As technology changes people are not only consumers of information on the Web, but actively participating in online conversations and creation of content. Because of this growth of popularity, its reach and immediacy of messaging, it is important that we integrate social networks and other online technologies into the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Associations (KKPsi-AA) communications work.
In addition to sharing Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association’s core messages and programming, we will seek to engage alumni by facilitating conversation, awareness, and action about the Alumni Association and Kappa Kappa Psi.
Defining Social Media
Social media is the term commonly given to websites, online tools and other interactive communication technologies, which allow users to interact with each other in some way by sharing information, opinions, knowledge, practice and interests, images and videos.
As the name implies, social media involves the building of online communities or networks, encouraging participation and engagement.
Descriptions of common Social Media platforms
Of course this is not an exhaustive list, just the most well-known.
Facebook — an online social utility that connects people and organizations with friends and others who work, study, live, and engage around them. People use Facebook to keep up with friends, to share links, to share photos and videos of themselves and their friends, and to learn more about people and organizations.
LinkedIn — a business-oriented online social utility that allows users to strengthen and extend one’s existing network of trusted contacts. People use linked in to stay informed about contacts and their industry of interest.
Twitter — a micro-blogging and social utility service that allows its users to send and read messages known as tweets, text-based posts of no more than 140 characters. People use twitter to share and view links, pictures, videos, opinions, news, professional information, personal status and more.
Blog — an online site short for “web log” that allows an individual or group to share a running log of personal insights, writings, events, news, and more.
YouTube — a video sharing website on which users can view, upload, and share videos and comments on other’s videos.
Flickr — a photo sharing website on which users can view, upload, and share photos. Popular place for storing photos that are linked to from blogs and other social media utilities.
Instagram — a photo sharing network that allows users to upload photos taken with a phone or tablet and apply special image filters through the app. The photos can be shared within the Instagram network or throughout other popular social networks.
Foursquare — lets your friends know where you are and for you to know where they are. You can also collect points, prizes and “badges.”
Pinterest — favored by women in the south central U.S., this platform allows users to ‘pin” images from any web page to boards on their profiles. Common topics of boards are crafts, recipes, home decor.
Social Media and Business Practice
The potential benefits to the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association include:
- Inexpensive implementation and maintenance
- Expanding and strengthening the Alumni Associations connectivity.
- Ability to better communicate with existing and future Alumni, as well as outside supporters of the fraternity (i.e. college band programs).
- Strengthening our relationships with our Alumni
- Fulfilling our mission to Foster, Create, Promote, Maintain and enable alumni relationships, communication, and opportunities.
Purpose of Policy
Social media are powerful communications tools that have a significant impact on organizational reputations. But with great opportunity, comes great responsibility. Because Social Media blurs the lines between personal voice and institutional voice, the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association has instituted the following policy to help clarify how best to enhance and protect personal and organizational reputations when participating in social media.
If you currently use any form of social media, either for business or for personal use, you should be aware of the consequences of making “public” comments related to an organization. “Public” is defined as anything that can be openly accessed by others.
Although everyone should be conscious of what they are posting to the public, we want our Alumni to have the freedom and confidence to explore (or continue to explore) social media in their own way for the advancement of the Association and our mission and to above all continue to support Kappa Kappa Psi.
This policy provides information on common best practice and sets out clear guidelines on how to approach blogging and social media posts. It also outlines a list of the things you should not do for the best interest of yourself and the organization.
Policies for all Social Media Sites, Including Personal Sites
Both in professional and institutional roles, alumni need to follow the same behavioral standards online as they would in real life. The same laws, professional expectations, and guidelines for interacting with constituents of the organization apply online as in the real world. Kappa Kappa Psi is liable for anything they post to social media sites.
- Protect confidential and proprietary information: Do not post confidential or proprietary information about Kappa Kappa Psi, it’s members or affiliates.
- Respect copyright and fair use: When posting, be mindful of the copyright and intellectual property rights of others. Properly cite your sources, and post only items that are covered by fair use. Otherwise, seek permission first.
