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What is Local+ (Part 2): Answers to Common Questions

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As a follow-up to our overview of People, Places and Events, here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the feature.

1. Can anyone on my team submit a People, Places and Events list?

Only your account’s Administrator-level users have permission to submit keyword lists to People, Places and Events.

2. Can I enter anything I want into my lists?

No. Since Social Sentinel can’t be used to monitor or surveil, users may only submit keywords for specific categories. 

People, Places, and Events works in addition to the details you provide about your district or campus when the account is created. It helps make meaningful associations about the people, places, and events unique to your community. Therefore, the keywords your team submits should fall into those three types. 

3. Are the lists vetted?

Absolutely. Vetting submitted lists and researching potential additions to them is something we do for all of our clients. Doing so helps ensure a seamless user experience, increases our solution’s ability to associate, and maintains our commitment to privacy. 

Terms and keywords submitted for People, Places and Events are reviewed and confirmed by one of Social Sentinel’s Optimization Analysts to check that:

  • All suggested additions meet the Terms of Service set forth by our social media partners (e.g., you cannot surveil individuals).‍
  • They are indeed unique to your community and not too generic. For instance, library on its own lacks specificity. However, the full name of a library on campus—or better still, what students and faculty call it in regular conversation—leads to more relevant associations.

We can’t add TVS or other broad, generic names/acronyms that could flood your account. The same is true for adding Martin for Martin Hall, or Alexander, for Alexander School Auditorium.  

If we identify problematic keywords, our team will gladly work with you to polish the lists, so your lists contribute strongly to the matching system.  

4. Does People, Places, and Events ensure I only receive posts associated with my district/campus?

That depends on how specific your submitted lists are. People, Places and Events is there to enhance the associations we’re already making to keywords found in publicly available posts. Providing lists that reflect the people, places, and events unique to your district or campus can greatly increase the relevance of associations made.

5. Am I allowed to input specific names of students or individuals?

The short answer is no, but for good reasons. We value school safety as equally as the user privacy laws and terms of service our social media partners implement. With respect to those restrictions, Social Sentinel cannot be used to surveil, monitor, or investigate individual authors.

Further, Social Sentinel is never in possession of student lists; associations to your district or campus are always based on geographic location, post content, or information volunteered by the post’s author.

6. Are these lists permanent?

Not at all. Some lists may go unchanged for the duration of your time with us. Others may fluctuate based on the inevitable changes or growth of your educational community. In fact, we recommend our users regularly review their lists at least once a year. 

Your People, Places and Events lists can be edited at any time. As mentioned earlier, a member of our Optimization Analysts team will vet any alterations to the list for terms of service compliance. 

Keywords about one-off or time-specific events can have activation and deactivation dates applied to them, or be timeboxed for effortless management. Many users plan for such events by reviewing their calendar for recurring activities throughout the school year.  

Of course, if you have other questions about Social Sentinel’s People, Places and Events feature or anything else related to our solutions, let us know.