Social Media

Social Media Policy

Policy Code: CE2005

Purpose

Federation University Australia acknowledges the rapidly growing use of social media by staff and students and encourages its use for the primary purposes of learning, engaging, connecting, collaborating, and promoting the University.

Social media has become a key tool for staff and students to connect and engage with the University’s communities and stakeholders on a global level, and can be an effective means of helping and informing University stakeholders across the spectrum of touch points (from prospective to alumni).

The purpose of this policy is to ensure staff and students understand the requirements of the University’s official social media accounts, and the requirements of the University in their use of social media both in an professional capacity on behalf of the University and in a personal capacity.

Emphasis is placed on guiding principles of behaviour and a common sense approach to the use of social media to ensure:

  • that, as much as possible, content and genuine conversation on social media is allowed to continue without interruption from the University
  • the use of social media is consistent with University legislation, policies and procedures;
  • the University’s reputation and that of its staff and students is enhanced and not compromised through the use of social media;
  • the University’s legal obligations are not compromised through the use of social media.

Scope

This policy applies to the use of social media by staff, students, contractors, partners, international agents and members of University groups and committees:

  • representing the University via social media in a professional capacity; and/or
  • where reference is made to the University on a social media site or the use of social media may have an impact on or affect the University or members of the University community (including other staff and students)

Legislative Context

  • Federation University Australia Act 2010
  • The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency Act 2011 (TEQSA Act) – establishes TEQSA as an agency who regulate using the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards)

Definitions

Term Definition
Social media Account(s) This term is used to refer to the individual listing within a platform (eg: page, group, persona, handle, etc)
Administrator

A user who has been given full access on a social media account. Full access means the user is able – but not necessarily permitted – to alter the settings of the account, including adding and removing other users, adjusting security settings, and all other available features.

An Administrator will undertake training with the Social Media Coordinator, during which the settings the Administrator is able to alter will be outlined – this will vary between platforms.

Alumni Graduate of the University
Content management The writing, posting, editing, deleting, monitoring of, and responding to posts on social media accounts
Creation or create The building, establishment or making public of a social media account
Editor

A user who has been given limited access on a social media account.

Editor access generally enables a user to publish, edit and delete content, but will not enable them to alter account settings.

An Editor will undertake training with the Social Media Coordinator, during which the guidelines for their access will be outlined – this will vary between platforms.

Friends or Likes Connections formed on social media accounts which allow access to posts and posting
Going live A message (which can take the form of text, image, video or a combination of these mediums) that is published on a social media platform
Platforms This term is used to describe the type of social media (eg: Twitter, Blog, Snapchat, Facebook)
Posting or post(s) A message (which can take the form of text, image, video or a combination of these mediums) that is submitted to social media for publication
Social media

Social media is an online means of communication that is used by groups and individuals to share information. Examples include but are not limited to:

  • Social networking accounts (eg: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat)
  • Video and photo sharing website (eg: YouTube, Flickr)
  • Blogs, including corporate blogs, personal blogs or blogs hosted by traditional media publications
  • Forums and discussion boards (eg: Google groups, Whirlpool)
  • Wikis (eg: Wikipedia)
  • Vod and podcasting
  • Instant messaging
  • Virtual communities (eg: Second Life)
  • Any other websites that allow individual users or companies to post comments to the web.
Social Media Advocate Social Media Advocates (SMAs) are personnel who directly assist a Social Media Champion to gather content for social media accounts. They don’t manage accounts – that role belongs to SMCs. They might have permission to post directly to an account.
Social Media Champion

Social Media Champions (SMCs) are trained staff who represent their area of the University, relaying information and updates back to their area as necessary. They may also be administrators of official FedUni social media accounts.

They monitor policy compliance for any account they manage and all content posted on it, including material posted by SMAs and work with the Social Media Coordinator to coordinate, review and update the account’s content plan.

Social Media Committee

The role of the Committee is to review, recommend and apply policy and best-practice processes across the University.

The committee comprises the following staff:

  • Director MACE
  • Marketing and Communications Manager
  • Public Relations Manager
  • Social Media Coordinator

Staff from across the University will be invited to consult on the Committee as required.

