NJCU SMS Policy
New Jersey City University
Text Message Policy
New Jersey City University (NJCU) recognizes the importance of text messaging as a means of communication for our students, faculty, and staff. It is essential to ensure that text messaging is used responsibly and in compliance with relevant regulations. This policy outlines the guidelines and procedures for the use of text messaging to protect our community from unwanted messages.
- Call to Action: An invitation to an individual to opt-in to a text messaging campaign, ensuring their consent to receive messages and an understanding of the nature of those messages.
- Consent: Permission given by a text recipient to NJCU to communicate via text message. The type of consent required varies based on the message type and is mandatory except for emergency purposes.
- Conversational Message: A back-and-forth text message exchange with one or a few individuals.
- Emergency Messages: Messages that address immediate health and safety concerns within the NJCU community, including weather closures, fire, health risks, and safety threats.
- Informational Messages: Messages sent to individuals who have voluntarily provided their phone numbers to NJCU, such as appointment reminders, welcome texts, and non-emergency informational messages.
- Mass Text Message: An identical or substantially similar message sent to more than 10 recipients in one or more batches.
- Official University Purpose: Text messages sent by university employees in their official capacity as representatives of NJCU.
- Opt-Out: The action by which a recipient indicates they no longer wish to receive text messages from NJCU. Opted-out individuals will no longer receive text messages from NJCU.
- Promotional Messages: Messages containing sales or marketing promotions. Adding a call-to-action may classify the message as promotional.
- University Employee: Anyone affiliated with NJCU, including staff, faculty, student workers, graduate assistants, teaching assistants, contractors, or vendors providing services on behalf of the university.
- Unwanted Messages: Messages that may include spam, phishing attempts, abusive, harmful, malicious, unlawful, or inappropriate content, or messages that lack proper opt-in consent.
- Employee Cellular Telephone Numbers: Private numbers not issued by NJCU may only be used with the employee's consent. Numbers issued by NJCU are considered public under relevant regulations.
- Student Cellular Telephone Numbers: Considered limited directory data and may only be used for purposes outlined in this policy and the Access to Student Records and FERPA policy.
- University-Related Text Messages: Treated as government data regulated under applicable laws regardless of the privacy status of the phone number.
- Scope: This policy applies to any text messaging application or system utilizing NJCU resources to send batch messages to 10 or more recipients. No other system may use NJCU's name, logos, branding, or indicia without written permission from the Associate Vice President of Marketing and Communications.
- Supplementary Communication: Text messages must not be the sole means of conveying essential messages. Messages should be supplemented with other forms of communication to ensure all individuals, including those without mobile phones, receive the message.
- Message Identification: Text messages must clearly indicate their origin as NJCU (e.g., "NJCU Alert" or "New Jersey City University Admissions").
- Non-Emergency Texts by University Employees: NJCU employees may send non-emergency messages related to the university's mission to recipients who have provided express consent. These messages may include information about upcoming school activities.
- Non-Emergency Text Requirements: Non-emergency text messages must:
- Comply with applicable laws and regulations.
- Follow best practices outlined by professional organizations.
- Allow subscribers to opt-out at any time.
- Communicate that standard data and text-messaging rates may apply.
- Provide an opt-out keyword (e.g., STOP) for recipients to unsubscribe.
- Prohibited Content: Text messages must not be used to convey:
- Personal matters unrelated to university activities.
- Advertising or commercial content unrelated to NJCU's mission.
- Personal or confidential information (e.g., social security numbers, passwords, financial information, or grades).
- Content related to Sex, Hate, Alcohol, Tobacco, or Firearms.
- Faculty Mass Texting: Faculty may use mass text messaging for class-related content but must obtain consent from enrolled students before sending such messages.
- Registered Student Organizations and Student Government: RSOs and Student Government may send messages to their members with consent, providing an opt-out option. Messages must pertain to official RSO or Student Government business.