Approved April 19, 2018
The following social media guidelines were originally developed by the University of Michigan and have been edited and revised for the Shasta College community. We thank our colleagues at the University of Michigan for sharing them with us and giving us permission to adopt and modify them for Shasta College.
The rapid growth of social media technologies combined with their ease of use and pervasiveness make them attractive channels of communication. However, these tools also hold the possibility of a host of unintended consequences.
Applications that allow interaction with others online (e.g., Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter) require the careful consideration of the implications of friending, linking, following, or accepting such a request from another person. There is the potential for misinterpretation of the relationship or the potential of sharing protected information. Relationships such as faculty-student, supervisor-subordinate, and staff-student merit close consideration of the implications and the nature of the social interaction.
Shasta College uses social media to supplement traditional public relations and marketing efforts. Employees are encouraged to share Shasta College news and events that are a matter of public record with their family and friends. Linking straight to the information source is an effective way to help promote the mission of Shasta College and build community.
While social media tools are changing the way we work and how we connect with the public and other higher education institutions, Shasta College policies and practices for sharing information remain the same.
Process for Creating a Shasta College Social Media Presence
Marketing will then grant the appropriate person(s) administrative access to those accounts. Any currently existing sites or sites created outside of this process should list Marketing as an admin for any/all sites in use.
Maintain Shasta College Confidentiality
Do not post confidential or proprietary information about Shasta College, its students, its alumni, or fellow employees. Use good ethical judgment and follow the College’s policies and federal requirements, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Review Shasta College Board Policies and Administrative Procedure for more information on the responsibility of a Shasta College employee.
The author of any content published on blogs, wikis, or any other public forum, is ultimately responsible for what is written. Participation in social forums on behalf of Shasta College is not a right but an opportunity, so please treat it seriously and with respect. Keep in mind that when posting with a Shasta College username, other users view the post as coming from Shasta College. These posts reflect directly on Shasta College, the staff, faculty, and students.
Do not use ethnic slurs, personal insults, obscenity, or engage in any conduct that would not be acceptable in Shasta College’s community. Show proper consideration for others’ privacy and for topics that may be considered sensitive, such as politics and religion.
Ensure to collect all of the facts prior to posting a comment – it is better to verify information with a source first than to have to post a correction or retraction later. Cite and link to the sources whenever possible.
Before composing a message that might act as the “voice” or position of Shasta College or a department, discuss the content with a supervisor or the dean/chair of the department or his or her delegate. If there is any question on whether a message is appropriate to post as a Shasta College employee, discuss with a supervisor prior to posting the message.
Respect College Time and Property
It is appropriate to post at work if the comments are directly related to accomplishing work goals, such as seeking sources for information or working with others to resolve a problem. Personal social media conversations should be posted during personal time.
The assigned Administrator must regularly monitor postings and content. The recommended minimum posting frequency is once to twice a week, be sure not to overload followers with updates. It is recommended to create a content calendar with pre-planned content for slow periods.
Marketing reserves the right to disable or temporarily un-publish Shasta College social media accounts that are dormant (no posts, no activity) for more than SIX months, as such stagnancy reflects poorly on Shasta College.
When page editors and administrators, especially students, have left the college and no longer require access to social media accounts, the page roles must be updated/adjusted immediately. Please contact Marketing any time an admin must be removed or added.
Don’t Use Pseudonyms
Never pretend to be someone else. Tracking tools enable supposedly anonymous posts to be traced back to their authors.
Social Media for Personal Uses
If a member of the Shasta College community is identified as such on any social media site, whether for personal or professional use, the member must ensure that their profile and related content accurately reflect their position and responsibilities at the district. In personal posts, one may identify him/her self as a Shasta College faculty or staff member. However, the user must ensure that it is clear that the views are being shared as an individual and not as a representative of Shasta College.
If you publish content to any website or social media site outside of Shasta College and it has something to do with the work you do or subjects associated with Shasta College, use a disclaimer such as: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t represent Shasta College’s positions, strategies, or opinions,” or “The views expressed on this [blog, website] are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect views of Shasta College.” This is particularly important if you could be perceived to be in a leadership role at Shasta College. Do not use the Shasta College logo, wordmark or any images associated with Shasta College brands on your personal sites. Do not use Shasta College’s name to promote any product, political party or candidate.
