Telstra: Okay, we did tell Fake Stephen Conroy to stop

Telstra has now conceded that managers did tell its staffer behind the Fake Stephen Conroy blog that he had to stop.  

In a posting this afternoon, Mike Hickinbotham, senior social media adviser at Telstra, said:

“Last night I said that Telstra hadn’t shut down Leslie’s Twitter account. This was based on the advice of my colleagues. It’s factually correct, though it’s also true that Leslie’s senior managers independently told him last night to stop.”

In his previous update, Hickinbotham had stressed that Telstra had not shut down the Twitter account.

This afternoon he said: “Leslie is not prohibited by Telstra from twittering as the Fake Stephen Conroy, as long as the satirical nature of the account is clear, and it doesn’t interfere with work and as a personal initiative. True, it’s arguably questionable for a Telstra employee to be dabbling in satire that is prone to being confused with his role in the company. But in keeping with the principles of social media, we try to take a light-handed approach to the problem, assuming that users are smart enough to judge for themselves what to think of other users.”

He concluded his post with advice to other companies: “Luckily Telstra was already pretty advanced in developing policies for social media. If other corporates haven’t begun writing their policies, this illustrates it’s time to do so now.”

Meanwhile, Mumbrella has this afternoon published a guest posting from Leslie Nassar giving his version of events.


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