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Privacy Policy

Terms of Use

Social Networking and Social Media

Comments expressed in this Social Media Policy or in the Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission (CMRPC) Social Media Sites do not necessarily reflect the opinions and position of the CMRPC, its individual members, or its administrators, officers, or employees. The CMRPC reserves the right to remove or hide a comment that is in violation of the CMRPC’s policy, without prior notification. The CMRPC does not endorse any content, viewpoint, product, or service linked from its social media sites and shall not be held liable for any losses caused by reliance on the accuracy, reliability, or timeliness of shared information. In addition to information provided by the CMRPC, the Social Media Sites may contain comments and opinions from unrelated third parties which are being provided as a convenience to the public and for informational purposes only. These comments or opinions do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by the CMRPC of any of the views or comments posted on the CMRPC’s website. Furthermore, the CMRPC bears no responsibility for the accuracy or legality of these materials. Under Massachusetts law, these comments are public record because these are made in connection with CMRPC business.

Internal Terms of Use:


This document defines the social networking and social media policy for the CMRPC. To address the fast changing landscape of the way residents within the CMRPC region communicate and obtain information online, the CMRPC aims to use social media tools in conjunction with traditional outreach methods to reach a broader audience. The CMRPC encourages the use of social media to further the goals, vision, and mission of the Organization. The CMRPC also seeks to maintain immediate, open, honest dialogue with members of the public through the use of social media platforms. This policy establishes guidelines for the use of social media.

Acceptable Use
Personal Use

All CMRPC employees may have personal social networking and social media sites. These sites should remain personal in nature and be used to share personal opinions, interests, etc. If an CMRPC employee chooses to identify themselves as such on a personal account, a disclaimer that the employee is expressing their own personal views (and not those of the CMRPC) should be present. In keeping with current Massachusetts public records laws, posts may be subject to public records laws.

CMRPC Social Media Terms of Use

Professional Use

All official CMRPC related communication through social media and social networking outlets should remain professional in nature and should always be conducted in a professional manner. Employees must not use official agency social media and social networking sites for political purposes, to conduct private commercial transactions, or to engage in private business activities. (see External Terms of Use, page 3). CMRPC employees should be mindful that inappropriate usage of official agency social media and social networking sites can be grounds for corrective action from CMRPC Administration. Only individuals authorized by the CMRPC Communication and Outreach Team may publish content to the CMRPC’s social media platforms.

Oversight and Enforcement

Employees representing the CMRPC through social media outlets or participating in social media features on agency websites must maintain a high level of ethical demeanor and professional modesty. Failure to do so is grounds for revoking the privilege to participate in CMRPC social media sites or other social media features. Information must be presented following professional standards for good grammar, spelling, brevity, clarity and accuracy, and avoid jargon, obscure terminology, or acronyms. Designated employees, approved by the Executive Director, are responsible for overall social media administration. Administration includes:

  • Scheduling and uploading posts
  • Moderating comments (see External Terms of Use, page 3)
  • Maintaining the site, aesthetics for the site, descriptions
  • Reviewing each post for policy and legal issues;
  • Other editing to correct spelling or grammatical errors.
  • CMRPC employees recognize that the content and messages they post on social media websites are public and may be cited as official statements from the Organization and subject to Massachusetts Open Records Law. CMRPC Social Media Sites shall only be used by Organization employees for CMRPC Professional use only and not for their personal use or for the personal use of the public.

Organization employees and the public may not publish information on agency social media sites that includes:

  • Confidential information
  • Copyright violations
  • Profanity, racist, sexist, or derogatory content or comments
  • Partisan political views
  • Commercial endorsements or SPAM.

CMRPC Social Media Terms of Use
Records Retention

The Massachusetts Legislature has declared that access to information concerning the conduct of the people’ s business is a fundamental and necessary right of every person in this state. The Massachusetts Public Records Law, Massachusetts General Law Chapter 66, requires the CMRPC to make public records available for inspection by the public and to provide copies upon request. CMRPC has established guidelines to ensure that all persons understand and are afforded the opportunity to use their right to access public records. A copy of the Public Records Access Guidelines is available for inspection at the CMRPC office and website, www.cmrpc.org.

External Terms of Use
The following guidelines must be displayed to users on all social media sites or made available by hyperlink on the CMRPC’s social media profile(s) and cmrpc.org where applicable.

Limited Public Forum
All social media sites used by the CMRPC are designated as Limited Public Forums. The CMRPC welcomes a person’s right to express their opinion and encourage posters to keep comments relevant to the topic in question. Posting of any content on any social media site used by the CMRPC by any visitor, follower, subscriber, or fan, constitutes acceptance of the terms of use described here in this policy.

Comments and Interactions
The CMRPC reserves the right to repost, share, like, or retweet content from another social media account. A like, share, or retweet of content does not imply an endorsement of that account. Likewise, comments expressed on any CMRPC social media page do not necessarily reflect the opinions and position of the CMRPC, its individual members, administrators or employees. When in doubt, the CMRPC will take a very conservative approach to what appears through social media.

Third party comments will be rejected or removed (if possible) when the content:

  • Is off subject or out of context
  • Contains obscenity or material that appeals to the prurient interest
  • Contains personal identifying information or sensitive personal information
  • Contains offensive terms that target protected classes
  • Is threatening, harassing, defamatory or discriminatory
  • Contains any copyrighted material owned by a third party
  • Circumvents Public Records and Open Meetings Laws
  • Incites or promotes violence or illegal activities
  • Contains information that reasonably could compromise individual or public safety
  • CMRPC Social Media Terms of Use
  • Advertises or promotes a commercial product or service, or any entity or individual

Moderation of Third Party Content
The CMRPC’s social media sites serve as a limited public forum and all content published is subject to monitoring. In the same manner as a public forum, user generated posts should be suitable in terms of time, manner and place. The CMRPC reserves the right to publish any posting, or to later remove it based on the aforementioned guidelines. While endorsing the proper use of the limited public forum on the CMRPC’s social media platforms the CMRPC cannot guarantee that violations will not take place. If a comment violates these guidelines, the CMRPC reserves the right to remove or hide a comment without prior notification.

Public Records Law
Commission social media sites are subject to applicable public records laws. Any content maintained in a social media format related to Commission business, including communication posted by the Commission and communication received from citizens, is a public record.

The CMRPC Communication and Outreach Team (who maintain the social media sites) is responsible for responding completely and accurately to any public records request for social media content. Should you have any questions in regards to this Terms of Use, please contact the CMRPC Communication and Outreach Team at rao@cmrpc.org.

Municipalities and governmental entities are allowed to contract directly with CMRPC in accordance with MGL Chapter 30B Sections 1 (b) (3) and (b) (9). Contract with CMRPC, contact CMRPC’s Executive Director, Janet Pierce at jpierce@cmrpc.org

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