Technology has made working life much easier for many people. However, it is important not to forget about some of the drawbacks. Technology has also given rise to new forms of harassment, and they can be work-related.
All workers in California have a legal right to feel unintimidated, safe and free from hostility at work. What are some of the more common forms of online harassment to look out for?
Social media and other apps are now routinely used for both personal and work-related conversations. If a coworker sends you offensive, intimidating or threatening remarks via these platforms, then this may amount to virtual harassment. Virtual harassment can be very traumatic for the person on the receiving end, and it ultimately has the potential to be damaging to an individual’s health.
At work, you should be judged solely on your job performance. What you do in your spare time is really of no concern to your co-workers unless you have a relationship with them outside of work. If someone displays a repetitive pattern of monitoring your every interaction and activity by using online tools, this could amount to cyberstalking. Not only is cyberstalking traumatic for the individual on the receiving end, but it can also be a precursor for more serious behaviors such as physical assaults.
While it’s important to consider physical forms of harassment, virtual harassment should not be neglected. You have a right to feel safe at work, including in both your online and physical spaces. If your working environment has become hostile or intimidating, it might be best for you to assess your legal options.