This is the fourth of a series of posts from Matt Ward, associate pastor of FBC Thomson. Read the previous posts here:
- Your church needs a social media policy
- You’re still a Christian while online
- Social media expectations are higher for church leaders
The primary difference between leaders and paid staff is the employment contract; expectations are otherwise the same. In addition to statements about harassment, child protection, office security, and confidentiality, most churches have a formal social media policy that can be summarized in these statements:
- Be responsible with online communication.
- Let official church accounts be operated by the proper church member.
- Respect intellectual property rights.
- Be proactive with the church’s online reputation.
- Respect the church’s mission, beliefs, and values.
- Do not promote your personal beliefs as the church’s beliefs.
- Pay close attention to confidentiality.
Just as with a secular company, violating the church’s personnel policies can result in termination of employment. We take social media very seriously.
With personnel policies in mind, I found it very instructive to research social media policies for major companies whose bottom lines are heavily influenced by their social media presence. These are the “experts” in social media; their opinions are valuable. Next week’s post will include three lists that were helpful in crafting this document: biblical passages related to communication, a business approach to social media, and a short list of applicable websites.