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The HR Capitalist Social Media Policy - All You'll Ever Need....

There's been a lot of talk on the following related to social media policies in your company:

1.  Do you need one?

2.  If the answer is yes, what the heck does a social media policy entail?

I'm usually a "less is more" type of guy related to polices, but I'll admit there might be a need.  For goodTwitter whale primers elsewhere, see the following from Jessica Lee and the HR Bartender related to social media policies.

As for me, I'd keep it simple with a little something like this:

"DAXKO encourages team members to be active in social media as a representative of our company.  Only three rules – be real, add value and don’t say anything that would embarrass your mom.  If your mom has low standards, then don’t say anything you wouldn’t want to see on the front page of USA Today.  Simple enough."

That's what I got.  If I was really writing in long form, I'd slip something in like "P.S. - You're responsible for all the other stuff in the handbook when you're twittering, blogging, facebooking or whatever it is that you crazy kids are doing these days."

What would you add?  On second thought, it would be kinda cool if you could share your social media policy via a 140-character tweet on Twitter...


Steve Levy

"What would you add? On second thought, it would be kinda cool if you could share your social media policy via a 140-character tweet on Twitter."

Great for a Twitter policy but what about us longer-winded bloggers?

Herein lies the problem KD - the bulk of the media has defined social media as Twittering which really is a shame (unless we're talking about how Rupert Murdoch's empire writes about MySpace).

Yucks aside, I'll go so far as to assert that the bulk of the policy writers in companies have have a very small social media profile yet are tasked with writing the policy. Go figure. And with so many users still believing that their Mothers are responsible for everything negative in their lives, I suspect that your policy would be met with laughter and a rash of Yo Momma jokes.

When the C-level understands the power - and pain - of all elements of social media, then perhaps we'll make from progress.


Bohdan Rohbock

I think your P.S. covers it. Social media is conversation and interaction like email, phone, and face to face. You may want to occasionally remind people that conversations on the internet last forever and are reproducible with 100% accuracy, but you don't need a policy that states that.


What would you add?

Actually, it is fairly simple: I am not sure I would add anything. Wouldn't a code of conduct cover this anyway? Why do you need something separate for social networking.

With respect to brand and brand image, a clear and concise policy that broadly discusses this should be sufficient as well.

Any thoughts?

Mike Carden

Jay Shepherd's 140 character Twitter policy: Be professional, kind, discreet, authentic. Represent us well. Remember that you can’t control it once you hit “update.”


I think it is a very simple. Employees that reference anything about an organisation are acting as de facto representatives of the organisation, just like your corporate communications and marketing staff. If you blog/twitter/facebook/linkedin/etc. about your organisation, you are rightly subject to that organisations oversight on what may or may not be said publicly. In my opinion, organisations should only allow employees to blog with specific permission and oversight if they wish to reference the organisation itself. Want to blog about your favorite music, go ahead, but don't talk about your company without permission, because your comments affect the company, and it therefore becomes both legally and ethically the organisation's business.

I blog ananymously for this very reason. I think this is a great topic, often misunderstood by employees.

Chris Boudreaux

This database of social media policies contains links to more than 70, and you can filter by industry:


Really great police. I like it.

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