The FA has seen an increase in the number of complaints and referrals it has received in relation to postings on social networking sites such as Twitter & Facebook.
This is of concern to the FA and we would ask you to remind all participants within your club of the following key points:
• All comments on social networking sites may be considered public comment by The FA and County FA
• Any comments which are improper, bring the game into disrepute or are threatening, abusive, indecent or insulting may lead to disciplinary action
• Comments about match officials which imply bias, attack the officials’ integrity or are overly personal in nature are considered improper
• Comments which include a reference to a person’s ethnic origin, colour, race, nationality, faith, gender, sexual orientation or disability may be considered aggravated and attract a higher disciplinary sanction
• Re-tweeting or re-posting another person’s post may lead to disciplinary action if the original comment was improper
• Deleting or apologising publicly for an improper posting, whilst advisable, does not prevent disciplinary action being taken
• An individual is strictly responsible for any posting on his/her account. Participants should take every care to ensure that others do not access their account, as the fact that a posting or comment may have been made by a third party will not prevent disciplinary action being taken against the account holder
Participants are required to act in the best interest of the game at all times.
Whilst we are conscious that the use of social networking sites can be positive we must advise that participants exercise caution with the content of any postings.
In addition to the above, youth clubs are also reminded of their safeguarding responsibilities in relation to this subject of social media. Further information about staying safe online can be found on the County FA website:
The FA has produced a range of guidance around this issue for coaches/managers, players and parents/carers, regarding the appropriate use of social networking, texts, emails and websites. This can be found at http://thefa.com/TheFA/WhatWeDo/FootballSafe/Downloads
If you have any queries in relation to this matter, please do not hesitate to contact the County FA offices.
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