Marketing and Communications

Social Media Guidelines

UT Tyler Social Media graphic

NOTE:

If your department currently has a social media site representing The University of Texas at Tyler, follow this link for instructions.

Blogs, digital media and social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, LinkedIn and iTunes U, offer new and exciting opportunities for The University of Texas at Tyler faculty, staff, students and alumni to share knowledge, express creativity and connect with people who have common interests.

When participating in social media it is important to always be upfront and honest about who you are and what you represent, use common sense before you post or comment, and respect the values and etiquette of communities you join.

We’ve put together the following guidelines to help you use social media effectively, with your personal and professional reputation and university policies in mind:

UT Tyler Social Media Guidelines

Prior to engaging in any form of social media involving UT Tyler (including usage of the name UT Tyler or The University of Texas at Tyler), you must receive permission from the supervisor as appointed by your department head and the Office of Marketing and Communications. (For those departments already engaging in social media, follow this link.)

When using an officially recognized social media channel, assume at all times that you are representing UT Tyler. If you are representing UT Tyler in social media, identify yourself as a UT Tyler faculty/staff member or student representative.

Confidential or proprietary university information or similar information of third parties, who have shared such information with you on behalf of UT Tyler, should not be shared publicly on these social media channels.

www.uttyler.edu, as well as UT Tyler’s main social media accounts may choose to post university related social media content generated by faculty, staff and/or students. UT Tyler’s main social media accounts can be accessed through the UT Tyler Home Page and include:

  • Each social media account should have at least two people with administrative privileges from the sponsoring department/office/campus and one from the Office of Marketing and Communications Web Team. (The Office of Marketing and Communications is not responsible for maintaining your page. We are there to offer support and ensure continuity through any turnover in university personnel.)
  • Each social media site must contain a link to the UT Tyler social media guidelines. An example can be seen on the UT Tyler Facebook page. (Details below.)
  • UT Tyler logos and/or visual identity cannot be used on personal or department social media without university permission from Marketing and Communications. To obtain permission and for specific guidelines for using the UT Tyler logo and visual identity on departmental or other social media, contact the Office of Marketing and Communications Web Team.
  • Your personal social media account is not an appropriate place to distribute university news. If you have university information and news that you would like to announce to the public or media, please contact the Office of Marketing and Communications.
  • Exercise discretion, thoughtfulness and respect for your colleagues, associates and the university’s supporters/community (social media fans).
  • Avoid discussing or speculating on internal policies or operations.
  • Be very cautious when deleting comments. Only comments using profanity, offensive comments or advertisements not related to the site should be deleted. It is not the practice of UT Tyler to censor any social media pages.
  • A healthy dialogue with constructive criticism can be useful but refrain from engaging in dialogue that could disparage colleagues, competitors or critics.
  • Be mindful that all posted content is subject to review in accordance with UT Tyler employee policies and editorial guidelines.
  • Please refrain from reporting, speculating, discussing or giving any opinions on university topics or personalities that could be considered offensive, sensitive, confidential or disparaging.
  • UT Tyler encourages faculty, staff and students to use social media but reminds users that at any time they can be perceived as a spokesperson of the university.
  • UT Tyler does not monitor personal websites but will address issues that violate established HR, editorial, graphic and social media guidelines.
  • Pages representing UT Tyler inactive after one year are subject to removal from the prospective social media network by the Marketing and Communications Department.
  • In addition to the policy and guidelines described within this site, UT Tyler's Computing Policies shall be considered in effect.

Best Practices

Facebook DO's and DON'Ts

DO...

  1. Use Facebook to create your best image. Google yourself every once in a while to check on your public image.
  2. Use Facebook to stay in touch with friends and make new ones.
  3. Use good judgment with your Facebook account and postings! What do you want future employers, administrators, faculty, and maybe even your parents to see?
  4. Use Facebook to get involved with the campus community and learn what’s happening.
  5. Use Facebook to publicize your organization's events.
  6. Use Facebook's privacy settings on your account to monitor who can look at your profile.
  7. Use Facebook's customer support page since it contains valuable information about privacy controls and other important safety information.
  8. Remember that UT Tyler administrators are not monitoring Facebook, but may act on any violations of law or university policy if brought to their attention. Just because you don’t want them to look at your page doesn’t mean they can't or won't.

