Social Media Policy

The following policies apply to all employees of Malone University, including temporary employees and students who are performing services for the University under a work-study program.

All Malone Social media pages must be registered with University Relations. Use of the Malone name on any social media pages must be approved by University Relations. Any pages that are not approved will be removed. Any social media accounts that have improper use of the Malone name and logo also will be removed.

 

Policies

Section 1: Policies for all Social Media Sites, including personal sites

Protect confidential and proprietary information

Do not post confidential or proprietary information about Malone University, students, employees, or alumni. Employees must still follow the applicable federal requirements such as FERPA, HIPAA, and NCAA regulations. Adhere to all applicable University privacy and confidentiality policies. Employees who share confidential information do so at the risk of disciplinary action or termination. Please also observe if posting as an individual.

Respect copyright and fair use

When posting, be mindful of the copyright and intellectual property rights of others and of Malone University. For guidance, consult the Guidelines for Copyright Compliance at http://www.copyright.com/Services/copyrightoncampus/.

Don’t use Malone University logos for endorsements

Do not use the Malone University logo or any other University images or icons on personal social media sites. Do not use Malone University’s name to promote a product, cause, or political party or candidate without prior authorization from Malone University.

Respect University time and property

University computers owned or provided by Malone University and/or time on the job are reserved for Malone-related business as approved by supervisors and in accordance with the University Computer Usage Policy. It’s appropriate to post at work if your comments are directly related to accomplishing work goals, such as seeking sources for information or working with others to resolve a problem. You should maintain your personal sites on your own time using non-Malone computers.

Terms of service

Obey the Terms of Service of any social media platform employed.

Section 2: Best Practices

This section applies to those posting on behalf of an official University entity, though these practical guidelines may be helpful for anyone posting on social media in any capacity.

Think twice before posting: Privacy DOES NOT exist in the world of social media!

Consider what could happen if a post becomes widely shared and how that may reflect on both the poster and Malone University. Search engines can turn up posts years after they are created, and comments - as well as private messages - can be forwarded and copied. If you wouldn’t say it at a conference or to a member of the news media, consider whether you should post it online. If you are unsure about posting something or responding to a comment, ask your supervisor for input or contact Amber Balash at 330-471-8241 or via email: abalash@malone.edu.

Strive for accuracy

Get the facts straight before posting them on social media. Review content for grammatical and spelling errors, especially if you are posting on behalf of the University in any capacity (Note that in some platforms, such as Facebook, users are able to edit their posts once live! Cite – and link to – your sources whenever possible.

Be respectful

Understand that the content contributed to a social media site could encourage comments or discussion of opposing ideas. Responses should be considered carefully in light of how they would reflect on the poster and/or the University and its institutional voice.

Remember your audience

Be aware that a presence in the social media world is or easily can be made available to the public. This includes prospective students, current students, current employers and colleagues, and peers. Consider this before publishing to ensure the post will not alienate, harm, or provoke any of these groups.

On personal sites, identify your view as your own. If you identify yourself as a Malone University faculty or staff member online, make it clear that the views expressed are not necessarily those of Malone University.

Section 3: Institutional Social Media

If you post on behalf of an official University department, the following policies must be adhered to in addition to all policies and best practices above.

Notify University Relations

Departments that have a social media page or would like to start one should contact University Relations at 330-471-8241 or abalash@malone.edu to ensure all institutional social media sites coordinate with other Malone University sites and their content – and that the sites are updated. All institutional pages must have a full-time appointed employee who is identified as being responsible for content.

Acknowledge who you are

If you are representing Malone University when posting on a social media platform, acknowledge this.

Have a plan

Departments should consider their messages, audiences, and goals – as well as have a strategy for keeping information on social media sites updated. University Relations is happy to advise you with your social media planning.

Link back to the University

Whenever possible, link back to a page within www.malone.edu

Protect the institutional voice

Posts on social media sites should protect Malone University’s institutional voice by remaining professional, courteous, and in good taste. No individual Malone University department or individual should construe its social media site as representing the University as a whole. Consider this when naming pages or accounts, selecting a profile picture or icon, and selecting content to post – names, profile images, and posts should all be clearly linked to the particular department or unit rather than to the institution as a whole.

Monitor comments

Most people who maintain social media sites welcome comments – it builds credibility and community. However, you can set many platforms so that you can review and approve comments before they appear. This allows you to respond in a timely way to comments. It also allows you to delete spam comments and to block any individuals who post offensive comments. If you are hosting a blog and allow comments, be clear that you will be regulating comments and that the same rules for commenting apply to everyone.