City of Daytona Beach Shores Social Media Policy
The adoption of this document establishes the social networking and social media policy for the City of Daytona Beach Shores (City). To address the fast-changing landscape of the Internet and the way City residents communicate and obtain information online, City departments may consider the use of social media to reach a broader audience. The City encourages the use of social media as a means of conveying City information to the public or promote the City’s goals and objectives and to serve the interests of its citizens. The City has an overriding interest and expectation in deciding what is “spoken” on its behalf on social media sites. This policy establishes guidelines for the use of social media within the scope of the City. The City reserves the right to engage in government speech as determined by the City Council and as implemented by the City Manager and the City Attorney.
For the purposes of this Policy:
- The term, “social media,” means any facility for online publication and commentary including, without limitation, blogs, the City Web Page, wiki’s, content hosting sites such as YouTube, and social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn
- The term “City Web Page” refers to the official City Website.
City social media sites shall be used to convey information to the public involving City events, meetings or important information that would fall within the scope of City’s responsibility.
The City Web Page will be the primary and predominant internet presence.
All official agency-related communications through social media shall be professional in nature and shall always be conducted in accordance with the City’s General Rules and Employee Conduct Policy, sound and generally accepted public management practices and principles, and normative expectations. City employees shall not use City social media for political purposes, to conduct private commercial transactions or to engage in private business activities.
City employees should be mindful that inappropriate usage of official social media may be grounds for disciplinary action which can result in termination of employment with the City.
Only individuals authorized by the City may publish content to City social media services.
Approval and Registration
All City social media sites shall be:
- Approved by the City Manager.
- Published using approved social media platforms and tools.
- Administered by the moderator or their designee.
- Registered to a City employee’s email address.
- Adhere to applicable Federal, State and local laws, regulations and policies.
In addition, all City social media sites shall comply with Section 668.6076, Florida Statutes, requiring the following notice: "Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. If you do not want your email address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in writing as such required notice may be amended from time-to-time.”
Oversight and Enforcement
City employees representing the City through social media outlets or participating in social media features on City websites are required to maintain a high level of ethical conduct and professional decorum. Failure to do so is grounds for revoking the privilege to participate in agency social media and may result in disciplinary action as aforesaid.
Information must be presented following professional standards for good grammar, spelling, brevity, clarity and accuracy, and avoid jargon, obscure terminology or acronyms.
City employees are deemed to recognize that the content and messages they post on social media are public and may be cited as official City of Daytona Beach Shores statements. Social media should not be used to circumvent other City communications policies.
City employees shall not publish information on social media sites that includes:
- Confidential information.
- Information that results in copyright violations or otherwise violated intellectual property rights.
- Profanity, racist, sexist or derogatory content.
- Partisan political views.
- Commercial or political endorsements.
- Postings including personal e-mail account addresses
The City Clerk shall act as Communications Officer and all employees shall be subject to the direction of the Communications Officer regarding matters set forth in this policy.
The Communications Officer shall delegate the responsibility of reviewing content to offices or departments to a designated “content manager”. When a site is maintained by an office or department, information posted on the site will be reviewed prior to being released, in accordance with the department’s or office’s normal review process.
The Communications Officer and content managers will be responsible for complying with established policies regarding branding, proper, use, copyright, records retention, Americans with Disability Act, social media compliance and all information security policies established by City.
The Communications Officer will be responsible for maintaining an archive of all information posted to the site as it pertains to public records retention in the event it cannot be retrieved from the actual site itself.
The Information Technology (IT) Department shall maintain a list of all City social media sites, administrative login IDs and passwords.
As of the effective date of this policy, the Public Safety Public Information Officer (PS PIO) shall be the primary back-up City staff person that can access and maintain/post information in the absence of the Communications Officer.
Moderation of Comments
The City’s social media sites serve as a limited public forum and all content published is subject to monitoring. User-generated posts or comments are subject to removal or restriction where the post or comment contains any of the following types of inappropriate content:
- Content that is off-subject or out of context.
- Content that promotes, fosters, or perpetuates discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, or mental or physical disability.
- Content containing obscenity or material that appeals to the prurient interest.
- Content containing personal identifying information or sensitive personal information.
- Content containing defamatory or personal attacks.
- Content which contains threats to any person or organization.
- Content which incites or promotes violence or illegal activities.
- Content that advertises or promotes a commercial product or service, or any entity or individual.
- Content which promotes or endorses political campaigns or candidates.
- Content that violates a copyright, trademark or other legal ownership interest of any other party
- Conduct in violation of any Federal, State or local law.
Denying Access to Social Media Sites
Access to online media may be restricted at any time by the City and without cause if it is determined by the City that there are legal or network security concerns, as determined by the City, or a concern or misuse of online as authorized by this Policy. In addition, the City may, at any time, direct a social media site to be shut down based on such concerns or based on policy considerations.
The provision of hyperlinks (or “links”) from the City social media sites to other websites is solely at the City’s discretion. Links will be provided solely as a convenience for users of the site. Links to commercial sites will not be generally established, except where such links promote specific objects established by the City.
- Permissible Links: Links may be provided for the following types of external websites:
- .Other governmental entities, including Federal, State, or local government sites, or operated by agencies of any of those entities.
- .Sites operated by IRS 501 (c) (3) non-profit agencies with which the City has an established statutory, participative, or supportive relationship.
- .State, regional, local, or Federal government agencies, special purpose districts, hospitals, scientific or cultural organizations, servicing the City and public educational institutions within the City’s area.
- .Human service organizations that receive direct support from the City.
- .Community events located within the City that are open to the public, with our without charge, and are sponsored or co-sponsored by the City.
- .Providers of search engines for the City Web Page or other City websites.
- .Commercial sites that the City determines may be of interest to site visitors who may be visiting the City, who may be planning a trip to or near the City, or who may be considering relocating to or near the City.
- .Commercial sites operated by entities that are official sponsors of City events or programs.
- Prohibited Links: No link is allowed to a site containing inappropriate material, to information irrelevant to the City, or to information unrelated to purpose expressed in this Policy. Links shall not be made to sites that are associated with, sponsored by, or serve a candidate for elected office or any political party or organization supporting or seeking to defeat any candidate for elective office or a ballot proposal.
Records Retention and Public Records Requests
Social media sites contain communications sent to or received by the City and its employees, and such communications are, therefore, public records subject to Chapter 119, Florida Statutes, and other controlling law. Records maintenance and retention requirements apply regardless of the form of the record (for example, digital text, photos, audio, and video). The City shall preserve records pursuant to a relevant and controlling records retention schedule for the required retention period in a format that preserves the integrity of the original record.
Persons making public records requests for social media or questions regarding the application of Chapter 119, Florida Statutes, or other controlling law, may contact the Public Records Custodian at (386) 763-5353 or in-person in the Office of the City Clerk, Daytona Beach Shores City Hall, 2990 South Atlantic Avenue, Daytona Beach Shores, Florida 32118.