Ask any U-W Badgers fan on Twitter for must-follows and you’re likely to hear about forward Zach Bohannon (@ZBohannon), who on Thursday posted photos of himself with each of the head coaches in the Final Four and a bonus photo with former President George W. Bush.
But whether it’s Bohannon, Sam Dekker (@samdek1), Frank Kaminsky (@FSKPart3), or Traevon Jackson (@T_Jacks12), they are all following a social media policy laid out by the university at the start of the school year.
The social media “guidelines,” obtained by the nonprofit Student Press Law Center (SPLC) along with dozens of other university social media policies, include tips for Badger student-athletes such as “Would you want your mom or grandma to see what you posted?” and warns that children could be among a student-athlete’s followers. It also warns against identity theft, a growing concern among college students. It is a part of a “Handbook & Planner” given to all Badger student-athletes.
The university policy on social media for its employees is adapted from one created by the University of Michigan. It is posted online. For more on the SPLC look at other athletic departments around the country and how they handle social media for their student-athletes, click here.
Here is the entirety of the Badger student-athlete social media guidelines found on p. 96 of their handbook.
1) “Social media can be a wonderful glimpse into a person’s personality. Use it for good, not evil.”
2) “Think about what you are posting—remember that nothing on the internet is ever truly ‘private.’”
3) “When you are posting remember that you represent yourself, your family, your school and your team.”
4) “Your followers could include children, teammates, student-athletes from other schools, coaches, media members, etc. Be smart about what you post.”
5) “Good rule of thumb: Would you want your mom or grandma to see what you posted? Remember, that goes for re-tweets too!”
6) “Be careful to protect your identity—don’t post things with your address, phone number, credit card info, etc. Also be careful talking about places you are going, especially late at night if you are going to be alone.”