'Pono' needed in the Army's modern social media world
March 22, 2013
WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii -- The Army lives by its core values of loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, honor, integrity and personal courage.
Soldiers, family members and Department of the Army civilians should remember that these standards still apply to personal actions conducted in cyberspace.
The Army Social Media Handbook states that "Soldiers are authorized to use and belong to a variety of social media platforms as long as their involvement does not violate unit policy and the basic guidelines of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. … Commenting, posting or linking to material that violates the UCMJ or basic rules of Soldier conduct is prohibited."
UCMJ violations may include Article 88, contempt towards officials; Article 89, disrespect toward superior commissioned officer; Article 91, insubordinate conduct; Article 133, conduct unbecoming an officer; and Article 134, for general violations.
"It is important that all Soldiers know that once they log on to a social media platform, they still represent the Army," the handbook states.
USAG-HI uses its Facebook page as an information resource to disseminate daily information and as a host for its quarterly town hall.
While participant interaction is encouraged, users are reminded that this resource's main mission is not a complaint forum for resolving issues. The garrison provides other customer service resources to track and resolve issues and concerns on post.
Participants are also reminded of the garrison's posting policy, which is to maintain a professional, polite and positive page that is family-friendly. Comments will be removed if they are abusive, hateful, racist, graphic, obscene or explicit. They will also be removed if they attack personnel, attempt to defame a person or organization, promote commercial or non-government agencies or events, encourage illegal activity, compromise operational security, or contain swear words.
Basically, USAG-HI asks that social media users employ the same respect when posting a comment as they would when addressing someone in person. While frustrations may be growing in this time of decreased resources and manpower, participants are asked to use the same common courtesy with which they would like to be addressed.
Users are also reminded that the garrison's Facebook page is monitored 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday-Friday. Comments posted after hours or during the weekend may not be addressed until the next business day.