Social Media Guidelines and Best Practices

Student Expectations

Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC) recognizes social media sites and personal blogs/websites can be effective tools for exchanging information. CPCC does not prohibit students from joining and participating in online communities as individuals. However, any online behavior on behalf of officially recognized student organizations is subject to College Policies and Procedures, the guidelines listed in the Student Code of Conduct.

CPCC student organizations must ensure that any content on social media sites and/or personal blogs/websites is appropriate to their student organization’s mission and purpose, as well as students’ roles as student leaders at CPCC.

Prohibited Items

  • Do not post confidential or proprietary information about the College, its students, its employees, or its alumni.
  • Follow all applicable federal privacy requirements, including FERPA and HIPAA, and adhere to all applicable college privacy and confidentiality policies. Employees and/or students who share confidential information do so at the risk of disciplinary action and personal liability.
  • Do not use the CPCC logo or any other college images or iconography on personal social media sites or any sites not approved by the Office of Student Life.
  • Derogatory language or demeaning statements. Inappropriate or incriminating images depicting hazing, sexual harassment, vandalism, stalking, underage drinking, illegal drug use, or any other inappropriate behavior/language.
  • Content that violates state or federal law. Information or images that are obscene, untrue, or defamatory.

Best Practices

  • Strive for accuracy
    Get the facts straight before posting statements online via social media or other online resources. Review content for grammatical and spelling errors. This is especially important if posting on behalf of the College in any capacity.
  • Be respectful
    Understand that content contributed to a social media site or other website may encourage comments or discussion of opposing ideas. Responses should be considered carefully in light of how they would reflect on the individual and/or the College. All responses should be courteous and professional.
  • Remember your audience
    Be aware that an online presence is, or easily can be, made available to the public at large. This includes prospective students, current students, colleagues, peers and other stakeholders. Consider this before publishing to ensure the post will not alienate, harm or provoke any of these groups.
  • Be transparent
    On personal sites, identify your views as your own. It should be clear that the views expressed are not necessarily those of the College.
  • Photography
    Photographs and media posted online can easily be appropriated by visitors. Consider adding a watermark to protect your intellectual property. You may also use images at a size sufficient for viewing on the Web, but not suitable for printing.
  • Fresh content
    Online communities and social media presences must be updated at least weekly and monitored daily.