My thoughts are that a Facebook group is better in terms of privacy. I think BSA has put out some guidelines concerning social media. I'm thinking that they would go with the closed (admin. approved membership) model.
The opposite is true: BSA policy requires that unit social media be public.
"To help ensure that all communication on social media channels remains positive and safe, these channels must be public, and all communication on or through them must be public. This enables administrators to monitor all communication and help ensure there is no inappropriate communication between adult leaders and Scouts or between Scouts themselves. Therefore, no private channels (e.g., private Facebook groups or invite-only YouTube channels) are acceptable in helping to administer the Scouting program. Private channels and private communication put both the youth and you at risk. If you feel the information you seek to share via social media channels should not be shared in public, you should not share that information via social media."
We had a public page for about 2 hours. As soon as I started tagging Scouts in the photos, friends of theirs started making crass comments about Scouts being fags in addition to your basic 4-letter words.
Now we're in violation of policy because I scrapped the public page and made a private group.
One big issue with BSA's social media policy is that whoever wrote it doesn't understand BSA's Youth Protection Policy, specifically, they do not understand that 2-deep refers only to overnight camping trips, and that no-one-on-one applies to all situations. So, the social media policy constantly refers to "two-deep" leadership when talking about PMs, email, IMs, etc. Specifically, the policy requires a second person is copied in on any electronic communication because "two deep" is required.
This position—whether its grounded in two-deep or no 1-on-1—also shows a basic ignorance about the nature of online communication. A Facebook PM, an Instagram PM, Twitter DM, email, etc never go away. Ever. Never, ever. If Joe Molester is going to mess with a Scout, his online messages and text messages are there forever, and he knows that. Yes, there are dumb criminals and they do use social media, but sending a direct message to a Scout does not endanger the Scout and the evidence is there forever.
Making those messages forbidden does not protect Dudley Doright from false accusation, either. Because those messages never, ever go away, they are false accusation proof. Mama Moneygrubber cannot falsely accuse Dudley because the innocent messages are there exonerating him forever.
Superfluous CCs annoy parents. There is no reason to copy mom on a text message that reads "don't forget your compass."
That snarky line at the end of the quote is stupid, too. The decision to go private had nothing to do with the content we were posting, it had to do with the response of teenagers and 20-somethings. I "feel" that the information should not be shared in public because the public are jerkwads, not because the content I was sharing (photos of camping trips) was some shady grey area content that I wanted to hide.
Edited by Scouter99, 26 July 2015 - 11:14 PM.