Club Policy on Social Media, Email and Texts
Guide lines for coaches and team managers
Social Media, when used properly, is an exciting communications tool and opens up many opportunities. By following some simple guidelines potential pitfalls can be avoided, and Social Media can be safely used as a promotional tool and a means of communication for the club. These guidelines are based on those provided by the ECB.
Facebook and Twitter accounts are great a great way to promote the club and cricket in general, as well as being a useful tool, in your personal life. However, it is essential to keep these two worlds separate.
You should have separate cricket-club related and personal pages; all contact with players should be through the former, and strictly only in relation to training, coaching, matches, and cricket related activity.
You must also adjust the privacy settings for your personal accounts so that content is only visible to accepted ‘friends’. This will keep younger players safe from material that may be unsuitable for them, and will also reduce the risk of your online interactions being viewed with suspicion.
Although younger players may see you as a friend, and may request to be your ‘friend’ on a social media site, you should direct them to the cricket- club related pages and keep all contact professional. What they might consider as innocent and friendly contact may not be seen as such by their parents, people at the club and others.
Key points to remember:
• You are representing the club
• Your communications should conform to ‘Safe Hands’ policy and guidance.
• Ensure that nothing you post could cause personal distress or be seen as inappropriate for children.
• You should have consent before posting any personal information online – this includes photographs where an individual can be identified. Remember the picture/no name guidance for under 18s.
Remember: If you wouldn’t put it on the club notice board, it doesn’t belong on the club’s social media pages.
Texts and emails: Contacting Under 18 players
The Children Act defines a person under 18 years as a child. Therefore you should make arrangements for under 18s via their parents or carers; this includes text and email messages. However, in the case of over 16’s this may not be ideal for yourself or the parents. An acceptable exception to this rule is to text or email the parent and to copy in the 16 or 17 year old, with the parent’s prior consent. This means the parent is able to monitor communications, but the 16 or 17 year old receives the information directly. If you receive any responses from a child that appears inappropriate you must bring them to the attention of the parent or carer.
You must not engage in individual text or email conversations with a 16 or 17 year old, without their parent receiving the same messages from you. All contact with children should be in relation to coaching, matches and cricket-related activity.
Any concerns regarding the above should be raised to the Club Welfare Officer.
Written July 2014
Reviewed September 2017