Social Media Guidelines for PTA Leaders and Members in California

Each PTA District, Council or Unit can create its own policies for members who use social media and identify themselves as PTA leaders or members. The California State PTA Social Media Policy is included as an example. 

The California State PTA uses social media and encourages leaders at all levels to participate in an engaging and productive exchange. The community-based aspects of social media can benefit PTAs in reaching out to new audiences and engaging an existing base. However, use of social media carries with it certain responsibilities. To assist leaders and members in making responsible decisions about using social media, we have established the following guidelines:

Guidelines

For our purposes, social media includes all means of communicating or posting information or content of any sort on the Internet – whether or not these channels are associated or affiliated with a PTA – Ultimately, you are solely responsible for what you post online.

Leaders and members may associate themselves with the organization in different ways—explicitly – by stating in a profile or on a site a PTA title or involvement and/or implicitly—by posting photos, graphics or other information that identifies them as a PTA leader or member.

You speak for yourself but your actions reflect on the organization. Do not post confidential information, accusatory statements, or any defamatory information. Be respectful, truthful, discreet and responsible no matter your privacy settings.

Consider the following:

If your profile picture identifies you as PTA, be aware when posting comments on other sites, both public and private. Remember PTA’s Noncommercial, Nonsectarian, Nonpartisan policies when posting on public sites (i.e., newspaper comments, public blogs, trade publications and other)

Privacy settings are no guarantee of privacy. Search engines and other technologies make it impossible to take something back once it’s been posted. Screen shots, forwards and other technologies can spread messages quickly beyond your intended circle of friends or followers.

Mistakes happen. If they do, apologize.

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