Limited Public Forum
For purposes of this policy, a social media platform is the website or app offered to the public to provide audio, video, still-photo or written communication between members of the public and/or representatives of certain groups, businesses, organizations or departments. Examples of social media platforms include, but are not limited to, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, LinkedIn, website blogs with commenting capabilities, forums and emergency notification services.
The definition of content as used in this policy refers to any written copy, photos, graphics, videos, live-video streams, comments or any form of communicative content exchanged between parties.
A comment posted by a member of the public on any Shasta College social media site is the opinion of the commentator or poster only, and publication of a comment does not imply endorsement of, or agreement by, Shasta College, nor do such comments necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of Shasta College.
Moderation of Content
Shasta College’s social media platforms are intended to be "family friendly." We ask all users to abide by these rules. When applicable, the District uses platform provided content moderation/filtering options to limit foul or obscene content. The District does actively monitor the social media platforms used by Shasta College, and will remove inappropriate content as defined below, without prior notice, and as soon as possible. The District shall reserve the right to remove and/or block anyone who posts inappropriate material as determined by the District. This material may include, but is not limited to:
- Comments not related to the original topic, including random or unintelligible comments;
- Profane, obscene, or pornographic content and/or language;
- Content that promotes, fosters or perpetuates discrimination on the basis of national origin, religion, age, gender, gender identity, gender expression, race or ethnicity, color, medical condition, genetic information, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, or military and veteran status;
- Personal attacks and abusive language;
- Threats to any person or organization;
- Comments in support of, or in opposition to, any political campaigns or ballot measures;
- Solicitation of commerce, including but not limited to advertising of any business or product for sale;
- Conduct in violation of any federal, state or local law;
- Encouragement of illegal activity;
- Information that may tend to compromise the safety or security of the public or public systems;
- Content that may put the District in legal jeopardy, such as potentially libelous or defamatory postings, or material posted in potential breach of copyright.
- Harassment or content which constitutes and/or facilitates stalking;
- Content which violates the right to privacy;
- Encouragement of violence;
- Repetitive content;
- Posts or comments that contain any external links.
- Posts containing personal contact information like phone numbers or addresses.
The District does not allow posting of photos or videos by anyone other than designated moderators of the District.
Denial of Access
Community Standards, Guidelines, Policies, Agreements, and Rules
Facebook's Community of Standards
All comments posted to any Shasta College Facebook site are bound by Facebook’s Community Standards, located at https://www.facebook.com/communitystandards/. Shasta College reserves the right to report any violation of Facebook’s Community Standards to Facebook with the intent of Facebook taking appropriate and reasonable responsive action.
The Twitter Rules
When applicable, Shasta College reserves the right to report any violation of the Twitter Rules, located at https://support.twitter.com/articles/18311 with the intent of Twitter taking appropriate and reasonable responsive action.
YouTube Community Guidelines
When applicable, Shasta College reserves the right to report any violation of the YouTube Community Guidelines, located at http://www.youtube.com/yt/policyandsafety/communityguidelines.html with the intent of YouTube taking appropriate and reasonable responsive action.
Instagram Community Guidelines
When applicable, Shasta College reserves the right to report any violation of the Instagram Community Guidelines, located at https://help.instagram.com/477434105621119/ with the intent of Instagram taking appropriate and reasonable responsive action.
Pinterest Acceptable Use Policy
When applicable, Shasta College reserves the right to report any violation of the Pinterest Acceptable Use Policy, located at https://about.pinterest.com/en/acceptable-use-policy with the intent of Pinterest taking appropriate and reasonable responsive action.
LinkedIn User Agreement
When applicable, Shasta College reserves the right to report any violation of the LinkedIn User Agreement, located at https://www.linkedin.com/legal/user-agreement with the intent of LinkedIn taking appropriate and reasonable responsive action.