About Face(book): Marines lift ban on social networking

Facebook responds

Marine Corps officials have lifted a ban on marines using social networking Web sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube on the service’s non-secret network, according to a memo.

Service members will be granted access to social networking sites on the Marine Corps’ non-secret network immediately, according to the memo the service issued March 29.

“The Marine Corps embraces and strives to leverage the advances of Internet-based capabilities,” the memo states.


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Marines must still follow other Marine Corps guidelines such as limiting the amount of time doing personal business on official networks, according to the memo. Marine Corps officials also plan to provide training on the effective use of Internet-based technologies.

Don Faul, Facebook’s director of online operations said in a statement that lifting the ban will benefit Marine Corps members and their families.

"As a former active duty Marine, I’m heartened by this week’s issuance of guidelines that encourage responsible and effective use of social networking by Marine Corps personnel,” Faul said. “Social media services like Facebook play an important role in people's daily lives and are a particularly beneficial link between those stationed around the world and their families at home.”

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

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Reader comments

Wed, Mar 31, 2010

@ Ed well said

Wed, Mar 31, 2010 Ed Kostiuk Oklahoma

This is good news for the kids that use these sites to keep in touch with family and friends. However, this is some responsibility as a Marine that they must also adhere to. OPSEC is the most critical but also they must remember that it is every Marine’s right to complain about our Corps but these popular social sites are not the place to do so. During the 1st Gulf War a Lt. Col would call his wife and provide her with details of our Task Force (Papa Bear) and our exact locations. He was quickly shut down by NIS and the Intelligence folks. I would hope that the Marines using these sites would remember that fellow Marines could be put in jeopardy if they failed to follow proper OPSEC protocol. No matter what communications devices the future holds for us as Marines it is our responsibility to ensure we use good judgment when utilizing such devices. Semper Fi to all you young men and women serving our beloved Corps.

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