So the Ontario and Federal Public service banned facebook because it thought it was eating into work time. Fair enough.
The Canadian Conservative Party however, has taken it a step further. Not only are they banning their staffers from accessing facebook from work, they are prohibiting them from possessing a facebook profile (even on their own time, accessed through their own computer). As this Calgary Herald editorial points out – this sort of restriction and censorship is reasonable:
“There seems to be a palpable fear that something which might embarrass a cabinet minister might find its way into a staff member’s profile and thus fall into the hands of some gleeful journalist. Just for the optics, it’s probably a good idea to try to prevent that from happening.”
I love that the Conservatives have so little trust in their staff they feel it necessary to prevent them from showing their faces or sharing their interests in a public space – even a virtual one.
Just ‘for optics’ maybe ministers and the party should control every aspect of their staffers lives? One wonders what other public spaces the Conservative party should ban their staffers from being seen in? Online dating must be no-no (too much like facebook). What about job searches – posting one’s resume and profile sounds pretty risky. But why stop online? What about parties and bars? Staffer could engage in some activity that might embarrass their minister in these public spaces too. Following this logic, maybe Harper should ban staffer from attending parties?
I love the paranoia of this Prime Minister’s Office.
Also, a H/T to Taylor Owen for drawing my attention to the Calgary Herald editorial.