The Power of Social Media: Laid Off HMV Employee Tweets About Pink Slips

Here’s a conundrum: You’re management, you’ve just laid off a group of employees but oops! You forgot one of them, a community manager, still has access to your Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Enter HMV. Last week the British entertainment retailer let go 190 employees, one of whom was Poppy Rose, the community manager.  You can guess what happened next: Rose started live tweeting about the lay offs.

To some, this may be considered career suicide. After all, would a future employer really want to know one of their workers could potentially embarrass them and speak out publicly? Then again, isn’t that a “risk” they assume with potential employees and social media accounts?

To others, it’s a social media skill that’s coveted by many employers. She created a hashtag on the HMV account, #hmvXFactorFiring, that she subsequently used on her own account, @poppy_powers.

On her account, she explained, “I wanted to show the power of Social Media to those who refused to be educated.”

She added, “Just to set something straight, I did not ‘hijack’ the hmv twitter account. I actually assumed sole responsibility of Twitter & Facebook over two years ago, as an intern. When asked (this afternoon), I gladly provided the password to head office. I also set another member of staff up as a manager on Facebook, and removed myself from the admin list. I didn’t resist any requests to cooperate.”

Although her tweets on the corporate account have been deleted, @hmvtweets wrote, “One of our departing colleagues was understandably upset. We’re still here thou, thx for supporting hmv thro these challenging times.”

Interestingly enough, the former intern who was single without kids and a mortgage felt she was the “safest” person to speak out. She also had to remind her former employer she still had access to their account and then instructed them on how to restrict her access.

She tweeted, “@hmvtweets you need to go to ‘settings’ and revoke my account access as an admin. I’m still able to switch between accounts.”