I’m taking the HyperlibMOOC class this fall. It’s been a fun experience: far exceeding my expectations with stimulating discussions, lectures, activities, and side conversations.
Currently, I’m working on a social media guidelines assignment for class. Browsing around the web for examples of other library social media policies, I stumbled on to one which I won’t call out by name. Their policy states:
“We reserve the right to use your comments in promotional materials, to use your stories to show others what makes [insert library name] unique and extraordinary.”
Is this standard boiler plate language? If so, what exactly does it mean?
- Would retweeting a comment such as: Got my assignment done! This library rocks! count as part of this?
I do that at my library without really thinking about it. To me, it’s part of the ethos of Twitter.
Or, might I see your Twitter post or Facebook comment incorporated into promotional materials for the library? Like an advertisement or poster. That I have a problem with. I’m not part of tin-foil hate brigade when it comes to privacy, but I do expect a certain base amount of protection and I bristle at things that come across as pure advertising.
Let’s say I posted something on the library’s Facebook page and then saw it captured and featured on large plasma displays in the library:
THAT would bug me. Without my permission? No.
I’m not exactly sure I have an answer for what IS the dividing line in terms of social media and privacy. It often seems rather fluid.
As a librarian and as a professional, I’ve always felt it was just the “right” thing to do to ASK people for their permission to use comments in advertisements and promotions. We’re inviting people to “friend” and “follow” us, I’d rather not risk that friendship just for an advertisement.
What do you think…Am I way off-base here? Is the library a business like anything else? Should we be mining our patrons’ comments and posts for our benefit without asking? Let me know!