Thursday, November 7, 2013

Social Media Policies Proposal

This assignment as actually been something I've wanted to do for our campus for a while now. Below is my draft of a proposal and policy I would like to use.
To whom it may concern,

 I am writing you to address our social media policy integration initiative, that I would like to incorporate beginning January 21st 2014; the start of the Spring semester. The policy revolves around integrating a social media guideline for students, faculty and staff to follow campus wide. By incorporating a best practices social media policy, instructors and faculty can get a better concept driven feel using social media in the classroom as a tool and how to best tackle that objective. The guideline and plan I am presenting will follow 10 specific policies and practices that cover the broad range of benefits and features social media represents while keeping a safe and professional organization.  

 I have attached a detailed plan for getting the students started that covers the following information:

  • Best Practices for using social media responsibly 
  • Social Media definitions 
  • Student Policy
  • Employee Guidelines
  • Contacts for additional help and information
  • Instructor plans for classroom use
  • usage plan worksheet
  • General Social Media Policy
To start with, our plan will address the varying definitions of what social media is and is not. The changing landscape of new and emerging technology will require us as an organization to treat these definitions as a living document. A doctrine that will be continually updated and improved upon as the social media landscape continues to evolve and encompass various meanings. 

Social Media Definitions: What is Social Media? 

According to Merriam Webster Dictionary:

A comprehensive list of ALL social media sites is nearly impossible to produce given the new and emerging sites being produced as technology continues to evolve and change. The list below is representative of the most common and popular social media sites being used as of 2013. 
1. Facebook
2. Twitter
3. Blogger
4. Pinterest
5.Google Plus

These are all examples of popular social media sites. It is important to understand new sites and trends are emerging every day. Our policy and guidelines will be suitable for the usage of different sites and future sites, by setting a standard to be followed that best displays professionalism and a positive digital footprint from the start. 

General Guidelines:
* The purpose of using these communication channels on behalf of McCann School of Business is to support McCann’s mission, goals, programs, and sanctioned efforts, including news, information, content and directives.

* Prior to engaging in any form of social media involving McCann School of Business, you must receive permission from the supervisor as appointed by your department head and notify the Director of Communications.
* When using an officially recognized social media channel, assume at all times that you are representing McCann School of Business.

* Confidential or proprietary school information or similar information of third parties, who have shared such information with you on behalf of McCann School of Business, should not be shared publicly on these social media channels.
*, as well as McCann’s main social media accounts may choose to post school related social media content generated by faculty, staff and/or students. McCann’s main social media accounts can be accessed through the faculty or student portal Web site.

Employee Guidelines:
* Keep employee records and information confidential

* Use of the Facebook page is not appropriate use as your personal page
* Follow all applicable state, federal, and university laws, faculty and staff handbooks, regulations, and policies, such as FERPA, and HIPPA Regulations. Any content and/or online activity created by a poster or site moderator that violates these ordinances, or contains/leads to the release of a student’s private personal information is strictly prohibited and should be removed.

* Protect confidential information with privacy laws, especially FERPA: "The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education. 
* Templates, proper logos, and department color numbers are available from the Marketing Department. Please be careful to use only the approved logos, colors and templates for backgrounds, avatars and other electronic communications that are pre-approved.

* Please use common sense when posting and respect that each post is representative of the McCann School of Business Name.
* Whenever, as a member of the McCann faculty, you utilize a social medium as a means of student participation in course work is sure to provide a practical and appropriate alternative for students who may be unable or reluctant to utilize that social medium (for example, some students may not be comfortable with opening a Facebook account).

Student Guidelines:
Follow proper netiquette and professionalism for appropriate use of social media.  Netiquette is Based on the definition from the dictionary, a noun that represents the social and moral code of all on-line interactions among users and social media behavior. It is a concept of appropriate social intelligence while using and communicating on the Internet. Netiquette can be likening to your table manners in an on-line environment. It focuses on respect, courtesy, and common misconception elements some find while trying to communicate a message in cyberspace. Netiquette is appropriate in every on-line space from social media, e-mails, Twitter, blogs, forum post and beyond. The way we behave in the on-line environment echoes who we are as a person to those who are not in a physical location with us, but rather in a proxy setting on-line.

