Social Media Policy

The use of social media is increasingly common for university departments, students, and employees. These communication tools have the potential to create a significant impact on organizational and professional reputations. The University of New Orleans has developed policies to properly portray, promote and protect the institution. The following policies also provide suggestions on how to protect personal and professional reputations while using social media. This policy requires that:

  • Each social media account will have responsible administrators assigned and will be updated once a month.
  • Inappropriate, offensive, injurious or illegal content may be removed by University of New Orleans employees identified as account administrators or at the direction of the Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing (OCPRM).
  • Best practices for social media accounts must be considered.

This policy will apply only to social media accounts created for the express purpose of officially representing the University groups, departments, programs, entities, etc., and will not apply to private social media accounts. University employees acting in an individual capacity should exercise caution to communicate clearly that they are not acting in a representative capacity, or expressing the views of the University.

Social Media Types

Social media is designed to be disseminated through social interaction using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. Social media has changed how people communicate with one another and receive news, information and entertainment. It has also transformed people from content consumers to content producers. Types of social media networks include Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram and YouTube but also include blogs and podcasts.

Social Media Accounts

These are accounts or profiles created in social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram and YouTube.

Responsibilities

Should a University of New Orleans employee administrator of an account leave the University for any reason or no longer wishes to be an account administrator, it is the academic or administrative department's responsibility to designate another University of New Orleans employee to be an account administrator and remove the former employee's administrative permissions to the account.

University of New Orleans employees identified as administrators of accounts are responsible for managing and monitoring content of their social media accounts. Administrators are responsible for removal of content that may violate any university conduct policies.

Because some pages may allow the immediate posting of comments and images, all University of new Orleans social media pages should include the following statement:
"The statements and images posted on this social media page do not necessarily reflect the total views of the University of New Orleans, its constituents, partners or donors."

Content Guidelines

  • University of New Orleans employees are expected to adhere to the same standards of conduct online as they would in the workplace. Laws and policies contracting and conflict of interest, as well as applicable policies and guidelines for interacting with students, parents, alumni, donors, media and all other university constituents apply online and in the social media context just as they do in personal interactions. Employees are fully responsible for what they post to social media accounts.
  • Use good judgment about content and respect privacy laws. Do not include confidential information about the University, its staff or its students.
  • Post only content that is not threatening, obscene, a violation of intellectual property rights or privacy laws, or otherwise injurious or illegal.
  • Representation of your personal opinions as being endorsed by the University or any of its organizations is strictly prohibited. The University of New Orleans' name, logos, watermarks or images may not be used to endorse any opinion, product, private business, cause or political candidate.
  • By posting content to any social media site, the poster represents that the poster owns or otherwise has all of the rights necessary to lawfully use that content or that the use of the content is permitted by fair use. Posters also agree that they will not knowingly provide misleading or false information, and that they will indemnify and hold the University harmless for any claims resulting from the content.
  • While the University of New Orleans is committed to the protection of academic freedom, and while is does not regularly review content posted to social media sites, it shall have the right to do so, and with respect to any site maintained in the name of the University, may remove or cause the removal of any content for any lawful reason, including but not limited to, content that it deems threatening, obscene, a violation of intellectual property rights or privacy laws, or otherwise injurious or illegal.
  • When using or posting online material that includes direct or paraphrased quotes, thoughts, ideas, photos, or videos, always include the citations, provide a link to the original material if applicable.
  • Refrain from using information and conducting activities that may violate local, state, or federal laws and regulations. If you are unsure whether certain content is protected by privacy or intellectual property laws, contact the Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing.
  • If you also maintain your own personal social media accounts, you should avoid confusion over whether or not the account is associated with the University of New Orleans. If you identify yourself as a University of New Orleans faculty or staff member online, it should be clear that the views expressed on your site are not those of the University and you are not acting in your capacity as a University of New Orleans employee. While not a requirement, University of New Orleans employees may consider adding the following disclaimer to personal social media accounts:

"While I am an employee at the University of New Orleans, comments made on this account are my own and not that of the University."

Use of Social Media Sites for the Placement of Advertising

University departments and individual employees are not authorized to enter into advertising agreements with social media sites. Any University of New Orleans unit wishing to purchase advertising services from social media sites, or from any type of publication, must follow all applicable rules and policies governing both the public relations consideration and the procurement and contracting considerations related to such services.

Because most, if not all, social media sites will require a "clickwrap" agreement (online contract that can be accepted by clicking "Yes" or "I accept"), university employees generally do not have the authority to place advertising without administrative approvals. Requests for approvals should be directed to the Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing. Agreements may also require and approval by the purchasing department.