Georgian Police Engage the Media and Use Social Media

Tim Burrows and I recently traveled to Georgia, not the state but the country, for the Department of State, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) program to provide media relations and social media training for the Georgian Police.  We conducted some preliminary research and arrived prepared to share our experiences and offer our insight into ways to improve their relationship with the media and how to use social media more effectively.

This was my second trip to Georgia and we arrived a little tired from the long trip but excited about the opportunity.  Our hotel was in the capital of Tbilisi located about 30 minutes from the Georgia Police Academy, where we conducted our training.

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A Good #SM Policy Protects Officers & Departments

According to a 2014 survey completed by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), over 95% of agencies that responded to the survey say they use social media.  This percentage has increased significantly since the beginning of the survey several years ago.  However, only 71% of departments say they have a social media policy.  In 2010, the year of the first social media survey, this gap was even wider.  At that time, only 35.2% of departments had a social media policy.  Although the percentage of departments that have a social media policy has risen dramatically, one question still remains:  Do the departments that have a social media policy have a good one?

This can be a difficult question to answer.  There are many law enforcement agencies with good social media policies.  Although good social media policies vary in length and content, there are at least three parts that should be in every policy.

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