For more information, please visit Jason Marconi's Netiquette home page, developed in Educational Technology class 502: 

Student Policy:

* Sign your post with your real name and indicate your relationship to Mccann. Do not use pseudonyms or post anonymously.
* Respect the views of others, even if you disagree.

* Be truthful, accurate and complete in describing Mccann programs and services.

* Strive to be accountable to Mccann audiences via regular updates and prompt responses when appropriate.
* Obey the Terms of Service of any social media site or platform in which you participate.

* Whenever appropriate, link back to information posted on the school's website instead of duplicating content. 
* Do not use social media to harass, threaten, insult, defame or bully another person or entity; to violate any College policy; or to engage in any unlawful act, including but not limited to gambling, identity theft or other types of fraud.

* Do not post or store content that is obscene, pornographic, defamatory, racist, excessively violent, harassing, threatening, bullying or otherwise objectionable or injurious. In addition, do not attempt to compromise the security of any Mccann social media site or use such site to operate an illegal lottery, gambling operation, or other illegal venture.
* Do not post copyrighted content (such as text, video, graphics or sound files) without permission from the holder of the copyright. Remember, even information that is widely available to the public (such as text, photographs, or other material posted on the Internet) may be subject to copyright restrictions that prohibit unauthorized duplication or dissemination. For more information, please review the McCann School of Business Copyright Policy posted on the student portal.

* Do not make false claims or representations about Mccann programs or services, and do not speculate or guess if you do not know the information.

* Do not spread gossip, rumors, or other unverified information. Furthermore, do not assume that everything posted on a social media site is true. 
* Do not disclose confidential information

*You are encouraged to link to your source material ANY TIME you are able. This will help reduce the possibility of misinformation and it will drive traffic.
All staff, faculty and students are asked to read and answer these questions before engaging in social media whether through personal use or for the school. The University of Oregon has inspired this checklist and Vanderbilt based on their social media policy guidelines.

Create a social media plan by writing out answers to the following questions:

  • Responsible People: Who will have the responsibility for populating, maintaining and monitoring your social media presence? Do they have skills and time? List the team members. AVOID relying only on students. School faculty or staff member must have administrative privileges to all accounts and is responsible for controlling permissions and security to the accounts.
  • Main Goals and Strategies: What do you hope to do? Launch a campaign, promote your department, and communicate externally? With alumni, media or donors? Internal communications? Define your goal and list promotions tactics, ex. “We will list our Facebook url on all print materials.”
  • Define and Measure Your Success: What do you hope to gain? How will you know when you have it? Do you want increased traffic to your website? More energetic give and take with prospective students? You want to reach out to new colleagues on campus or around the world. Define success, how you will measure it, and the tools you need to measure it (Google Analytics?).
  • Who's coming to your party?: This is about audience. Targeting specific groups, like prospective students, English faculty members, the class of ‘95 will help you tailor your content and conversation. List your primary audiences. Do you have secondary ones, too? How will you reach out to them initially? Remember simply setting up a Facebook page isn't enough. You have to invite people there.
  • Engagement and conversations: Nobody likes it when you talk constantly about yourself. It shows bad social skills. In social media, you need to be a good conversationalist. Sometimes small talk is more valuable than messaging. How will you engage informally with your audience? For example, the most active conversations on McCann’s Facebook page sometimes center on the best things to do on a sunny spring day. Pepper your presence with questions. It is, after all, social media.
  • Shhh… Before you talk, listen: What are people saying in similar spots? What are people saying about you? Who is talking? List who is talking, about what, and where?
  • Content: What content will you share? Is it news or engagement-based? Images? Video? List the content you will be sharing via social media and the kinds of things you think are successful. Remember, it is social, so it should not always be about you. Sometimes, it should be about your users. Will you solicit input from them? How will you foster the loyalty required to defend you when you need it most?
  • Evaluation: Schedule an evaluation of your effort’s success based on the plan you outlined by answering these questions. Be ready to recast your site’s content and strategy. Regular evaluation should also be part of your effort. It's OK to fail on some things. Set out your timeline. This is not a project. It is an ongoing effort.

