Statement of Intent
Fordham University seeks to foster robust and civil discourse, and to promote academic freedom on all University owned social media channels. Nothing in the policy below should be construed as constraining speech on non-University social media, nor other non-University print, broadcast, nor digital channels.
Applicability and Scope
This policy outlines the proper use of social media for the official business purposes of Fordham University, including the promotion of the University, colleges and schools, departments and offices, programming, faculty, and staff of the University. (See the section “Official Fordham Social Media Account Recognition” below for the definition of official University accounts.)
For the purpose of this policy, “social media” refers to, but is not limited to blogs (i.e., web-based journals) and microblogs (e.g., Tumblr), collaborative websites (e.g., Wikipedia, etc.), message boards, social networking sites (e.g., Facebook, Twitter), podcasts (i.e., multimedia distributed over the internet), video sharing (e.g., YouTube), and photo sharing (e.g., Instagram, Snapchat, etc…).
This policy applies to all University employees, including faculty and staff, and to anyone posting content and comments to any official Fordham site. The Office of University Communications is responsible for the enforcement of this policy and is a resource to the University community for launching social media initiatives. This policy does not preclude more restrictive policies for academic or administrative units that have different needs.
Any questions regarding this policy or Fordham’s social media presence may be addressed to:
Office of University Communications
(212) 636-6538 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Fordham University values robust and civil discourse, and seeks to promote academic freedom. We welcome critical posts and opposing points of view, but users shall refrain from using profanity and from making personal attacks in any comments posted to University social media platforms.
As Fordham’s social media platforms are integral parts of its marketing and public relations efforts, the University reserves the right to moderate comments without prior notification as part of its standard editorial practices. We delete comments that contain personal attacks, obscene, harassing, or threatening language, and ban users who violate these terms, except where such actions infringe upon employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act. As a rule, we delete comments that are clearly off-topic, as well as advertising and solicitations for non-Fordham events, products, businesses, and fundraisers.
The University assumes no responsibility for user comments, screen names, nor any information they post. Third-party content shared on Fordham social media platforms does not constitute an endorsement, nor reflect the views of Fordham University. Likewise, user accounts followed by official Fordham platforms do not constitute endorsements of those users, nor of the content they post. The use of Fordham University logos and wordmarks is restricted to official University accounts (see below).
Users who post to official University social media platforms consent to allow Fordham to use such content for marketing and promotional purposes.
We hope that visitors to Fordham’s social media pages will help us maintain an open and collegial atmosphere.
If you see content or comments on Fordham social media pages that raise concerns about an individual’s safety or the safety of the University community, contact the Department of Public Safety at (718) 817-2222, and ask to speak to a duty supervisor (this line is staffed 24/7).
For comments that appear to violate Fordham’s social media policy, or the University code of conduct, but do not rise to the level of a threat to the University community or property, please email us at: email@example.com (we will generally respond within 24 hours—nights, weekends, and holidays included).
Official Fordham Social Media Account Recognition
This refers to accounts created with the approval of the academic or administrative department in cooperation with University Communications for the purpose of promoting the University and its constituent departments and programs.
Individuals and groups not directly employed by Fordham and authorized by the appropriate University officials may not represent themselves as official Fordham accounts, nor may they improperly use Fordham logos, seals, nor wordmarks to identify those accounts.
Before setting up any social media accounts for official Fordham business, users must seek approval and guidance from the Office of University Communications.
Officially recognized Fordham-affiliated social media pages must be registered with the assistant director of communications for social media (firstname.lastname@example.org), including any page in circulation at the time of this policy’s approval, or future pages. The “owner” of the platform must be a full-time faculty member or employee of the University; at least one other person in the account owner’s department (or in University Communications) must have access to the account login information and password. That second person must also be a full-time faculty member or employee of the University.
Only social media pages officially recognized by Fordham will be included in the official Fordham Social Media Registry and be allowed to use official Fordham-branded graphics, images, and other digital assets, as provided by University marketing and communications.
Information found on any unauthorized Fordham-related social media page is not considered representative of the University.
When applicable, pages registered with Fordham must make every effort to use all available accessibility features. This includes creating and posting any additional content, i.e., alt text, captions and photo IDs. The University’s web accessibility site provides more information about complying with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Employees using social media on behalf of the University must follow all applicable requirements including, but not limited to, the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), and NCAA regulations. Employees must not violate intellectual property rights of the University, its faculty and staff, nor any third parties, nor disclose confidential or private information of the University or third parties. A complete listing of applicable requirements can be found at Human Resources Policy and Guides.
With respect to copyrighted material, this policy applies in conjunction with, and not independent of, the Terms of Service of any and all social media sites where relevant content resides. Additionally, all copyrighted material must respect federal copyright laws.
Faculty and Staff Personal Social Media Accounts/Posts
The University does not seek to determine the appropriateness of content on faculty and staff’s personal social media accounts. However, University personnel who identify themselves as a Fordham faculty or staff member on their personal social media accounts or in posts or comments should:
- Use their best judgment and exercise personal responsibility when posting on social media;
- Include when appropriate a disclaimer that their views, positions, and opinions are their own and not those of Fordham University; and
- With the exception of LinkedIn, no employee may use Fordham’s trademarked or copyrighted marks or emblems without the prior approval of the Office of University Communications.
Updated October 7, 2019