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Is blackmail always illegal?
October 30, 2006 4:25 AM   Subscribe

I have a question about forcing an employee to resign.

I have an employee who has been having affairs with multiple women over the past few years. He's a guidance counselor in our school district as well as a sports coach after school. I discovered these affairs by reading his email while investigating another charge against him (that turned out to have no merit). These women include other staff members, coaches from other schools and parents of kids he coaches. The emails between them are extremely explicit and detailed (think Dear Penthouse...).

This is unacceptable for several reasons and I want him gone ASAP, but I don't think my case is strong enough to fire him considering our teacher's union is very strong.

This is my question: Would it be illegal for me to threaten to send these emails to his wife if he doesn't resign? Could I get myself or our district in trouble by attempting this?

FYI: Not to sound rude, but I really don't care if anyone thinks I shouldn't get rid of him.
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (46 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
 
IANAL, but I would be willing to bet that not only would it be illegal, but you would be opening yourself up to all sorts of liability. Consult a lawyer.

Also, do you actually have grounds for firing him? Job performance issues? Or is this just 'moral' indignation? If it's the latter, too bloody bad.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 4:31 AM on October 30, 2006


Consult your lawyer, geez.
posted by footnote at 4:31 AM on October 30, 2006


All of the above, but one other thing. This is one of those deals where, should he get fired for those indiscretions on whatever grounds, it would be good for you to have it on record that you at one time tried. (think Foley/Hastert).

Have your objections noted. Whether you morally approve, you can't really fire the guy for being a slut, strong teachers union or not. Now if he is sleeping with a student, ok that is a different story. Consenting adults? Well no. Not the best behavior for a guidance counselor, but not criminal either.

Maybe you can have him reprimanded for improper use of resources, the email exchanges.
posted by lampshade at 4:47 AM on October 30, 2006


As so often happens, the OP isn't giving enough information for intelligent answers to the questions posed, which depend largely on jurisdiction and contract details to which we aren't privy. But generally, threatening people is a truly bad idea, and yes, in most instances in the U.S., you'd open up huge civil liabilities personally, as well as for the district, by handling things as described.

And very possibly, and in my opinion, for subverting due process in a union environment, the OP would endanger future bargaining situations for the district, and might therefore jeaprodize their own job. In my opinion, it would be deservedly ironic if, in attempting such a morally questionable tactic, the OP lost their job, while the target of the action prevailed and kept theirs, but I could see that as a likely outcome.
posted by paulsc at 4:48 AM on October 30, 2006


Of course it would be, are you retarded? It's called extortion.

Well, I should add that I'm not a lawyer, but it seems to fit my 'lay' definition of extortion. If you we knew your state we could look up the relevant statute

here is the relevant code from iowa:
711.4 Extortion.

A person commits extortion if the person does any of the following with the purpose of obtaining for oneself or another anything of value, tangible or intangible, including labor or services:
...
3. Threatens to expose any person to hatred, contempt, or ridicule.

4. Threatens to harm the credit or business or professional reputation of any person.
...
Extortion is a class "D" felony.
Now, would what you're doing qualify? are you "Obtaining for yourself or another" something "intangible"? I would say yes.
posted by delmoi at 4:58 AM on October 30, 2006


It sounds like he is misusing the schools email system, which could very well be grounds for some punishment, although I would certainly consult with the school system's attorney and HR dept. As noted above this is a potentially sticky situation that could come back to haunt you if not handles just right. Also, does the school system have any rules against co-workers having relationships or any sort of morals clause int he contract? Once again, you should have the appropriate expertise available to consult about these things.
posted by TedW at 5:06 AM on October 30, 2006


Echoing everyone else: If you have record of this (I hope you kept hardcopy evidence and had the school's system administrator take a backup copy of his current email inbox...) the FIRST thing you should do is go talk to your district's head of HR and find out what's possible and exactly what procedures need to be followed. It may be that you can't do anything about it, but if he sleeps with a student sometime in the near future at least you were on record as being the person who brought it to the attention of the administration... and at least they know to watch.
posted by SpecialK at 5:24 AM on October 30, 2006


Yep, it sounds like the only thing he has done wrong is use work email unprofessionally. You can pursue that as much as you can pursue that.

