Social media at the Department of Agriculture

​The Department of Agriculture maintains a social media presence on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to support the communities we serve.

The department's social media policy underpins our social media activity. We've also produced a video for staff that we’re happy to share; you can find it on the Australian Department of Agriculture YouTube channel.

[expand all]

The department's social media channels

Social media terms of use

If you choose to view, post or comment on, or otherwise use any social media channels of the Department of Agriculture, you will be taken to have entered into a binding legal agreement with the department and must comply with the terms of use set out below. Please read them carefully.

Use of the department's social media channels

The use of the department's social media channels is aligned with the Australian Public Service (APS) Code of Conduct. You agree to only use the department's social media channels for lawful purposes and in a manner that does not infringe the rights of, or restrict the use and enjoyment of the channel, by any other person. This includes avoiding any conduct which is unlawful, or which may harass or cause distress or inconvenience to any person. You must also not use the department's social media channels to transmit any unlawful, defamatory, obscene, offensive or scandalous content or any material that constitutes or encourages conduct that would contravene the law or disrupt the operations of the channels.

Therefore, in using the department's social media channels, you agree:

  • to always comply with the terms of use of any social media platform (such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube) that hosts the department's social media channels
  • to always treat other people using the social media platforms with respect and courtesy
  • not to use the social media channels to defame, libel, insult, abuse, harass, stalk, threaten or attack anyone
  • not to post any material that is offensive, obscene, vulgar or violent
  • not to post any material that vilifies or discriminates against any particular gender, religion, sexual preference, age, disability, marital or domestic status, race/ethnicity, criminal record or political opinion
  • not to post any material that is fraudulent, deceptive or misleading including to not impersonate or falsely represent any other person or organisation
  • not to post any material that you do not have a legal right to post (for example, material that infringes the copyright or other intellectual property rights of another person or material which is confidential)
  • not to post any material that advertises, offers or promotes anything of a commercial nature (for example any material which may breach the Spam Act 2003 (Cth))
  • not to post any material or encourage any conduct that would constitute a criminal offence or give rise to civil liability or is otherwise illegal or unlawful
  • to protect your personal privacy and that of others by not posting any personal information (e.g. names, e–mail or private addresses, phone numbers, photographs etc) relating to yourself or anyone else
  • not introduce any virus or other form of malicious code into the social media channels
  • not to deliberately disrupt discussions (e.g. trolling)
  • not to post irrelevant or excessively long material.

If you breach these terms of use we may, in our sole discretion:

  • remove or refuse to post any material you have submitted
  • suspend or permanently block you from using the department's social media channels
  • report your conduct to the owner of the relevant social media platform and/or to any appropriate law enforcement authorities
  • take any other action, including legal action, which we consider to be appropriate.

Licence under which you post content

In posting material to any of the department's social media channels, you agree that you licence (as licensor) that material to the public under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia licence. Please read the terms carefully. In licensing your material under this licence, you agree to ensure that you have all necessary rights (including in respect of copyright and other intellectual property rights) from any owners of material which you include in your post in order to lawfully post that material under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia licence. You remain entirely responsible and liable for any infringement you may make of another person’s intellectual property rights as a result of your postings to the department's social media channels.

Indemnity

When posting or otherwise communicating content using the department's social media channels, you agree to indemnify the Commonwealth and its employees and agents against any claim by a third party arising out of any breach of these terms of use by you.

Department of Agriculture moderation policy

You accept that the department will moderate its social media channels as far as possible in accordance with its moderation policy as set out further below. You further agree that this moderation will occur entirely at the department's discretion.

General issues

These terms are governed by the laws of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). You agree to submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of these laws and the courts of the ACT in respect of these terms and your use of the department's social media channels.

Disclaimer for the department's websites and social media channels

The department does not accept responsibility for any loss, damage, liability, cost or expense however caused or incurred (including through negligence), which you may directly or indirectly suffer in connection with your use of its social media channels or any linked site or facility, nor do we accept any responsibility for any loss arising out of your use of, or reliance on, information accessed using the department’s social medial channels. This disclaimer does not exclude liability arising under statute if, and to the extent, such liability cannot be lawfully excluded.

