STALBRIDGE YOUTH FC
GUIDE - USE OF TEXT, EMAIL
AND SOCIAL MEDIA
In today’s world,
safeguarding children and young people applies as much online as it does
Part of the role of The FA
as the game’s governing body is to offer guidance. They’re constantly looking
to provide a supportive framework around everyone who participates in football,
whatever their role.
This guidance role clearly
extends to the use of digital platforms in a football context. Such platforms
include websites, email, mobile messaging and use of social media sites such as
Facebook, WhatsApp, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter.
Of course, these
technologies have huge benefits. For example, it’s so much easier nowadays for
a team or club to let its players know the times of training sessions, meet-ups
and match venues. However, we have to recognise that digital platforms can be
misused, with increased risks to children and young people.
Football takes these risks
extremely seriously. It’s with this in mind that a series of guidance notes
have been developed.
essential that everyone involved in our great game makes informed decisions
about how they use the internet, social media, mobile phone and email communications
– particularly when children and young people are involved.
Whilst the internet brings many benefits
and opportunities it also opens up some new risks and challenges.
The FA has teamed up with the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP)
Centre to promote online safety and vigilance.
We would ask that you as a parent/guardian
to be aware of the following best practice promoted within
• - Ensure you are aware of
how coaches, managers and other members of the club or league should communicate with your child.
• - Show an interest in the
communications between the club, you and your child. Open communication about club and league
activities/issues often mean concerns are picked up early and issues can be
• - Familiarise yourself with
the FAs guidance for clubs in relation to websites, text messaging and social
• - Familiarise yourself with
the social networking sites your child is using. Did you know children under 13 are not
supposed to use Facebook? 13-17 year
olds are given different ‘set up’ security features within Facebook so please
ensure that they are set up correctly using their real date of birth and
haven’t bypassed this.
• - If you are not getting copied
into club/team text messages or emails raise this with the club and ask that
you are added into these communications immediately.
• - Know who your club
welfare officer is and how to contact them if you have any concerns about the
content of club/league web pages or in relation to the welfare of your child.
• - Ensure you tell your
child to tell someone they trust about communications that make them feel
uncomfortable or where they’ve been asked not to tell their parent/guardian
about the communication.
• - Remember as a member of a
club you are responsible for and need to abide by club protocol/policy and FA
Rules and Regulations regarding comments that you place online about the
league, club, players, managers and/or match officials
Look at the guidance
offered by the Child Exploitation Online Protection (CEOP) centre; they provide
guidance for parents/guardians, children and young people. They also provide the most up-to-date
guidance for online environments.
• The FA Respect Codes of
Conduct give guidance on appropriate behaviour which can be related equally to
match day, training and online environments.
• If your child receives
images or messages which are offensive, threatening or unsuitable please copy
and save them elsewhere or print them off before removing or destroying
them. They may be needed as evidence by
the Club Welfare Officer or other agencies involved in the protection of
• If you have serious
online concerns for the welfare of your child report it directly to CEOP and
speak to the Club Welfare Officer as soon as possible.
at the guidance offered by CEOP. They
provide guidance for parents/guardians, children and young people on how to
stay safe online.
This can be found
Guidance for Under 18s
Mobile technology is a key part of everyday
life including how and where you can find information about football. Whether
it’s about professional teams you follow or your own team or club it’s a great
way to get and share information.
Within football we want you to use social
networks, the internet, texts and email safely to get the information you need.
We have produced the guidance below to keep us all safe and to ensure that we
respect each other:
- Tell an adult you trust
about any communications that make you feel uncomfortable or that asks you not
to tell your parent/guardian.
- Know who from your club
should be contacting you and how they should be contacting you.
- You can talk to your
club’s Welfare officer if you are unhappy about anything sent to you or said
about you over the internet, social networking sites, text messages or via
- Don’t post, host, text or
email things that are hurtful, insulting, offensive, abusive, threatening or
racist as this would go against football rules and could also be against the
- Don’t give out personal
details including mobile numbers, email addresses or social networking account
access to people you don’t know well offline.
- Facebook has different
‘set up’ guidelines for under 18s to help to keep you safe – use them.
- Even if you get on with
your coach, manager, club officials, adult referees or mentors, don’t invite
them to become your friends online.
They have been asked not to accept such invitations.
- Tell an adult you trust
if an adult involved at your club or within refereeing asks you to become their
friend online and inform your club Welfare Officer.
- If you receive an image
or message which you find offensive, threatening or upsetting tell an adult you
trust. Make sure you copy and save the
image/message elsewhere or print it off before you remove and destroy it
because this may be needed as evidence.
- You can also report
concerns directly to the police.
you want to know more about how to keep safe online:
(Revised May 2019)