Social media policy


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Learn some guidelines for creating a social media policy for your company.

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Social media policy

  1. 1. SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY The policies that companies, organizations (i.e., non-profits) or governmentsuse vary widely based on their purposes and the extent of usage of Social Media. Infact, the definitions of “Social Media” differ from organization to organization. Many policies refer to “Internet and Email Usage” separate and distinctfrom “Blogging and Social Media Usage”. Many companies rely on their Codes ofConduct or other Ethics Policies, but those simply are not enough to govern SocialMedia issues, which have special considerations and ways to disseminateinformation and interpersonal interactions that go beyond traditional methods. FORM: GUIDELINES FOR USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA Company Philosophy and/or Mission Statement (To use Social Media to execute Company’s mission of …) Social Media Goals (Usually to create an empowered online community of Company supporters.) Understanding Privacy Settings Be Yourself. Be Courteous. Be Genuine. Differentiate between personal opinion and Company/Employee opinion Give credit where credit is due. Be clear, but not defensive. Tell the Truth Delete comments that are spam, profanity, hate or infringe copyrights Correct errors promptly Disagree respectfully Reply to comments only as appropriate and promptly Link directly to research sources and reference materials.
  2. 2. FORM: GENERAL INTERNET AND EMAIL USAGE:Voice mail, email, and Internet usage assigned to an employees computer, telephone ortelephone extensions are solely for the purpose of conducting Company business. Some jobresponsibilities at the Company require access to the Internet and the use of business softwareand more specialized software. Only people appropriately authorized, for Company purposes,may use the Internet or access additional software.Software Access ProcedureSoftware needed, in addition to those softwares licensed and/or used by the Company, mustbe authorized by your supervisor and downloaded by the IT department. If you need access tosoftware, not currently on the Company network, talk with your supervisor and consult withthe IT department.Internet UsageInternet use, on Company time, is authorized to conduct Company business only. Internet usebrings the possibility of breaches to the security of confidential Company information. Internetuse also creates the possibility of contamination to our system via viruses or spyware.Spyware allows unauthorized people, outside the Company, potential access to Companypasswords and other confidential information.Removing such programs from the Company network requires IT staff to invest time andattention that is better devoted to progress. For this reason, and to assure the use of worktime appropriately for work, we ask staff members to limit Internet use.Additionally, under no circumstances may Company computers or other electronic equipmentbe used to obtain, view, or reach any pornographic, or otherwise immoral, unethical, or non-business-related Internet sites. Doing so can lead to disciplinary action up to and includingtermination of employment.Email Usage at CompanyEmail is also to be used for Company business only. Company confidential information mustnot be shared outside of the Company, without authorization, at any time. You are also not toconduct personal business using the Company computer or email.Please keep this in mind, also, as you consider forwarding non-business emails to associates,family or friends. Non-business related emails waste company time and attention.Viewing pornography, or sending pornographic jokes or stories via email, is considered sexualharassment and will be addressed according to our sexual harassment policy.Emails That DiscriminateAny emails that discriminate against employees by virtue of any protected classificationincluding race, gender, nationality, religion, and so forth, will be dealt with according to theharassment policy. -2-
  3. 3. These emails are prohibited at the Company. Sending or forwarding non-business emails willresult in disciplinary action that may lead to employment termination.Company Owns Employee Email, Attachments and all Contents.Keep in mind that the Company owns any communication sent via email from its servers,computers (tablets, pc’s, iPads), phones and any other equipment. The Company also ownsany data, information and/or forms that are stored on company equipment. Management andother authorized staff have the right to access any material in your email or on your computerat any time. Please do not consider your electronic communication, storage or access to beprivate if it is created or stored at work.FORM: BLOGGING AND SOCIAL MEDIA POLICYGuidelines for Interaction About Your Company on the InternetIf you are developing a Web site or writing a blog that will mention your company and/or ourcurrent and potential products, employees, partners, customers, and competitors, identifythat you are an employee of your company and that the views expressed on the blog orWeb site are yours alone and do not represent the views of the company. Unless given permission by your manager, you are not authorized to speak on behalf of the company, nor to represent that you do so. If you are developing a site or writing a blog that will mention our company and / or our current and potential products, employees, partners, customers, and competitors, as a courtesy to the company, please let your manager know that you are writing them. Your manager may choose to visit from time to time to understand your point of view. Confidential Information Component of the Blogging Policy You may not share information that is confidential and proprietary about the company. This includes information about trademarks, upcoming product releases, sales, finances, number of products sold, number of employees, company strategy, and any other information that has not been publicly released by the company. These are given as examples only and do not cover the range of what the company considers confidential and proprietary. If you have any question about whether information has been released publicly or doubts of any kind, speak with your manager and the Public Relations department before releasing information that could potentially harm our company, or our current and potential products, employees, partners, and customers. You may also want to be aware of the points made in the non-disclosure agreement you signed when you joined our company. Your company logo and trademarks may not be used without explicit permission in writing from the company. This is to prevent the appearance that you speak for or represent the company officially. Respect and Privacy Rights Components of the Blogging Policy Speak respectfully about the company and our current and potential employees, customers, partners, and competitors. Do not engage in name calling or behavior that -3-
