Having been involved in the labour dispute industry for 21 years I have witnessed some very interesting situations. During the past 2 years, an interesting new form of protest has been developing. In addition to traditional picket lines at company facilities, activists are using social networks such as blogs, Facebook and Twitter to spread their message.
Companies can no longer just focus on preparing contingency plans to deal with lawful picketing, rallies and protests. They must also now have a strategy to manage a different kind of protest – one that is fought on the web. Photos and videos often show up on Youtube or Facebook where each side is attempting to win the battle of hearts and minds.
The contingency planning process must include all possible actions that will do harm to their company’s brand and not just worry about pickets at the entrance to the facility on strike.