FACEBOOK SNARK: South Yorkshire Police draw a line in the sand beautifully

Learning how to handle online comments is one of the hardest things you can do in the public sector.

Learning how to deal with comment, criticism and abuse needs different strategies and there’s a load of grey areas.

One thing that gladdens my heart is when admin go back and challenge a comment and by doing so educate the rest of the room.

For some reason, police seem to be a lot more robust at this technique than others. But there’s no reason why others can’t be as direct.

In this example, South Yorkshire Police launch a campaign ‘No More: Stand With Us’ aimed at targeting street harassment. A Facebook post within 21-hours attracts almost 1,000 shares, 600 comments and more than 2,200 likes. This would represent good engagement.

One of the keys to the engagement is the debate it sparks. The coments are almost all supportive although there’s also regret from a woman that her experience when reported didn’t lead to a prosecution.

One comment from a man stands out, as it suggests that dressing in a particular way encourages attention.

The response from South Yorkshire Police is excellent:

On the one level, bravo South Yorkshire Police.

On another level its striking that we have to remind ourselves that it’s okay to speak with a human voice and to challenge people.

Huge thank you to Kevin Wright for spotting this example.

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