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The college recognizes the benefits of social networking platforms and other internet communications as valuable, supplemental forms of communications for the purposes of recruiting students, enriching academic programs, recruiting athletes, promoting student activities, distributing information about the college's programs and services and networking alumni.

Since user-generated internet communications such as blogging, social web-applications and social networking platforms (e.g. Facebook, MySpace, You Tube, Twitter, Bebo, etc.) may be created and published by faculty and staff of Cowley College that are not the designated publishers of internet communications for the college, all employees of Cowley College should understand and follow all guidelines that follow.


Because any form of social networking publication that represents organizations, athletic programs, clubs, workgroups and departments of Cowley College can be interpreted as official pages of Cowley College, it is appropriate to define the minimal guidelines to be followed when an employee of Cowley College publishes information that references Cowley College.

This policy does not provide guidelines for an employee’s personal internet presence if there is no implied or stated reference to Cowley College; however, the college expects that its employees will use good judgment when communicating through social networking sites to ensure that they project a positive reflection on the college.

Guidelines for social networking sites or communications by students are outside the scope of this policy. If a student is a contributing editor on a social networking site owned by an employee, the responsibility and liability of the site remains with the employee.


Requests for permission to create, publish and maintain a social networking site that represents the college’s organizations, athletic programs, clubs, workgroups and academic departments should be submitted to the college’s Marketing Committee via the Director of Institutional Communications. The request should include the name of site, URL, purpose and use, and ownership.

If the purpose of a social networking site is to provide instructional materials, the review and approval of the Vice President of Academic Affairs is required.

The Marketing Committee has the authority to approve or deny the request on a case-by-case basis. If an employee is denied permission to represent the college on a social networking site, all references to Cowley College must be deleted from all content and publications associated with the social networking site that was denied.

If the employee (hereto after referred to as the owner) of an “approved” social networking site decides to abandon a site for any reason, the Marketing Committee must be informed.


An “approved” social networking publication should adhere to branding standards that ensure a consistent and professional publication of information and images.

Cowley College encourages the use of the college’s logos and branding elements; therefore, the Marketing Committee will create logo images, banners, and icons for use on social networking sites. Requests for use of the Cowley College logos/trademarks and the creation of banners and icons should be submitted to the college’s Marketing Committee via the Director of Institutional Communications

Any social networking site that references or implies that the site is associated with Cowley College should use the following disclaimer:

"This site is a personal page created and maintained by an employee of Cowley College for the purpose of providing positive information that supports Cowley College, its activities and its academic endeavors. Because the college does not routinely monitor and scrutinize the contents of this page, Cowley College does not take responsibility for the contents of this page or any material accessible from this page.”


The owner must not post confidential or proprietary information about Cowley College, its employees, its students or its alumni. The owner must not post excessive personal information that is not necessary to meet the purpose of the page.


The owner of any social networking platform that references Cowley College is responsible to ensure that the content submitted, posted, transmitted, or shared does not infringe upon the policies of the college or rights of any third party, including but not limited to copyright, privacy; otherwise unlawful material, and language and images that threaten, harass, intimidate or offend others.


The use of copyright material, including but not limited to photographs, video, sound tracks, and any material created by another person, is not allowed on any blogging, social web-applications and social networking platform associated with Cowley College unless the material has been purchased for reprint or permissions to reprint have been given by the copyright owner, or the reprint of such material falls under the “fair use” laws.

The Marketing Committee reserves the right to determine if the use of copyright material is acceptable according to the copyright laws published by the U.S. Copyright Office and the college’s Music Performance Agreements.

Unless otherwise notified by the Director of Web Services, “approved” social networking sites can copy and use photographs, videos, and information published on the official websites of Cowley College without asking or receiving permission. Unless the Director of Web Services is otherwise notified, official web sites of Cowley College can copy and use photographs, videos, and information published on “approved” social networking sites without asking or receiving permission.
The Marketing Committee has a written contract for Royalty Rights for a large collection of instrumental music that can be used as sound tracks for employee-generated presentations and videos. Requests for use of these music files to use exclusively on college-related presentations and videos should be submitted to the college’s Marketing Committee via the Director of Institutional Communications.


All social networking sites that reference Cowley College should publish accurate and current information to ensure a professional appearance and to maximize the benefits of social networking.


The official web sites of Cowley College will link to “approved” social networking sites. The Marketing Committee will conduct periodical reviews of “approved” social networking sites and has the authority to take necessary actions if the guidelines of this Social Networking Policy are not being followed.


It is the responsibility of the owner of any blog, social web-applications and social networking platform to ensure that the college does not suffer a serious negative impact or legal ramifications as a result of any content, information or material published on the owner’s page. Failure to protect the college may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination.

Adopted May 17, 2010


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