A yoga instructor who was hired to teach classes at Facebook in March says she was fired last month for banning students from checking their mobile devices in class.
SFGate, the website for the San Francisco Chronicle, reported on Monday that 35-year-old yoga teacher Alice Van Ness says her long standing ‘no phone in class’ policy was ignored by one student in particular. Van Ness shot the student a disapproving look and then the student stepped out of the class to complete what she was doing on her device. The student complained to Van Ness’ managers and a couple weeks later, Van Ness says she was fired.
The fitness employer she worked, Plus One Health Management, allegedly told Van Ness not to say “no” to Facebook employees. A letter Van Ness supplied to SFGate from the company said instructors should “say yes” to students’ requests: “We are in the business of providing great customer service,” said her termination notice from Plus One Health Management. “Unless a client requires us to specifically say no to something, we prefer to say yes whenever possible.”
The article also says this firing cost Van Ness a yoga teaching job at Cisco Systems.
Van Ness said when it comes to yoga, checking your Facebook can wait. “We’re not talking about the U.S. government here. We’re not talking about Russia is about to bomb us. We’re talking about Facebook. Something can’t wait half an hour?” she was quoted as saying.
Facebook declined to comment.
Do you think Van Ness should have been terminated? Do you think there are places where cellphones should be banned? Tell us in the comments.
[Via SFGate, Casey Newton]