How to be a civil servant AND a social networker

Civil servants now have a new code of conduct for social networks, thanks to MP Tom Watson, a long-time blogger and savvy MP who just announced (on the floor of Parliament) that he’s got it down to five points and a few paragraphs of government health warning stuff at the end. A little bird emailed it over to me, so if you’re a civil servant, listen up:

Principles for participation online
1. Be credible

Be accurate, fair, thorough and transparent.

2. Be consistent

Encourage constructive criticism and deliberation. Be cordial, honest and professional at all times.

3. Be responsive

When you gain insight, share it where appropriate.

4. Be integrated

Wherever possible, align online participation with other offline communications.

5. Be a civil servant

Remember that you are an ambassador for your organisation. Wherever possible, disclose your position as a representative of your department or agency.

In the small print it says “You should participate in the same way as you would with other media or public forums such as speaking at conferences.”