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Social and Communications Policy

The social media and communications policy is in place to support and protect members personal interaction with the club and other members.

It covers Social Responsibility, use of media channels, age certification and advertising to name a few subjects.

Please contact the committee if you have any questions or feel it is omitting anything relevant.

Hounslow and Barnes Hockey Club, Social Media Policy

Hounslow & Barnes Hockey Club (“BHC”) recognises that social media provides an effective platform for discussion and information sharing amongst adult and junior club members.

Nevertheless, BHC also recognises that the use of social media can pose risks to its club members, reputation and compliance with legal obligations. One inappropriate comment can cause distress to one person and impact hundreds of club members. The purpose of this policy is to protect club members, minimise risk and ensure BHC’s social media is used appropriately.

This policy covers all members of Hounslow&Barnes Hockey Club.

The Key Message is:

Think before you post!

Posts on BHC’s social media or media linked to BHC’s social media, be it photos, comments or links should not be inappropriate. Users must not engage in activities or transmit content that is harassing, discriminatory, menacing, threatening, obscene, defamatory, or in any way objectionable or offensive. Users are personally responsible for what they communicate in social media and should remember that what they publish may be available to a wide audience over a lengthy period of time. Users should not post comments which could be construed as sensitive, objectionable or inflammatory. When using social media, users should respect their audience.

Don’t identify young people in images (i.e. captions to pictures, tagging on Facebook). Communication with young or vulnerable people is covered by England Hockey’s Safeguarding & Protection Policy and specific guidance for Clubs. The key do’s and don’ts are shown at the end of this document.

Remember, the term ‘young person’ means those under 18 years old.
Anyone who finds a post inappropriate should email details to the Club Chairperson and Club Secretary (or Club Welfare Officer is related to an U18).

Sanctions

Comments that are deemed to flout the above will be removed by the administrators and the person who posted will be informed. Anyone who persistently posts inappropriate content will be dealt with by BHC’s disciplinary committee, led by the Chairperson.

The Club Committee will be informed of any matters relating to young or vulnerable people and deal with the post as appropriate.

Issues relating to adults and the reputation of the Club will be referred to the Chairperson and Club Committee.

The hockey Leagues have made it very clear that any published inappropriate comments about opponents, umpires, officials or other clubs on social media, websites or match reports in the press will be dealt with by them through sanctions such as bans and point deductions.

Controls over Club Specific Social Media

Facebook

To manage the risk on Facebook, BHC has a ‘closed group’ presence on Facebook with strict controls over membership of that Group. The Group has Administrators in place to manage requests for access to the group. The administrators are designated members within the Club Committee and they will ensure that those wishing to become part of the group are, or have been, BHC Hockey Club Members or are affiliated to the club in another way (for example regular umpires) or are bona fide supporters of the club known to the Club.

Only over 13s will be allowed to join the group, to comply with the global age restrictions for Facebook.

If unsure, administrators will liaise with relevant club members to ascertain the identity of the person requesting to join.

Twitter and Website

BHC uses a Twitter account @Barnes_Hockey and the Website www.barneshockeyclub.co.uk to represent the Club to the outside world, catering for prospective and current members as well as providing information for other clubs and general browsers seeking knowledge about BHC. For this reason material published on these mediums is controlled by appointed administrators.

Communication with young people

As mentioned above, communication with young or vulnerable people is covered by England Hockey’s Safeguarding & Protection Policy and specific guidance for Clubs. The full guidance can be found at the link below and on our website:
http://englandhockey.co.uk/page.asp?section=650&sectionTitle=Guidance+for+Clubs+%26+Associations

The key do’s and don’ts when communicating with young people are:

 contact players only when necessary
 if players need to be contacted urgently, e.g. for a change in training arrangement, set up a grapevine system
 copy parents into written communication (i.e. letters or emails) unless you have been given specific parental consent to communicate direct with the young player
 speak with a player and their parents if there is a need to communicate information in relation to playing, training or competition
 clearly state the club’s policy on communication with players and parents.
Contacting young people by phone, text, email or social networking site should never be undertaken without parental consent.

Avoid:

 contacting a young person unnecessarily
 e-mailing young people directly as individuals (but this can be done as part of a disclosed list, once permission has been gained to do so)
 using text or a social networking site as a medium of contact with a young person
 making or receiving calls on a mobile phone during training or at competition (coach). It is inappropriate to compromise the safety of a session
 e-mailing one young person without copying in parents, other players or club members.

Advertising

Any form of advertising of a commercial nature has to be approved by the BHC Committee prior to being distributed through any channel that is viewed by BHC Members, including but not exclusive to Facebook, Linkedin, BarnesHockeyClub.co.uk, twitter.

Affiliations

Club sponsor