Instructor Plan for Social Media Use in the classroom

The following should be used as guideline for instructors looking to utilize the benefits of social media as a learning tool. 
* Create and follow a plan ahead of time. You attempt to incorporate social media without a policy or plan you will be at risk of failure and then perhaps even a disregard for future activities, because it was unsuccessful. 

* Explain the "why" to students thoroughly, and understand the “why” for yourself as an educator. Before adopting social media as a tool just to adopt it, research its benefits. Create a foundation for yourself as to what social media site is best for your purpose and what you want to accomplish.
*Create a rubric for students to follow that nudges them towards your ultimate goal with the social media. Leaving the commenting and usage up to the students may not result in what you are looking for. Setting a rubric that specifies commenting, posting, and sharing will help the students recognize what you are looking for.  The rubric should follow your plan and have that plans goals as the center piece along with what you want the learning outcome to be. Again, using social media as the tool to get there instead of as the learning itself. 

*Maintain positive and functional feedback to the students while encouraging them to have a voice. 
* Explain to the students that will have contact with outside centers of influence they are representing not only our school, but also themselves as a personal brand as well as you the instructor. Constant professionalism is key. 

* Always, have a backup plan. Relying 100% on technology or social media for an entire lesson plan or entire weeks’ worth of instruction is dangerous. Connectivity is never a guarantee so always have a plan B for what you wish to accomplish

* Plan to incorporate students that may fall within the digital divide. If you have students working with social media outside classroom hours, be sure to have alternatives for those who may not have access to devices or the Internet. No one should feel left out, and no should feel slighted due to their circumstances. Plan this accordingly. 
* Survey, Survey, Survey. Gaining feedback from your students is important. Do not wait until the end to gather feedback, you want to gauge the entire process from the students (and sometimes parents) perspective from beginning, middle, and end.  This is especially important if you're using social media for the first time.   

* Don't fear the unknown. If you are unsure where to start with incorporating social media, network with those who have.  There is a best practices page on our employee portal, utilize this to interact with other instructors who have been using social media. 
* Stay current and stay informed. Students are aware of what is new and what is old as far as social media is concerned. Staying updated on which platform to use and how to use it, will bode well for when you're writing a lesson plan. Adopting an educational approach to new technology will also be impressive in the student’s eyes. 
* Share!  Social media would not be what it is today, if everyone kept to themselves. Sharing with parents, other faculty and the FULL student body will help in our best practices approach and help build our social media presence for the better. 

Contact for questions and info:
For campus support and questions contact John  Doe IT program Director, or Jane DoeRegistrar

 Technical Support:  Contact the Help Desk, which is on speed dial 3 or e-mail them

Other questions and answers can be found in our employee handbook and student handbook under Media guidelines and procedures section four. 

This policy has been pieced together with the help of other existings policies found in a search of College Campus social media policies. The reference sheet can be found below.


Boudreaux, C. (n.d.). Policy Database. Chris Boudreaux on Social Media Governance. Retrieved November 7, 2013, from

Lasica, J. (n.d.).  Best practices for developing a social media policy. Retrieved November 7, 2013, from

 (2012, January 1). Social Media Policy. Marketing Communications. Retrieved November 7, 2013, from

(2013, January 1). University of Houston. Social Media Policy -. Retrieved November 7, 2013, from

University of Oregon. (n.d.). Social Media Best Practices. Digital and Social Media Communications. Retrieved November 7, 2013, from

Friday, November 1, 2013

Learning/ideas/applications about using social media in my teaching through project research.

