Swansea Canoe Polo Club

Social Media & Communications Policy

Social Media & Communications Policy

Social media forms an important part of keeping our current and future members up to date with information and events and provides a great way for all of us to stay connected, show our individual personalities and for friendships to form. Whilst social media is a valuable asset to our club and members, its use can also have serious consequences for our mental health and well being and it is important that all members engage with each other and the club safely.

If you aren’t sure about something or have any questions, you should talk to a club official who can help. If you have breached our policy, including things which may not be specifically listed but are in the spirit of the policy, either deliberately or without realising, it can result in disciplinary action and may result in your exclusion from certain forms of communication with the club, or removal from the club.

When engaging with the club both online and in person, you should consider whether what you say or do is appropriate, safe and the impact it may have on others. We ask that you exercise common sense, and treat others as you wish to be treated.

The club operates a number of social media channels on a variety of platforms, you will be able to find our official usernames / addresses on the contact page of our website. Our social media channels include:

The club may form group chats using services such as Whatsapp, and we may also use email and other electronic and traditional means to communicate.

Many platforms allow you to interact publicly and privately with posts including commenting, sharing or reacting using emotes such as laughter, anger, or a thumbs up. Everything you do or say may have an effect on others, and it is important that we all engage online respectfully so that all members feel safe, welcomed and included in our club.

Some platforms will allow you to become ‘friends’, or connect with other people. If you are an adult, you should not be connected to club members who are children (anyone under the age of 18) unless it is appropriate, for example, you are their parent or family member of the child. Many parents will have access to their child’s social media accounts and profiles, you should not use your child’s account to interact with other children who are members of the club.

  • You should always avoid any private messaging with children.
  • If a child contacts you directly, you should not reply unless it is an emergency, and you should let the club safeguarding officer know.
  • There are some cases where club officials or coaches will communicate with children. When this is the case, the consent of a parent will be first sought, and a trusted third person will be included in these communications, such as a parent or the club safeguarding officer.

If you want to take pictures or record video at club sessions such as pool sessions, you must get permission from a club official before doing so. Not everyone will consent to having their photo taken at private events such as our pool sessions.

When posting online, including group chats such as those on Whatsapp, our public profiles, our private groups and other forms of engagement, please ensure you use your best judgement at all times; if you are uncertain if something is inappropriate, then you should not post it. You should also avoid discussing/sharing political or similar topics which are not related to the club’s purpose.

Before posting or reacting, you should ask yourself:

  • Would it be appropriate for children to see or read?
  • Is what you are posting true?
  • Are you being respectful, kind and civil?
  • Could what you are posting be seen as harassment, or a personal attack?
  • Is it degrading, or intimidating?
  • Is it discriminatory?
  • Is it necessary or helpful?
  • Is it legal?
  • Do you have the necessary permissions to share any pictures or videos?
  • Is it offensive?

You should always be respectful, and you should refrain from posting derogatory or hateful comments about anyone, including other clubs and organisations; and you should avoid talking about potentially controversial or inflammatory subjects.

You should be aware of confidentiality

  • Never share someone else’s personal details such as their age, phone number, email address, or other personal information which isn’t publicly available.
  • Consider whether information you share was given to you in confidence, such as details from a conversation which may have been considered private.
  • Do you have the necessary permission from everyone, including the club and parents of children to post pictures or videos of club events?

Think about the security of your accounts

  • Do you have a secure password to prevent others from accessing your social media accounts?
  • Do you have adequate controls on who can access your devices such as your phone or computer, where access to your social media and email accounts may be possible?

We understand that friendships will form between members of our club, and we encourage this, if you have any concerns about interactions between members of any age, please let our Safeguarding Officer know. You will not necessarily have the right to be kept up to date once you have reported your concern, but all reports will be taken seriously.

The club will monitor official channels such as Facebook Groups, interactions with our public profiles, group chats on Whatsapp, and we may take further action if anything is deemed to be inappropriate. Unfortunately it is not possible for us to monitor all forms of social media and communication and we ask that if you have any concerns about anything you have seen online relating to the club or its members, please contact the Club Safeguarding officer, or another club official that you trust as soon as possible. If you would like an additional group chat or similar to be created for the purposes of discussing club matters, please talk to a club official first so that we can continue to ensure the safety of our members to the best of our abilities.

All matters including bullying, harassment, discrimination, degrading or insulting comments, threats of violence or harm and other things of similar nature will be taken seriously, will not be not tolerated and appropriate action will be taken, which may also include reporting to relevant authorities.

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