Social Media Policy

The purpose of this policy is to address use of social media, such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, by the Cook Memorial Public Library District ("Library") and its employees, volunteers, elected officials and patrons. The Library uses social media to increase awareness of and accessibility to its programs, resources and services in order to serve its mission.

Article I Library – Sponsored Social Media

Only those employees responsible for the Library’s social media sites should be actively participating on those sites during work hours. Employees who contribute to the Library’s social media should present content in a professional manner and should check facts, cite sources, avoid copyright infringement, present balanced views, acknowledge and correct errors and check grammar and spelling before posting.

Employees should not discuss confidential, work-related matters through social media.

Content that is posted on Library-sponsored social media sites is subject to the Freedom of Information Act and records retention requirements.

Article II Employee Personal Use of Social Media

Library employees have the same right to self-expression enjoyed by members of the community as a whole when discussing matters of public concern. As public employees, Library employees are cautioned that speech made pursuant to official duties is not protected speech under the First Amendment and may form the basis for discipline if deemed a violation of any policy of the Library. Employees should keep in mind the following best practices when posting content about library-related subjects and issues on personal time.

    1. If you identify yourself as an employee of the Library, make it clear that the views expressed are yours alone and do not represent the views of the Library.
    2. Respect the Library’s confidential and proprietary information. Do not post information that is still in draft form or is confidential.

No comments with any kind of negative, mocking, condescending, etc. slant should be made about patrons in general, about specific questions from patrons, or about patron behavior on the Library’s social media sites.

The Library does not endorse, monitor or review the content of personal, non-Library related social media activity of its employees.

Employee use of personal social media is not permitted during working hours except for work-related purposes such as professional development or library-related social media outlets.

Article III Posting on Social Media Sites

The Library permits patrons to comment on Library posts. It does not endorse the opinions expressed in posts on its social media sites.

While the Library recognizes and respects differing opinions and the First Amendment rights of its employees and patrons, the Library reserves the right to delete posts that violate Library policy. Failure to comply with federal, state and local law as well as Library policies will be grounds for suspension of posting privileges.

Posts that contain any of the following are prohibited and will be removed:

    • Obscene material
    • Child pornography
    • Libel
    • Discriminatory or harassing language
    • Copyrighted or trademarked material
    • Spam
    • Advertising or sale of merchandise or services

Article IV

The Library, its employees, agents and officials assume no responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, arising from participation in Library-sponsored social media. Violations of this policy by employees may result in discipline, up to and including termination of employment.







Adopted: 03/22/12