Social Media Moderation

social media moderationIf your brand has a presence on social media networks, you are most likely going to get a fair share of feedback, both positive and negative. If you’re in charge of monitoring the brand’s social pages, it’s your job to moderate the conversations, and determine if a comment is out of line and needs to be removed from the site. As easy as it would be to delete any criticism of the brand, you have to maintain a transparency with customers so they continue to trust and follow the brand.

A social media manager’s job can be made easier with moderating policies or guidelines. Unfortunately, not every brand (including my own) has such a policy in place. It’s left to my discretion to choose how to respond to customers’ comments. Fortunately, I have yet to run into any major problems. The only time I have ever deleted a post, was when it was spam. The rest of the posts I leave out there for the world to see. I “like” and acknowledge on the praises on Facebook, answer any questions a customer may post, and try to help customers who may have some discrepancy with the brand or its social media.

Before you post or moderate any social pages, you have to be aware of the norms and behaviors of each different network. You most likely wouldn’t share the content that you post on LinkedIn, with your Facebook followers. While that is an obvious example, there are plenty of other examples out there. There are general norms of each network, but how a company approaches those networks, is going to differ from each different brand or person.

In my personal experience and usage, I share more personal posts and articles with my Facebook community. My Facebook followers are made up of mainly family and friends, so I have a level of comfort when posting on the network. I don’t think as much or worry how I’m going to be perceived because my followers all know me pretty well.

More professionals and colleagues follow me on Twitter, so it’s a completely different vibe. It’s a way more casual version of LinkedIn. I try to share professionally-related content, but I do it in a more fun, and trendier way. I love a good hashtag! I use more abbreviations or jargon because Twitter only allows so many characters. I also allow more of my humor and personality to shine on Twitter.

I view both Instagram and Pinterest in the same light in terms of how I moderate my pages. Both networks allow me to post more creatively. I think brands have the same advantage when using these networks (at least if they’re using them correctly!). These networks allow a brand or individual to reflect who they are or who they want to be. For brands that are struggling to bridge the gap between being professional and human, these networks could help you accomplish that.


Social Media Terms and Conditions – The Small Print

I’m so connected to my computer and social media, when I login and see an updated user agreement or terms of services, I usually just scroll to the bottom of the page and click the “I accept” box. It doesn’t stop there, I recently signed a new lease and when handed a long document that the lady told me was “just your standard leasing agreement,” I signed the dotted line without reading all the terms and conditions. I could have signed my life away and I would have no clue!

This week’s lecture and readings reminded me a lot of the South Park iTunes agreement episode.

The problem with terms and conditions is that they’re just too long and usually contain jargon that’s hard to understand. It was a real struggle for me to make it all the way through the long list of terms and conditions, and there’s no way I would have read every word if it wasn’t for class! I consider myself to be a fairly intelligent person, but when reading through Facebook and Twitter’s user agreements, I have to admit that I was confused.

I don’t know that there is any quick and easy solution to making terms and conditions completely user-friendly because the social networks have to include the legal jargon so they don’t get sued. However, I think that there are steps that could be taken to ensure that social media users are actually reading the terms that they’re agreeing to.

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When reading through Facebook and Twitter’s terms and conditions, I liked that Twitter highlighted and summarized information in terms that everyone could understand (above). Organizing terms of service in this manner would help ensure that even if users didn’t read every single word, they would at least understand what they were agreeing to. I doubt that either network would legally be able to summarize all terms and conditions in this way, but I’m guessing it would increase what was actually read.

In Facebook’s terms and conditions this is a lot of emphasis put on “You,” as opposed to the company. As unfair as this may seem, you are the one who is using Facebook’s services, so you have to be responsible for how you use the network.

Some of the areas that I think need to be included in the terms and conditions of the social networks are user rights, privacy, how the site will share/use user content, account security, and provisions applied to advertisements/businesses. All of these areas have some crossover with ethical issues. To highlight an ethical concern that I’ve heard a lot about lately, I think it’s beneficial that both networks emphasize the fact that it’s against the rules to request that a user give you their password or account information. This will prevent the unethical practice of businesses requesting the information of potential employees.