This social media policy assists divisions, colleges, departments and programs in creating and sustaining social media channels.
If you are exploring an administrative social media presence, you are encouraged to contact Strategic Communications' social media team. We can help you think about issues related to your social presence and arrange for your channel(s) to be included in the official online inventory of CSUF social media sites.
To remain listed on the official inventory of CSUF social media sites, you must maintain your channel(s), acknowledge the best practices presented here, and participate in the university's Social Media Working Group.
The university may instruct administrative employees to remove content or suspend social media channels that violate these standards or exhibit poor professional judgement.
As you begin to think about your social media presence, here are some questions to guide your planning.
What are your social media goals? What audiences are you hoping to engage?
What social environment(s) are best suited to those objectives and audiences?
What tools do you intend to use to track your success? (e.g., Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, crowdbooster.com).
How active do you plan to be on your chosen channels? Are you prepared to maintain that level of content creation, curation and engagement over the long term? Do you have a content calendar in place for planned messages/events/deadlines?
Who will be managing your social media presence? Do you have back-ups in place?
Best Practice Steps
The more time you spend listening to your audience and observing engagement trends, the more effective you will be.
Developing a content calendar for planned messages/events/deadlines will aid you in higher-impact posts.
All sites should list contact or "hosted by" information.
Grouping vs. Single Events
Instead of creating new groups/pages for one-time events, look for opportunities to have these groups/pages serve longer-term needs. Otherwise, plan how to delete or transition groups/pages when they are no longer relevant.
Facebook Pages vs. Personal Profiles
Only Facebook pages should be used to represent CSUF colleges, departments and programs.
Timing and Frequency
Timing can be everything with social media. The day and time you post can be the difference between heavy engagement and none at all. Also, posting too often can adversely affect your social communities. Listening to your audience and developing a content calendar will help ensure that you’re not inundating your community with unwanted clutter.
Exercise Good Judgment
Whatever you post in your social media channels is written in ink, not pencil. Once content is “out there,” it can go anywhere on the web. When you’re posting from your official accounts, remember that you are representing Cal State Fullerton.
Be friendly and outgoing, while keeping in mind that you are representing the university. To the degree possible, your channels should help support the university's brand framework.
If a negative comment about the university or your program is posted on one of your channels, do not automatically delete it. Instead, assess whether a response is warranted either on the site or in a private message. Do delete commercial or SPAM posts, comments that are profane or abusive, comments that make personal allegations about a person, obscene images, or content that violates FERPA or other policy. A statement regarding your deletion policy should be available to users.
Example policy statement:
We reserve the ability to delete business solicitations or other commercial advertising. We also reserve the ability to delete comments that are off-topic. Threats or comments constituting severe harassment may be deleted and reported to appropriate authorities. Posted content inconsistent with the platform's user agreement also may be deleted.
If you are sharing content from another source, be sure you have the appropriate permission to share that content and make proper attribution.
If there is a social media situation that you are unsure of how to address, contact CSUF Strategic Communications at 657-278-5143. If there is a safety concern, contact Campus Police immediately.
Keep Personal and Professional Separate
Content that might be interesting to your friends might not always be of interest to your college/department/program’s social media audience. Separate these two aspects of your life. In other words, if it doesn't directly impact or involve your CSUF audience, keep your personal life on your personal pages.
Seek engagement with content that your audience will find interesting or informational. A high level of engagement rarely results from only broadcasting one-way updates about your college/department/program.
As the administrator of an official CSUF social media channel, you accept the responsibility for maintaining current and accurate content and monitoring and moderating posts to that channel.
Some online communities can be volatile, tempting users to behave in ways they otherwise wouldn't. The university's reputation is most often best served when we remain above the fray.
If a question or comment is directed toward you via your social media site or page, you should do your best to reply in a timely and appropriate manner. Delete commercial or SPAM posts, comments that are profane or abusive, comments that make personal allegations about a person, obscene images, or content that violates FERPA or other policy.
If you participate in, or maintain, a social media site on behalf of the university, clearly state your role and goals. Discuss with your supervisor when you are empowered to respond directly to users and when you may need approval.
Before you jump into a discussion thread or respond to a posting, think about the implications. Will your response stimulate positive discussion, provide new information or insight, or inflame? If you have any questions about whether it’s appropriate to enter into a social media discussion, take a position, or address certain issues in your role as a CSUF employee, ask your supervisor before you post or contact Strategic Communications.
Know The Rules
Comply with FERPA, CSUF and CSU policies related to conflict of interest, privacy, security, safety, intellectual property, computing and technology resources and human resources issues. Also review and comply with all communications standards found on the CSUF Brand Central website. Become familiar with the terms of service and policies of sites and networks in which you participate. Pay attention to updates. If the legal language is hard to follow, follow a respected blogger who discusses service changes.
You are responsible for gaining the expressed consent of all involved parties for the right to distribution or publication of recordings, photos, images, video, text, slideshow presentations, artwork and advertisements, whether those rights are purchased or obtained without compensation.
Keep Your Personal Views Separate From Your Work Online
Your channel(s) represent the university. Do not enter into opinion-based political discourse on official administrative channels, including making changes to your photo or avatar in relation to political or social issues. Do not use or imply the university's name to promote or endorse any product, cause, political party, or candidate.