Some countries and organizations have developed guidelines for exposure to social media. For example, the Federal Association of Digital Economy (Bundesverband Digitale Wirtschaft – BVDW) in Germany has Social Media Code of Ethics, which helps maintain the constructive use of the social media and also guides the relationship between companies and bloggers and other social network users. Most importantly as regards contents, they expect respect towards users and their opinions, objectivity in communication, quick and appropriate response to comments, questions and opinions, honesty in dealing with errors and mistakes, and respects for copyrights, privacy policies and data protection.
However, to avoid undermining another person’s right or allowing your own rights to be overstepped on social media, there are a few basic tenets of online communication that you should be aware of:
Know the Boundaries of the Rights of a Blogger
As publishers, bloggers have the responsibility to declare whether they are giving an opinion or speaking as a representative of a group. Already, we have said that Compensated Endorsement of Blog Posts and Tweets should be clearly stated. In addition, bloggers have the responsibility to state the source of their information and how authentic the sources are. Also, bloggers are expected to verify information before propagating them via their blogs or social networks. False information could severely affect the credibility of bloggers and negatively affect their audiences.
Understand Employees-Employers' Social Media Constraints
While there is so much to say about the rights and privileges of employees and employers as regards social media, it is simply advisable that all employers update their staff handbook and state their expectations clearly. They should be fair in their demands, considering the extent to which social media has woven itself into our daily activities.
Social media is obviously in its infancy, and the ethical challenges facing it should be expected. In fact, ethics – what is right and what is wrong – is a subject of constant controversy. We just need to regularly develop policies to help manage the excesses of people.