One of the sessions I enjoyed most at EMS Today this year was "The Facebook" session. In "Fired for Facebook?: 15 Common Sense Principles to Help Keep Your Face on Your EMS Agency's Profile," JEMS Editorial Board members Steve Wirth, Esq. and Douglas Wolfberg, Esq., offered the room full of attendees tips of things EMS providers should NOT do on Facebook.


1. Don’t Post Inappropriate Pictures of Yourself or Others;

2. Don't Post Pictures or Make Comments About Patients;

3. Don't Complain About Your Job, Supervisors or Coworkers;

4. Don't Post Conflicting Information About Your Credentials Or Resume;

5. Don't Lie About Your Profile Information or Lie In Your Postings;

6. Don't Post Statuses You Wouldn't Want Your Boss to See;

7. Understand and Check Your Settings;

8. Don't Accept or "Troll" for "Friends" Who Aren't Really Friends;

9. Don't Post Things While Engaged in Work Activities;

10. Don't Make Statements About Others That Can Lead to Defamation or Slander Claims;

11. Don't Violate Coipyright Laws or Misuse Other Peoples' Stuff;

12. Don't Share Confidential or Proprietary Information;

13. Don't "Trash Talk" or Pick Fights or Harass Others;

14. Avoid Politically Charged Statements or Statements that Indicate "Biases"; and

15. Correct Your Mistakes!


"It's kind of a free for all out there these days," Wirth told attendees. "Ultimately only you have responsibility for what you post."

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Tags: Facebook, etiquette, tips


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Comment by Nathan Stanaway on March 30, 2011 at 6:28pm
That was a good article.  Thanks.  Im willing to bet that in the future almost all activity on social media will be protected. Legally. (Again, Im not saying its smart to dump on people)  I imagine there will be restrictions about what will be considered unprofessional behavior reflecting on the company.  But certainly any opinions about the company and or colleagues would I imagine be protected.   Obviously, broad "you cant reference, refer, or otherwise speak of us on social media" are not acceptable.
Comment by Jennifer Berry on March 30, 2011 at 1:19pm

Thanks to mwboswell for a great link!

Comment by mwboswell on March 30, 2011 at 1:34am

To Nathan:

Check this site:


Of course for licensed/regulated healthcare workers -there's always the "unprofessional conduct" clause.... beware.

Comment by Peter Minners on March 24, 2011 at 1:31pm
I'm a big fan of freedom of speech myself but, this really is just a reminder to folks that social media isn't a private conversation between you and 300 of your closest friends.  It's equivalent to writing something on a piece of paper and posting it in a room, in somebody elses house, where millions of other people go to post their notes in their rooms, and thinking there's no chance your boss will ever wander around and look in any of the rooms (which people do all the time).  

None of us live in a vacuum.  People know people who know people and chances are 1 of those 300 friends just might like the supervisor you hate and mention the post to them.  Social media requires social responsibility and social etiquette to be utilized correctly.  If you don't, it's just a matter of time before you alienate the wrong person :-)
Comment by Nathan Stanaway on March 24, 2011 at 12:13pm
Not that its a good idea, but didnt the NLB recently rule in favor of free speech on social networking sites?  Im not saying smack talking your boss is ever a good idea.  Im just saying its legal.  Im a big fan of freedom of speech.  Maybe its the whole born in America thing..
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