The purpose of this policy is to capture the positive impacts all volunteers can have on the overall reputation and impact of TXBC, while protecting TXBC against any risks that could have the reverse effect. This entails promoting and commenting on TXBC events, important announcements, and policies various social media platforms.
This policy serves to advise all volunteers using a social media platform in a personal or professional capacity, on suitable behavior and rules to abide by.
What is Social Media?
Board Members or other TXBC leaders discussing TXBC or TXBC business related issues in their personal or professional use of social media platforms are required to follow this Policy.
Social media tools include (without limitation):
- social networking sites, e.g., Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, etc.
- video and photo sharing websites, e.g., Instagram, YouTube, Flickr
- micro-blogging sites, e.g., Twitter
- weblogs, including corporate blogs, personal blogs or blogs hosted by traditional media publications
- forums and discussion boards, such as LinkedIn Groups, Yahoo! Groups or Google Groups
- online encyclopedias, such as Wikipedia
- any other web sites that allow individual users or companies to use simple publishing tools
Social Media for Personal Use
This section outlines how this Policy is applied if a Board Member or other TXBC leader chooses to make references to TXBC, its people, products or services, its competitors, and/or other business related individuals or organizations when they are using a social media platform in a personal (i.e., not TXBC pre-approved/professional) capacity. It is important in these circumstances that readers of such posts do not misconstrue the comments as representing an official TXBC position. Requirements:
- Identify themselves as an TXBC Board Member or other TXBC volunteer;
- Ensure they do not imply in any way that they are authorized to speak on TXBC’s behalf;
- Ensure they do not knowingly use the identity of another TXBC leader (including name or variation of a name) unless in conjunction with a public event or with prior approval;
- Be mindful during their social media engagements of the importance of not damaging TXBC’s reputation commercial interests and/or bringing TXBC into disrepute;
- Disclose only publicly available information. They must not comment on or disclose confidential TXBC information or internal discussions.
- Not include TXBC’s logos, trademarks or other TXBC intellectual property in their postings, without the approval of the Chair.
TXBC volunteers/leaders are personally responsible for the content of their posts online. In this context, TXBC volunteers/leaders have a responsibility to ensure that any information about TXBC products and services that they provide is informed and factually accurate. If they wish to express their opinions please state they are the volunteer’s personal opinions, or the opinion of another organization which they represent, and not those of TXBC.
If a volunteer/leader is offering their personal perspective on a matter related to TXBC, that volunteer should be mindful that their commentary and opinion does not cause damage to TXBC or its commercial interests. Requirements:
- Use a disclaimer if they are referring regularly to TXBC or TXBC related issues. For irregular TXBC references, a disclaimer need only be used on a case-by-case basis. It is understood that when using a Social Media Platform such as Twitter, that disclaimers on every post are not possible or appropriate; however, a general disclaimer could be put on your Twitter profile stating: ‘Views all my own.’
- An example of when a disclaimer would be appropriate is at the end of a blog post published by the volunteer on a website. An example of a disclaimer is: “the views expressed in this post are mine only and do not necessarily reflect the views of TXBC.”
- Ensure they are not the first to make a TXBC announcement unless authorized by the Board to do so.
Social Media for Business Purposes
This section outlines how this Policy applies where a Board Member or other TXBC volunteer uses social media in a professional capacity to represent TXBC on a social media platform for legitimate business purposes.
- Disclose that they are an TXBC volunteer (and any other organization which may have an interest in what is being discussed);
- Disclose only publicly available information. The volunteer must not comment on or disclose confidential TXBC information or internal communications;
- Ensure that any content they publish is factually accurate and complies with any other relevant TXBC policies;
- Ensure they are not the first to make a TXBC announcement unless authorized to do so.
- Only offer advice, support or comment on topics that fall within their area of responsibility at TXBC.
Social Media Generally
This applies to Board Members and other TXBC volunteers/leaders who choose to make references to TXBC (or its directors, officers, employees or contractors) when using social media in a personal capacity.
- Do not post confidential or proprietary information about TXBC;
- Be respectful of all individuals and communities with which the volunteer interacts online;
- Respect copyright, privacy, financial disclosure and other applicable laws when publishing on social media platforms;
- Do not use TXBC logo or any other TXBC images or iconography on personal social media sites;
- Do not use TXBC’s name to promote a product (other than TXBC products), cause, political party or candidate;
- Think twice before posting: Privacy does not exist in the world of social media. Consider what could happen if a post becomes widely known and how that may reflect both on the poster and TXBC. Search engines can turn up posts years after they are created, and comments can be forwarded or copied;
- Get the facts straight before posting them on social media. Review content for grammatical and spelling errors.
- Ensure the volunteer/leader does not post material that is obscene, defamatory, threatening, harassing, discriminatory or hateful to another person or entity, including TXBC, its employees, its contractors, its partners, its competitors and/or other business related individuals or organizations.
- Ensure the volunteer does not disclose other people’s personal information in social media venues,
- Photographs posted on social media sites can easily be appropriated by visitors. Consider adding a watermark to protect your intellectual property.
TXBC’s Main Social Media Pages:
- TXBC Facebook page:
- TXBC Twitter Handle: @TXBC1985