IV. Principles

Principles:To maintain clear editorial separation, sponsorship messages should never be designed to appear as content. Sponsorship messages on program Web sites must support a positive user experience. Accordingly, sponsor messaging must not interfere with the user’s ability to access the content, and sponsor creative must be in keeping with the tone and character of the page where it appears.

It is our intent to adhere to the fundamental principles articulated in Sections I and II of these Guidelines to maintain the character and integrity of the content on PBS.org. At the same time, we recognize that the Internet represents broad new sponsorship terrain, with a quickly-changing landscape that will require PBS to react with a level of flexibility.

Accordingly, the Internet Sponsorship Parameters, reflecting up-to-date considerations of industry practices and feedback from a variety of sources, may be revised from time to time (consistent with these guidelines) to remain relevant in today’s media landscape. These parameters include, among other things, message-to-content proportion, certain categorical exclusions, prohibited creative devices, unacceptable messages, and other special concerns as they arise*. Sponsorship messages that seek to promote public television or align with the PBS mission are generally encouraged.

To the extent that the provisions articulated below seem to repeat or extrapolate from broadly applicable language appearing earlier in this document, this is for emphasis only and is not to be construed as implying that other sections are irrelevant for Online purposes.

* For more information or questions concerning online sponsorship guidelines and parameters, please contact Angela Lunter, 703-739-5016, aslunter@pbs.org, in Online Sponsorship.

IVA. PBS Review and Advance Approval

All online sponsorships are subject to review and approval by PBS in advance of implementation. Producers are strongly encouraged to submit wireframes and other materials to facilitate an understanding of the design and intended execution of the proposed sponsorship.

IVB. Full Disclosure

In addition to providing the full details of funding arrangements and other relevant facts and circumstances necessary for PBS to arrive at a reasoned judgment concerning sponsor acceptability, producers must use good faith effort to disclose (within the context of the web site) whether there is any mention of the sponsoring party in normal editorial coverage.

IVC. Privacy/Personal Data Collection

PBS is committed to protecting the private information of our visitors. PBS expects its sponsors to operate in a manner that is consistent with our collection and use of personal data, per the PBS privacy policy posted here.

PBS expects sponsors to have a privacy policy that is clearly posted and linked to on the destination site's landing page or home page.

Where personal information is collected on the sponsor's landing page, PBS expects that the:

  • Collection of that information is in compliance with all privacy laws

  • Sponsor states how it will use the information collected

  • Collection of the information is in a secure environment

  • Sponsor does not willfully disclose personal information collected to any third party without first receiving permission

  • Sponsor only uses personally identifiable information for activities stated in its privacy policy

  • If a user does not want their information to be collected or used, sponsor provides an opportunity for the user to opt out

  • Producers may not collect personally-identifiable information from program site users on behalf of a sponsor.