Social Media: Account Management

Getting Started

Whether you are deciding if a portfolio or group you represent needs a social media presence, wondering if you should take on a new platform, need help with an upcoming campaign, or want to bolster existing efforts, your first step should be to contact the Social Media Steering Group. The SMSG will help you determine the most effective way to get your message across, whether it involves creating a new account or utilizing an existing one.


All social media accounts must be created and maintained by an authorized representative of the Institute. Faculty and staff account managers and contributors must adhere to all applicable Rensselaer Human Resources Policy Guidelines as set forth in Policy 800.8 – Social Media. Students must adhere to the Policy on Electronic Citizenship included in the Rensselaer Handbook of Student Rights & Responsibilities.

Guiding Principle

Rensselaer social media accounts should promote interaction and conversation with and between their followers. However, there may be a point at which an audience member posts something inappropriate for the general audience. The account manager is permitted to delete user comments per the Rensselaer social media guideline, which applies to all Rensselaer social media accounts. The guideline is as follows:

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute reserves the right to delete user comments that promote commercial ventures or that do not comply with other Institute or (platform) policies. Posts that are off-topic, abusive, contain profanity, are threatening in tone, or devolve into personal attacks will be deleted. Account administrators reserve the right to review all comments and posted materials and remove such materials for any reason.

This guideline should be listed on Facebook and other platforms that provide the space in an “About” section. While all social media audience members have a right to free speech, an account manager may only delete a comment that meets the criteria for deletion in the guideline, not simply because the manager does not like or agree with the comment.

Content and Interaction

Social media content should be the original work of a Rensselaer employee or student and link to a Rensselaer Web page when possible. Exceptions include sharing relevant posts by outside sources such as reputable news outlets and user-generated content.

Account managers are encouraged to interact with other official Rensselaer social media accounts through tagging, mentions, shares, comments, and retweets. Such interaction leads to cross-promotion, which is likely to increase awareness of multiple accounts among followers. Account managers can also boost visibility by interacting with sources outside of Rensselaer, including news outlets and industry accounts that share information their followers would find interesting.

A social media post that includes a photo or video will generally get a better response than a text post. Account managers should not post photos, videos, memes, or gifs without a Rensselaer connection because we want to give our followers an experience that is unique to the Institute.

Credit the original source when posting user-generated content. User-generated content can be obtained when the owner of a photo or video shares it with a Rensselaer social media account through a message, mentions the account’s handle, uses a hashtag promoted by the account, or mentions the department, group, or initiative the account represents.

Rights and permissions must be secured before posting, sharing, or distributing copyrighted materials, including but not limited to: music, art, copyrighted photographs or texts, portions of copyrighted video, or information considered proprietary by a Rensselaer partner, vendor, affiliate, or contractor. Content should be removed if the originator requests that it be removed.