Any one have anything in their bylaws reguarding posts on face book, twitter and others,about pics from fire scenes and mvc's and your basic b/s talk that you have when members are unhappy about be voted out of office? We are in the process of adding to our bylaws and any help would be great
This is a section that we had just added to our depts. constitution.
Section VII. The use of (PED) personal electronic devices (ie cell phones, digital cameras etc) is prohibited. Any photos or videos taken with AFD equipment during training, incidents etc. are the exclusive rights of the Abrams Fire Department and are for internal use only. Any images that are taken and or distributed without written permission from the AFD Chief will be cause for immediate dismissal from AFD along with any legal prosecution that so warranted.
as long as it can be done so safely, pictures can be taken however they MUST be approved before posting where the public can see it. License plates, any patients, or 'gore' can not be present in any photo.
we do not have a formal rule against it, but it well known that license plates and victims are off limits in pictures. On our website a few license plates may be shown, but its reporting news, not showing off to people on facebook of incidents. We have a high number of new members, and on the ordinary MVC scene, we have additional hands that photos are possible. As webmaster of our website, I encourage taking photos, and all of my firefighters know what I want/expect.
I haven't talked to the chief yet about social network sites like facebook but I have about emergency service sites like this one since I am the dept photographer. No license plates are to be shown, no patients at all, try not to show the building address unless it printed in the paper or shown in a photo posted on the dept website first then may do so. I don't know about what rules the other members have to follow pertaining to photos.
Address isnt a big deal. It becomes public knowledge when dispatched. Also, just because a newspaper prints it, doesnt mean you can. Press isnt bound by any HIPAA regulations.
thanks to all with some talk to other departments in the area i think we can get somthing drawn up and added
I'm unsure to the exact wording in my companies bylaws but I'm aware of a rule stating that any pictures, videos, and recordings of any type are to be reviewed by either the chief or the PLO if on-scene for an extended amount of time. A good thing to consider is exactly what is and what is not allowed in any type of recording (picture, video, audio etc. ) One must be specific about these things because if a loophole exists it will be exploited at some point. I'm fairly certain that Facebook and other means of social networking are monitored under a more unspoken rule (use your best judgement) although there is punishment for violations.
As to BS talk common among angry firefighters, just make sure they know to avoid slandering the company and/or one another.
I would like to add to the discussion that i started. One problem that we have is the local Fireman Association is always looking for new incident photos to add to a photo album that is on display at their tent during the county fair. This might cause some problems when we add to our bylaws.
At a monthly meeting a few months back the subject was brought up of photos being sent on cell phones during fires and mva's was being done by neighboring departments during the operations , So needless to say our word of mouth policy at this point is No photos with your cell or camera , department camera only to be used and the chiefs exact words "keep your cell phone in your pov" Written policy is almost done .
That is the nice thing about having a dept photographer, it eliminates a lot of the issues that could arise. My photo are used by the dept for public services (dept open house, the local fair), press releases, the dept web site, sometimes for investigations and I can post many on fire / ems sites to show my work as well as the dept working.