As for his other interactions, mind your own damn business.
posted by Slenny at 5:29 AM on October 30, 2006


I am not a lawyer. You should find one and ask them, because it certainly sounds like your plan is dodgy.

considering our teacher's union is very strong: Thank goodness. Sounds like you're the reason it needs to be.
posted by robcorr at 5:30 AM on October 30, 2006


Would it be illegal for me to threaten to send these emails to his wife if he doesn't resign?

it may be illegal ... but the second the community and the teacher's union find out that you've done such a thing, your job may well be over and the resulting mess will damage relations for a long long time ... which, come to think of it, leaves you in a position that's blackmailable, doesn't it?

think about it ... what happens after you make your threat and the guy calls your bluff? ... if you mail the stuff to his wife and she believes it, he's got nothing to lose by blowing the whistle on you, as his life's going down the tubes anyway ... if she doesn't believe it ... (it's not like you have his fingerprints on those emails, you know) ... then you've revealed yourself as an extortionist for nothing, something that could be used against you

and, genius, what do you suppose is going to happen if she ALREADY KNOWS ABOUT IT? ... for all you know, she may approve

after you've done this, one phone call to the paper is all it's going to take to blow your school district, your community, and your career to pieces

you don't know the guy that well, obviously ... or his wife ... and now you're going to blackmail him?

in all seriousness, some people faced with this kind of situation decide that the best course of action open to them is to kill the blackmailer ... read the paper ... it happens all the time ... i don't support that, but ... you should hand this over to your labor and your legal counsel and step back from it ... if there is nothing legal they can do, then that's it ... if there is something that can be done, then watch as they do it

better stop playing with fire before you get burned

ps - morally, you're a lot sleazier than the coach is ... and you're just as stupid
posted by pyramid termite at 5:31 AM on October 30, 2006


Ths school district has an attorney. It probably would be very wise to consult him/her. Blackmailing him with emails would be grounds for a good lawsuit possibly leading to your termination.
posted by JJ86 at 5:39 AM on October 30, 2006


Short and sweet:

Would it be illegal for me to threaten to send these emails to his wife if he doesn't resign?

You need to ask a lawyer in your county/state (asumming you're in the US)

Could I get myself or our district in trouble by attempting this?

Hell YES.


It sounds like you have something personal against the guy. This could seriously cloud your judgement in these matters. You and your school administration NEED to consult with a lawyer before going one step further with this.

Because this has the potential to be make major headlines and leaving aside all the "fun" that would be, just imagine what would happen someone finds and links to this post (and they will if it makes national headlines).

But mostly, YOU need to take the personal out of this and include others or turn the problem over to them. 'Cause at the rate you're going, based on this post, you will screw this up.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:43 AM on October 30, 2006


'the OP isn't giving enough information for intelligent answers to the questions posed, which depend largely on jurisdiction and contract details to which we aren't privy'

Exactly. What is in their employment contract? But as everyone else is saying, this is always going to be a legal minefield and it would be incredibly reckless to take any action without legal advice.
[Oh, pyramid termite...re: your ps - stfu]
posted by peacay at 5:44 AM on October 30, 2006


Please be careful and thoughtful of your actions. You may already have created a potential issue for yourself by reading his email.

Depending on where you live and the employment contract that was signed, you might not have the right to read his email at all, even while investigating another issue. Reading another's email with out a very strong case is not something I would consider prudent or wise.

You may have damaged you case already by reading his email. If your main evidence is comprised of the email that you have read and it is dismissed due to it being read unlawfully, where does that leave you?

In an attempt to help you, I'd get some guidance from the experts (HR and Legal). If you can discipline him on the inappropriate use of email, then do so. That's creating a case for when you can dismiss him.

Don't be tempted to make his job difficult or impossible to do. This is constructive dismissal and is at least as immoral as black-mail and nearly as illegal.

I think that you need to be very careful of how you deal with this individual as it could be a career defining moment for both of you. Pick your battles. Don't flex your muscles without being able to back it up.
posted by dantodd at 5:49 AM on October 30, 2006


Unless you have more than moral indignation, you're not going to be able to do much. He's allowed to have a private life, and unless you have an unusual employment contract, your moral judgments simply don't apply there.

Presumably, this is all consenting adults. Unless you have more than you talk about here, you don't have a leg to stand on. As others are saying, if you try to force this guy to leave, you could very well lose your own job.