To the extent permitted by law, any condition or warranty which would otherwise be implied into these Terms is excluded.

While reasonable efforts are made by the department to ensure inappropriate material on its social medial channels is identified and moderated, this does not guarantee that it will identify all inappropriate material or that inappropriate material will be removed in a timely fashion or at all. However, the department reserves the right to remove any posts or comments at its sole discretion.

The department accepts no responsibility whether expressed or implied for the accuracy, currency and completeness of any information posted on its social media channels or its relevance and suitability for any purpose. The department does not endorse or otherwise support any view, opinion or comment posted by a user or contributor on its social media channels. Users should exercise their own skill and care with respect to evaluating such posts or comments and that they carefully evaluate the accuracy, currency, completeness and relevance of the post or comment for their purposes.

The department accepts no legal liability whatsoever arising from, or connected to its failure to moderate any post or comment or the use of, or reliance on, any post or comment by a user.

The department's moderation policy

We encourage your comments and hope you will join the discussions. Our moderation process aligns with the APS Code of Conduct. This helps ensure that spam or comments that breach the terms of use are not published. All of the department's social media accounts will be monitored and actively moderated during standard operating hours only: Monday to Friday 9:00am to 5:00pm AEST (unless otherwise stated and excluding public holidays).

Please make sure you comply with the terms of use for our social media channels. These require, amongst other things, that you ensure:

  • you treat other users with respect and courtesy and behave in an appropriate way for a civil online forum
  • your posts do not contain material that is offensive, threatening, harassing, defamatory, discriminatory, fraudulent, infringing or unlawful
  • your posts do not include commercial or advertising material
  • your posts do not include any material or encourage any conduct that would constitute a criminal offence or give rise to civil liability
  • you protect your privacy and the privacy of others.

The department uses a post–moderation process: your comment is published immediately. The Australian Government has strict guidelines on discrimination and intimidation. Therefore we take a strong stance on deleting content which is illegal, discriminatory, hateful or threatening; and actions which may offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate or otherwise breach the terms of use.

When submitting content, please:

  • post material that is relevant to the issues being discussed
  • do not post overtly party political comments (e.g. reference to candidates, fundraisers, support for political parties).

By submitting a comment to one of our social media channels, you consent to the department reproducing and publishing that content (either in whole or an edited version of the posting) to our website and any associated Commonwealth publications and you agree to licence the public to use your post under a Creative Commons licence (see the terms of use for more information).

Your feedback and suggestions are valued and can be forwarded via our social media channels. However, we may not respond directly to individual messages but rather choose to respond if there is an on–going theme identified by relevant discussion groups.

There may be times when posts or comments that breach the terms of use appear on a channel before they can be removed. Please contact the department's social media team if you are aware of any post or comment that is in breach of the policy, and moderators will address the issue appropriately.

Privacy statement

The department records any information posted to its websites or social media channels and uses that information for operational and administration purposes including considering and/or addressing any comments made. No attempt will be made to further identify individuals except where authorised or required by law.

It is important to remember that comments, hyperlinks, photos and other content that you post on the department's social media channels will be able to be viewed by members of the public that visit those channels. It is important that you carefully consider what content you post to those channels as a result, as the department cannot control what members of the public may do with the content you have contributed.

The department may, at its discretion, seek to delete or otherwise remove any personal information posted by users of its social media channels whether it relates to the poster or any other person. However, you must be aware that the providers of the social media platforms (e.g. Facebook, YouTube, Twitter) may receive any personal information you post to the respective social media channel. The entities that control those platforms handle personal information in accordance with their own privacy policies and you should review these policies before posting on these social media channels. The department is not responsible for the privacy practices or content of these social media platforms or any linked websites.

Social media policy for the department's staff

The department’s social media policy is designed to support and protect staff and the department when engaging with social media. The policy forms the foundation of the department’s social media engagement efforts.

For more information contact the department's social media team.