Skip to the content of the web site.

Monday, January 10, 2011

  • 'Guidelines' for Waterloo in social media
  • Feds promotions, math lecture and more
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

'Guidelines' for Waterloo in social media

[Platz gesturing]“Use good ethical judgment and follow university policies,” say new guidelines on the university’s use of social media — Facebook, Twitter and the rest. The guidelines were prepared by a committee headed by Kayleigh Platz (left), social media specialist in the office of communications and public affairs, and are now available on the CPA web site.

Platz explains that the guidelines are meant to cover situations in which someone is representing the university online. They’re not about personal use of social media sites, and they also don’t touch on student groups or individuals.

The guidelines “should be seen as a part of the larger uWaterloo positioning guide,” the web page says. “Social media at uWaterloo follows the same beliefs and vision.… At Waterloo, we want to communicate well. We want every person who encounters us to come away from our story thinking, ‘That was interesting,’ or ‘That was something I didn’t know before.’ But above all, we want people to feel that we are telling them the truth about who we are and the experiences we provide. It’s about being authentic and honest in how we face the world.”

And more: “Social media is about conversations, community, and building relationships. Social media is a tool to connect with fellow staff, students, both current and prospective, alumni and other stakeholders. Social media is a ‘many to many’ network tool and offers different levels of engagement than other broadcast channels. Social media not only allows you to hear what people say about you, but also to respond.”

The guidelines say: “We encourage you to think about your total communications goals, and to take the time to map out how social media will enhance and complement your other media. Before embarking on creating a presence on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media outlet, please complete and submit the Social Media Brief for review and to be added to the official uWaterloo social media list.”

Some advice: “Be honest about your identity. If you are authorized to represent uWaterloo in social media, say so. If you choose to post about uWaterloo on your personal time, please identify yourself as a uWaterloo faculty or staff member. Never hide your identity for the purpose of promoting uWaterloo through social media. Make sure that you have all the facts before you post. It's better to verify information with a source first than to have to post a correction or retraction later.”

The guidelines include a warning: “There's no such thing as a ‘private’ social media site. Search engines can turn up posts years after the publication date. Comments can be forwarded or copied. Archival systems save information even if you delete a post. If you feel angry or passionate about a subject, it's wise to delay posting until you are calm and clear-headed.

“Do not post confidential or proprietary information about uWaterloo, its students, its alumni or your fellow employees. Use good ethical judgment and follow university policies. If you discuss a situation involving individuals on a social media site, be sure that they cannot be identified. As a suggestion, don't post anything that you would not discuss in a public area.

“Discuss with your supervisor when you are empowered to respond directly to users and when you may need approval. If you have any questions about whether it is appropriate to write about certain kinds of material in your role as a uWaterloo employee, ask your supervisor before you post. If you have to think about it, it probably is not appropriate.”

By way of background to the guidelines, Platz explains that “the university has been exploring social media and its application for the last year and a half at different levels. The university, as a whole, is focused on expanding and engaging in Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

“Many faculties, departments and offices are also involved in social media. Currently Alumni Affairs and Marketing and Undergraduate Recruitment have worked closely with CPA to create unique social media strategies to complement their specific audiences.”

Back to top

Feds promotions, math lecture and more

Monday of the second week of classes, and here’s the latest from the Federation of Students: “A Canadian crooner, wing sauce flying everywhere, free food, lots of laughs and sex with Sue. It’s Frost Week at Waterloo.” Nga Tran, special events coordinator for the Feds, says the week — well, three days, Tuesday through Thursday — offers “something for everyone” and is “a way to welcome all of Waterloo’s undergraduate students back and remind them that even though the homework has already started, there’s always time for some fun.”

The details: Frost Week will kick off with free breakfast treats in the Student Life Centre tomorrow at 8 a.m., followed that night by an 8 p.m. comedy show at the Bombshelter pub with Yuk-Yuk comedians. On Wednesday the iconic Sue Johanson will be in the SLC at  noon for Sex with Sue. A Canadian celebrity, Johanson has been packing university auditoriums for years. “Following Sue will be a tough act,” says Tran, “but the Bomber Wing Eating competition is going to do its best. Five heats of five students will compete for bragging rights and full bellies. For those not full of chicken wings, the Frostfest Night will kick off at 8 p.m. in the SLC with inflatable games, speed meeting and video games. All of the fun is leading up to the main event, a free Justin Nozuka concert on Thursday at Federation Hall. Doors will open at 8 p.m. and it’s an all ages event. Nozuka has been described as ‘soulful and wise as blues greats four times his age’.”

While all that’s going on, the Feds have another promotion going on, aimed at giving some student “a glimpse of what it would be like to rule as mayor of the Federation. Starting January 10, students are encouraged to check into Feds on Foursquare to compete for the title of Mayor of Feds.” Okay, explanation for those who aren’t that deeply into certain social media:  Foursquare is a cellphone app that can be downloaded free to any smartphone. Then users “check in” at various locations as they visit, and Foursquare uses the GPS functionality on phones to ensure the user is at that venue. Somebody who’s been to a place more often than anybody else in the past 60 days is celebrated as “mayor” of that location. Kirsty Budd of the Federation says the new promotion “is set to be a highly competitive race with huge prizes at stake, including a free iPad, VIP and free lunch at the Bomber for a month as well as free coffee from Federation Xpress for a month, not to mention bragging rights. Students can check in from January 10 to March 10. The student that checks in the most over that period will be awarded the mayorship. Throughout the winter term there will be specials that can be unlocked just by checking in at at Feds’ businesses including the Bomber, Wasabi, Curry Up and Federation Xpress. The specials will include discounts on meals, free items and loyalty rewards.”

