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Evolving Social Media Policies

August 31, 2009 2 comments
image from fredcavazza

image from fredcavazza

I’ve been studying social media policies by companies, organizations, non-profits and even governments. It’s been about a year since I last looked over policies, and in just one year, the policies have grown in length and complexity. Every organization (whether you have a web presence or not) might want to consider writing up policy for protection and clarification as to what is acceptable and not acceptable behavior in relation to your organization and your employees (or members).

Here are a few highlights from my current research:

1. Policies are evolving. This is obvious but it exagerated by the rapid changing online technology. Each new technology raises new questions and challenges. The challenges of twitter vs facebook vs youtube vs blogging have similarities but yet each platform bring distinct questions to the table. For example, media sites like youtube are full of excellent and relevant teaching/training resources that may not be accessible if you block it companywide. I think there is still a challenge for addressing nuance in each platform.

2. Code of Conduct – Companies like IBM and Intel are referencing a seperate code of conduction that outlines expectations concerning how employees behave off line and online.

3. Three Types of Regulations – There are at least three different types of social media policies: organizational participation, employee participation, and user participation. While not all companies have policies for all three types of content, it is worth thinking about all three. All three types address legal issues of content ownership, confidentiality, and privacy issues. Organizational policy defines why the company is participating, how the company will officially participate, who is allowed to participate, and where this happens. Employee participation policies address everything from using social media at work, creating social media content, to mentioning the company (at work or away and the expectations for disclosure that they are a company employee). While I didn’t see much about social media within the company intranet, I think there it is relevant and important to encourage while providing direction for great engagement with company intranets (and social media applications) but that is another question. Lastly, companies are addressing user participation on company sites with regulations or suggestions about expected behavior as well as content use and customer liability for post content they don’t own.

123 Social Media has a good list of social media examples is you’re interested.

Critiqueing Walmart’s Twitter Policy

August 28, 2009 Leave a comment

When crafting a corporate social media policy, it is helpful to read critique’s of other policies (as well as reading other policies). By analyzing the good and bad (lacking) of Walmart’s Twitter policy, Augie Ray help shine light on issues that should impact all businesses developing policies.

While his whole article is worth reading, here is a quick highlight. Ray suggests that Walmart needs to set specific expectations of employee behavior when tweeting. The following list can be helpful for all potential tweeting companies:

  • How many tweets per day or week are expected
  • Rules for tweeting; what topics or language is acceptable and what is not
  • Follow-back guidelines–when should followers be followed?
  • Expectations for when and how to respond to @replies (or direct messages)
  • Expectations for retweeting
  • Expectations for seeking out new followers–since following people is a successful way to build a list of followers, how many new people should be followed each week and what are the criteria?
  • Expectations for monitoring for and responding to brand mentions on Twitter
  • Expectations for engaging with and showing interest in followers regarding non-brand matters.

Thanks to Charlene Li’s new Altimeter Group for the link to Ray’s article.

Flock Rocks!

December 7, 2007 Leave a comment

flock.jpg

I just download the latest version of Flock. If you interact with a variety of blogging, media or social networking sites, this the best browser I’ve seen. While I had been using an old version of Flock, this newest version is better integrated than anything I’ve seen yet.

Supporting Charities on Facebook

December 7, 2007 Leave a comment

Charity Gifts On Facebook

Facebook junkies can now send gift icons to their friends and donate to charities at the same time. While the early adopting may be slow, I think this is a cool way to integrate supporting non-profits into our social networking experiences (as opposed to siloing that experience on some offshore site. Now I am wondering when the IRS is going to have cash icons that we use to pay our taxes.

Eastern Orthodox MySpace

May 11, 2007 2 comments

I heard an ad on Ancient Faith Radio for an Orthodox MySpace. Interesting. If you’re Orthodox and want to enter into an online community of Eastern Orthodox Christian visit the Orthodox Circle.

Easy Bake Make Your Own Mashup

December 8, 2006 Leave a comment

if you’re like me, you’d rather leech onto someone else’s brainpower, than try to do too much figuring out yourself. Some when it comes to technology that allows me to create quite painlessly (from a mental sense), I’m on board! Like ning, openkracow is a open source site that shares code and make creating applications fairly simply. This site is focused on craiting masup. Pretty cool.

Another Twist on Social Searching

December 8, 2006 3 comments

I’ve explored a few different social searching sites, but nothing really grabbed me or made me feel like I was missing something if I didn’t use them. Not sure if this one will be any different, but it has some interesting features. Searchles allows you to connect with other folks who are doing similar search and post those searches to a common pool. Sort of a social my delicious I guess. You can search tags and groups to find like minded searchers. And the idea behind it is that people may find potential networking parnters for business, creative projects, etc. I notice several business groups on their, so this might have some interesting possiblitites. Time will tell.

Discover Musical Soul Mates

December 8, 2006 Leave a comment

Uplay me promises to track your listening preferences and connect you with other people who listen to the same music. Could be interesting, could be freaky.

blip.tv rules the video sharing world!

November 30, 2006 1 comment

I know all the talk over the last year has been about YouTube, and I’ve spent my fair share of time browsing and uploading. But today I tested blip.tv, and I must say: it rocks!

This video sharing service offers RSS feeds for your videos, automatic blogging and cross-posting options, multiple formats and even multiple uploading options. And this is just the start. If you are serious about videos or setting up an online channel. Use blip.tv!! I love it!!

Integrating my interests and my work

November 30, 2006 Leave a comment

I wrote about the idea of integrity and integration earlier in the month. The divisions between our personal and public lives do not appeal to me. I want to live as a whole person whether in the workplace, the ministry, the home or even online. When working at Philips, I had the opportunity to use my interest in creativity and play to lead workshops among co-workers. This excited me because within the workforce, I found a way to integrate personal interests with work in a way the I believe benefited the company.

Another key interest in my life has been community/relationship building. That’s why I track social networks and trends in culture. I am interested in how these trends online and offline will impact the formation of relationships. I’ve had the privilege of bringing this interest in community building into several companies, but the focus has primarily been within a company not between the company and their outside stakeholders (customers, vendors, et al).

So I’ve tried to find connecting points between this interest and the company I’ve been working with most recently: Jewelry Television. We’re making some baby steps toward community/social networking. They recently gave approval for me to start a Jewelry Television blog. It’s very low radar right now. We’ve not promoted or mentioned it much at all.

This is still an ongoing experiment. While I want the blog to direct people to our site (so I post ads and videos from the site), I also want to blog to reveal the human side of the company and open the door for conversation with customers. Eventually, it is a step toward building a more socialnet based dialogue between JTV and customers as well as other folks online.

Take a look at it, if you have chance and give me any feedback. I’d appreciate it.

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