And, from what I can see, that would be the correct outcome. At least he only fucks people that agree to it.
posted by Malor at 6:05 AM on October 30, 2006


If there is a union, there is a procedure that you need to follow to get someone out of their job. This procedure is probably written down and very very clear about what the steps are. Going outside of these procedures (especially with something dodgy like blackmailish things you describe) would, if it came to light, be very very damaging to your career. There is pretty much no way to guarantee that it would not come to light. Therefore, this is a bad plan. I would not recommend it for all the reasons people stated above (maybe the wife knows, maybe you weren't supposed to be in that email, maybe the person broke no rules and wouldn't otherwise be leaving that job, maybe their union is stronger than you think, maybe the person is more popular than you)

I concur with what people have said above. If there are legitimate performance issues then you can start taking steps which, even in most of the situations I can think of, would start with a paid or unpaid leave of absence. If this is the case, I'd start building a case and working through channels. I'd also read the union contract specifically to see what it says about terminating workers and maybe talk to the shop steward in broad hypothetical terms if, after reading the contract, you think you still have a case.
posted by jessamyn at 6:07 AM on October 30, 2006


(DanTodd -- constructive dismissal only exists in the Canada, non?)
posted by girlpublisher at 6:10 AM on October 30, 2006


You need to consult the school district's legal department. You have access to free legal advice. This is not legal advice.
posted by Ironmouth at 6:20 AM on October 30, 2006


Ethically and legally this would be a very bad idea.
posted by caddis at 6:49 AM on October 30, 2006


It isn't clear to me that this is actually extortion in the criminal sense, because I'm not certain that obtaining the coach's resignation would qualify as "personal gain." In some states, it appears that extortion only requires a threat intended to force someone to do something against their will, which this surely would be. It is possible that this would be considered extortion in the other states as well depending on how loose "personal gain" was construed. It is certainly close enough that I wouldn't take the risk.

Circumventing the established collective bargaining agreement is dead certain to be trouble if you are exposed. If you make the threat and he goes his union lawyers, you are likely to get yourself and the school in a pile of trouble.

Furthermore, I think that it is morally reprehensible and I would avoid it on those grounds.

A middle ground that is probably acceptable is for you to tell him what you found and explain that you intend to take it to the appropriate disciplinary process which may result in embarrassment for him and that he should consider resigning to save himself this fate. If he doesn't believe that the process will expose him or he doesn't fear that it will cost him his job, then I think that will fail. I suspect that it will not result in him being fired. Affairs between coworkers are fairly common but not usually the subject of formal disciplinary proceedings. Raunchy email exchanges on one's work account are foolish, but also extremely common.

I also think that you should be certain that you had the right within your school's policies and union agreement to read his email before you go any further. If you do proceed, I would limit yourself to remedies that are officially sanctioned to avoid damage to your career and your school.
posted by Lame_username at 6:50 AM on October 30, 2006


Everyone's told you to talk to the people that handle this at your school board, but talk to HR, HR, HR. Remember all the other askme threads that indirectly complained about how much HR is on the employer's side, not the employee's? Well, here's your chance to use that resource.

HR will decide if it needs to go to legal. (Legal will probably even just refer you to HR if you go straight there.) It's not like you can let someone go without involving HR, so you might as well bring them into the loop now.
posted by mendel at 6:54 AM on October 30, 2006


you can't really fire the guy for being a slut

I don't know a school district in the country where it's ok to write sexually explicit emails from your school computer to one of your student's parents - or to anyone else; a teacher who's doing that is colossally stupid, is setting the district up for a massive lawsuit and probably deserves to be fired. This is hardly a simple issue of puritanical 'moral' indignation, as dirtynumbangelboy and Malor implied. But this is also clearly a case where the poster needs to call in his or her boss. That s/he's even considering acting alone here is ridiculous, and doesn't say much for their judgment, either. Take it to your boss or shut up about it. Those are your choices.

You may already have created a potential issue for yourself by reading his email.

I doubt even the strongest teacher's union could get an expectation of privacy for employee use of school computers at the district level. The poster read the emails while investigating another complaint; that sure seems like normal boss behavior to me. Did s/he follow correct procedure for reading an employee's email? We don't know, so I'll assume yes. But it's still astonishing to me that any school administrator would even consider the hugely stupid move the poster is considering.
posted by mediareport at 7:18 AM on October 30, 2006


I'll tell you that if you managed to pull this off and get him to leave, how do you think the rest of the staff is going to like working with you? Something to consider.
posted by maxpower at 7:46 AM on October 30, 2006


There is something slightly fishy with your story...
You say you stumbled across these offending emails while investigating this person on a different allegation.