The human resources department sent an e-mail memo last week to thousands of people who were paid by the university (staff, faculty, students and others) during 2010. “In preparation for issuing T4 and T4A tax forms this coming February,” it said, “we would like to ask you to verify the address that Human Resources has on file for you. To do this, please use your ACE/ Quest/ WatIAM username and password to log into myHRinfo. Navigate to the Personal Information Summary page. Here you can view the address on file in Human Resources. If this is not the address you would like your tax forms mailed to when they are printed in February 2011 then click on the yellow button to Change home address and save the change. Address changes in Quest are not reflected in Human Resources automatically. Please also check your Social Insurance Number (SIN) for accuracy.” And a warning: “There is a $10 administrative charge to replace lost T4 or T4A slips. Please keep it in a safe place when you receive it next February.”

[Yau]There’s been so much interest in a January 18 lecture by Harvard mathematician Shing-Tung Yau (right) that it’s been moved from the originally scheduled lecture hall to the biggest space available, the Theatre of the Arts — and even that venue is now filled. “We are very grateful to the actors and the director of a production that was already scheduled to rehearse in the theatre on that evening,” says pure mathematics professor Spiro Karigiannis, who was a doctoral student with Yau and is organizing his visit. "The bookstore has started a waiting list of names for tickets. People who have already registered are being asked to pick up their tickets by Friday at the latest. Any unclaimed tickets will be redistributed to the names on the waiting list, beginning Saturday, January 15.” The talk, sponsored by the Faculty of Mathematics with support from the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics and the university bookstore, comes just after publication of Yau’s his new popular science book, The Shape of Inner Space. “Professor Yau's research has had many profound impacts in the understanding of the geometry of our physical universe,” says Karigiannis, who will introduce Yau at the 7 p.m. event with some anecdotes and personal recollections. A reception will follow, organized by the math faculty alumni office.

The December 22 Daily Bulletin noted a number of retired and former faculty members who died during 2010, and here's one  more. Philip Basil Healey, who died on July 20, was a faculty member in the economics department in the 1967-68 year. He then moved on to a career at Wilfrid Laurier University (which in those years was still Waterloo Lutheran University), as a faculty member in business and economics and, for a time, as vice-president (academic). He officially retired in 1992.


Back to top

Link of the day

Plough Monday

When and where

Internet Explorer 8 will be released from the Windows patching server on Monday. Details.

Senate graduate and research council 10:30 a.m., Needles Hall room 3004.

Work reports due for most returning co-op students, Tuesday.

Games Institute gathering to discuss collaborations Tuesday, Communitech Hub, Kitchener; demonstrations also planned. Details.

‘BlackBerry 101’ “trainer-to-go” program at Waterloo Stratford Campus, Tuesday 12:00 noon. Details.

Senate undergraduate council Tuesday 12:00, Needles Hall room 3004.

Arts faculty council Tuesday 3:30, Theatre of the Arts.

Application deadline for Ontario secondary school students to apply for September admission, January 12 (other deadlines pertain to some programs). Details.

Career workshop: “Networking 101” first part Wednesday 4:30, Tatham Centre room 1208 (second part January 26). Details.

Weight Watchers at Work January 13, 20 and 27, 12:15 p.m., PAS building room 2438 (note room change); information ext. 32218.

Art gallery reception for the opening of exhibitions by Balint Zsako and Susy Oliveira, Thursday 5 to 8 p.m., East Campus Hall.

Science alumni and friends Ski Day at Osler Bluff near Collingwood, Friday. Details.

Library books borrowed on term loan before mid-December are due January 15; return or renew online.

Grade 10 family night for parents and university-bound students, information about application process, finances and choices, January 20, 6:30, Humanities Theatre. Details.

Engineering alumni ski day at Osler Bluff near Collingwood, January 21. Details.

Waterloo Summit Centre for the Environment, Huntsville, Ontario, grand opening January 21, 4:00, reception 6:00, panel discussion 7:00, by invitation.

St. Jerome’s University lecture: Bishop Remi De Roo and Gregory Baum, “The Promises of Vatican II” January 21, 7:30, Siegfried Hall.

Fall term grades become official January 24.

Volunteer and Internship Fair organized by Centre for Career Action, January 25, 11:00 to 2:30,  Student Life Centre.

Howard Armitage, founding director of Conrad Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology, “thank you celebration” January 27, 4:00 to 7:00, Communitech Hub, Kitchener, RSVP by January 20.

An Evening with David Morrell celebrating 50th anniversary of the department of English, January 27, 7:00, Siegfried Hall, St. Jerome’s University, tickets $10. Details.

One click away

Kitchener planner now ‘in residence’ at university
Mel's Diner fire investigated as arson
Juniper College, the home of ‘Office Hours’
Clusters (like Waterloo) ‘key to the innovation culture’
Traffic delays as McMaster food services staff strike
Football steroid scandal ‘raises questions’ for the US
‘It’s time to transform undergraduate education’
Nominations open for K-W Arts Awards
City of Waterloo documents on Northdale neighbourhood
Universities lobby Parliament about salary cap law
Spending on research and development (Stats Canada)
Man charged in September car-bicycle crash
‘Five myths about internationalization’Are students seeing the value?

Friday's Daily Bulletin