Social media use

How we use social media and blogs to communicate with our customers.

Our social media and blogs

We use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and blogs to communicate.

We also use Flickr to publish our images, which some people can use free of charge.

Facebook

We have 3 Facebook pages:

We’ll delete:

  • abusive, racist, sexist, homophobic or comments we consider to be inflammatory
  • nuisance comments considered to be spam
  • personal information, like telephone numbers, address details and driving licence numbers
  • posts made or content within posts (such as film) that actively and obviously identify individual DVSA staff members
  • posts which clearly advertise commercial activity or make requests for donations or money, unless agreed in advance with DVSA

We publish a full set of ‘house rules’ on each of our Facebook pages.

We only ‘like’ other Facebook pages which are non-commercial - being ‘liked’ by one of our pages doesn’t imply endorsement of any kind.

Twitter

We have a number of Twitter accounts:

You can also communicate directly with some of our teams:

  • @DVSA_HelpMe for questions about learning to drive, driving tests, and driving instructor services
  • @DVSAdigital for updates on how we’re designing services and content to meet the needs of users
  • @DVSAPressOffice for updates about DVSA in the media, links to broadcast coverage and interview requests
  • @DVSAFraud for updates about investigations (where appropriate), and to report suspected illegal driving instruction

Responses from DVSA

Responses to customer questions sent to the @DVSAgovuk and @HighwayCodeGB Twitter accounts will be either from the account itself, or @DVSA_HelpMe.

We might ‘mute’ or ‘block’ any Twitter follower who uses abusive, racist, sexist, or homophobic language in their tweets or direct messages when engaging with any of our accounts.

Following DVSA

We may follow you back if you follow us on Twitter - being followed by us doesn’t imply endorsement of any kind.

Retweets from DVSA

On Twitter, we’ll retweet if the request:

  • is to publicise an event or activity the follower is undertaking for charity purposes (like Sport Relief, Children in Need or a local charity)
  • is to publicise a message of congratulation on a follower’s pupil (or family member if the follower isn’t an approved driving instructor) successfully passing their driving test

Retweets from DVSA’s Twitter accounts doesn’t imply endorsement of any kind. We might also retweet (without being asked) those tweets whose messages are considered relevant to DVSA’s policies.

YouTube

We have a YouTube channel which has short videos about the , lorries and bus, providing MOTs, and other road safety matters.

On YouTube we:

  • don’t publish any abusive, racist, sexist, homophobic or comments we consider to be inflammatory *will add videos with a road safety interest to our playlists from time to time, but this does not imply endorsement by DVSA

We don’t accept requests to be added as a contact on individuals’ YouTube accounts.

Flickr

We have a Flickr channel which is an online library of road safety-related images that the press and news media can use and share, free of charge. However, you must acknowledge Crown copyright.

Blogs

We have 4 blogs:

  • Despatch - which offers official advice and information for driver and rider trainers
  • Matters of Testing – which offers official advice and information for MOT garages and testers
  • Moving On – which offers official advice and information for truck, bus and van operators and drivers
  • DVSA digital - which tells you how we’re designing services and content to meet the needs of users

Moderation policy

We encourage and welcome open, lively debate, but the decision to publish comments received on our sites remains at our discretion. The views expressed by any third parties are solely theirs and are not necessarily endorsed by DVSA.

We welcome lively discussion, but ask you to follow our guidelines when submitting comments. We reserve the right to modify these guidelines at any time.

Where views have been sought, all comments will be considered before the response is published.

Moderation guidelines

We pre-moderate most of the comments we receive.

‘Pre-moderation’ means that comments will not be published instantly. Comments will be checked first by moderators who will monitor the site Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. WE aim to process comments as quickly as possible - and usually within one working day.

This is not about censoring your views. The aim is to make sure that comments relate to the particular subject being discussed. Moderation will not be used to suppress legitimate, reasoned discussion.

About you

To contribute to this site you will need to be aged 16 or over.

You’re not allowed to impersonate other people - either well-known people or other members of this site.

What you post

We’ll normally approve comments for publication as long as they:

  • are on-topic – don’t post messages that are not related
  • respect other people – comments shouldn’t be malicious or offensive in nature, and should not constitute a personal attack on a person’s character
  • don’t incite hatred on the basis of race, religion, gender, nationality or sexuality or any other personal characteristic
  • don’t reveal personal details, like private addresses, phone numbers, email addresses or other online contact details
  • are reasonably concise, and don’t constitute spamming of the site
  • don’t impersonate or falsely claim to represent a person or organisation
  • aren’t party political in nature - this is a government website and comments used for party political purposes can’t be published for propriety reasons
  • don’t include swearing, hate-speech or obscenity
  • don’t break the law – this includes libel, condoning illegal activity, and breaking copyright
  • don’t advertise commercial products and services – you can mention relevant products and services as long as they support your comment
  • are in English – unfortunately, we do not currently have the resource to moderate comments in other languages

We reserve the right to suspend comments at any time. Where we choose not to publish a comment for a reason other than those listed above, we’ll reply to the commenter by email explaining our reason and inviting them to make appropriate changes so that the comment can be reconsidered.

Responding to comments

We read every comment, and respond where and when we can. We make no commitment to respond to every individual comment.

It tends to be the content authors who moderate and respond to comments, but DVSA staff are encouraged to participate in the comments stream where appropriate, using their own name, and signalling that they are commenting in an official capacity.

Staff who aren’t comfortable participating in public conversations cam use the convention ‘first name@DVSA’ when commenting, for example, Sarah@DVSA.

Read the social media guidance for civil servants for more information.

General terms and conditions

We make no commitment to respond to every individual comment, post or tweet.

We can’t engage on issues of party politics or answer questions which break the general house rules.

We reserve the right to modify or alter our policy and terms and conditions at any time.

We’re not responsible for the advertising content on social media websites and do not choose which adverts appear on its page.

We accept no responsibility for social media websites being unavailable.

Open Government Licence

Under the Open Government Licence, you’re free to:

  • copy, publish, distribute and transmit the information
  • adapt the information
  • exploit the information commercially and non-commercially for example, by combining it with other information, or by including it in your own product or application

You must acknowledge the source of the information by including this attribution statement:

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0