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Responding to Negative Comments on Social Media

Feb 12, 2015
Live Blog Responding to Negative Comments On Social Media

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Learn how to appropriately respond to negative social media posts. This is a transcript of live tweet coverage of an in-person session at Foundation Center Atlanta.

Presented in collaboration with Pro Bono Partnership of Atlanta.

Nonprofits thrive on their personal relationships with donors, clients, volunteers and other stakeholders. Unfortunately, sometimes those relationships go sour, and with the explosion of social media, the resulting negativity can become extraordinarily public. How do nonprofits deal with these negative comments? 

This session covered:

  • Whether or not to respond to attacks
  • How to respond
  • When to call a lawyer
  • When to call a public relations expert
  • Tips for avoiding these situations

Key takeaways:

  • Have a social media policy in place, even a simple one, that includes escalation strategy for staff responding to comments.
  • Obtain consent if you plan to use people's images, especially if they're celebrities.
  • Legal remedies for negative comments are difficult, costly, and time consuming. Best to focus on 3Rs: Respond, Respect, Resolve.
  • Respond immediately online to negative comments to show that you're listening, but resolution may work best by moving the discussion into offline channels, like calling or meeting with commenters.

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Presenters

ASHLEY HARP  Working from Jackson Spalding’s Athens office since 2007, Ashley provides strategic counsel to national, regional and local clients on marketing communications, social media and brand development. She supports social media strategy for clients including SCANA Energy, Orkin and Mattress Firm. She was recently featured in a video promoting the University of Georgia and Public Relations Society of America co-branded course “Using Social Media to Build Business.” In January 2015, Ashley presented at the National Generation & Transmission Communicators Conference on “Staying Ahead of the Social Media Curve.”

DON RIDDICK is a IT transactional attorney who is passionate about the vibrant field of technology law. He has successfully and agilely closed transactional negotiations, settlements, audit disputes, and relationship agreements on high profile US and global customers, including over 400 of the Fortune 500. Don has successfully removed posts and settled numerous social media cases and reviews with most of the top social media providers over the last ten years.

CANDACE RODRIGUEZ is Associate General Counsel for The Home Depot. In this capacity, Candace provides transactional and regulatory support to The Home Depot’s merchandising organization. Additionally, she manages the intellectual property portfolio for the organization.  Prior to joining The Home Depot, Candace worked for King & Spalding, LLP.  Candace received her undergraduate degree from Spelman College and her law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School.