By Kelly Matyas Magyarics, Pittsburgh, Fraternity Public Relations Chairman
Instagram, Twitter and Facebook users know that the sum of content
on a social media site—all those posts, tweets, photos and videos—is referred
to as a “feed.” Take a minute and ask yourselves—what are you “feeding” your
chapter social media outlets?
Right now, many chapters are in the middle of Membership
Recruitment, Bid Day celebrations and the new member program. It’s undeniably
an exciting time, as chapters wish to celebrate and highlight those newly
pledged members who have agreed to uphold and promote our values and Standards.
But are the posts and photos of these members responsible for the future of
your chapter in line with Fraternity expectations?
While it may be tradition in your chapter to refer to new members
as “babies,” did you ever stop to think about how that term might be interpreted
by others? The intention may be to show your excitement in welcoming these
precious new members into your sisterhood, and share with them the history,
heritage and ideals of Kappa Kappa Gamma, but you may inadvertently be feeding
the notion that new members are lower in rank than initiated members, requisite
of obedience and subservience to those initiated sisters.
Likewise, is your feed peppered with photos of decorated paddles
displayed on tables at pre-recruitment events where potential new members learn
about Greek life, or during events where Big and Little Sisters are revealed?
While Kappa members are sure that blue and blue paddles adorned with names,
letters and the owl, key and fleur-de-lis are strictly for decorative and gift-giving
purposes, others may misinterpret their use. Have you stopped to ask “Is their
inclusion on social media feeding into the stereotype of hazing and violence
towards uninitiated members?”
The hope for you during Recruitment and the new member program
is that you successfully show your chapter’s personality online, and your pride
and excitement for your newest member class, in ways that put Kappa’s core
values on display. Here are a few tips to help you really shine online:
- Use modern recruitment terminology: “new member”
instead of “pledge” or “baby,” and “Recruitment” instead of “rush.”
- Post photos of excited new members holding their
bid cards and meeting their new sisters.
- Do not post photos of Bid Day that include men
in the foreground—Bid Day is about sisterhood.
- Stop using paddles in your chapter as gifts from
Big Sisters to Little Sisters, change that tradition by having big sisters
decorate photo frames instead. Set up a photo booth for Big and Little Sister
reveal events, and post fun photos of Big and Little Sisters.
- Refrain from using any acronyms or hashtags that
seem to promote Kappa while putting down other Greek organizations, or ones
that can be interpreted that Kappa Kappa Gamma is the only choice for a
potential new member. We need to be aware of promoting a positive Panhellenic
spirit and promoting going Greek, not undercutting other organizations through
mean spirited hashtags and acronyms.
The Fraternity sees so many great examples of cheerful, poignant, funny and
sisterly posts, and we are so proud of the great job many of you are doing to
share your Kappa experience online. We ask that you continue to feed your
social media accounts with fulfilling and meaningful content that’s worthy of
the Fraternity, the chapters and the amazing new members that allow Kappa
sisterhood to grow each and every semester.