GSA Student-Athletes and Coaches,
As you begin your participation in the athletic season, the Athletic Department at Green Street Academy wants to make sure you are aware of the social media guidelines. Baltimore City Public Schools and the Athletic Department recognize and support the student-athletes’ rights to freedom of speech, expression, and association, including the use of social networks. In this context, however, each student athlete must remember that playing and competing for Green Street Academy is a privilege. As a student-athlete, you represent the school and you are expected to portray yourself, your team, your school and the school district in a positive manner at all times.
Below are the social networking guidelines, which provide the following direction for social networking site usage:
- Everything you post is public information-any text or photo placed online is completely out of your control the moment it is placed online-even if you limit access to your site. Information (including pictures, videos, and comments) may be accessible even after you remove it. Once you post a photo or comment on a social networking site, that photo or comment becomes the property of the site and may be searchable even after you remove it.
- What you post may affect your future! Many employers, college admissions officers, and athletic recruiters review social networking sites as part of their overall evaluation of an applicant. Carefully consider how you want people to perceive you before you give them a chance to misinterpret your information (including pictures, videos, comments and posters).
- Never involve yourself with alcohol or any other controlled substance. Posting pictures, retweeting, or “liking” a post where this behavior is going on also indicates your approval
- Similar to comments made in person, the GSA athletic department will not tolerate disrespectful comments and behavior online, such as
o Derogatory language or remarks that may harm teammates or coaches; other GSA student-athletes, teachers or coaches; and student athletes, coaches or representatives from other schools, including comments that may be disrespectful to opposing teams.
o Incriminating photos or statements depicting violence, hazing, sexual harassment; full or partial nudity; inappropriate gestures; vandalism; stalking; underage drinking, selling, possessing, or using controlled substances; or any other inappropriate behavior (including the use of profanity)
o Creating serious danger to the safety of another person or making a credible threat of serious physical or emotional injury to another person.
o Indicating knowledge of an unreported school or team violation-regardless if the violation was unintentional or intentional.
In short, do not have a false sense of security about your rights to freedom of speech. Understand that freedom of speech is not unlimited. The online social network sites are NOT a place where you can say and do whatever you want without repercussions. The information you post on a social networking site is considered public information. Think about whom you represent: yourself, your family, your teammates and coaches, and your school. Like it or not, people are going to associate everything you post with you and what you represent. Protect yourself by maintaining a self-image of which you can be proud for years to come.