The United National Transport Union (UNTU) would like to appeal to its members to be mindful of what you share on any social media platform and to read through a post before sharing it or retweeting it.
Over the past few weeks UNTU took note of photos on social media of individuals who were ignoring the lockdown regulations of Government. At the same time there were several instances where fake news where circulated on various platforms.
When President Cyril Ramaphosa declared the COVID-19 pandemic a national disaster in March 2020, Government issued a regulation that anyone who creates or spreads fake news about COVID-19 is liable for prosecution hence information must be verified before it is shared.
On 11 June 2020 Twitter Inc requested users to click on links and other websites before retweeting them to discourage the spread of misinformation and to encourage more thoughtful communication on its social network.
In 2017 Facebook announced several steps it implemented to combat the posting of fake news and inauthentic spam accounts. According to a statement Facebook believes fake news is harmful to communities, makes the world less informed and erodes trust.
UNTU has cautioned our members about the dangers and consequences of participating on any social media platform, irrespective of your own closed social media account, those of your employer or the social media accounts of the Union.
General Social Media Don’ts:
- DON’T provide confidential or other proprietary information. If there is any question in your mind, or on the side of keeping silent.
- DON’T refer to your employer or fellow colleagues in a negative manner. Remember
- whatever you publish on social media becomes public immediately and will remain with you for your entire career.
- DON’T assume that posting anonymously will keep your identity secret if you publish inappropriate comments and content.
- DON’T use ethnic slurs, personal insults, obscenity, or engage in any online conduct that would not be acceptable at work.
- DON’T just like someone’s comment. Read what is said and associate yourself with the words or photo before you like it or retweet it.
Social Media Do’s:
- DO make certain that your online profiles and related content are consistent with how you wish to present yourself to colleagues and your employer. Model good behaviour.
- DO take personal responsibility for the content that you publish on any public forum.
- DO be selective. You do not have to accept every friend request that comes your way. It is okay to restrict your Facebook friends list to people you know.
- DO practice positivity. If you like a post, like it. Got an encouraging word to say? Go ahead and comment. Post a story, video or picture that is bound to make people smile.
If you are going to act impulsively on social media, let this be the way you do it.