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  • Guidelines

Marketing & Communications

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  • Social Media Guidelines

  • These guidelines are the standard both legally and ethically for:

    1. Those posting on behalf of MSU Moorhead
    2. Those who identify themselves in social mediums as employees of MSUM
    3. MSUM social media administrators/managers/content producers

    The university has always protected the freedom of speech for our faculty, staff and students. These guidelines are meant to enact an ethical and moral standard on our university’s public mediums—they are not meant to restrict personal freedoms and personal social media activities.

    Follow our social media requirements as a representative of MSU Moorhead.

    To ensure that Minnesota State University Moorhead is properly portrayed and protected on the Internet, these practices establish criteria by which social media sites become officially endorsed by the university. Such recognition enables MSUM to monitor its presence on social media sites that purport to represent the institution or affiliated units, without involving excessive censorship or limiting academic freedom. The goal of endorsement is to ensure the university is represented in a fair, accurate and legal manner while protecting the brand and reputation of the institution.

    Official endorsement means the social media site will be listed on the university’s social media website and, whenever feasible, will be linked to, promoted and featured in marketing and communication activities.

    The following actions are required to become officially endorsed:

    • Notify the university’s digital marketing specialist of the proposed site. (The site or platform must already be vetted by the appropriate administrative leader, i.e., dean, chair, director, etc.)
    • Register the site and name of the parties responsible for content for each site with the university’s digital marketing specialist. This ensures effective communication and content coordination capabilities.
    • Submit for approval the profile image/avatar of each account/site to ensure MSUM branding standards are upheld. Be thoughtful about the type of photos you share. Consider adding a watermark and/or posting images at 72 dpi and approximately 800x600 resolution to protect your intellectual property. Images at that size are sufficient for viewing on the web, but not suitable for printing. Contact University Photography at 218.477.2338 or upgphoto@mnstate.edu with questions.
    • Clearly indicate in the account’s description that it is the official representation of the unit and legally associated/affiliated with Minnesota State University Moorhead.
    • Include a disclaimer statement regarding content and opinions contained on the site.
    • Agree to a consistent level of posting in order to build awareness and generate followers. Guidelines recommend posting 3-5 times a week on Facebook, 3-10 times daily on Twitter and the other platforms regularly.
    • Sites not updated regularly will be subject to deletion.
    • Sites that model spam will also be removed. Organize your posts, tweets and pins, and avoid posting excessive messages within the same timeframe.
    • Monitor replies and comments, and respond promptly and appropriately. Unanswered questions or unaddressed concerns may generate negative posts that reflect on MSUM’s social media effort as a whole. (Best practice suggests checking and responding at least twice per day.)
    • Adhere to the same standards of conduct and communication that are expected in the workplace.
    • Protect confidential and proprietary information. Do not post confidential or proprietary information about MSUM, students, employees, or alumni. Employees must follow the applicable federal requirements such as FERPA and HIPA, as well as NCAA regulations. Adhere to all applicable university privacy and confidentiality policies. See the MSUM policy website.
    • Post accurate information. Clarify and consult sources before posting.
    • Be mindful of intellectual property rights and copyright rules. Cite and link to the MSUM website (Dragon Digest) and sources whenever possible.
    • Avoid content that could be interpreted as obscene, offensive, threatening or illegal.
    • Adhere to Terms of Service (or Terms and Conditions) as defined by the social media website in which the user is participating.
    • Respect university time and property. University computers and time on the job are reserved for university-related business as approved by managers. It’s appropriate to post at work if your comments are directly related to accomplishing work goals. All university employees must abide by the Minnesota State System policy on the Acceptable Use of Computers and Information Technology Resources.

    Failure to carry out any of these laws, regulations and policies could result in the termination of social media platforms.

    Social media provides an opportunity to reaffirm the mission of MSU Moorhead, to strengthen our brand, to promote accomplishments of our faculty, students and alumni, to engage with stakeholders and to be a valued community member.

    See MSUM's Strategic Plan for more information.

    • Maintain personal blogs, social media accounts and websites on your own time.
    • If you identify yourself as a Minnesota State University Moorhead community member, you are sharing your own views and not that of the University. You must use a disclaimer such as: “The views expressed here are mine and do not necessarily reflect the views of Minnesota State University Moorhead.”

    Social media technology is evolving, and social media participants are constantly pushing the envelope as to what is acceptable. We recognize that this policy cannot address all of the situations and circumstances that may arise in the social media world. Users can contact Danielle Page, the digital marketing specialist, at danielle.page@mnstate.edu or socialmedia@mnstate.edu for guidance.