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Social Media Policy for University Accounts - 5F5

  1. INTRODUCTION

    Social media platforms are widely used communication tools that allow users to easily interact with each other and publish a variety of content. Social media platforms and applications provide outlets for positive connections, sharing and collaboration. These platforms are important tools for organizational use in communicating with constituencies. The University engages in social communication and encourages units, College/Schools, departments and programs to examine how the use of social media could be beneficial to their overall communication strategy. However, as units, College/Schools, departments and programs designate account managers and enter into social media, it is necessary that they recognize that publicly shared information, statements, and graphic representations online may have a significant impact on the reputation of the University and its programs.

    1. Purpose of the Policy

      The Social Media Policy for University Accounts provides a standardized process through which University-affiliated College/Schools, departments, programs and organizations can create authorized social media accounts representing the University and gain authorization to use approved and/or trademarked logos and wordmarks. The policy also outlines standards and expectations with which account managers must comply for social media accounts to retain authorized status.

    2. Scope of the Policy

      The Social Media Policy for University Accounts is a university-wide policy and applies to any social media account publicly representing a University College/School, unit, department or program, office, athletic team, student organization and/or University-affiliated entity.

    3. Responsibility

      1. Overall responsibility for administering and maintaining this Social Media Policy for University Accounts lies with University Marketing and Communications. Changes and alterations to this policy will be approved by the Chancellor.

      2. Account managers are ultimately responsible for the content posted to an account and ensuring adherence to this policy.

      3. All users are encouraged to report social media account(s) representing a University College/School, unit, department or program, office, athletic team, student organization and/or University-affiliated entity that is not in compliance with this policy. Accounts in question should be reported to Marketing and Communications at 650-3643.

  2. DEFINITIONS

    1. Social Media: For the purposes of this policy, "social media" refers to a broad group of online communication tools, sites, platforms and channels that can be used to facilitate communication, interaction, publishing and information sharing between users in real time. There are various types of social media including, but not limited to:

      • Social networks - Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Google+
      • Blogs - WordPress, Blogger, TypePad, LiveJournal
      • Microblogs - Twitter, Tumblr
      • Discussion boards and forums - may be stand-alone platforms or embedded on another site
      • Media sharing (photos, video, podcasts, presentations) - Flickr, PhotoBucket, YouTube, Vimeo, Blubrry, SlideShare, Prezi
      • Social bookmarking and news - Del.ici.ous, Diig, Reddit, StumbleUpon, Pinterest
      • Wikis - Wikia, Wikispaces, Wet Paint, PBWorks

        Please note that this list and selection of examples is not intended to be comprehensive. These examples are only a selection of current popular platforms and new platforms will emerge.
    2. Account Manager: Any person with access to a University social media account that may post as the University College/School, unit, department or program, office, athletic team, student organization and/or University-affiliated entity being represented is considered an account manager.

      1. Primary account manager: Primary account managers will be considered the "owners" of University social media accounts for registration and administrative purposes. Primary account managers will be the point of contact for University Marketing and Communications in all matters related to the account. Primary account managers will be responsible for updating the account registration when account managers are added and/or changed. Primary account managers will be ultimately responsible for any and all content posted to the account.

      2. Secondary account manager: Secondary account managers will be granted access to the account by the primary account manager. Secondary account managers will have access to the account and will be able to post content as determined by the primary account manager.

    3. Content : Information, data and communication shared on social media platforms including text, images and photos, videos and audio.

    4. Logos and Wordmarks: Logos and wordmarks are the visual representation of the University brand. SIUE wordmarks and logos are registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The University may commence legal proceedings through the Office of General Counsel for trademark infringement to prevent unauthorized use of its trademarks. All parties must gain consent to use the SIUE wordmarks and logos through the SIUE Marketing and Communications Department as outlined in the Wordmark and Logo Requirements (5F3).

      References to University logos and wordmarks include:

      • Southern Illinois University Edwardsville wordmark
      • Stylized SIUE wordmark
      • Stylized 'e'
      • College and School-level wordmarks
      • SIUE Cougars logos and design elements
      • Club Sports logos

      Samples of University logos and wordmarks can be viewed in the Wordmark and Logo Requirements (5F3).

  3. REQUIREMENTS FOR UNIVERSITY SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS

    1. Permissions

      Each social media account must be authorized by the unit's supervisor, chair or director and must be registered with the SIUE University Marketing and Communications Department.

    2. Account Naming

      Social media account names must be specific to the department, unit, faculty/staff/student group, and must present a professional presence. Names must be respectful of all members of the SIUE community.

    3. Account Registration and Managers

      All new social media accounts representing the University must be registered with University Marketing and Communications prior to account creation. Upon registration, University Marketing and Communications will assist account managers in procuring required branding elements with which the account can be created. Official, authorized social media accounts will be included in the University Media Center directory. University-affiliated accounts should link back to the SIUE website.

      1. Account Managers

        Each University social media account must have at least two account managers having access to the account at all times, one of whom will serve as the primary account manager.

        1. Primary Account Managers

          The primary account manager must be an SIUE employee. Graduate assistants, contingent workforce and independent contractors are not eligible to serve as primary account managers. The primary account manager will be considered the 'owner' of the account for registration purposes and will be the contact to whom all inquiries regarding the account are directed.

        2. Graduate Students

          Graduate assistants will be permitted to serve only as secondary account managers on University accounts, managing account updates under the supervision of the primary account manager.

        3. Undergraduate Students

          Undergraduate students will not be permitted to serve as primary or secondary account managers on University accounts, except when the account is representing a student organization.

