Social Media Policy

Updated January 2022

Over the last decade, social media has taken over many aspects of our life and has brought with it significant impact on brand reputation and societal engagement.

Ensuring all users have a positive and engaging social media experiences on official as well as affiliated channels is needed to achieve the school's goals. Understanding and supporting social media best practice policies are important for all University at Buffalo School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences community members. 

Social Media at the University at Buffalo (UB)

Social Media at the UB School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (SPPS)

SPPS Social Media Ownership
All official SPPS social media channels are managed by the Office of External Affairs.

Goals of SPPS Official Social Media Channels
SPPS strives to maintain a strong presence on social media to:

  • Keep students engaged in their education
  • Attract prospective students
  • Share research and scholarship
  • Promote long-lasting relationships with alumni, partners and friends
  • Inform the public about events and other information

SPPS Official Social Media Channels

SPPS Social Media and Crisis Communications

In the event of an emergency situation in the Pharmacy Building and/or on campus, the Office of External Affairs staff will utilize its social media platforms quickly and efficiently to provide needed information to students, parents, faculty, staff, and the community as soon as it is safe/possible.

Expectations and Best Practices

Global Social Networking Platform Policies
SPPS follows and adheres to all global social networking community policies and procedures including but not limited to:

On This Page

Definitions

Social Media
Social media is a form of electronic communication through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content, such as videos and photos.
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/social%20media

Official Channel
All social media channels that speak on behalf of or are affiliated with the University at Buffalo and/or the University at Buffalo School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, represent a university unit or department, or are administered or managed by university personnel to conduct official business are considered official UB channels.

Examples of Appropriate Content on SPPS Official Social Media Channels

  • Photos and videos relating to the University at Buffalo or the University at Buffalo School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
    • To ensure HIPAA compliance, any photo including a patient, community member or other non-UB SPPS members must have a completed subject/patient photo release form. The signed release form needs to be sent to Kara Sweet (kasweet@buffalo.edu) within seven (7) days of the event/date of completed form to ensure HIPAA compliance.
  • Infographics representing information: statistics, outcome measures, events, etc.
  • News releases
  • Bulletins/reminders about important upcoming tasks for pharmacy and pharmaceutical sciences students to help them stay on top of their schedules.
  • Pictures/profiles of SPPS community members
  • Celebration of pharmacy, national and academic related events/news to spread positivity and encouragement

Examples of Inappropriate Content on SPPS Official Social Media Channels

  • Alcohol
  • Nudity
  • Photos of anyone other than SPPS faculty, students or staff, unless written/signed permission is secured
  • Violent/Graphic content
  • Profanity
  • Copyrighted materials such as photos, videos, or articles
  • Content that violates global social media platform policies and procedures as noted above 

How to Handle Inappropriate Content on SPPS Official Social Media Channels
Send a screenshot or the URL of the post directly to Kara Sweet, Assistant Director of Communications and Alumni Relations: kasweet@buffalo.edu.

SPPS Social Media User Guidelines

We reserve the right to block users, delete a post or restrict access to any SPPS official social media channel if any of the following guidelines are violated:

  • Do not attack someone personally.
  • Do not attack another school account, business account, organization, etc.
  • Do not use curse words, racist words, or abusive language.
  • Do not engage in negative behavior/responses such as responding back to a comment with irrelevant/negative/emotional response. Keep in mind, a response may not be needed/warranted.
  • Be accurate and truthful in every post.
  • Do not advertise.
  • Failure to follow all global social media platform policies and procedures as noted above.

Personal Social Media Accounts

  • Students, staff and faculty should be aware of who is following their social media accounts, and that personal posts could be construed as an extension of your SPPS affiliation.
  • Students, staff and faculty communicating with UB/SPPS accounts via their personal accounts should ensure their word choice and tone is appropriate.

Creating an SPPS-Related Social Media Account

An affiliated account cannot be created until first consulting with Kara Sweet, Assistant Director, Office of External Affairs. If you would like to create a social media page on behalf of an SPPS organization, department or program, please contact Kara at kasweet@buffalo.edu with the following information:

  • Type of account you are considering creating
  • Overview/paragraph describing the group, or department
  • Name(s) and email addresses of those administering the account

The Office of External Affairs will help you to get started and explain the expectations and guidelines of having an SPPS-related account. Keep in mind that maintaining an active social media account is very important---even when classes are not in session.

Questions to ask yourself before creating an SPPS-related social media account:

  • Is there a true need for my account?
  • Are there already published accounts that cover my idea/messaging?
  • Do I have the needed time and effort to successfully run this account, even during semester breaks/summer?
  • Do I know how to proficiently use the social media platform of interest to engage my target audience?
  • Will this be one account on one platform or will multiple social media platforms be used?
  • Should I be working individually or with others to manage this platform to reach its full potential?

Reviewing the questions above can help you assess the need to create an account as well as refine account focus and messaging. A proactive review will help ensure on-point messaging and effective engagement for you and your audience.

Questions?

Any questions pertaining to this policy can be directed to Kara Sweet, Assistant Director of Communications and Alumni Relations, at kasweet@buffalo.edu or 716-645-7789.