Social media is meant to be fun and informative, but it’s important to have policies in place to protect your local group and guide you in the governance of your sites.
The following language can be used and adapted by your local group as rules of engagement for those who interact with and on your social channels. All moderators should read and understand the policies to gain an understanding of content and comments that are considered permissible — or not.
What’s the best way to publicize these policies? Add them to the terms and condition page on your local group’s website, and link to it in the “about” or “bio” sections of your social media channels.
Social Media Policies and Disclaimers: Rules of Engagement
(Your ASCE local group name) uses social media to educate and inform its members, local civil engineers, and interested parties of the public about news and promotions related to ASCE and the profession.
We welcome discussion on our social media sites: sharing experiences and reactions makes our social spaces that much more vibrant. That said, all conversation should be courteous and on-topic. We do not tolerate posting of offensive, spammy, or harmful comments. Remember, everything posted to our social sites is public – don’t publish something that you might regret down the line.
Complete Rules and Policies
Here are (Your ASCE local group name’s) complete social media rules and policies in legal terms:
The following rules govern the use by you of (ASCE local group name) social media channels, including, but not limited to, (list applicable social media channels for local group in question). By accessing (Your ASCE local group name) social media channels, you agree to abide by these rules and any modifications thereto.
The opinions and or views expressed on (Your ASCE local group name)’s social media platforms represent the thoughts of individual contributors and online communities, and not those necessarily of (Your ASCE local group name) or any of its affiliates. The opinions and views expressed on these channels also do not in any way reflect the views of the social media platform they are posted on, the staff involved with maintaining the social media page, or any members on the social media platform.
Links to other websites on (Your ASCE local group name)’s social media channels are provided for entertainment and informational purposes only, and do not constitute endorsement of those sites. As such, (Your ASCE local group name) is not responsible for the content of external websites.
(Your ASCE local group name) reserves the right to remove, edit, or otherwise alter content deemed inappropriate for any reason, without notification.
(ASCE local group name)’s social media channels, and any postings and comments therein, shall not contain or link to language or illustrations that:
- Are libelous, defamatory, obscene, threatening, offensive, abusive, ad hominem, or off-topic
- Are confidential or proprietary to ASCE, its members, or affiliates
- Are intended for commercial purposes, such as solicitation of funds, promotion of commercial entities, or engaging in other commercial activity
- Endorse or oppose any political candidate or party or any partisan political position (Because of ASCE’s status as a 501(c)(3) public charity, ASCE is prohibited from engaging in political activity.)
- Include spam or chain letters
- Violate a third party’s right to privacy or any other applicable local, state, national or international law
- Degrade others based on gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual preference, disability, or other classification
- Infringe on any third party’s copyright, trademark, or other intellectual property rights
By posting on (Your ASCE local group name) social media channels, you understand and acknowledge that this information is available to the public. If you do not wish to have the information you have made available via these social media sites used, published, copied and/or reprinted, please do not post on them.
(Your ASCE local group name) social media communication is for general informational purposes only and is not intended in any fashion to be a substitute for professional consultation. Reliance on the contents of these communications is solely and completely at your own risk; therefore, you are urged to exercise a reasonable degree of caution in your use of any information or advice contained herein. Under no circumstances does (Your ASCE local group name), its affiliates, officers, directors, employees, or volunteers warrant the completeness, accuracy, or relevancy of any information or advice provided herein, or its usefulness for any particular purpose. (Your ASCE local group name), its affiliates, officers, directors, employees, and volunteers expressly disclaim any and all responsibility for any liability, loss, or damage that you may cause or incur in reliance on any information or advice provided herein.
Respecting Copyright on Social Media
Post only items that you have the legal right to reproduce, adapt, display, and distribute. Just because something is on the internet, it does not mean that it isn’t protected by copyright. Accurately attribute material that is not your own, including quotes and images. Never use copyrighted material without permission. As a rule, if you did not take the image, you must obtain permission to post it on social media. Photos in the public domain or under a Creative Commons license may be available to use for free, while other photos require a purchase of publication rights. For more information about understanding image copyright, access resources here and here. Failure to obtain photo permissions or provide proper citation may result in legal action or fines.