“Practice proper online behavior” AFP tells its members

“All AFP military, civilian human resource, to include dependents, are directed to practice caution in publicizing personal opinion especially when engaging in social media activities,” says the directive from the Office of the AFP Chief of Staff through the Public Affairs Office published on May 6.

The directive was communicated to the different Commanders of the Major Services and Unified Commands with an official message.

It cited a policy on social media use published in 2016.

Specifically, it called for “proper etiquette and a high standard of conduct and behavior in any and all online interaction or activity.”

Under the policy, posting or sharing online any materials that violate existing laws, rules, and regulations is also prohibited, along with “information that harm or put other people in embarrassing, inconvenient, and or humiliating positions or put the AFP or any of its units in bad light.”

While posting personal opinion is not strictly prohibited, all personnel must ensure that their posts are not misconstrued as official releases, statements, or position of the AFP.

The AFP also reminded its Commanders and Spokespersons to follow the Security-Accuracy-Propriety-Policy Rule published in a 2007 Letter Directive.

Security refers to measures that prevent unauthorized persons from having access to official and classified information, while accuracy refers to the correctness of all data, names, figures, quotations, and statements.

Meanwhile, propriety limits to the proper authority the disclosure of information that are within their official capacity and responsibility.

Policy on the other hand refers to the adherence to a broad course of action or guidance adopted by the government in pursuit of certain objectives.

“Each member of our organization has a responsibility to protect not only our physical structures and the lives they contain, but more importantly the people’s trust and confidence that took many years to build,” AFP Chief of Staff General Felimon Santos Jr said.

“Our ranks and positions as public servants hold us to higher standards of discipline and behavior and we are expected to live up to these in every aspect of our lives,” General Santos Jr added.

Source: Jimmiley E. Guzman, Philippine Information Agency, May 8, 2020