Recent news surrounding the resignation of Kent’s youth crime commissioner, following inappropriate Twitter use, illustrates the need for brands and businesses to set appropriate social media guidelines for staff, advises integrated social media, search and PR company Punch Communications.
Paris Brown, 17, was appointed by Kent Police to act as a bridge between the younger community and the police. Tweets sent by Paris before her appointment, between the ages of 14-16, have been considered offensive, racist, homophobic and pro-drug use and have ultimately led to her resignation and potentially a criminal investigation.
Pete Goold, managing director at SEO agency Punch Communications, says: “Increasingly, stories are hitting the headlines about people inappropriately using social channels to air work grievances. This latest news about Paris Brown further demonstrates how anti-social behaviour on platforms such as Twitter can have significant negative repercussions for employers; Kent Police in this instance. Most disconcerting, it was Paris’ former updates on Twitter, previous to her appointment, which led to her downfall.
“It is paramount that businesses and brands of all sizes spend sufficient time creating a social media policy which can be shared amongst employees. Whether they like it or not, employees are brand ambassadors for the company they work for and any negative or inappropriate content shared by them on social channels could be detrimental to both their employer and subsequently, their role.
“Employers are also vetting potential employees on social channels, so it would have been wise for Paris to check her history on Twitter before applying for the role. Any candidates looking for employment now should take heed and ensure their channels are ‘interview-ready’.”
With clients spanning the globe, Punch’s social media agency services include strategic consultation, content creation and implementation, fan and follower acquisition and social media policy development. For further information visit www.punchcomms.com.