  4. 4. will reflect negatively on your companys reputation. Note that the use of copyrighted materials, unfounded or derogatory statements, or misrepresentation is not viewed favorably by your company and can result in disciplinary action up to and including employment termination. Your company encourages you to write knowledgeably, accurately, and using appropriate professionalism. Despite disclaimers, your Web interaction can result in members of the public forming opinions about your company and its employees, partners, and products. Honor the privacy rights of our current employees by seeking their permission before writing about or displaying internal company happenings that might be considered to be a breach of their privacy and confidentiality.Competition Component of the Blogging Policy You may not sell any product or service that would compete with any of your companys products or services without permission in writing from the president. This includes, but is not limited to training, books, products, and freelance writing. If in doubt, talk with your manager and the president.Your Legal Liability Component of the Blogging Policy Recognize that you are legally liable for anything you write or present online. Employees can be disciplined by the company for commentary, content, or images that are defamatory, pornographic, proprietary, harassing, libelous, or that can create a hostile work environment. You can also be sued by company employees, competitors, and any individual or company that views your commentary, content, or images as defamatory, pornographic, proprietary, harassing, libelous or creating a hostile work environment.Media Contact Component of the Blogging Policy Media contacts about our company and our current and potential products, employees, partners, customers, and competitors should be referred for coordination and guidance to the Public Relations or Human Resources department. This does not specifically include your opinions, writing, and interviews on topics aside from our company and our current and potential products, employees, partners, customers, and competitors. -4-
  5. 5. FORM: DELL’S GLOBAL SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY – 5 PRINCIPLES 1. Protect InformationSocial Media encourages you to share information and connect with people. Whenyou use Social Media, you should try and build relationships, but you should also beaware that through your relationship with Dell, you have access to confidentialinformation that shouldnt be made public. So, you shouldnt share ourconfidential company information or any of our customers personally identifiableinformation. Every year, you take a course on how you should protect privacy andpersonal information. The same thing applies on Social Media, because youmistakenly post confidential information on a Social Media platform, it will be hard totake down that information completely.2. Be Transparent and DiscloseWhen you talk about Dell on Social Media, you should disclose that you work for Dell.Your friends may know you work for Dell, but their network of friends and colleaguesmay not and you dont want to accidentally mislead someone. You should know andremember the 10 magic words: "Hello, my name is [NAME], and I work forDell." Be sure to replace [NAME] with your name because that looks odd.3. Follow the Law, Follow the Code of ConductSocial Media lets you communicate incredibly fast and have your message go viral inseconds. This makes it difficult to fix an inaccurate message once youve shared it.The best thing to do is double check all content before you share it, both foraccuracy and to make sure it fits into Dells overall Social Media strategy, our Codeof Conduct and any restrictions that may apply to your content based on local law(such as the FTC Endorsement Guidelines in the US) and the platform you areusing (such as terms of service for the site upon which you are sharing). One ofDells core values is winning with integrity, and that applies to Social Media as well.Dell employees hold ourselves to high ethical standards, as our Code of Conductspells out, and that applies to Social Media just like everything else you do as a Dellemployee.4. Be ResponsibleMake sure youre engaging in Social Media conversations the right way. If you arentan authority on a subject, send someone to the expert rather than respondingyourself. Dont speak on behalf of Dell if you arent giving an official Dellresponse, and be sure your audience knows the difference. If you see somethingbeing shared related to Dell on a Social Media platform that shouldnt be happening,immediately inform the Social Media and Communities team, your manager,Ethics and Compliance or some other appropriate contact. And always rememberthat anything posted in social media can go viral, no matter what your privacysettings may be, so be sure you’re only posting content you would feelcomfortable showing up in your boss’ inbox, your coworker’s Twitter feed orthe front page of a major news site. [Analogy: Judge reading back to you.] -5-
  6. 6. 5. Be Nice, Have Fun and ConnectSocial Media is a place to have conversations and build connections, whether youredoing it for Dell or for yourself. The connections youll make on Social Mediawill be much more rewarding if you remember to have conversations ratherthan push agendas. Dell has always been a leader in using technology to directlyconnect with our customers. Social Media is another tool you can use to build ourbrand, just be sure you do it the right way.DELL Property: Social Media Account OwnershipThis section isn’t a Social Media principle, but its still important enough to be in thispolicy. If you participate in Social Media activities as part of your job at Dell,that account may be considered Dell property. If that account is Dell property,you dont get to take it with you if you leave the company — meaning you willnot try to change the password or the account name or create a similar soundingaccount or have any ownership of the contacts and connections you have gainedthrough the account. This doesnt apply to personal accounts that you may access atwork, but would certainly apply to all Dell-branded accounts created as part of yourjob. If you have any questions about an account you operate, please reach out to theSMaC team to discuss the account.FORM: COMMUNITY GUIDELINES (FLICKR)Don’t be creepy.You know the guy. Don’t be that guy.FORM: INTEL’S SOCIAL MEDIA GUIDELINES1. Disclose: Name/Identity/Clarify Role/Truthful/Be Yourself2. Protect: Confidentiality/Don’t tell Secrets (litigation/financials)/Play Nice3. Use Common Sense: Perception/Add Value/Keep it Cool/Admit Mistakes -6-