I tried to post the following to the Oklahoma Social Media Club Ning website tonight, but they are having problems with their forums and new posts cannot be created. (Strange!) If you have input on this I’d love to hear it. 🙂

Hello everyone, I’m glad to have discovered the Oklahoma Social Media Club thanks to a Blog Oklahoma tweet! I have a question for our community related to employee use of social media.

My new employer has a variety of part-time and full-time employees, and not surprisingly lots of the younger (and even some of the older) folks are regularly using Facebook and other social media websites. Our personnel handbook does not address this at all. We don’t want to chill use of social media websites, in fact we want to leverage the power of social media to let as many people as possible know about and stay up to date on the activities of our organization, but we also don’t want people to post foolish things that could embarrass them or our organization as a whole.

Does anyone have examples of social media use policies that are being used by organizations here in Oklahoma or elsewhere? I’d be glad to share ours once we develop one, but I’m hoping I can get some links to other examples that I can build on.


UPDATE: Bill Handy had posted a forum message about IBM’s Social Computing Guidelines. This is just the sort of example policy I’m looking for. This sounds like it is well phrased and appropriate. The executive summary states:

1. Know and follow IBM’s Business Conduct Guidelines.
2. IBMers are personally responsible for the content they publish on blogs, wikis or any other form of user-generated media. Be mindful that what you publish will be public for a long time—protect your privacy.
3. Identify yourself—name and, when relevant, role at IBM—when you discuss IBM or IBM-related matters. And write in the first person. You must make it clear that you are speaking for yourself and not on behalf of IBM.
4. If you publish content to any website outside of IBM and it has something to do with work you do or subjects associated with IBM, use a disclaimer such as this: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies or opinions.”
5. Respect copyright, fair use and financial disclosure laws.
6. Don’t provide IBM’s or another’s confidential or other proprietary information. Ask permission to publish or report on conversations that are meant to be private or internal to IBM.
7. Don’t cite or reference clients, partners or suppliers without their approval. When you do make a reference, where possible link back to the source.
8. Respect your audience. Don’t use ethnic slurs, personal insults, obscenity, or engage in any conduct that would not be acceptable in IBM’s workplace. You should also show proper consideration for others’ privacy and for topics that may be considered objectionable or inflammatory—such as politics and religion.
9. Find out who else is blogging or publishing on the topic, and cite them.
10. Be aware of your association with IBM in online social networks. If you identify yourself as an IBMer, ensure your profile and related content is consistent with how you wish to present yourself with colleagues and clients.
11. Don’t pick fights, be the first to correct your own mistakes, and don’t alter previous posts without indicating that you have done so.
12. Try to add value. Provide worthwhile information and perspective. IBM’s brand is best represented by its people and what you publish may reflect on IBM’s brand.

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One Response to Organizational policies about social media use by employees?

  1. […] Organizational policies about social media use by employees? | Moving at the Speed of Creativity | Wesley Fryer | 17 September 2008 […]

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