Twitter lesson for councillors after bungle

Training in the use of social media will be offered to Shellharbour City Councillors in the wake of a recent Twitter mix-up.

For a while last week it looked like an unexpected reconciliation between Shellharbour Deputy Mayor Paul Rankin and his former Liberal colleague Kellie Marsh was on the cards.

An offer to meet and settle differences appeared to have been made by Cr Rankin on Twitter and accepted by Cr Marsh in view of more than 1000 "followers" before accusations of hacking were made by Cr Rankin.

It was later revealed Cr Rankin had shown fellow councillor Helen Stewart how to use Twitter by logging into his own account on Cr Stewart's iPad. The offers to meet up were accidentally made by Cr Stewart in Cr Rankin's name.

Shellharbour Mayor Marianne Saliba said each year the council reviewed its training program for councillors.

"Each year councillors are trained in a number of issues, we update our skills regarding the code of conduct and the code of meeting practice and after the incident last week we will have social media training too," Cr Saliba said.

"It is not so much about how to use social media, but understanding our responsibilities and liabilities - and good etiquette."

Cr Saliba said that four of the seven Shellharbour councillors used Twitter.

"We go from those who profusely use Twitter, through to those that don't use it it all.

"Like email, social media is a way of communicating and we want to ensure it is used appropriately and effectively."

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