There has been a recent post about an alleged local sex offender and want to point out that although this is an appalling crime, one that I hope the police are fully investigating, it is actually a criminal offence (amongst other acts, under the Communications Act of 2003) to post information about these crimes regardless of whether they are true or false.
I am actually not going to discuss this ongoing investigation or the laws. Instead, the purpose of my post is to educate people of the role of an admin on these social media pages and the importance of managing them correctly and professionally and within the confines of rules set down by the platform providers.
Using Facebook as an example, they have a whole section on community standards and how users should post respectfully and take into consideration all those using the same platform. For example, Facebook have a section 13 titled “Hate Speech” that defines what is the rationale behind this policy and therefore admins must adhere to it explicitly. If an admin does not apply the Facebook rules and policies set down, in managing a page to these standards the page could be taken down and an admin could actually be held accountable (albeit partially) for the content and not complying.
I appreciate this makes an admin job very difficult where they have to weigh up the difference between what is socially acceptable and what can be seen as personal feelings or opinions. However, the admins role is a matter of fact and must be taken very seriously indeed. it also means that admins are put under extreme pressure by these social media platforms to manage and make sure that the page and posts are all fair and run within the rules with no exceptions.
The last point I want to make is about how admins are treated managing these pages. I get calls and emails from people all over asking for my advice in regard to this matter and my advice is clear. Using the same rules laid down by these social media platforms that the admins have rights too, they shouldn’t be abused, there should be no hate crimes against them for managing these pages within the guidelines set out by the provider and those people who make crimes against admins face prosecution under Hate Crimes. The Crown Prosecution Service defines a hate crime as a range of criminal behaviour where the perpetrator is motivated by hostility or demonstrates hostility towards victims disability race religion sex or sexual orientation or transgender identity, furthermore a hate crime can include verbal abuse intimidation threats harassment assault and bullying as well as damage to property.
So, to conclude if you are going to admin a page then you do so within the confines of the rules set up by that platform provider. furthermore, those who choose to publish posts on these pages must also comply with the rules set out with the provider and the laws within the UK.
Facebook Community standards: https://www.facebook.com/communitystandards/objectionable_content
Crown Prosecution Service: https://www.cps.gov.uk/hate-crime