Read Some Real Stupid in Georgia: Using Facebook to save Fido –

Susan Ruelle loves animals so much she volunteered at the Gwinnett County Animal Shelter and helped organize an independent Facebook page showcasing pets available there for adoption.

Adoption Rescue Coordinator Jamie Martinez holds a 6-month-old male tabby in the cat adoption area of the DeKalb County Animal Services building in Decatur.

But last month Gwinnett officials said Ruelle couldn’t work at the shelter while maintaining the Facebook page, citing a policy against employee use of social media for county business. She gave up the volunteer work to continue her Facebook campaign, but she believes the county’s skittishness about social media shows a reluctance to embrace change that has hindered the adoption of animals.

“There are people with all kinds of experience who want to help,” Ruelle said. “But they’re just not welcome. It’s a shame.”

A Gwinnett citizen task force has recommended the shelter embrace both Facebook and volunteers to increase animal adoptions and decrease the number of dogs and cats it kills.

County Administrator Glenn Stephens said Gwinnett’s restrictive social media policy is designed to ensure sensitive information about taxpayers or government operations isn’t disclosed, which could result in litigation.

More of this stupid stuff here: Using Facebook to save Fido  |