Social Media Policy

Last Modified: April 2024


Social Media Policy for Friends of Michigan Libraries


The mission of the Friends of Michigan Libraries “is to support the activities of local Michigan libraries and to be advocates for libraries at the state level. FOML will serve as clearinghouse and information center for all Friends groups in the State of Michigan by planning meetings to exchange ideas, by supporting a newsletter to go to member groups, and by offering workshops and speakers to help advance the goals of Friends working with libraries, whether as program planners, as volunteers, as advocates of library legislation, or as a source of financial contributions and support.”

Policy Statement: The FOML will use social media to help fulfill the mission of the organization in addition to informing its member libraries of deadlines for grant and award applications, advertising events of interest to or sponsored by the FOML and/or Friends groups, promoting membership in the FOML, and providing general information pertinent to libraries and their supporters.

Purpose: To define best practices for FOML’s participation in the realm of social media. To create an informative and entertaining online space to engage Friends groups statewide.

Appointee and Description:

The Executive Board will appoint a board member to act as the Social Media Manager and one or more volunteers to assist the Manager. The Social Media Manager will be responsible for

  1. overseeing the volunteers and the social media postings;
  2. determining what information is proprietary or confidential as opposed to information that may be posted;
  3. delegating posting assignments to volunteer members;
  4. deciding which postings should be open to public comment, conversation or engagement of any kind;
  5. insuring that postings follow the FOML mission and social media guidelines;
  6. removing offensive material and blocking the user;
  7. answering questions or forwarding them to an authority;
  8. maintaining an offline calendar for online postings about annual FOML events like deadlines for grants, the membership drive, annual meeting; national events like Library Week, National Friends Day, and Banned Books Week;
  9. contacting the FOML Membership Coordinator/Web Developer for any questions or issues involving memberships, maintenance, or program registrations. (See Appendix C of FOML’s Standard Operating Procedures)


  1. Designated volunteers may post on FOML social media sites but not from personal profiles.
  2. Posting approval is not required of designated volunteers, but the Social Media Manager has full discretion to accept, edit, or delete postings.
  3. Member libraries should submit their event postings to the Social Media Manager with one or two pictures. The email address for the contribution of posts should appear on the main page.
  4. When following other sites (i.e. “liking” pages), consideration should be given to the ways in which the site coordinates with the FOML mission.
  5. Content should be posted frequently enough to keep followers engaged.
  6. Welcome new members when they renew lapsed memberships or join for the first time and thank them.
  7. The FOML will clarify at public events that photos taken of attendees may be posted on social media, but the FOML will honor the wishes of anyone who specifically asks that their photo not be published.
  8. As a courtesy, the FOML should obtain permission from presenters to publish their names and pictures.
  9. Children’s photos, clearly showing their faces, will not be identified by names nor will they be published without a signed parental release. Photos showing unidentifiable children (taken from the back) will not require a parental release. Sample signed release for a child by a parent/guardian: “I give permission for the photo(s) of my child(ren) to be used on social media by FOML.” Signature and date


  1. Posts should be impartial, void of personal stances and criticism of political parties, government policies, other groups, or individuals.
  2. Posts containing excerpts of copyrighted material should follow the law’s “fair use” exceptions.
  3. Posts should identify sources, giving attribution to the intellectual property of the originator so as to avoid plagiarism.
  4. General posts should relate in some way to the mission statement and engage followers.
  5. The FOML discourages postings that compromise the privacy of an individual or include personal information or self-promotion.


  1. The FOML will be held harmless against all claims in respect to damages or liabilities arising from its use of the social media content or any violations of laws or regulations.
  2. The FOML is not responsible for comments made by users. A posted comment is the opinion of the user only, and publication of a comment does not imply endorsement or agreement by the FOML.


Approved by FOML Board:  April 2024