University of Maine Social Media Standards
The purpose of this policy and procedure is to ensure quality and appropriate use of approved/official University of Maine social media channels for promotion and information at the University of Maine.
At the University of Maine, we recognize that social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Flickr, Pinterest and LinkedIn have become important and influential community communication channels. The purpose of using social media channels on behalf of the University of Maine is to support UMaine’s mission, goals, programs and sanctioned efforts, including university news, information, marketing and branding strategies, content and directives. Therefore, when using approved/official UMaine social media channels identified with the University of Maine (e.g., Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and YouTube), it is critical that UMaine community members recognize that they are representing the University of Maine to the world at all times. To assist in posting content and managing these sites, the University of Maine offers the following policies and guidelines for official use of social media. These policies and guidelines apply to all UMaine community members using approved/official UMaine social media. These policies and guidelines are not intended to govern or restrict personal presence on the web, nor are these guidelines intended to restrict employee rights to engage in concerted, protected activity related to the terms and conditions of their employment.
University of Maine System Comment Policy
The University of Maine System, including all of its universities, study centers and affiliated programs (“UMS”) fully supports and encourages free speech, freedom of expression and freedom of assembly. When accessing any UMS social media platform, including comment sections, UMS expects members of the public to be respectful and remain on topic.
UMS reserves the right, at its own discretion, to monitor posts and messages on public social media platforms, including but not limited to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. associated in any way with UMS. UMS may choose to defer to the user policies of these social media platforms but it reserves the right not to do so. UMS holds its faculty, students and staff to the standards set forth in its Student Code of Conduct, Employee Handbooks and other applicable UMS policies, including the Acceptable Use Policy.
Similarly, UMS will not permit, and may remove in its discretion, postings by the public on platforms, as described above, associated with UMS that:
- Constitute unlawful discrimination or harrassment;
- Threaten any individual or group with harm or incite imminent unlawful action;
- Claim to or imply that they are speaking on behalf of UMS without prior approval from UMS to do so;
- Are defamatory or infringe on any copyright or are otherwise unlawful under Federal or local or state law.
UMS reserves the right to remove or block any user who violates these guidelines.
Approval of Official UMaine Social Media Accounts
Employees who wish to set up approved/official University of Maine social media accounts and speak on behalf of the University of Maine through social media must receive permission from their department/organization head prior to setting up the social media account. Once you have received permission from your department/organization head, please contact the Division of Marketing and Communications to discuss issues such as confidentiality, privacy and FERPA.
University of Maine Web Standards
UMaine Web Standards policy and procedure regarding contact information, accuracy, confidential information, advertising/sponsorship, copyright, usage of University of Maine name, and spelling/grammar, apply equally to official University of Maine social media channels. Please contact the Digital Communications Office for assistance.
University of Maine News Announcements
University of Maine Public Relations and News Media policy and procedure regarding news releases, media advisories and campus announcements, apply equally to official University of Maine social media channels. Please contact the Division of Marketing and Communications for assistance.
University of Maine Name, Seal and Logos (Branding)
UMaine Name, Seal and Logos policy and procedure applies equally to official University of Maine social media channels. Social media sites provide varying degrees of flexibility in allowing account holders to style pages. For UMaine logo usage and branding standards, please see the University of Maine branding website. Please contact the Manager of Creative Services in the Division of Marketing and Communications for assistance.
Video must be approved by the Digital Communications Office in the Division of Marketing and Communications prior to posting on official social media channels or pages representing UMaine.
Social Media Dialogue
Many social media sites promote commenting and online dialogue, the tone of which is generally informal. Despite its informal tone, all online dialogue is public. Please remember that anything you write can and will be viewed by current and future UMaine community members and constituencies as well as other colleagues and possible future employers.
Social Media Templates
The Division of Marketing and Communications has created templates for approved/official UMaine social media accounts. These templates are available online in the Branding Toolbox and include versions of the UMaine logo shield that are optimized to the profile/avatar image specifications of social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Approved/official UMaine social media channels must either use these approved profile/avatar and background images, or request approval of alternative images from the Division of Marketing and Communications. This policy ensures that UMaine’s social media presence is consistently branded and maintains a professional appearance.
When engaging in dialogue on official University of Maine social media sites:
- Remember that your statements and responses represent the University of Maine to the world at all times
- We request that you refrain from discussing or expressing opinions regarding University of Maine policies, operations and personnel. Such comments may be removed at the University of Maine’s discretion.
- Exercise discretion, respect and thoughtfulness toward all dialogue participants
- Maintain professional language and tone
- Confidential or proprietary University of Maine information or similar information of third parties, who have shared such information with you on the University of Maine’s behalf, must not be shared publicly on official University of Maine social media channels
- Official University of Maine social media accounts may choose to post university-related social media content generated by UMaine community members, including faculty, staff and/or students. Official University of Maine social media accounts can be accessed online, and include:
The Division of Marketing and Communications recognizes that the world of social media continues to evolve. If you have any questions about whether specific content is appropriate for posting on these social media sites, please contact the Senior Manager of Web Development and Social Media in the Division of Marketing and Communications.