International Taekwon-do Council Media Policy.

Version: 1. Draft: 1. Date: 12 March 2016.
Drafted by: Barry O'Mahony (Ireland).
Edits:
Reviewed and approved for publication by:
ITC Founder: Master John J McNally
ITC Chairman: Grandmaster Paul Liversidge

POLICY

This policy provides guidance for member use of social media, which should be broadly understood for purposes of this policy to include blogs, wikis, microblogs, message boards, chat rooms, electronic newsletters, online forums, social networking sites, and other sites and services that permit users to share information with others in a contemporaneous manner.

PURPOSE

This policy has been created for, and on behalf of, the International Taekwon-do Council (hereafter referred to as ITC), to serve as a set of guidelines for members to follow when engaging with social media and similar media outlets. ITC, and each of its members individually, have put many years of hard work into promoting and maintaining positive public images. By following the procedures of this policy, ITC members can work to ensure that their actions, in relation to media, do not reflect poorly on ITC or their fellow ITC members.

PROCEDURES

The following principles apply to official use of social media on behalf of ITC as well as personal use of social media when referencing ITC.

  • Members need to know and adhere to any ITC rules and policies when using social media in reference to ITC.
  • Members should be aware of the effect their actions may have on their own images, the overall image of ITC, and the image of their fellow ITC members.
  • The information that members post or publish may be public information for a long time; even information posted and later deleted by a member may still remain in existence on the social media platform's servers, or may have been copied and stored by other individuals or groups.
  • Members should be aware that ITC may observe content and information made available by members through social media. Members should use their best judgment in posting material that is neither inappropriate nor harmful to ITC, its members, or the public.
  • Although not an exclusive list, some specific examples of prohibited social media conduct include posting commentary, content, or images that are defamatory, pornographic, proprietary, harassing, or libelous.
  • Members are not to publish, post or release any information that is considered confidential or not public. If there are questions about what is considered confidential, members should check with the ITC Executive / the ITC member charged with maintaining Public Relations policy.
  • Media contacts about ITC should be referred for coordination and guidance to the ITC Executive / the ITC member charged with maintaining Public Relations policy.
  • Social media networks, blogs and other types of online content sometimes generate press and media attention or legal questions. Members should refer these inquiries to authorized ITC spokespersons. If members encounter a situation while using social media that threatens to become antagonistic, members should disengage from the dialogue in a polite manner and seek the advice of the ITC Executive / the ITC member charged with maintaining Public Relations policy.
  • Members should get appropriate permission before referring to, or posting images of, current or former members, members, or members of unaffiliated groups. Additionally, members should get appropriate permission to use a third party's copyrights, copyrighted material, trademarks, service marks or other intellectual property.
  • Media activity that violates the ITC Medial Policy or any other ITC policy may subject a member to suspension or termination of membership.
  • If members publish content that involves subjects associated with ITC, a disclaimer should be used, such as this: “The postings on this site are my own and may not represent ITC's positions, strategies or opinions.”

RECOMMENDATIONS

While not binding rules as such, the following recommendations should be considered by all ITC members. It is hoped that, by following these recommendations, ITC members can work to avoid running into difficulties regarding copyright infringement, defamation and abuse, and to promote and maintain the good name of ITC and its members.

  • If sharing content online, where part or all of the post is not your own original creation, it is advisable to seek permission from the original creator (if possible) and to give credit to the original creator in either the title or description of the post. Unauthorised or uncredited reproduction of another person/group's work could be considered plagiarism.
  • If posting or commenting on material regarding or relating to ITC (and ideally, regarding martial arts in general) on social media, it is advisable to do so from an account created specifically for your martial arts posts, where possible, and to use a separate social media account for your personal posts. Where this is not possible, or is impractical, it is advisable to ensure that one's Account Privacy Settings restrict visibility of your personal posts to people that you have specifically added as “Friends”, and that those “Friends” are people that you truly know. Keep in mind that, what you deem harmless or entertaining (for example, but not limited to: jokes, political views or religious beliefs), may be seen as offensive by others. If the people viewing your posts are not close friends or family members, they may not understand the context of your post, and may judge you, and by extension other ITC members, harshly. Remember that the tone of a message can be lost when the message is reduced down to a simple social media post, and your words or intentions may be taken out of context.
  • Take care in your choice of social media profile picture. On most sites, your picture will appear next to your post or comment. If you are posting or commenting on martial arts related topics, keep in mind that your comment may be seen by children, their parents and members of the general public. If your profile picture contains anything which may be deemed offensive (for example, but not limited to: nudity, profane language/gestures, violent imagery/language) it may reflect poorly on you and your fellow ITC members.
  • Similarly, if your profile picture features a martial arts related image, (for example, but not limited to: a martial arts club crest, a picture of you in your uniform, an image or you/someone performing martial arts), then you are effectively putting yourself forward as a proponent and ambassador of the martial arts. If this is the case, you should take care in what type of material you post and the language you use when wording your posts and comments.
  • It is advisable to customise your privacy settings on Facebook to determine what you share and with whom. However, as many people have learned all too well, virtually nothing is truly private on the Internet. It's very easy for someone to copy material out of restricted pages and redistribute it elsewhere for wider viewing.
  • Recognise that you are legally liable for anything you write or present online. You can potentially be sued by someone that views your commentary, content, or images as defamatory, pornographic, proprietary, harassing or libelous.
  • Refrain from publishing comments about other clubs, coaches or officials and any controversial or potentially inflammatory subjects.

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