MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. --
What could be seen by someone as an innocent post by a loved one talking about their Marine or sailor’s deployment on social networking sites could have potential negative consequences. One of those risks could involve directly placing the service members and the unit in danger and alerting the enemy to friendly force movements.
Marines and their families can take steps to protect their unit’s and loved ones by talking to their unit’s family readiness officer about applying for accounts on www.emarine.org where they will be able to access things like Marine Corps news, tools, resources and be able to talk openly and securely about the Marines and sailors.
“The eMarine site is a web-based, one-stop shop of tools, information and Marine Corps family connection,” said Annissa Hackney, the FRO for 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division. “There’s information about unit events and downloadable resources like a welcome packet for Marine families in transition between units and a predeployment checklist. There are even polling sections that will make it quick and easy for everyone to give feedback to the units so we can continue to improve and better serve the needs of Marines and their families.”
Everyone who visits the website will have access to several resources and Marine Corps-wide messages and news updates. From the eMarine homepage, users with accounts will be able to access the unit specific pages their accounts are linked to. The unit pages are otherwise locked to everyone without one of the proper passwords.
“eMarine is a secure website that won’t be available to just anybody who accesses the site,” said Hackney. “Because of that we can now personalize a lot more of the information on the site. We can show pictures of our Marines with their families and list them all by name, which is something we can’t do on a public website. We can also talk about the roles everyone has in the unit to help families better understand things.”
In order to gain access to a unit’s page the Marine or sailor must apply for an account with their FRO and then approve which family members will also be allowed onto the site.
“Everyone who gets an account will be provided a unique user identification and password they can use to log into their unit’s eMarine page,” said Thomas Cluen the FRO for 3rd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment. “Because of this extra level of security, we’ll be able to share important information about our Marines and sailors that we couldn’t do with something like a unit page on Facebook.”
eMarine has been designed to be a secure and easy resource pool so family members will be able to safely access it from any computer with an Internet connection and be able to find everything they need in one location.
“I’m very excited about the possibilities and really hope Marines and sailors continue to sign up and invite their families,” said Hackney. “I love being able to provide assistance based on the needs of the families and this entire project makes it easy to give better service quickly.”
Several units have been adding forums to their unit pages where family members will actually be able to talk with one another and the Marines of the unit about specific questions and topics, to help improve the services provided by the FROs and unit.
Jena Sackett, the FRO for 6th Marine Regiment, said the regiment has been using eMarine for several months to provide the families of its service members with timely information while most of the unit’s Marines and sailors are deployed to Afghanistan.
“Our unit forums have been very active,” said Sackett. “Every week, family members start several conversations with each other and members of the unit’s command. They’ve been able to really come together and help everyone while we wait for our Marines and sailors to return home.”
Many of the topics they’ve been covering have not been just about how their service members are doing overseas. They’ve also been talking about how to tackle the challenges of everyday life at home like caring for young children and where to find things in the local area.
“I love eMarine, it’s a blessing on all Marines, sailors and their families, especially for those belonging to deployed units,” said Sackett. “It does so much for the families and is only going to continue to get better and improve.”