Social media best practice: guidelines for freelance contributors

Last modified on Mon 1 Jun 2020 08.06 EDT

These guidelines should be read in conjunction with the terms and conditions issued to you by GNM in respect of your freelance engagement where they are incorporated into same by reference.

1. Association with News & Media Ltd (“GNM”, “we”, “us”): Your personal social media accounts are personal and are owned by you. However, if you could be publicly associated with GNM then we expect you to abide by the following guidelines on social media, particularly in posts relating to your work for GNM.

2. Tone: always treat people with respect and professionalism on social media, even if you disagree with them. Ignore those who are abusive or offensive, and avoid public arguments on social media, with colleagues, contributors or others. If in doubt, do not respond.

3. Dealing with abuse: Make sure you are safe. If someone is in immediate danger dial 999 (UK), 911 (US) or 000/112 (Australia). Report abuse to social media platforms but do not respond or escalate - block or mute troublemakers so you do not see their posts. If you feel threatened, tell your editor. We have guidelines and support in place to help you.

4. Accuracy: only share or retweet verified information from trusted sources; do not blur fact and opinion. If you make a mistake or repost inaccurate information, delete the post with errors to prevent it spreading further, and make a new post explaining what has happened. Use common sense and think twice before you post.

5. Legal, privacy and copyright: You are legally responsible for what you say online on your personal social media accounts. Do not make derogatory or defamatory comments (this includes retweeting/liking other people’s comments). Do not post anything that could be classed as confidential and be aware of contempt of court issues if you are tweeting about an active case. You must adhere to the GNM Editorial Code guidelines on privacy, and comply with local copyright laws.

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