Who are you to have this sort of authority?

If, in fact, this was an official investigation, the proper person to have such authority would be the head of HR, head of Security, or the Principal/Director of Education. Certainly, all of these individuals would have some clue as to what the legal process might be in a case such as this, yet you appear utterly clueless. That, in itself, doesn't wash.

You say "you have an employee". This implies that you are, again, either his superior (i.e. Principal, Director, etc.) or an HR director. But, again, any of those people would know what their legal limits are and wouldn't be fishing for clues on an internet board.

Why do I think you are, perhaps, some nosy IT geek who was illegally rummaging through teacher's emails and stumbled across something juicy that you can use?

As I said, this doesn't smell right.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:49 AM on October 30, 2006 [3 favorites]


Well, here is what I might do. Call him in with union representation present. Lay out the facts. Tell him (them) you will will be conducting a thorough investigation of the incident(s) including using school email for personal and sexually explicit purposes. Tell him you are not sure of the outcome but it may well include discipline up to and including termination. Tell him you would look favorably on a resignation( if he so chose) including the fact that you will not contest any claims for unemployment but neither will you lie on any forms that require truthful statements. Then do what you say you will do which includes continued consultation with HR and/or legal counsel. I would strongly discourage you from in any way discussing this with his family or any one else except on an "absolute need to know" basis. I do not agree with some of the posters regarding problems in reviewing his emails unless there is a district policy that says administration will not access emails. My guess is, if the district has any sophistication, you already have a policy on use of email and sexually explicit content. The notion of contacting his wife is tacky and fraught with problems. That is not a proper or professional response.
posted by rmhsinc at 8:02 AM on October 30, 2006 [2 favorites]


There are a lot of assumptions going on here. For all we know, this takes place in a school like mine which doesn't even have an HR staff. We're the only private school in the area and take care of matters exactly like this all in house. Not as schools have a massive HR department or even a real teacher's union.

Consider very strongly:
I'll tell you that if you managed to pull this off and get him to leave, how do you think the rest of the staff is going to like working with you? Something to consider.

The rest of your staff will find out what happens if you blackmail him. Not only will they find out, you are guaranteed the teacher and all parties associated will greatly emebellish what happened to make you look like the bad guy. Others in the community will be equally pissed off. People here already think of you as such without any embellishment- this will only make it worse. If you are in a position of power at the school, you stand to loose any command over the staff you might have and then welcome to hell.

That said, if you want the teacher gone, there are a better and legal ways to get rid of the teacher other than blackmail.
posted by jmd82 at 8:16 AM on October 30, 2006


Public (read: job) computers have been shown to carry no expectation of privacy. As his boss you could have read his email even with no investigation.

Were I you, I would yell his indescretions from the rooftops and then let the outrage from the parents finish the job.
posted by Willie0248 at 8:21 AM on October 30, 2006


A lot of people are advising you to talk to HR, or the district lawyers, or your boss. When you do so, describe the situation, and the emails, and your concerns with the employee, but do not mention this harebrained blackmail scheme. To do so will risk embarassing yourself and calling your own judgement into question.
posted by mr_roboto at 8:26 AM on October 30, 2006


Assuming you have the authority to read his email (due to the original allegation) - do you also have the authority to approach him on the matter? Don't threaten him, but perhaps state on a 'personal' level that you came across these emails and he should keep this behavior out of his work environment. You could also tell him that you're going to be giving him a formal repriamnd for using his email for personal means. Also add that the reprimand has nothing to do with the details of his extracurricular activites discussed in the emails - just that they were of a personal nature. I may also think about recording the conversation (depending on the laws in your state), just to prove that you were not attacking him on a professional level because of the affairs.

This would give you the chance to document part of the problem in his personnel file. Then there would be something to go back to should the issue of firing him come up in the future.
posted by youngergirl44 at 8:35 AM on October 30, 2006


I may be wrong and I'm sure someone will correct me if that is the case, but don't most unions demand involvement in investigations of their members right from go? I'd think you'd wind up with a powerful, well funded organization objecting to your having read this individuals emails, even presuming you had cause and the authority to be doing so.

And pyramid termite touched on this, but people have been killed for less.

