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Social media include all forms of electronic communication on the Internet (including multidirectional communication, such as blogs, Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube) through which users create and use online communities to share information.
These Guidelines apply to all UCAR employees and representatives who create, use, or contribute to all forms of social media. Social media is public, so consider and treat online comments the same way you would your public comments at a meeting or other public forum. UCAR expects its employees to act with integrity and to behave in ways that merit public trust and confidence, including while engaging in and using social media.
1) Separate work from play.
UCAR social media assets (UCAR-provided and -supported communications tools, including UCAR email or a UCAR Google+ account) should be reserved for legitimate business purposes. Use a separate personal account for your non-business communications. Use a non-UCAR, personal email address when starting a personal social networking account. Do not use your UCAR social media asset for other than legitimate business reasons.
UCAR does not prohibit employees from engaging in commercial endorsement or political/religious advocacy in their personal lives, but UCAR systems and equipment, including UCAR social media assets, may not be used to promote or endorse commercial products or political causes or positions; they may not be used for personal commercial gain; and they may not be used to advocate religious beliefs.
Keep in mind that your opinions and activities can be perceived as coming from our organization when you post to a UCAR social media asset or present yourself as an NCAR or UCAR employee or representative on non-UCAR social media.
If NCAR or UCAR is a subject of the content you are creating, be clear that your views do not represent the views of the organization. Further, if you publish or post material or opinions online related to the work you do or the subjects associated with NCAR or UCAR, clearly state that these are your personal views and not do not reflect the opinions of NCAR/UCAR.
2) Know the rules.
You are responsible for what you publish online.
3) Understand the role of NCAR/UCAR Communications.
Communications manages the organization's top-level social media channels, representing NCAR/UCAR research, education, facilities, services, and administration as a whole, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube, under the AtmosNews identity. Communications staff are available to consult and advise on best practices for strengthening the organization's presence on social media.
4) Get prior authorization.
UCAR social media accounts/channels intended to represent an NCAR or UCAR lab, division, program, project, office, or group (a “Unit”) of any size should:
We encourage the free exchange of ideas. Discussion is welcome but uncivil discourse, including vulgar language, personal attacks, or offensive terms targeting individuals or groups is not.
Once your channel is approved and online, please contact Communications so that the new channel can be added to the Social Media at NCAR & UCAR web page.
5) Be professional, honest, accurate.
6) Post only appropriate and respectful content.
Your comments are public and represent not only you but also your colleagues and the organization as a whole. Be fair and courteous. Do not participate in spreading false rumors or unverified speculation.
7) Be safe.
Social media use involves privacy, safety, and security risks. See the Social Networking Security guidelines from NCAR’s Computational and Information Systems Laboratory for ways to reduce the risks.
Contact the Director of Communications if you have questions about these Guidelines.
For additional resources and information about social media at NCAR/UCAR, see the support pages from the organization's Web Advisory Group.