Rules of Privacy on Facebook
Often, we feel we’re in a bubble of our family and friends on Facebook. In the case of your council’s Facebook page, however, we should remember how public the social networking site truly is. Be sure your council’s page follows privacy etiquette and the Order’s Social Communications Policy.
Take private conversations offline: Your council’s Facebook page may receive questions as public comments to your posts. Some of these — such as “Who can join the Knights?” or “When is your next Coats for Kids drive?”— can be answered through a public reply in the comments section, since the answer can be helpful to the general public and doesn’t include private information. Questions whose answers may include private information should be answered using the private message feature.
Have the correct permissions when posting photos: Be sure to request permission to use photos taken at council events and activities on your council’s Facebook page. When asking permission, make it clear that the photos may be posted on social media and that you will not ”tag” nonmembers in any photos you post to your Facebook page. Permissions are particularly important with regard to minors: If any youth were at the event or activity, be sure to ask verbal permission from parents or guardians before posting images.
Keep content relevant: Remember that anyone browsing Facebook (or using a search engine) can see your council Facebook page. Therefore, it is important not to use this platform to post information that should be seen only by council members. Do not post council members’ full names, addresses or contact information. You may post an advertisement of the next First Degree Ceremony, but you should not post council meeting minutes or other private council news.
When you follow proper privacy etiquette on Facebook, you protect not only the good reputation of your council and the Order, but also those involved in your programs and activities. You should refer to the Social Communications Policy, available on the Officer’s Desk Reference, as your regular resource.
Knightline, June 2016