Last week, LinkedIn debuted on the NYSE with an initial public offering of stock at $45 a share. The share price climbed on Friday, sending the social-networking company’s market value to $9.1 billion. According to the Washington Post, this is approximately 24 times its 2011 revenue.
Employers like to think of LinkedIn as the “good son” among social-networking sites, especially as compared to Facebook. LinkedIn is marketed to professionals and is used widely for recruiting. It also can be used as an online rolodex, enabling professionals to connect with others in their industry and get automatic updates when your “connections’” contact information changes.
In light of the recent LinkedIn IPO, it seems like a good time to give some thought to some of the employment-law implications of this darling of the social-networking sites. In this series, I’ll review some of the employment-law cases in which LinkedIn has played a substantive role. In the last post in the series, I’ll discuss some of the ways that the lessons from these cases can be applied to an employer’s social-media policy.