        4. Student Organization Accounts

          Undergraduate and graduate students may serve as secondary account managers for social media accounts representing student organizations. As secondary account managers, members and/or officers of student organizations will have full access to manage content and post updates. Student organization advisers will serve as primary account managers on accounts representing student organizations to prevent them from being lost due to graduation and changing of student organization officers. Inquiries regarding the account will be directed to student organization advisers. In the event that a student organization adviser is unable to serve as primary account manager, the adviser may delegate the responsibility to another SIUE employee or a member of the University Marketing and Communications department.

        5. Responsibility for Content

          The primary account managers will be responsible for any and all content posted on the account and should exercise discretion when granting access to secondary account managers. Both primary and secondary account managers should monitor content and engage in conversations on social media accounts, responding to and interacting with community members as needed (media inquiries and requests for comment on the official position of the University should be directed to University Marketing and Communications).

        6. Changes to Account Managers

          If new account managers are added to a University social media account or existing account managers are changed, the primary account manager should notify University Marketing and Communications to update the account registration.

        7. Account Credentials

          Strong passwords should be used, and should only be shared among account managers on a specific account.

    4. Wordmark Usage

      All use of SIUE wordmarks and logos must be in full compliance with the Wordmark and Logo Requirements and Logo and Trademark Licensing Administrative Policy Statement (5F3). All parties must gain explicit written consent to use the SIUE wordmarks and logos through the University Marketing and Communications Department. University Marketing and Communications will approve the usage, initial setup of wordmarks and logos, and monitor usage. University Marketing and Communications will provide a selection of graphic elements designed specifically for use on various social media sites. All wordmarks and logos are not to be changed, manipulated, or modified in any way. They may be resized proportionately. Trademark violations will be reported.

    5. Intellectual Property

      Any content posted that was not created by the originator must be cited properly. Any usage of trademarks, copyrights, etc. can only be posted with the permission of the trademark or copyright holder. Any use of SIUE trademarks in print or on the web must be approved in advance of use through University Marketing and Communications.

    6. Compliance with University Policy and Local, State and Federal Law

      Account managers are responsible for understanding the University's policies and ensuring that all online content is in compliance with these policies. Ultimately, account managers are responsible for the content that is posted and will be held accountable when inappropriate content is posted. The posting of inappropriate content that includes discriminatory remarks, harassment, threats of violence, or unlawful conduct will not be tolerated and may subject employees and students to disciplinary action.

      1. Protection of Private Information

        Account managers should be particularly careful in regards to private information. The University does not endorse social media as a secure means of communication for business transactions or matters involving personal information. Account managers must ensure that activity on social media platforms is in compliance with state and federal law (including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)), all University policies and/or handbooks, and other applicable policies or regulations (such as NCAA regulations), and policies of national or parent organizations.

      2. Photo Releases

        Account managers are responsible for ensuring that releases are acquired when necessary for photos and videos of individuals posted online. Photo/video release guidelines and approved release templates are available from University Marketing and Communications.

    7. Compliance with Terms of Service

      Account managers are responsible for compliance with the Terms of Service for any social media platform. Terms of Service change regularly and account managers should stay apprised of changes. Accounts not in compliance with Terms of Service are subject to suspension or deletion without notice.

    8. Media Contacts

      Only authorized representatives of the University working in conjunction with University Marketing and Communications are permitted to respond to media inquiries. Any member of the media should be referred directly to University Marketing and Communications as directed in the Media Contacts and University Positions Policy (2C2). In the event of a University crisis, account managers will refrain from posting and defer to institutional-level accounts to release official information and comment on the official position of the University as determined by the Chancellor.

    9. Visitor Generated Comments

      Success in social media endeavors is contingent upon building an engaged community and regularly interacting with constituencies. It is the responsibility of the account manager to monitor discussions and comments, providing feedback as needed and removing inappropriate comments. Inappropriate comments include but are not limited to expletives, slanderous words, rumors, etc. Account managers are encouraged to take advantage of the following sample "House Rules" when the social platform allows for the posting of such guidelines. If at any time a comment is questionable, account managers should contact University Marketing and Communications for guidance.

      1. Sample "House Rules"

        "Thank you so much for your comments and interaction on our [INSERT SOCIAL NETWORK] page. We encourage interaction among SIUE Cougars and friends around the world and on campus. Please note that we review all comments made.

        Comments will be removed if they are:

        • Offensive
        • Inappropriate
        • Use foul language
        • Insult or attack
        • Contain illegal suggestions
        • Contain unauthorized commercial solicitation

        We reserve the right to terminate access to the page by repeat offenders. Please email us at [INSERT CONTACT EMAIL] with any concerns about the content on this site. Comments made on this page are the opinions of the authors, not of SIUE or the SIU Board of Trustees."

    10. Compliance with the Policy

      If a University-affiliated account is not in compliance with this policy, the primary account manager will be notified by University Marketing and Communications and will be responsible for rectifying any and all issues in a timely fashion. Continuing or recurring violations will result in the revocation of authorization to represent the University and use any SIUE logos and wordmarks. The social media account will be removed from the online SIUE Media Center and the dean, director, and/or vice chancellor will be notified. Violations by Student Organizations will be reported to the Kimmel Leadership Center and the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs pursuant to the Student Conduct Code (3C1). Account managers will be responsible for all content posted on a University-affiliated account.

      1. Questions Regarding the Policy

        Contact Marketing and Communications at (618) 650-3643 for questions regarding this policy.

Approved by Chancellor effective June 27, 2013
This policy was issued on June 28, 2013.
Document Reference: 5F5
Origin: OC 6/27/13

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