Social Media Ethics

The rise of social media over the past decade has been the fastest change in communication in history. Businesses and corporations need to address how social media is changing the way we communicate. Of course, there are policies, rules, and ethical laws behind social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. However, if users don’t read these policies and simply click ‘I Agree’ when setting up their account, there isn’t a way or a reason for people to read them or care.

 

Employees must realize that there is no such thing as privacy or personal property. Thousands of users can access conversations, posts, and pictures. Whether employees use social media on a personal or professional level, it is important to differentiate opinions to facts, as well as the ethically correct use of these social platforms.

 

Employers need to set a standard for their employees. A corporation or business as a whole should come together as an entity to decide their goals, motives, and interests. They should establish a tone, and how much they want to be visible on social media. Employees should then be sensitive to these standards, and post within their guidelines.

 

It sounds simple, but it only takes one tweet or one post to go viral for an entire business or brand to deal with the aftermath.

 

–Stephanie Larocque

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2 Responses to Social Media Ethics

  1. Melanie Gratton says:

    I completely agree with this post. The problem with online social media platforms is if you post something it will be there forever. It doesn’t matter if you are sorry or regret it, it’s there and with enough investigation anyone can find it.
    I believe it would be important for those not yet entering the workforce to be educated on the guidelines and aftermath of posting frenzies. Although it is fun to share the pictures from that great party last night, your future employer doesn’t want those pictures in relation to his/her company.

  2. Jenn Skiffington says:

    This post is so accurate and important for every PR professional, business, or any individual in the workplace. Often times when we are faced with a crisis, we do let our emotions get the best of us instead of taking a step back, making a crisis management plan and prioritizing what we need to do in order to overcome it. Instead of using our energy to better the situation, many use the energy and turn it into negatively and a hopeless defeated mindset. PR professionals, who are often faced with crisis and high stress situations, should have the skill set and know the steps in order to overcome stressful challenges. It is a skill to time manage, and to channel negative energy into positive and motivated energy. If however, someone is feeling negative energy social media is not the appropriate place to highlight it. It is important for PR professionals especially, as they are so exposed to social media in their everyday lives, to only use it as a channel to express positive, knowledgeable, relevant, appropriate and insightful thoughts and comments. It is not the place to talk about stress, negativity and crisis situations within your company or personal life – it can be detrimental to your career, business and personal brand.
    Jenn Skiffington

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