Key Learning, ideas, applications found from project examples:

The first projects I found and read about were from the social media blog post of University of Georgia. This blog had a list of student projects and each inspired me to write lesson plans for similar projects. The one project that caught my eye was selling art in second life. It is fair to say a good majority of my freshman students consider themselves "gamers".  Second Life while not as popular as it was three to five years ago is still a recognized online game. Cash and game currency transactions are increasing in popularity and academic textbooks for E-commerce and Marketing are taking notice as well. This type of lesson plan would talk directly to my students' interest, I just never knew how to incorporate it.  The project shows how one student made digital art and then sold it on Second Life. Using that social medium I can demonstrate to students different social media marketing concepts as well as getting them to think beyond social media marketing meaning Facebook ads.  I went back to that list of projects and found one more I really enjoyed which was a Sports Blog Post. My colleagues and  I try to incorporate blogs as a class participation and a way for students to do written homework assignments. This blog in particular was designed by a student to follow his favorite division in hockey and blog about it, from trades to the business side of hockey it was professionally done and well written. Giving the students a professional topic they have an interest in I think would create more of a passion and response towards blogging. 

The next project used curation as a tool for a marketing project. To be honest before my classes, I often stuck to the tried and true marketing class experiences, drawing logos, branding old products, and using social media for marketing in a very "safe" way.  I mean safe as what was easiest for me to manage as far as the classroom is concerned.  This project was for students to use curation and social media for their main class project. The project I'm sharing and found resourceful as a business education instructor was regarding branding insights from a journalist. In BU240 our Marketing class we deal with branding and using curation as a project tool seems like a natural fit. The example I used was about branding. This particular curation about branding is the same one I plan on showing as an example to my class. They used Storyful, which is like Storyify and curated from around the Internet all different resources about brand awareness. It was a great example of using social media's different platforms to hammer home a important marketing concept. The example shows not only written articles but also diagrams, charts, and videos. Showing that to students would be a benefit because they would recognize  the need to research branding from different learning styles, not just reading about it, but finding other representations. That thought was really the biggest accomplishment I took away from this project. Every example paved the way for me to have students use social media in a way to build further on the power points, and reading I ask them to pay attention to and do on a nightly basis. It's one thing to read about brand awareness in their text book, it's another to create that awareness on their social media pages. Another great benefit from these projects that I can show my students is showing them how these projects build their digital portfolio that aides in their employability. I cannot sugar coat how fierce the competition is in the job market especially for marketing. These types of projects they are participating in act as a great living documentation of their marketing ability, and understanding of concepts such as brand awareness. While it won't guarantee them the job, it certainly won't hurt. The hands on experience in establishing and working with an actual brand awareness campaign through social media would be easier to draw upon during an interview than just the definition given in a power point lecture. That thought about interviews, and building an online project portfolio really had me excited to take some of these idea's right back into the classroom for the students. 

The thought of building a digital portfolio was the major takeaway from this project. My second major takeaway came from a project I read about that didn't quite fit into my business classes, but had an overall community theme that I felt was an important note to bring back to students. The Charleston Chalk board brought forth a sense of community and the power of social media. This project made the sense of community linked to social media a very real connection. Community pride is something every successful leader and business professional should share. This project has led me to meet with other business adjuncts to try and create a community awareness project that we can incorporate into all of our classes. It's hard to believe that before that initial meeting we've never even thought of something like this.  I understand we get so comfortable and so use to our routine day in and day out in the classroom as well as the tried and true lesson plans, that thinking about larger projects during the  semester can be difficult. I spoke with the adjuncts about those feelings, and we all agreed that using that as a crutch is no longer intelligent for a student focused, student driven, business. I know the majority of us at this meeting having this conversation didn't feel we were in that dreaded teaching rut, but it was important to make it generalized to speak to those who perhaps were or realized they were.  We are now moving forward with a plan to use our marketing, finance, management, and small business class to help a local non for profit company increase their awareness, both community wide and through social media. The next phase of our plan is to come up with class specific assignments that all contribute in some way, similar to the project I detailed in Depaul's Digital PR class. 

Overall this project brought light to some great ideas teachers and classes have already established for projects. What I liked most about it, was the excitement it gave me to put my own business class twist on it.  While some of the projects seemed great for their time, I think with some of the resources I have available I can build upon their great ideas, like a physical curation of projects. Some ideas I feel are solid, and want to reuse. Ultimately I think the students will benefit the most from this project, as they have from others.