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Last night’s tweet went out as it did because of a failure to follow the established procedures Mass.gov has in place for its social media communications.

The Mass.gov team has several content authors who create tweets and blog posts. Our aim is to tweet about each secretariat daily, and authors sometimes “pre-schedule” content on a weekly basis to promote programs and services the state offers to its constituents. There is an editorial gatekeeper who reviews all social media content to ensure consistency in messaging, including appropriateness, tone and voice.

In this instance, the author of the sexual assault awareness tweet did not send this tweet to the editorial gatekeeper for review, and instead scheduled the tweet independently.  Having spoken with the author this morning, it is clear there was no malicious intent behind the tweet; the tweet inaccurately summarized the content in the linked-to blog post, which discussed services available for victims of sexual assault. The tweet author agrees that perpetrators of sexual assault are always at fault, and it was never the author’s intent to blame victims for crimes perpetrated. The author has agreed to participate in sexual assault awareness training.

All Mass.gov content authors have been reminded of the editorial process and going forward, no tweets will be published without first being run through this established review process.

Written By:


Geoffrey has 10-plus years' experience managing day-to-day operations at print and online media companies. He specializes in online community development, social media management, and web content development.

At Mass.gov, Geoffrey develops strategies to effectively and efficiently deliver information and services offered by the Commonwealth to its constituents via the web, including mobile and social media channels. He continuously works to introduce best practices and relevant tools to the organization, and establish metrics to measure initiatives’ success. In addition to working with agency partners to identify and resolve issues regarding the front-end user experience and with our Percussion content management system (CMS), he also sets team priorities to guide delivery of upgrades and enhancements to the public-facing website and the administrative back end to enhance the user experience for both site visitors and internal users.

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