I know if I (hypothetically of course) had things going on the side with my wife none the wiser and you managed to fuck both that and my career up for me and I was left with no legal recourse against you, I might be likely to track your ass down and introduce you to my friend Louie V. Slugger.

Not saying I'd be right to do so, but I don't know how much comfort that would be to you when you were eating your steak through a straw.
posted by JaredSeth at 8:37 AM on October 30, 2006


Just because Anonymous was able to read the employee's personal e-mails doesn't necessarily mean that he used a work e-mail account. It is trivial to log into many people's personal webmail accounts if you have physical access to their computer. This employee may not have broken any rules at all.
posted by designbot at 8:45 AM on October 30, 2006


You say "you have an employee". This implies that you are, again, either his superior (i.e. Principal, Director, etc.) or an HR director. But, again, any of those people would know what their legal limits are and wouldn't be fishing for clues on an internet board.

Eh, that's a bit of a strech. He seems to understand the policy issues, but he may not know the legal ones. That's entirely possible.
posted by delmoi at 9:01 AM on October 30, 2006


"This is unacceptable for several reasons and I want him gone ASAP, but I don't think my case is strong enough to fire him considering our teacher's union is very strong.

"This is my question: Would it be illegal for me to threaten to send these emails to his wife if he doesn't resign? Could I get myself or our district in trouble by attempting this?"


Let's paraphrase: "I am a party to a contract that prevents me from doing X. Would it get me in trouble if, to circumvent that contract, I did something illegal?"

Yes, doing something illegal -- in this case, blackmail or extortion -- will get you in trouble.

You're in over your head. It's time for you to shut up, and get a lawyer.

Your own personal lawyer, because at this point your interests and the interests of the school's lawyers are no longer aligned. (Hint: the safest course for the school's lawyers would be to find a way to fire your ass, quick like a bunny.)
posted by orthogonality at 9:02 AM on October 30, 2006


I'm curious as to why you're only going after this guy and not the other staff members who are involved. If any rules have been broken, these people are just as guilty of violating them as he is, yet none of them appear to be getting the same treatment.
posted by stefanie at 9:13 AM on October 30, 2006 [1 favorite]


For all we know, this takes place in a school like mine which doesn't even have an HR staff. We're the only private school in the area and take care of matters exactly like this all in house. Not as schools have a massive HR department or even a real teacher's union.

He says in the question that there is a very strong teacher's union, and that he doesn't want to get his district in trouble. This is not a private school.
posted by designbot at 9:14 AM on October 30, 2006


If he has had an affair with any parent who is married and not separated, which could lead to divorce or raise the probability of domestic violence, I don't see how that could possibly fail to meet any reasonable standard for 'endangering the welfare of a child under his supervision,' regardless of how strong your teacher's union may be.

Threatening to tell his wife would be a crime, and would put you and the school district entirely at his mercy.
posted by jamjam at 9:42 AM on October 30, 2006


(girlpublisher - constructive dismissal is definitely a concept in Australia where I'm from, but I'd hazard a guess that if not legally recognised elsewhere, the union will support any member found in this situation. That's part of why unions exist.

On email access: Not all jurisdictions legally allow unfettered access to other people's email. Even if it is legal, it is not good practice especially if you'd like to maintain staff moral).

I think that rmhsinc's comment is the most valid in this case. The union will respect your decision to follow the rules and are less likely to cause any problems down the track.

I'd like to stress the point that even if you act with the law of your district, you may still walk away from this in a bad position. You can't have other people believing that the person in question was dismissed unfairly or that the methods that you used were immoral or illegal. It will make things more difficult for you in the future.

You'll probably find that this person will conduct themselves in a way that you will be able to give them a series of "chances" prior to having a strong enough case to dismiss them.

I'd also not "leak" the information to the public as this may create a perception of inaction from your office or your colleagues. Deal with it directly but discretely.
posted by dantodd at 9:47 AM on October 30, 2006


Albeit morally questionable, unless the GC is breaking some sort of clause in his labor agreement, he's only guilty of misusing email resources.

Parroting what the rest of the hive mind thinks, you should contact HR and your legal counsel, and leave it at that.

The path that you wish to take has the potential to be more damaging to you than to the GC. I'm going to infer that you are probably an administrator at that school, and if you are, worry more about your students. Human Resources departments exist to handle employee issues.

Personally, the fact that you wish to crucify the GC, and not other district or school staff shows that you hold some kind of grudge, moral or otherwise, against the GC. That does not excuse what they did, and shows that you should not be in a position to dictate this person's fate, as you are showing the lack of capability to make an impartial decision regarding this employee's job.