Social Media Coordinator This role is responsible for implementing the recommendations of the Social Media Committee. The role is also a central point of contact for University enquiries and is responsible for: social media training; advising best-practice processes; reviewing activity for policy compliance; and bringing matters to the attention of the Social Media Committee.
Use

Professional use of social media refers to authorised use of social media as an official representative of the University (in accordance with the Staff Code of Conduct, student guidelines and the induction programs for staff, contractors and international agents), as an official representative of the University.  Professional use of social media may include University approved social media accounts or official comment on behalf of the University on other social media accounts.

Personal use of social media refers to the use of social media (in accordance with the Staff Code of Conduct) in a non-official capacity accessed via:

·         University equipment or its networks; or

·         personal equipment or other networks, where the use of social media impacts on or affects the:

·         legal responsibilities of the University; and/or

·         rights of other members of the University community or University stakeholders.

The operation of this policy and procedure is in no way intended to restrict or inhibit the operation and application of clause 40 of the Federation University Australia Union Collective Agreement 2015 – 2018.

Users Social media users or users means staff (including sessional staff, researchers and research staff), students, contractors, partners, international agents and members of University bodies and committees

Policy Statement

Social media users must be mindful that their use is respectful to the University and members of the University community and in accordance with University legislation, policies and procedures. 

Users are reminded that the same laws, expectations and guidelines which apply in the real world also apply online.  Social media users are accountable for anything they post online. 

A breach of this policy may result in disciplinary action against the staff member or student, in accordance with relevant University legislation, policies and procedures.  The University reserves the right to edit, delete, reject or remove content which breaches this policy or any University legislation, policies or procedures.

Principle Demonstrated by:
The University’s reputation and that of its staff and students is enhanced and not compromised through the use of social media
  • Expecting staff and students to behave professionally when using social media
  • Expecting staff and students to comply with legal requirements, including the University’s legislation, policies and procedures when using social media
  • Expecting staff to complete induction training and for professional users to attend additional University’s social media training
  • Having processes in place for the creation, maintenance and deletion of social media content and accounts
  • Encouraging staff and students to familiarise themselves with, and adhere to the social media policy and procedure
The University’s response to social media content and that of its students and staff is respectful of the views and rights of individuals and whenever possible, content and genuine conversation is allowed to continue without interruption
  • Having processes in place to assist staff and students on when and how to respond to content, comments and messages
  • Offering training and support to staff and students
  • Having processes in place to assist in monitoring social media for content that may require further action
The University’s social media is managed centrally through the Engagement Portfolio, and varying levels of access are distributed across the University to encourage involvement from all areas of the University
  • Offering training and support to all areas of the University that have content the University would like to publically share.
  • Having processes in place to enable staff and students to seek approval to open, close, manage or significantly change a social media account
  • Having a Social Media Committee who:
    • are up to date with social media trends and developments
    • regularly review the performance of the University’s social media accounts
    • ensure appropriate levels of access to social media account(s) are given to the appropriate staff and students
    • manage (or assist staff and students in managing) social media issues, threats and other concerns
Academic Staff do not use social media as a means of distributing or accepting assessable work, or as a primary (or singular) means of communication with students and other staff
  • Having University systems and processes in place which allow Academics to distribute and accept assessable work, and which allow Academic staff to communicate with students and other staff
  • Offering training and support to Academic Staff in the appropriate use of social media
  • Having processes in place for the creation, maintenance and deletion of social media accounts

Supporting Documents

Responsibility

  • The Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Engagement is responsible for monitoring the implementation, outcomes and scheduled review of this policy and its accompanying procedure/s
  • The Marketing & Communications Manager is responsible for maintaining the content of this policy as delegated by the Director of Marketing, Advancement and Community Engagement
  • The Social Media Coordinator is responsible for the administration support for the maintenance of this policy as directed by the Marketing Manager

Promulgation

The Social Media Policy will be communicated throughout the University via:

  1. An Announcement Notice via FedNews and on the FedUni Policy Central’s Policy Library ‘Recently Approved Documents’ page to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy;
  2. Distribution of e-mails to Executive Deans, Heads of School and Directors, and existing Social Media Champions and Social Media Advocates

Implementation

The Social Media Policy will be implemented throughout the University via:

  1. An Announcement Notice via FedNews and on the FedUni Policy Central’s Policy Library ‘Recently Approved Documents’ page to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy;
  2. Staff and contractor induction sessions
  3. Staff and student social media training sessions