This is both an encouragement and a warning! The various social media platforms are a great way of keeping in touch with each other, supporting one another in learning, and debating issues and topics. BE AWARE, however, that whatever you say on such platforms may become public even when you consider them closed and only available to colleagues or friends. The safest approach is to think of whatever you say on social media as a public statement and something you would be prepared to say out aloud and directly to the person or people concerned.

The guidelines on this page are taken from those of that apply to the national social media accounts of the Church of England and are what we take to be our own guiding principles. As a student on any of our courses you must adhere to them.

Having a concern to be faithful ambassadors for Christ in all that they do, those on ministerial training programmes in this diocese must adhere to these guidelines in their use of social media:

  • Be safe. The safety of children, young people and vulnerable adults must be maintained. If you have any concerns, ask a diocesan safeguarding adviser.
  • Be respectful. Do not post or share content that is sexually explicit, inflammatory, hateful, abusive, threatening or otherwise disrespectful.
  • Be kind. Treat others how you would wish to be treated and assume the best in people. If you have a criticism or critique to make, consider not just whether you would say it in person, but the tone you would use.
  • Be honest. Don’t mislead people about who you are.
  • Take responsibility. You are accountable for the things you do, say and write. Text and images shared can be public and permanent, even with privacy settings in place. If you’re not sure, don’t post it.
  • Be a good ambassador. Personal and professional life can easily become blurred online so think before you post.
  • Disagree well. Some conversations can be places of robust disagreement and it’s important we apply our values in the way we express them.
  • Credit others. Acknowledge the work of others. Respect copyright and always credit where it is due. Be careful not to release sensitive or confidential information and always question the source of any content you are considering amplifying.
  • Follow the rules. Abide by the terms and conditions of the various social media platforms themselves. If you see a comment that you believe breaks their policies, then please report it to the respective company.
See the full document at the Church of England website.

Last modified: Tuesday, 18 May 2021, 4:13 PM