DON’T...

  1. Post overly personal information like cell phone numbers, dorm addresses, class schedules, etc. unless you feel comfortable being contacted by strangers. Students have been stalked by uninvited viewers of their Facebook pages when they posted overly personal information.
  2. Post pictures of your friends without their permission. It may be considered a legitimate invasion of their privacy, or may jeopardize their chances for a job, or their scholarships.
  3. Think that just because you have to have an ".edu" account, that you are safe from any harm or consequences for the content of your page.
  4. Forget that once you post something, it may live forever, even if you take it down.
  5. Think that Facebook is the only website of concern. These same principles apply to other social media such as MySpace.com, Friendster.com, etc.
  6. Be afraid to get creative with your profile. Have fun and express yourself legally and responsibly. There are plenty of ways you can create a positive self-image. You can impress your peers and community members and abide by all university polices and laws!

Best Practices

  • Be clear about what your objectives are and who your audience is for your particular social media page.
  • In the web world, it actually does more harm to do something halfway than to not do it at all. Be consistent. Keep content fresh and dynamic to keep people coming back to your site.
  • http:// before all websites in all URLs so the link is automatically hyperlinked and only one click away.
  • Monitor your site and delete profanity or offensive comments according to the UT Tyler Facebook/Social Media Policy. At the same time, respond to any negative or inaccurate comments about UT Tyler by providing accurate information in a positive way. It is NOT appropriate to delete comments because you disagree. 
  • The whole concept of social media is to engage people in conversation. Encourage comments.

For more on getting started and best practices, follow this link >>>

Social Media Policies-Facebook

The University of Texas at Tyler developed this specific written policy to be posted in a conspicuous location on any official UT Tyler Facebook page. This can be done by adding a custom app which allows you to create a section of your Facebook page with a navigational tag, using standard HTML. Adding a welcome page with the UT Tyler Facebook policy is also appropriate. If you would like for the Office of Marketing and Communications to add the app for your site, email web@uttyler.edu.  The current UT Tyler Facebook page has an example of this in use.

UT Tyler Facebook Page Policy

Posts and other content specifically added by administrators of The University of Texas at Tyler Facebook pages are official UT Tyler content. Opinions expressed by other Facebook users do not necessarily reflect the opinion of UT Tyler. User-provided content is not screened or evaluated during the submission process.

UT Tyler reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to screen and remove any content it deems inappropriate. This includes commercial content whose primary purpose is to sell a product, a service or other such practices via the UT Tyler page, as well as content that harasses, abuses, threatens, posts contains profanity or hate speech, is offensive or in any way violates the rights of others. Personal attacks on others, students, administrators and staff members are prohibited. Although it may screen and remove content, UT Tyler is not responsible for the content posted by others on the UT Tyler Facebook page. We also reserve the right to remove posts containing any and all links.

In addition, UT Tyler upholds the Terms of Service standards administered by Facebook. [ http://www.facebook.com/terms.php ]. All content is bound by the UT Tyler Acceptable Use Policy. Further, users are expected to abide by applicable laws, regulations, rules and policies including the University Student Code of Conduct, the University Sexual Harassment Policy, and other regulations and policies concerning public communications.

We encourage users to report content that violates Facebook’s Code of Conduct by using the official Facebook procedure.

It is not acceptable to build a social media page for the university.

It is not acceptable to use official UT Tyler logos.

Final Thoughts

If you have any questions or need assistance with your social media site, please consult the Robin Kelly-campus webmaster. Due to the evolving nature of social media, these policies and guidelines are subject to revision by the Office of Marketing and Communications team. We also welcome feedback from the campus community.

UT Tyler students and staff, please reference the Social Media Guidelines - Accounts to maintain and create accounts associated with UT Tyler.

 The University of Texas at Tyler
Office of Marketing and Communications
3410 Varsity Dr. Suite 143
Tyler, Tx 75799

Ph: 903.566.7170
Fx: 903.566.7173

news@uttyler.edu

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 Last Published 2/13/12