- Protect the Kappa Kappa Psi brand: Do not use the fraternities or Alumni Associations logos for endorsements. Do not use the Fraternities or Alumni Associations name to promote a product, cause, or political party or candidate.
- Terms of service: Obey the Terms of Service of any social media platform employed.
- Seek Permission: When revealing information about others, ensure that you seek their permission/consent to ensure that you do not disclose anything that would affect their right to privacy.
- Use a disclaimer if publishing a post or engaging with social media outside of official Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association social networks and websites: If you are posting to a blog or social media network outside of the KKPsi-AA website and social networks, and the blog or social media network is openly accessible to the public and mentions your work/affiliation with Kappa Kappa Psi in any way or subjects closely associated with Kappa Kappa Psi, you must use a disclaimer such as; “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent Kappa Kappa Psi’s Alumni Associations positions, strategies or opinions.”
Blogs or websites which do not identify the blogger as affiliated with KKPsi-AA and do not discuss or reference your affiliation but are purely about personal matters would normally fall outside of this policy.
- Identify yourself. When you write about KKPsi-AA or Alumni related matters in blogs or social networks or responding to comments on blogs, forums or social networks, identify yourself as a member of such and how you are affiliated. Posting responses to complaints or discussions about KKPsi-AA as an anonymous person not associated with the organization is never okay.
- Be respectful: Understand that content contributed to a social media site could encourage comments or discussion of opposing ideas. Responses should be considered carefully in light of how they would reflect on yourself and/or the Fraternity.
- No disparaging comments: No communication openly accessible to the public should disparage Kappa Kappa Psi, any brother, or person affiliated with the organization.
- Remember your audience: Be aware that a presence in the social media world is or easily can be made available to the public at large. Consider this before publishing to ensure the post will not alienate, harm, or provoke any of these groups.
Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association reserves the right to remove or edit any posts on the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association website or social networks that are in violation of this policy.
This section applies to those posting on behalf of the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association, though the guidelines may be helpful for anyone posting on social media in any capacity.
- Think twice before posting: Privacy does not exist in the world of social media. Consider what could happen if a post becomes widely known and how that may reflect both on the yourself and the organization. Search engines can turn up posts years after they are created, and comments can be forwarded or copied. If you wouldn’t say it at an event, to your grandmother, to one of our students or to a member of the media, you should not be posting it online. If you are unsure about posting something or responding to a comment, ask a KKPsi-AA Board Member. When in doubt, ask!
- Be responsible for what you write and what you post. Our use of social media sites is governed by our mission and our core values – and by good judgment and common sense. In general, we will tell our stories responsibly and not write or post anything that would embarrass our families, or reflect badly on the KKPsi-AA.
- Strive for accuracy: Get the facts straight before posting them on social media. Review content for grammatical and spelling errors. This is especially important if posting on behalf of the organization in any capacity.
- Photography: Photographs posted on social media sites easily can be appropriated by visitors. Consider adding a watermark and/or posting images at 72 dpi and approximately 800×600 resolution to protect your intellectual property. Images at that size are sufficient for viewing on the Web, but not suitable for printing.
- Admit your mistakes: Social media moves fast, you will make a mistake- a typo, an incorrect link. When people comment about your mistake, be gracious; thank them for letting you know. Fix the mistake and move on. Everyone makes mistakes, how you handle it is what will stick out.
Blogging Best Practices:
• Write informally, as if you are having a conversation with the reader.
• Above all- use common sense!
• Find out who else is writing on a topic and cite them or link to them. This is good and accepted social media practice.
• Always write with honesty and integrity, be the first to correct your own mistakes but do no correct or alter posts without indicating that you have done so.
• Think about “keywords “ when you write. Keywords, relevant to the topic you are writing about and which users may use to search to find that content are the key to getting your posts found.
• Try to add value, provide worthwhile information, useful and fresh perspective and always write from a position of knowledge.