Social Media Policy

Social Media includes any online communications channels dedicated to community-based input, interaction, content-sharing and collaboration. Websites and applications dedicated to, but not limited to forums, microblogging, social networking, social bookmarking, social curation, and wikis are among the different types of social media.  Examples of social media sites include, but are not limited to, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and X (formerly known as Twitter).

The Yonkers Public Library (“Library”) has a presence on several social media platforms to promote its programs and services, and to provide an opportunity for the sharing of ideas, opinions, and information about library-related topics. This includes, but is not limited to: conveying information about library programs and services; advising patrons about program updates; obtaining patron feedback, exchanging ideas or trading insights about library trends; reaching out to potential new patrons; and raising awareness of the Library's brand. The Library aims to provide a welcoming and inviting online space where patrons will find useful information and be able to interact with library staff and other library users. 

While the Library encourages an open forum, posts and comments are moderated by Library staff. The Library reserves the right, at its sole discretion, not to publish/post and/or to remove submissions or comments that violate this policy and/or are otherwise inappropriate or unlawful.

1. General Rules and Guidelines

Rules for Commenting and Posting: 

  1. Posting offensive, obscene, threatening, harassing, abusive, defamatory or discriminatory content is prohibited. The Library will remove posts/comments that contain abusive, vulgar, offensive, threatening or harassing language, personal attacks of any kind, or offensive terms that target specific individuals or groups. Individuals are fully responsible for libelous or defamatory comments. Posts and/or comments threatening the Library, library staff and/or patrons will be referred to law enforcement. 
  2. Hate speech will not be tolerated. Posts containing racism, homophobia, sexism, or any other form of hate speech will be removed from the Library’s site.
  3. Please do not include personal information. The Library strongly discourages individuals, especially people under the age of 18, from posting personal information about themselves (e.g. last names, school, age, phone numbers, addresses, etc.), and reserves the right to remove any posts with personal information about other people or that violate a third party’s right to privacy.
  4. Stay on topic. Comments and posts should be related to the issues being discussed. Do not post links to sites that are not relevant to the topic.
  5. Spam will be removed. The Library will also remove posts or comments used for promotional and/or commercial purposes or for campaigning, soliciting and/or fundraising. 
  6. Individuals should not post anything that they do not have the right to post. The Library will comply with takedown requests when notified of violations of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
  7. The Library is not responsible for any of the patron–generated comments/content that appears on social media. A posted comment is the opinion of the poster only, and publication of a comment does not imply endorsement or agreement by the Library.
  8. Users may report concerns and Library staff will endeavor to review those concerns as soon as possible. The Library reserves the right to remove/delete user comments and posts in a manner consistent with its mission and policies.

2. Library Employees

  1. Only employees designated and authorized by the Library (“designated and authorized employees”) can prepare content for, publish, delete, edit, or otherwise modify content on the Library’s social media platforms on behalf of the Library. Designated and authorized employees are responsible for ensuring that the Library’s social media conform to all applicable Library rules and guidelines. These employees are authorized to remove immediately, and without prior notice, any content from Library social media, including, but not limited to, offensive content such as pornography, obscenities, profanity, and/or any other material that violates Library policies or the General Rules and Guidelines set forth above. All other employees may post and/or comment as members of the general public, and are subject to the General Rules and Guidelines set forth above, as well as the additional rules set forth below. 
  2. Employees are prohibited from posting or otherwise sharing confidential, proprietary, or nonpublic Library information.   
  3. Employees are prohibited from posting or otherwise sharing personal information regarding fellow employees, including, but not limited to, home addresses, phone numbers, social security numbers and/or medical information. 
  4. Employees are prohibited from posting or otherwise sharing confidential patron information, including, but not limited to, names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, borrowing history and/or account numbers.   
  5. The Library’s harassment policy shall apply to employee posts and comments. 
  6. Employees must abide by the YPL Policy Manual concerning staff use of electronic resources.
  7. Employees may not post personal views or statements as representing the views or statements of the Library. Employees who choose to identify themselves as employees of the Library on social media should state explicitly, clearly, and in a prominent place that their views are their own and not those of the Library.

3. Photographs/Videography

The Library permits the taking of photographs and video in accordance with its Photography Policy.  The posting of such photographs and/or video on the Library’s social media shall be permitted for the purpose of advertising and/or promoting the Library’s programs and services without the prior consent of the subject(s) of the photograph(s) and/or video(s).

4. Violations

Patrons who repeatedly violate these rules may be barred from further commenting and/or posting.

Employee violations of this policy may result in loss of permissions to manage social media platforms, as well as discipline up to and including termination of employment in accordance with the requirements of any applicable statutes, rules, regulations and/or collective bargaining agreements. 

Adopted by the Board of Trustees on November 16, 2017

Updated by the Board of Trustees on December 21, 2023