Social media is the term for social networking websites such as Facebook and Twitter which enable online interaction between individuals and groups of people with similar interests and hobbies. Users of social media establish an online ‘profile’ on a networking website containing information about themselves, which might include: 
• Personal information 
• Social events 
• Activities and interests 
• Likes and dislikes 
• Friends 
• Photos 
• Videos 

These sites allow users to create their own content and share it with a vast network of individuals, known as online communities. Social networking is widely used to promote sports activities, campaigns and events.

Whilst social media can provide exciting opportunities, it’s important to understand that there is also a risk of danger and negative consequences if these sites are abused. Many social networking sites have age restrictions. To be eligible to sign up to Facebook or Twitter, you must be at least 13 years old.

We do not encourage young members to use social networking sites, and we do not engage with any young members online, for safeguarding reasons and to ensure our own protection against any potential allegations.

Social Media and Turtles Swimming Club Turtles Swimming Club, like millions of organisations around the world are starting to use social media as a way of communicating and engaging with our current and potential members. Social media platforms can be a powerful tool for marketing our club and can be used to promote our activities and achievements, and to interact with different stakeholders associated with the club. Through social media, we can discover new ways to reach our target audience, and when used correctly, can drive engagement with other parts of our organisation, such as your website. We can reach audiences from all different walks of life, of a variety of ages and with differing or common interests. In the UK alone, there are around 38 million active users on social media accounts, so it is important to ensure our club is in a position to capitalise on this huge audience.

Good Practice While social networking can provide exciting opportunities for helping our club engage with members and the public, it can also present a number of dangers and negative consequences if abused by users, such as: 
• Cyber bullying, through posts which are upsetting to people and often inaccurate. 
• Causing offence to individuals, or other clubs and organisations. 
• Exposure to inappropriate content, or offensive comments or pictures. 
• Adverse publicity through inappropriate posts 

To minimise risk at Turtles Swimming Club:

1. The social network site should never be used as a medium by which to abuse or criticise Turtles Swimming Club or any individual associated with the club

2. Photographs from Turtles Swimming Sessions or other activities should not be posted without direct consent from the person or parent/carer involved.

3. All images of children under the age of 18 must be: 
• Above the waist, covered. 
• In full clothing, not swim suits. 
• Distance shots where individual swimmers are non recognisable 

4. Personal information about swimmers must not be posted. This includes: 
• Full names 
• Family member names 
• Dates of birth 
• Age 
• Addresses 
• Health information

5. Turtles Swimming Club will operate 2 Facebook presences. 
• Turtles Swimming Club Page – this will be maintained by a nominated club administrator(s) with the sole purpose of advertising and promoting our activities. 
• Turtles Swimming Club Closed Group – this will be open to all current members of Turtles Swimming Club with the intention of giving members a forum to discuss and celebrate swimming achievements and club news. 

6. Members must not repost (eg copy and paste or screen shot) any content from Turtles Swimming Club closed group.

7. All members of Turtles Swimming Club have a responsibility to report any posts or online content that they discover that breaches this policy.

8. The creation of any social media presence purporting to be representing Turtles Swimming Club is not permitted without the express permission of Turtles Swimming Club committee.

Consequence of actions Please be aware that anyone posting messages, comments or any media on a social networking site that breaches the above social media policy may face disciplinary action in accordance with the Club’s disciplinary Procedures. You will be obliged, on request by the committee, to remove any postings that are in breach of this policy.

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