No, Partners Cannot Watch Pornography in the Office
While facing adverse consequences at work for misconduct is nothing to be celebrated, there are certainly times when taking one for the team, paying dues, or facing the music, is heralded as a rite of passage.
That's not the case when a lawyer, or anyone really, is busted watching porn in their office. That's a lonely, solitary, and embarrassing way to get in trouble. And for one partner at a prestigious BigLaw firm in London, his suspension will perhaps go down in history as one of the most embarrassing moments an attorney can be dealt. You see, that partner, clearly believing himself to be alone, began watching pornography at his desk, in his private office.
Allegedly, there may have been more going on, but thankfully, his hands were not visible. And if you're wondering how the whole world found out, that's where this story takes an unexpected turn.
Apparently, another law firm located across the street was privileged enough to have a good enough view into the partners office that they could clearly see him watching pornography with his back to the window.
One associate at the firm with a good view pulled out a smartphone and video recorded a snippet, and forwarded it to someone at the partner's firm, eventually making it to that firm's HR and resulting in an internal investigation and suspension of the partner who should have hung some curtains.
Notably, both firms have large floor to ceiling windows, are directly across the street from each other, and the street is reportedly rather narrow. And while there is clearly an invasion of privacy in the making of the video, the conduct is rather shocking, particularly for a partner who presumably has associates or staff working under them.
While there is nothing wrong with adult content per se, just as with free speech, there are time, manner, and place restrictions.
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