My suggestion: Get off the moral high horse, hand it over to HR and legal and be done with it. Doing anything else would be a disservice to yourself, your co-workers, your school district, and those who are otherwise involved.
posted by richter_x at 10:48 AM on October 30, 2006


It sounds like you work at a school. Your school district has an attorney or two, I promise you. Speak to that attorney.

Yes, this could be illegal; it could expose your district/school to liability. It could also expose you, in your individual capacity, to criminal liability — ie, jail time. Talk to your lawyer.

(I am a lawyer, but I do not represent you and this is not legal advice.)
posted by raf at 11:30 AM on October 30, 2006


Just one small note: blackmail never works. The truth always comes out, especially in school districts and fragile marriages. You're dealing with both. All will be known by all soon.
posted by koeselitz at 11:46 AM on October 30, 2006


[a few comments removed, there is already a metatalk thread about this thread if you'd like to get meta about it ]
posted by jessamyn at 12:07 PM on October 30, 2006


After looking around a little, it appears that it is legal for employers to forbid dating between employees. That might apply here. However, I have a feeling that there aren't any school districts that have such rules.

Also, God, haven't you ever fired anybody before? How hard can it be, if you have good reasons? (This is the last place to look for good reasons.) You are surrounded by people who can help you better than we can.
posted by koeselitz at 12:22 PM on October 30, 2006


Would it be illegal for me to threaten to send these emails to his wife if he doesn't resign? Could I get myself or our district in trouble by attempting this?

Yes to both questions. I'd honestly be surprised to learn that this question was anything other than a time-wasting troll. Blackmail is the name of a felony. Therefore, when you do blackmail, you do a felony. How could anybody not realize this? Threat of exposure of adultery is a time-tested means of blackmail; it's illegal everywhere, open-and-shut. Perhaps it would go to court and the learned attorneys would dispute over niceties of the case that you haven't revealed to us, but good heavens, your attorney would have a hell of a mountain to climb in trying to prove that what you did wasn't blackmail. And that'd be the crux of your defense.

Furthermore, although you may strongly disapprove of this guy's affairs with multiple women, the onus would be on you to show that the affairs with multiple women were relevant to his job performance in such a way as to constitute grounds for dismissal. If they aren't, you'd have a damn hard time explaining to the judge why they came up during the dismissal conversation.

I understand that you don't like the guy and think he's not a good employee to have and I'm sure you're right. But find a different way to get rid of him, one that doesn't involve you committing a felony.
posted by ikkyu2 at 2:53 PM on October 30, 2006


IANAL but it seems that you are coming at this the wring direction. If you approach him as a "friend" and let him know that the investigation found something that will get him fired and that you will hold off on it if he wants to resign. You aren't blackmailing anybody, you are doing sombody a favor!!
posted by Megafly at 12:32 PM on October 31, 2006


I'm a little puzzled by this comment:

>a teacher who's [writing sexually explicit emails from a school computer] is colossally stupid, is setting the district up for a massive lawsuit and probably deserves to be fired.

What lawsuit could there possibly be against the school district? What would the grounds be?

It's legal for adults to have sex with each other. The only legal action anyone could make against this guy would be the wife, for divorce, if she found out. He's almost certainly broken some rule about internet access, yes, but apart from that, you've got nothing on the guy unless there's a morals clause in his contract about sleeping with colleagues or parents of pupils.

And it's all fruit from a poisoned tree too, if you were investigating him for something else and "just happened" to read unrelated email. I'm sure the union will argue you had no right to read them.

Here's another thing. If he's sending and receiving these steamy emails via Hotmail, is that "work email"? And can you prove these emails really are from the people you think they're from and the contents of them aren't fictional? If not, you've got nothing on him at all.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 2:51 PM on November 1, 2006


If he's sending and receiving these steamy emails via Hotmail, is that "work email"?

No, but if he is reading and sending said emails at work then he is using school equipment for personal use, which may well be grounds for termination; I have seen it happen in my workplace. It seems a lot of posters in this thread do not realize that when using a workplace computer and the workplace's internet connetion, whatever goes on is either work-related or theft of resources, according to many companies' IT policies. How vigorously and in what situations these are enforced is another debate.
posted by TedW at 8:17 PM on November 1, 2006


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