Dear Rabbi Simon,
An acquaintance mentioned that someone i know has a new job. I replied that he is making a go of it. She said she knew the employers weren’t sure about the “fit” originally and asked why they had accepted him.
I replied that they took him on as they would have taken anyone who could say Yes to an immediate start.
Is this loshon hora? – About him as being hired out of desperation – or about his employers that this is all they were interested in?
Thank you for your question in the important arena of lashon ha-ra.
The kind of conversation you describe—while undeniably very common—is fraught with lashon ha-ra possibilities. Even if neither of you has malign intent, the possibility of an uncomplimentary implication is difficult to avoid. I would say that your response (even if truthful to the best of your knowledge and belief) is at least implied or avak lashon ha-ra WRT to the employee.
I don’t see your comment as maligning the employer, however, as there is no inherent deficiency in needing to fill a position urgently. Of course in the particular instance, perhaps your assessment was uncomplimentary about them as well. This would depend on further particulars.
Miri, you are to be commended on seeking to clarify the parameters of permissible and forbidden speech in the instance you mention.
Rabbi Rashi Simon