World Association of News Publishers

WAN-IFRA's Social Media Policy

WAN-IFRA's Social Media Policy

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WAN-IFRA encourages its staff, friends and colleagues to engage in a dynamic conversation about the future of news publishing through our blogs and social media platforms, and through your personal platforms as well.

To help make this exchange work well, we have developed a social media policy for staff for their use of social media in their work.

Social media is consumer-driven, transparent, engaging, inclusive and sincere. It shouldn't be impersonal, exclusive, formal or one-sided. Engaging with our audience via social media is like being invited into their homes.

WAN-IFRA's social media policy:

We are the trade association for the newspaper industry, whose mission is "to be the indispensable partner of newspapers and the entire news publishing industry worldwide, particularly our members, in the defense and promotion of press freedom, quality journalism and editorial integrity, and the development of prosperous businesses and technology." Our professional communications on all platforms should reflect this mission. Do not provide information that compromises or denigrates WAN-IFRA policy or public positions.

  • When talking about WAN-IFRA and its issues, those not authorised to speak in an official capacity should include a disclaimer that makes clear that they are speaking as an individual, and that their opinion does not necessarily reflect the views of the organisation. This applies to personal platforms where you are identified as a WAN-IFRA employee.
  • Always be respectful, and make sure your communications are in good taste. Do not disparage or insult others. If you are reacting to criticism, always keep your cool – the goal of social media is to create dialogue.
  • Always remember that your posts are visible to anyone with online access.
  • Good writing matters. As the global organisation of the newspaper industry, our members expect nothing less. And always ensure that the information is relevant to our audience.
  • Be authentic. Social media are personal, not corporate; be conversational.
  • Be sensitive about linking to third party content – links can be seen as an endorsement. This also goes for re-tweeting on Twitter, "likes" on Facebook and similar pointers to third-party content. These are important tools to build relationships with other network members, but be sure the content is appropriate.
  • Always give credit to others when credit is due.
  • WAN-IFRA believes in transparency and honesty. You are encouraged to use your real name and identify yourself as a WAN-IFRA employee when you talk about WAN-IFRA-related topics. The use of pseudonyms and aliases are strongly discouraged.
  • Do not share information that might violate a colleague's right to privacy. Likewise, respect confidentiality and do not share confidential information.

Legal Matters

For your protection, and the protection of WAN-IFRA, employees are prohibited from engaging in activities via internal and external social media channels that:

  • could easily provoke a legitimate copyright infringement claim;
  • evaluate the performance of their co-workers, business partners or suppliers;
  • criticise the behaviour or actions of a customer;
  • discuss legal matters, litigation or WAN-IFRA's financial performance. When asked by others to discuss any of these matters, employees should reply that "WAN-IFRA's social media policy only allows authorized employees to discuss these types of matters but I can refer you to someone on our external communications team if you'd like to ask them" and refer the question to an appropriate communications team member.


  • BBC Guidance: Social Network, Microblogs and other Third Party Websites: Personal Use
  • Kodak's Social Media Policies
  • The American Institute of Architects: Staff Use of Social Media
  • Social Media Policy Template by Eric Schwartzman

For a complete list of social media policies, consult the Online Database of Social Media Policies,


Anton Jolkovski's picture

Anton Jolkovski


2014-05-19 17:06

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