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Communications, Intranet

Ten laws for intranet managers – & I mean legal

Luke Mepham (et al.) has made a list of ten laws that intranet managers and communicators in the UK should be aware of to a fair degree.

It’s a fantastic list, over at Intranetizen* and a resource I shall  refer to time and time again, and so I wanted to share it with you. I have been greatly annoyed in the past when certain colleagues have flouted the laws of the land merely because they felt it more convenient, or worse, assumed that the laws and morality don’t apply to ‘internal’ work… “Copyright? But I got it off Google…”

  1. Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (‘RIPA) – Impact: Monitoring employee activity
  2. Data Protection Act 1998 (‘DPA 1998’) – Impact: Privacy
  3. EU Data Protection Directive 95/46 – Impact: Data protection and cloud computing
  4. Equality Act 2010 – Impact: Employment and discrimination – replaces the famous DDA – Disability Discrimination Act 1995 – information has to be available to people of all abilities, which may mean ensuring your CMS / intranet / ITC systems can be used easily by everyone
  5. Defamation Act 1996 – Impact: What can and cannot be said about colleagues and companies
  6. Freedom of Information Act 2000 (‘FOI’) – Impact: Limited, except for public sector intranets
  7. EU Electronic Communications Framework (‘EU Cookie Law’) – Impact: on intranets that use cookies, as most modern systems do
  8. Human Rights Act 1998 – Impact: Personal data storage and use
  9. Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 – Impact: What you can and cannot say on news or CEO blog
  10. Trademark Act 1994 – Impact: using logos / marks of other companies / Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1998 – Impact: Images / works you use on your intranet.

I am so committed to following copyright regulations, and I just adore Creative Commons – which many people on Flickr use.

Read Luke’s original post with all the relevant links, and note the legal caveats and acknowledgements at the bottom :)

Yes, you may have a legal team or a General Counsel team to guide you, but you actually need to talk to them about your work in order to protect your company and respect other people, their lives and their works. If you don’t have a good relationship with the legal team then build one! They may appear to be incredibly serious and important, but they’ll be flattered and pleased to help a communicator who takes the company’s duty seriously.

Thanks to @lukemepham and @digitaljonathan for letting me rob their work.


Photo credit: Eversheds LLP – used under Creative Commons licence

*what an annoyingly brilliant name.

About Wedge

I’m Wedge, and this is my website! I’ve worked within internal communications since 2004, managing intranets and digital comms. Now I’m a freelance comms and intranet specialist - I help organisations plan and improve their intranets. I work with other agencies, and write a lot of blog and magazine articles. I founded the Intranet Now conference. You can catch up with me on Twitter - I’m @Wedge.