Social media

View the Facebook channel for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council

View the X channel for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council

View the YouTube channel for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council

View the Linkedin account for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council

Social media house rules

Updated March 2024

The communications and marketing team is responsible for the council’s social media presence on Facebook, X, LinkedIn and YouTube. These accounts aim to explain services, initiatives and decisions taken and to answer questions you may have on them.

We want you to join the conversation and to comment on what we and others are saying. While we read all comments and aim to be as responsive as possible, we cannot respond to every individual comment. We will however ensure that any common themes or helpful suggestions are passed to the relevant council team.

We have a short set of house rules to help everyone to understand what we consider to be acceptable and unacceptable.

We support and encourage free speech and don't want to have to remove any content, so please try and keep your contributions within these house rules. If these rules are broken, we may issue you with a warning about your future contact.

For serious or persistent breaches of these rules, we reserve the right to prevent users from accessing our pages and/or report them to the platform and/or the relevant authority.

Political comments during the pre-election period

During the pre-election period, councils have to be particularly vigilant in monitoring what is posted on their accounts. Comments or posts that could be seen as relating to any political party or candidate will be deleted.

Be kind

We will not tolerate any form of direct or indirect bullying, harassment or victimisation of other users or of our staff or councillors and we take this behaviour extremely seriously. Please let us know if you feel people are using our page to bully or intimidate you and we will remove the offending comments and consider removing that person from our site. We won’t reply to abusive messages and may take sanctions against anyone posting messages of this nature, in line with our Unreasonable Behaviour Policy.

Don’t spam or troll us

Spam is the term that describes any kind of unwanted online communication. If you spam our page, we reserve the right to delete it and may ban persistent spammers.

We will not respond to people who post hostile, abusive, condescending, sarcastic or offensive language that is intended to belittle or intimidate and will take action, which could include banning them.

This is because these types of posts can spoil other people’s experiences of using our page.

We will also remove any posts that advertise private businesses or services.

What you say is public

You are wholly responsible for any content that you choose to post or share on our social media accounts. Any posts containing misleading or deceptive information will be removed. We will also remove posts that unnecessarily name council officers or staff.

We reserve the right to restrict comments on our posts where appropriate.

Be respectful

We will not accept swearing, abusive or offensive language and will remove any comments that contain them. This includes racist, sexist, sexually explicit, homophobic or otherwise offensive remarks.

In cases where comments incite hate based on race, religion, gender, nationality, sexuality or other personal/protected characteristics (as defined in the Equality Act 2010), we will consider reporting the comment to the police.

We also reserve the right to hide or remove comments that are likely to disrupt, provoke, attack or offend others.

What to do if you don't agree with comments by others

People are encouraged to submit comments on our social media channels in the spirit of free and open dialogue and debate. If you disagree with a comment on our page, you are welcome to add a reply to express this, provided you stay within these house rules. However, if you do wish to formally complain about material posted, by another person, you can let us know by emailing communications@basingstoke.gov.uk.

False identities

If it's clear you aren't who you say you are then not only are you breaking Facebook and X's rules but you’re also breaking our house rules and we will remove any content you've posted and may block you from our page.

Respect confidentiality

Please don’t post confidential or private information on our pages, as they are a public forum. This includes sharing your own phone number, email address or other contact details, or anyone else’s. If you need to share this kind of information with us, please send it in a private message.

Report abuse

If you are offended by another user's post, please report it to Facebook or X. If you would like us to remove it, please contact us at communications@basingstoke.gov.uk and we will look into the issue.

What we will do if users contravene these rules

If we see users on any of our social media channels breaking any of these rules, we may hide the comments or replies. This means although your comment or reply is still posted, it will not be easily visible to other people, and, depending on the channel, this may only include you and your connections.

If you repeatedly break these rules, we will consider banning you from the council profile or page on the channel you are posting on. We will issue you with a warning on the channel you are posting on and then monitor your comments over a period to provide a record if you continue breaking the rules. The Communications and Marketing Manager will decide if a ban is warranted.

If this happens, it will be without any further warnings.

If you have any questions you can contact us by emailing communications@basingstoke.gov.uk.

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