07b.Ford social media guidelines


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07b.Ford social media guidelines

  1. 1. Be honest aboutwho you areIf the conversation relates to our businessor our industry, you should identify yourselfas working for Ford Motor Company inthe content of your post/comment/othercontent. Not only is this the ethical thingto do, but in some countries, like theU.S., there may be personal liability underFederal Trade Commission regulations ifyou don’t. Best practice is always to behonest about who you are without givingout detailed personal information.Make it clear thatthe views expressedare yoursInclude the following notice somewhere inevery social media profile you maintain: “Iwork at Ford, but this is my own opinionand is not the opinion of Ford MotorCompany.”You speak for yourself,but your actions reflectthose of Ford MotorCompanyUnless you have been authorized byCommunications, you cannot speak onbehalf of Ford Motor Company. Do notportray yourself as a spokesperson, evenan “unofficial” spokesperson, on issuesrelating to Ford Motor Company. Realizethat people may likely form an opinionabout the Company based on the behaviorof its personnel.Use your commonsenseIt’s good business practice for companies(and individuals) to keep certain topicsconfidential. Respect confidentiality.Refrain from speculation on the futureof the Company and its products. Keeptopics focused to matters of public recordwhen speaking about the Company orthe automotive industry. Do not disclosenon-public Company information or thepersonal information of others.Mind your mannersTreat past and present co-workers, otherpersonnel, suppliers, consumers, partners,competitors, Ford Motor Company, andyourself with respect. Avoid postingmaterials or comments that may be seenas offensive, demeaning, inappropriate,threatening, or abusive. Acknowledgedifferences of opinion. Respectfullywithdraw from discussions that go off topicor become profane.The Internet is apublic spaceConsider everything you post to theInternet the same as anything you wouldpost to a physical bulletin board orsubmit to a newspaper. Many eyes mayfall upon your words, including those ofreporters, consumers, your manager andthe competition. Assume that all of thesepeople will be reading every post, no matterhow obscure or secure the site to whichyou are posting may seem.The Internet remembersSearch engines and other technologiesmake it virtually impossible to takesomething back. Be sure you mean whatyou say, and say what you mean.An official responsemay be neededIf you spot a potential issue and believean official Company response is needed,bring it to the attention of a member ofthe Communications team or the Legaloffice before it reaches a crisis situation.Potential issues can often be resolvedmore effectively and efficiently if they areidentified quickly.Respect the privacy ofoffline conversationsProtect your co-workers and our partnersby refraining from sharing their personalinformation or any conversations orstatements unless you have their writtenpermission to do so. Bringing someoneelse into an online conversation withouttheir permission can be destructive to arelationship, cause misunderstandings orviolate laws, commercial contracts and/orconfidentiality agreements.Same rules and lawsapply: New medium,no surpriseDue to the nature of the digital medium,extra diligence is required in respectingintellectual property (such as copyright andtrademark), financial disclosure laws, falseadvertising and the like. Also, refer peoplewith vehicle or repair concerns to thedealer or customer relations (Contact Fordat http://www.ford.com/owner-services/customer-support/contact-ford). If anyonehas a new idea for the Company, refer themto “Your Ideas” on The Ford Story.When in doubt, askIf you have any questions about what isappropriate, play it smart and check witha member of the Communications team orthe Legal office before posting.These guidelines are meant to provide a simple and clear guide to online communications for FordMotor Company personnel. For a more detailed look at the guidelines and potential implicationsfor failing to follow them, please visit our internal resources on HR Online or FordLaw.We have advised our personnel to observe these guidelines when participating in an online conversation regardingFord or the automotive industry. These are a summary of our ethical policies. Ford personnel should refer to themore detailed information available within the Company.Ford Motor Company’s Digital Participation GuidelinesIn brief, our guidelines for engagingon the social Web consist of thefollowing core principles:1. Honesty aboutwho you are2. Clarity that youropinions are your own3. Respect and humilityin all communication4. Good judgment insharing only publicinformation – includingfinancial data5. Awareness that whatyou say is permanentGuidelines08/2010