TASC Policies/Guidelines Regarding Social Media

Texas Association of Student Councils encourages positive communication efforts that reflect the association’s mission, values, and goals.  Members and staff who create, use, and maintain social media and networking sites on behalf of TASC are encouraged to use these guidelines to help maintain TASC’s commitment to effective communication.  Because social media is evolving so rapidly, these guidelines will change as knowledge and use grows.

TASC philosophy:  In online social networks, the lines between public and private, personal and professional are blurred.  Just by identifying yourself as a TASC member, you are creating perceptions about your expertise and your affiliation.  When you post to a TASC social media site, you are representing the association.

One mission, many voices:  Aim for “best-of-class” communication.  Be an ambassador for TASC.  Each time you tweet, blog, or post a message on Facebook related to TASC, ask yourself the following:
 - Does this help advance TASC’s mission?
 - Does it coincide with TASC values?
 - Is the information I am posting timely, factual, and accurate?
 - Am I being respectful?
 - Am I familiar with TASSP/TASC policies?
 - Can I dedicate the time necessary to keeping a social networking site relevant and active?

Privacy:  Set your privacy options carefully. Remember that privacy options do not provide 100 percent protection of your personal information.

Social media by districts, schools, and officers:  These guidelines pertain to all student, district, and alumni organizations that choose to post information about their programs and events.  All information posted by these groups on social media outlets regarding TASC should reflect best practices as they relate to individuals, the organization, and TASC.

Photos:  Use extreme care with posting photos online.  Schools must follow FERPA guidelines.  If you are unsure whether an individual would object to his or her photo being posted online, do not post it.  Photos of children should not be posted by a school without the express written consent of their parents or guardians.  Any photo posted on a social network as it pertains to TASC must be appropriate in nature to TASC and public schools.  Examples of photos/videos that should be avoided include, but are not limited to, photos involving alcohol, tobacco, nudity, and graphic scenes.  You may want to include a statement on TASC District event permission forms that say "Pictures and videos of participants may be taken at this event and used in District XXX publications."

Facebook:  For Facebook accounts created on behalf of TASC, consider setting up a “pages” rather than a “group” profile.  Individual pages allow users the option to become “fans,” offer numerous features and are specifically designed for organizations.

Permanence:  Assume everything you communicate via social media is permanent.

Responsibility:  It is a good idea to have one person who “owns” the site, but it is also smart to have multiple folks involved as regular contributors.  Assemble a team who knows what is happening with the site and can help keep it fresh. Monitor!

Relevancy:  If you have an out of date site, take it down.  Consider setting up Tweets with a year associated to them so those following them, for example, at a workshop one year will not continue to receive messages another year,

Have fun:  Social media is about voice and relationship, both of which are extremely important to TASC.