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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Facebook Fan Page Guidelines or House Rules

Facebook Fan Page Guidelines or House Rules: Coca-Cola

What about Facebook guidelines or house rules? How prevalent are they and what are some good examples?

Having explored the matter from a LinkedIn perspective in LinkedIn Group Guidelines or Rules of Engagement, I was interested in turning to Facebook.

My favorite Facebook House Rules example comes from the Intel Facebook Fan Page [hat tip to the wonderful Ekaterina Walter who shared her Facebook experiences in a MarketingProfs pro seminar titled Growing Your Fan Base and Engaging Effectively on Facebook.

Although relatively few Facebook Fan pages include guidelines or house rules [e.g., Urban Outfitters, Zappos, Amazon, IKEA - among others - do not], I found examples more easily than I did searching for them in LinkedIn Groups. Possibly because legal teams are involved in initially creating these brand presences on Facebook Fan pages?

At first, I thought that Nestle had no rules posted. But, then, I came across a note on Nestle's Facebook Policy. These House Rules from Converse All Star have to be the simplest guidelines ever! Are they enough in your opinion?

I'll share with you in more detail these three Facebook Fan page guidelines: Intel, Coca-Cola's House Rules [featured on a dedicated page] and those of the U.S. Army, referred to as "Public Transit".

Intel's Facebook Fan Page House Rules

Welcome to Intel’s Facebook page. We’re glad you are here.

This page provides a place to discuss the Intel brand, our family of products, initiatives, services and breaking news. The following guidelines are designed to help provide a quality environment for our fans. Please take a minute to read them and keep them in mind whenever you participate.

By using or accessing this page, you agree to comply with Facebook’s Terms and Conditions. While we are excited to hear from everyone, it is important to note that postings by fans to Intel’s Facebook page do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Intel, nor does Intel confirm their accuracy.

We understand that technology is a subject many of you are passionate about – a passion we share. We welcome all questions and commentary, including constructive feedback. We don’t take decisions on moderating posts lightly. But we do expect that participants post content and commentary that is both relevant and respectful to this community as a whole. Intel reserves the right to remove any posts that don’t adhere to our guidelines and to block anyone who violates them repeatedly. Specifically, we do not tolerate these kinds of posts:

• Abusive, harassing, stalking, threatening or attacking others
• Defamatory, offensive, obscene, vulgar or depicting violence
• Hateful in language targeting race/ethnicity, religion, gender, nationality or political beliefs
• Fraudulent, deceptive, misleading or unlawful
• Trolling or deliberate disruption of discussion
• Violations of any intellectual property rights
• Spamming in nature
• Uploading files that contain viruses or programs that could damage the operation of other people’s computers
• Commercial solicitation or solicitation of donations
• Link baiting (embedding a link in your post to draw traffic to your own site)

If you have a customer service issue, we recommend going to for the fastest path to resolution.

Coca-Cola's Facebook Fan Page House Rules

This is your Fan Page and we encourage you to leave comments, photos, videos, and links here. However, we will review all comments and will remove any that are inappropriate or offensive. We will leave what you share that relates to the subjects covered on this Page. Please understand that comments posted to this Page do not represent the opinions of The Coca-Cola Company.

Coca-Cola Facebook Terms of Use
The Coca-Cola® Facebook page is intended to provide a place for fans of Coca-Cola® to discuss Coca-Cola® beverages and promotions. All comments, visuals, videos and other type of material posted by fans on this site ("User Content") do not necessarily reflect the opinions or ideals of The Coca-Cola Company ("TCCC"), its employees or affiliates. TCCC (a) does not represent or warrant the accuracy of any statement or product claims made here, (b) is not responsible for any User Content on this site, and (c) does not endorse any opinions expressed on this fan page.

All users must comply with Facebook's Terms of Use and TCCC's Terms of Use for the Coca-Cola Facebook Page. TCCC does not monitor every posting of User Content on the Coca-Cola Facebook Page. TCCC expects, however, that users will not post any materials that fall into any of the following categories and may have removed any materials that:
  • Defame, abuse, harass, stalk, threaten or otherwise violate the legal rights (such as rights of privacy and publicity) of others.
  • Publish, post, distribute or disseminate any defamatory, infringing, obscene, indecent, misleading or unlawful material or information.
  • Upload or attach files that contain software or other material protected by intellectual property laws (or by rights of privacy of publicity) unless you own or control the rights thereto or have received all necessary consents.
  • Upload or attach files that contain viruses, corrupted files, or any other similar software or programs that may damage the operation of another's computer.
  • Delete any author attributions, legal notices or proprietary designations or labels in any file that is uploaded.
  • Falsify the origin or source of software or other material contained in a file that is uploaded.

The U.S. Army's Facebook Fan Page House Rules

Welcome to the U.S. Army's Official page on Facebook, where you will find the most recent news stories, videos and photos that are distributed by the U.S. Army's Office of the Chief of Public Affairs.

If you're looking for the official source of information about the U.S. Army please visit our homepage at

On Facebook, we hope you'll join us here and check out our profiles on: Flickr, Twitter and You Tube and the Army's official blog, ArmyLive.

While this is an open forum, it's also a family friendly one, so please keep your comments and wall posts clean. In addition to keeping it family friendly, we ask that you follow our posting guidelines here. Posts will be removed if they violate the guidelines listed below.

- No graphic, obscene, explicit or racial comments or submissions nor do we allow comments that are abusive, hateful or intended to defame anyone or any organization.

- No solicitations or advertisements. This includes promotion or endorsement of any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. Similarly, we do not allow attempts to defame or defraud any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency.

- No copyrighted or trademarked images or graphics. Imagery should be owned by the user.

- No comments or photos that suggest or encourage illegal activity.

- No documents of any kind should be posted on this page.

You participate at your own risk, taking personal responsibility for your comments, your username and any information provided.

Also, the appearance of external links on this site does not constitute official endorsement on behalf of the U.S. Army or Department of Defense.

For more information, visit the DoD Social Media user agreement

Three examples from three large organizations. Certainly, much more detailed than the Converse example. Considering, though, that these are House Rules and the message serious, the tone is relatively conversational making the rules of engagement easy to understand and setting expectations for those wanting to interact with the Facebook Fan Page.

What is your take on these Facebook Fan Page Guidelines or House Rules? What would you add? What would you do differently?

[I've just updated the Columbia Business School Alumni Club of New York House Rules.  Feedback welcome!]

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  1. House rules seem like a good safe guard, especially for these monster brands, even if it only serves as a reminder. It's also good to differentiate a business page from a personal page, where users may be a bit more laid back about their topics and language.

  2. Emily, house rules are definitely a valuable safe guard for these big brands. I find that, just as with a blog comment policy, guidelines help all size brands establish commonality of purpose and expectations for response.

    It will be very interesting to see how all of this evolves.

    Thanks for visiting!


  3. I have created our House Rules in the Notes section of FB but how do I actually get a link on the left hand side of the News Feed to the House Rules - not many people poke around the Notes area and we want the rules to be very visible.
    Regards, Jeanette.

  4. Jeanette,

    You can try to add a brief message about your House Rules in your 'about' section in the left sidebar. Otherwise, I recommend detailing it in Info - which is more visible than Notes.

    I'd love to see your House Rules when you have the chance.

    Thanks for visiting and commenting.



Reminder: Please, no self-promotional or SPAM comments. Don't bother if you're simply trying to build inauthentic link juice. Finally, don't be anonymous: it's too hard to have a conversation. Thanks, CB

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