The following are guidelines – for placing CCS-related content on social media sites.
Participation may be part of your job. CCS may request that faculty and staff maintain work-related, supervisor-approved social media accounts or blogs, which can be managed and updated during work hours. Employees should be transparent in their activities, using their real name rather than writing anonymously or under a pseudonym, and disclose or explain their role at the College.
Be professional. Engaging in dialogue in an interesting, fun and productive manner is the best way to use social media. If you choose to include CCS in your profile on a social site, conduct yourself professionally there. Be transparent and identify yourself clearly as an employee in any business-related discussions. Be yourself and feel free to say what is on your mind, but do so respectfully. Your opinions should be apparent as yours and not represent the views and opinions of CCS, unless specifically authorized by a supervisor to do so.
Official groups or pages must be supervisor-approved. Groups and fan pages on social media sites are easy to create and promote, sometimes making it difficult for users to identify “official” pages. However, these pages require input and maintenance to be effective. If you feel there is a need and value to generating an official group or page for CCS, ask your supervisor before allocating time or resources to the endeavor. Also, please consult with CCS’s Director of Marketing and Communications. There are several existing CCS-related groups and fan pages that are not “official.” Participation in those groups can be as valuable as creating your own group. Weigh the value of these groups/pages as opposed to creating a new one prior to starting.
Social sites are public, permanent and retrievable. Your messages on social media websites can be read by anyone, even those not in your “social sphere.” You are searchable and what you say can spread and stays online forever. Presume that even if you don’t identify yourself as a CCS employee on a particular site, the vast and growing repository of data on the Web will make you identifiable to outside parties as such. Similar to College email, employees should have no expectation of privacy when using or posting on social media websites.
Be selective. Not everything needs a response. When you see criticism of the college online, don’t feel compelled to respond. If you have the ability to correct an error or factually incorrect statement, or give someone direction to a webpage that does so, that’s helpful. If you feel there is a post or comment that is sensitive and needs response, forward it to your supervisor or to CCS’s Director of Marketing and Communications.
Mind and learn from the competitors. One of the many benefits of social media is the ability to learn and share with colleagues around the world. Watching how other cultural icons are using social media and engaging with them can be a valuable way to share best practices and create great professional relationships.
Protect confidential and proprietary information. Sensitive information should never be shared via social networks, even via “Direct Messages” that are considered private. Mistakes happen, and in the world of social media, they spread rapidly and they are impossible to take back. If something is considered of a sensitive nature, err on the side of caution and use traditional methods to distribute to appropriate parties.
Be aware of liability. You are legally liable for what you post on your own sites and on others.
For any questions about these guidelines or any matter related to CCS’s policy on social media, personal websites, and other user-generated web content contact the Director of Marketing and Communications.
Marcus Popiolek, Director of Marketing and Public Relation