9.2 SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY
Purpose: Set out the AFL’s expectations for the use of Social Media by AFL employees
1. All AFL employees and contractors.
2. Any other person who is notified that this company policy applies to them.
3. If you are officially accredited to represent the AFL in Social Media, or if you are discussing the AFL or AFL business related issues in your personal use of Social Media platforms, you are required to follow this policy.
The AFL acknowledges that Social Media has increasing prevalence in our lives and also the value in using Social Media to build more meaningful relationships with fans, communities and other relevant stakeholders. However, all employees need to use good judgment about what material appears online, and in what context. Serious ramifications can arise for organisations and individuals as a result of using social media platforms inappropriately.
It is essential that you understand that comments you make via Social Media platforms are as public as if you were making the same comments to the media or at a public forum. In addition, these comments could be mistakenly attributed to the AFL in some circumstances.
9.2.1 RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH ONLINE SOCIAL MEDIA
a) Breach the AFL’s Code of Conduct.
b) Bring the AFL’s brand and reputation into disrepute.
c) Misrepresent a personal view as that of the AFL.
d) Plagiarise or breach copyright conditions when using material.
e) Excessive time used browsing Social Media platforms in a non-work capacity.
f) Could make promises or statements regarding the AFL’s operations which are not true.
g) Negatively impact on revenue streams by offending sponsors or other AFL key stakeholders
9.2.2 DEFINITION OF SOCIAL MEDIA
To publish or access Social Media tools, defined in this policy as all online media which allow user participation and interaction.
Some common examples include (although are not limited to):
a) Social networking sites (eg. Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Bebo, Friendster).
b) Video and photo sharing websites (eg. YouTube, Flickr).
c) Blogs, including corporate and personal blogs.
d) Blogs hosted by media outlets (eg. ‘comments’ or ‘your say’ feature on theage.com.au).
e) Micro-blogging and activity stream websites (eg. Twitter).
f) Wikis and online collaborations (eg. Wikipedia).
g) Forums, discussion boards and groups (eg. Google groups, Whirlpool).
h) Vod and Podcasting.
i) Instant messaging (including SMS).
j) Any other website that allows individuals users or companies to use simple publishing tools.
1. OFFICIAL AFL SPOKESPEOPLE
To ensure a consistent and controlled approach, only a few AFL employees are authorised to speak to the media on behalf of the League. This also applies to representing the AFL on Social Media.
Before engaging in Social Media as a representative of the AFL, you must be formally authorised to comment. You may not comment as a representative of the AFL unless you are authorised to do so by the CEO and Corporate Affairs Manager.
1.1 Once authorised to comment as an AFL representative, you must:
a) Liaise with the Corporate Affairs Department to ensure you are adequately prepared.
b) Disclose you are an employee/contractor of the AFL, and use only your own identity, or an approved official account.
c) Disclose and comment only on information classified as public domain information.
d) Ensure that all content published is accurate and not misleading and complies with all relevant AFL policies and agreed positions.
e) Comment only on your area of expertise and authority.
f) Ensure comments are respectful of the community in which you are interacting online.
g) Respect copyright laws and fair use of copyrighted material and attribute work to the original author/source wherever possible.
i) Redirect any questions to the AFL Corporate Affairs Department if you are unsure of the AFL response/view.
1.2 If you are authorised to comment as an AFL representative, you must not:
a) Post or respond to material that is offensive, obscene, defamatory, threatening, harassing, bullying, discriminatory, hateful, racist, sexist, infringes copyright, constitutes a contempt of court, breaches a court suppression order, or is otherwise unlawful.
b) Re-send or re-Tweet any material that falls into the above categories.
c) Publish or report on conversations or information that is deemed confidential or classified or deals with matters that are internal in nature.
d) Make any comment or post any material that might otherwise cause damage to the AFL’s reputation or bring the League or the game into disrepute.
e) Publish material that may cause injury to any other person, organisation, association or company’s reputation.
9.2.4 PERSONAL USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
The AFL recognises that you may use Social Media in your personal life. This policy does not intend to discourage nor unduly limit your personal expression or online activities.
However, you should recognise the potential for damage to be caused (either directly or indirectly) to the AFL in certain circumstances via your personal use of Social Media when you can be identified as an AFL employee. Accordingly, you should comply with this policy to ensure that the risk of such damage is minimised.
