing to the following terms:

Commentary and photos submitted to the Missoulian ( may be published or distributed in print, electronically or other forms. Opinions expressed in's comments reflect the opinions of the author, and are not necessarily the opinions of the Missoulian or its parent company. See the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Our guidelines prohibit the solicitation of products or services, the impersonation of another site user, threatening or harassing postings and the use of vulgar, abusive, obscene or sexually oriented language, defamatory or illegal material. You may not post content that degrades others on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability or other classification. It's fine to criticize ideas, but ad hominem attacks on other site users are prohibited. Users who violate those standards may lose their privileges on

You may not post copyrighted material from another publication. (Link to it instead, using a headline or very brief excerpt.)

No short policy such as this can spell out all possible instances of material or behavior that we might deem to be a violation of our publishing standards, and we reserve the right to remove any material posted to the site.

Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick