Community Guidelines are a critical part of managing an online community.
Setting expectations and healthy boundaries are essential so people know what behaviour is expected online. They are also important to help you protect not only the community, but your company.
It’s recommended that Community Guidelines:
- address expectations around anti-social behaviour, like offensive or discriminatory posts
- address expectations around spam, advertising and group attacks
- set the tone for collaboration and community
- make it clear not to share personal information
- address expectations around posting of fraudulent, deceptive or misleading posts (especially if a products-based business).
It’s also helpful to set expectations around where people can find out more about how to contact your business and operating hours.
Below is an example of the common features added to community guidelines. These are a good starting point for your community. You may have points you wish to add or remove based on your community vision.
Welcome to the [company] community! This is a safe space to discuss [brand/products or values].
We want everyone to be part of our community and have their voice heard.
We encourage your feedback and aim to respond to your comments as soon as possible. While we do moderate this community, we welcome open discussion.
To help everyone enjoy our community, we ask that when you post, you keep in mind the following:
- We don’t allow defamatory, indecent, offensive, profane, discriminatory, misleading, unlawful or threatening comments.
- Personal attacks, name-calling, trolling and abuse will not be tolerated.
- Spamming, posting promotional material or posting links to third party websites is not permitted.
- We reserve the right to delete comments at our discretion and block any repeat offenders. We will remove content that is fraudulent, deceptive or misleading.
- Coordinated group attacks will not be tolerated.
- Respect that other people in the community have had different life experiences and may have a different perspective to yours. We welcome different viewpoints.
- Our community is a public place. Don’t post personal information that you would not be comfortable sharing with a stranger. We recommend that you don’t post any information that may identify you or anyone else, such as your address, email address or phone number.
- Employees participating in the discussion in our community are reminded of the staff social media guidelines.
If you a question about a product or service of ours, please get in touch via our website at [website].
If you’d like to chat with a customer service representative, please get in touch with us at: [customer support hours, contact number and/or website].
Want to work with Rachel?Rachel Beaney is a writer and social media content specialist, helping businesses connect with their audiences.
She’s worked with local, national and global companies, in addition to not-for-profits and government bodies. She loves helping businesses tell their stories with creative and data-driven solutions.
She is based in Sydney, Australia.
Want to work together? Rachel would love to hear from you. Get in touch today.