You are personally responsible for the content you publish in a personal capacity on any form of Social Media platform. When in doubt, you should seek guidance from the AFL Corporate Affairs Department on how to comply with the following obligations.
It is important to note that the AFL’s Social Media policy does not apply to personal use of Social Media platforms where you make no reference to AFL related issues.
1. Where your comments or your profile can identify you as an AFL employee,
1.1 You must:
a) Only disclose and discuss publicly available information.
b) Ensure that all content published is accurate and not misleading and complies with all relevant AFL policies and agreed positions.
c) Expressly state on all postings relating to AFL (identifying you as an AFL employee) the stated views are your own and are not those of the AFL.
d) Be polite and respectful to all people you interact with.
1.2 You must not:
a) Post material that is offensive, obscene, defamatory, threatening, harassing, bullying, discriminatory, hateful, racist, sexist, infringes copyright, constitutes a contempt of court, breaches a court suppression order, or is otherwise unlawful.
b) Imply that you are authorised to speak as a representative of the AFL, nor give the impression that the views you express are those of the AFL.
c) Use your AFL email address or any AFL logos or insignia that may give the impression of official support or endorsement of your personal comment.
d) Use the identity or likeness of another employee, contractor or other member of the AFL.
e) Use or disclose any confidential information or personal information obtained in your capacity as an employee/contractor of the AFL.
f) Post material that is, or might be construed as, threatening, harassing, bullying or discriminatory towards another employee/contractor of the AFL.
g) Make any comment or post any material that might otherwise cause damage to the AFL’s reputation or bring the League or the game into disrepute.
h) Make any comment or post any material that might cause damage to the AFL’s relationship with key stakeholders such as sponsors, Government Departments and partners.
9.2.5 USING SOCIAL MEDIA AT WORK
When accessing Social Media via the AFL’s Internet, intranet and extranet systems, you must do so in accordance with the AFL’s Internet, Email and Electronic Messaging Policy, which permits limited personal use “only to the extent that it does not interfere with the user’s duties and function or with any other person or organisation”.
Examples of reasonable use include:
Re-tweeting content from the AFL account on your own Twitter account
Updating Facebook status and posting messages during a lunch break
AFL resources should not be used to access or post any material that is fraudulent, harassing, defamatory or otherwise inappropriate or unlawful
It is not acceptable to spend lengthy periods using Social Media that is not related to your work
9.2.6 INAPPROPRIATE USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
a) Conducting private business.
b) Using discriminatory, defamatory, abusive or otherwise objectionable language in content.
c) Accessing, downloading or transmitting any kind of sexually explicit material, violent and graphic images (without medical purpose).
d) Accessing, downloading or transmitting information on the use and construction of weapons, explosives and other tools of violence or terrorism.
e) Accessing, downloading or transmitting any material deemed to be illegal under Australian Commonwealth or state law.
f) Accessing, downloading or transmitting hate speeches and overt racism material.
g) Compromising the privacy of any person.
h) Using services for personal political purposes.
i) Using services for industrial purposes.
j) Attempting to gain unauthorized access to the computing resources of the AFL.
9.2.7 BULLYING AND HARASSMENT
a) The AFL’s Member Protection Policy applies online and in the physical workplace.
b) Workplace bullying and harassment includes any bullying or harassing comments employees make online, even on their own private social networks or out of office hours.
c) Abusive, harassing, threatening or defaming postings are in breach of the AFL’s Member Protection Policy, and may result in disciplinary action being taken.
d) All employees are expected to treat their colleagues with respect and dignity and must ensure that their behavior does not constitute bullying and/or harassment.
a) Depending on the circumstances, non-compliance with this policy may constitute a breach of employment or contractual obligations, misconduct (under the AFL’s Code of Conduct), sexual harassment, discrimination, or some other contravention of the law.
b) If you fail to comply with this policy you may face disciplinary action which could include termination of your employment.
9.2.9 REPORTING INAPPROPRIATE OR MEDIA-RELATED CONTENT
a) If you notice inappropriate or unlawful content online relating to the AFL, or any content that may otherwise have been published in breach of this policy, you should report the circumstances to the Human Resources Department.
b) If you notice any material on Social Media that may lead to a media issue or may require an AFL response, you should notify the AFL’s Corporate Affairs Department as soon as possible.
If you require clarification about aspects of this policy and how it applies to your own circumstances, please contact your manager, the Human Resources department or the Corporate Affairs Department