Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

RTE set to clamp down on its presenters’ tweets

RTE stars may soon be looking over their shoulders for ‘big brother' as the Republic’s national broadcaster is drawing up guidelines for staff using social networking sites.

Just last week following the untimely death of 2FM DJ Gerry Ryan, instant messages were quickly appearing on the internet further fuelling rumours of his tragic demise.

RTE yesterday confirmed it was following other media organisations, such as the BBC, in drawing up guidelines on the use of social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook.

But RTE spokeswoman Carolyn Fisher denied the measure was forthcoming in the aftermath of Mr Ryan's death. She said work has been under way since late last year on drawing up the protocols in the face of the surge in popularity of networking sites.

Mr Ryan's RTE colleague Miriam O'Callaghan had confirmed his death on her Twitter page, around an hour before the national broadcaster had began officially reporting his death.

The Prime Time presenter swiftly moved to delete the tweet as she apologised over her brief message appearing on the internet before the death had been announced in public.

“We are in the process and very close to having them complete,” Ms Fisher said, adding it was too early to provide an indication of the content of the guidelines.

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