Social Media Guidelines

These guidelines are in place to help create a safe environment for the public on all social media channels run by West Yorkshire Police.

The Force has multiple social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

The main force pages are run, monitored and maintained by the Corporate Communications team with input from other key departments. Our social media channels aren’t monitored on a 24-hour-basis. 

In order to help create a safe online environment we have set out the following guidelines which apply to all social media channels. 

By choosing to engage on our social media channels you agree to follow these guidelines:

Your comment has grounds to be removed if:

  • You have identified a victim, witness or suspect by any means which potentially affects their personal safety. For example; names, address, school, place of work etc.
  • You have identified a serving police officer in a manner which potentially affects their personal safety, threatens violence or is grossly derogatory.
  • You have used offensive language - profanity (curse or swear words), hate crime e.g. racial/ homophobic slurs or language which targets a protected characteristic in a derogatory manner, content which is grossly offensive or incites violence.
  • You have published yours, or anyone else's, personal information, such as contact details.
  • You have "spammed" our accounts by posting the same message, or very similar messages, repeatedly. In these circumstances, if your comment/reply does not violate other social media guidelines, one comment/reply will remain on our page.
  • Your comments could be perceived to be threatening or abusive to other community members.
  • You are using our pages/account to promote your own businesses/products/company which the force is not affiliated with.
  • You have commented on someone’s personal appearance which is not helpful to our investigation/appeal. 
  • Your comment is not relevant to the post in question. 
  • You have included comments which could potentially leave the force in contempt of court (Any material which could influence members of the jury in an ongoing or imminent trial is deemed as being in contempt of court and is punishable in a court of law.

These comments could include;

  • References to someone’s previous convictions
  • Statements about a person’s character
  • Evidence seeming to link a person directly to the crime of which they have been accused
  • Other suggestions that the person is guilty
  • When proceedings are 'active', the above content cannot be posted and the Facebook user is in contempt of court. Proceedings are ‘active’ when;
    • A person is charged
    • A person has been arrested
    • An arrest warrant is issued
    • A summons is issued


We reserve the right to determine, at our discretion, whether contributions to our social media channels breach our guidelines. We reserve the right to hide or delete comments made on our channels, as well as block users who are repeat offenders and do not follow these guidelines.

Anyone who believes that they have blocked from our pages without reason, should raise a complaint through our webpage here

Reporting breaches of Facebook Terms and Policies
If you’ve seen something on Facebook that you think is wrong and breaches their terms and policies, you should contact Facebook. 

Reporting crimes
We’d like to remind all followers not to report crime on our social media channels but instead to call 999 in an emergency and for non-emergencies either report online or call 101.

To report crime online, you can do so here: