WA STATE GUIDLINES FOR MARIJUANA ADVERTISING
- "This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming.";
- "Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.";
- "There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product."; and
- "For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of the reach of children."
Giveaways, coupons, and distribution of branded merchandise are banned.
[Cannot] Depict a child or other person under legal age to consume marijuana, or includes:
- Objects, such as toys, characters, or cartoon characters suggesting the presence of a child, or any other depiction designed in any manner to be especially appealing to children or other persons under legal age to consume marijuana; or
- Is designed in any manner that would be especially appealing to children or other persons under twenty-one years of age.
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A successful advertising medium must have the confidence of its readers if it is to produce results for its advertisers. The Seattle Times, therefore, expects that the advertisements offered are truthful; in compliance with local, state and federal laws; not offensive or detrimental to individuals, groups or other businesses; and legitimate in purpose.
Advertising that is acceptable in The Seattle Times may not be acceptable in certain products that have young readers as an audience (such as the Summer Guide or Comics section).
The advertiser is solely liable for compliance with local, state and federal laws that regulate advertising and the collection and use of customer information.
All advertising, regardless of the rate charged, must contain the advertiser’s name, with the exception of congratulatory ads, teasers, employment advertisements, personal notices and announcements, and advertising from entertainment promoters.
The right to refuse advertising
Newspapers have a contractual and a First Amendment right to refuse to publish any advertisement, and advertisers have no legal right to have their advertisements published.
The Seattle Times exercises its right to refuse advertising that does not meet policy standards; that would be confusing or misleading to readers; that would damage The Seattle Times’ credibility in the marketplace; or that would harm its business franchise.
Positioning of advertising
All newspaper advertising is accepted on a run-of-press (ROP) basis. Although advertisers may request a position or section, The Seattle Times does not guarantee positions, except for power positions.
Advertising resembling editorial format
Advertising material must not resemble news content of The Seattle Times. Use of newsroom typefaces in advertising copy is prohibited. Advertisements designed to resemble general news or editorial formats, and that could reasonably be expected to deceive or mislead readers, must be labeled “Paid Advertisement.” Advertisements that resemble news but do not deceive or mislead readers are acceptable and the following disclaimer guidelines apply.
There are different environments in which advertising resembling news material might appear. If, in any of these environments, advertising material is designed to appear as if it has been produced by a news department, steps must be taken to identify the copy as advertising in order to avoid confusing or deceiving readers. The manner in which a disclaimer is to be displayed on advertising material is as follows:
1) ROP Advertising
ROP advertising that resembles editorial format must meet the following requirements:
- A border of at least 4 points.
- Bylines, headshots and city/state indicators are not permitted (e.g. “By Ann Smith, Seattle, Wash. –”).
- The advertising disclaimer “Paid Advertising” or “Paid Advertisement” must be repeated in three-column increments, centered at the top of the advertisement, inside the border. The disclaimer must be distinctive and not concealed or obliterated by advertising artwork. Advertising that is one column in width must include a 10-point disclaimer. Advertising less than 68 total column inches must include a 12-point disclaimer. Advertising over 68 total column inches must include a 16-point disclaimer.
- Advertising that contains multiple columns of text designed to resemble news columns must meet a minimum width of 2.75 inches per column. The intent of this policy is to distinguish advertising copy from news copy (i.e., the 6-column format).
Advertising preprints supplied by a customer or produced by the advertising department that resemble editorial copy must also carry an appropriate advertising disclaimer (either “Paid Advertising” or “Paid Advertisement”). The disclaimer must appear in at least 12-point type centered at the top of the preprint on the front cover and repeated on each of the inside pages. The disclaimer must be distinctive and not concealed or obliterated by advertising artwork.
3) Special Sections Produced by the Advertising Department
Special sections produced by the advertising department must include the wording “Produced by The Seattle Times Advertising Department” in at least 10-point type on the front cover. In addition, inside folios will include the wording “Special Advertising Section.”
An ad resembling a comic strip is acceptable. A 4-point rule must separate the regular newspaper comics from the advertisement, which must also include the “Paid Advertisement” disclaimer centered.
5) Substantial White Space
Advertising that contains a substantial or predominant amount of white space may require a “Paid Advertising” disclaimer and is subject to management review.
All copy resembling news is subject to management review. Sufficient lead time prior to publication must be provided.
Please contact your campaign manager or account executive with any questions prior to building creative. The advertiser/agency is solely liable for the content of the ads and must meet the following requirements.
- Ads must open a new browser window when clicked.
- Ads cannot bleed into the Web page and may require a minimum 1-pixel border to clearly distinguish advertising from editorial content.
- Ads should not mislead users into navigating to a site that is unrelated to the content of the banner ad.
- All ads must clearly identify the advertiser.
- In-banner audio and video must be user-initiated with a click and have a clear on/off switch.
- In-banner animation may run for a maximum of 15 seconds without being re-initiated by the user. The animation can loop a maximum of three times in 15 seconds.
- We do not accept advertisements that intend to influence search-engine rankings. Any hard-coded paid link must contain the rel=”nofollow” tag.
- Ads must clearly state how to interact with the ad if it expands. If expansion happens on rollover, it must close on roll off. If the ad expands on click, it must be click-to-close.
User-frequency capping restricts the number of times particular ad unit is presented to a user over a period of time. User-frequency capping may be imposed on interruptive ad units including, but not limited to, floating ads, sliding billboards, pushdowns and interstitials.
Ads that have misleading “faux” functionality, such as those with graphics and/or text elements designed to mimic computer operating system commands and functions, false-close “X” boxes, system warnings or faux system dialogue boxes are not allowed.
Third-Party Ad Tags
All third-party tags are subject to approval and require an additional two business days for site integration testing. At the time of submission, ad tags must be to allow thorough testing prior to launch. Tags that delay load time, fail to appear on the site or rotate unapproved creative are strictly prohibited and will be immediately pulled. Swapping creative is allowed but requires approval in advance.
POLITICAL/PUBLIC OPINION/ADVOCACY ADVERTISING
Public opinion/advocacy advertising is defined as advertising which expresses an opinion on almost any matter of public interest. (Examples include, but are not limited to, issues relating to the environment, human rights, education, domestic violence and other social issues.)
Political/public opinion advertising must meet the following copy requirements. Ad is subject to management review/approval. Sufficient lead time for review should be provided.
- All written political advertising relating to candidates or ballot propositions shall include the sponsor’s name and address (RCW 42.17.510.). Either a post office box or street address is acceptable. Public opinion advertising and general political advertising must include the advertiser or sponsor name and a means of response; either a website, address or phone number is acceptable [7/2008].
- If a partisan race is involved, the candidate’s party must be clearly identified within the advertising copy.
- Indemnity statements are required for advertising that carries the names of multiple political advertisers, sponsors or endorsers. An Indemnification Form must be on file prior to publication. A signature of the individual responsible for payment of advertising must be on file. In political advertising containing multiple endorsement signatures, only the signature of the advertiser or their authorized representative is required; it is not necessary to obtain the signatures of all those named in the advertisement.
- Political or advocacy advertising requires a “paid advertising” disclaimer. The disclaimer statement, “Paid Advertisement” must appear at the top and within the border of a display advertisement. The statement, “Paid For By _____________________” (name of sponsor) must appear at the bottom and within the border of a political display advertisement (not required for a public opinion ad.) For Federal elections the disclaimer must be in a printed box that is set apart from the contents in the communication. The print must be 12-pt size or larger. (BCRA Supplement, FEC Record.)[Rev 6/2004].
- Political advertising must comply with applicable election laws.
- Political poly bag advertising is unacceptable.
- Political or public opinion advertising which refers readers to a third party is acceptable when the party named is a government or public official or government agency. Authorization from the third party is not required in this case. (Acceptable example: A group organized to promote charter schools asks readers to call or e-mail the Governor, President, state legislators, etc., and lists their telephone numbers and e-mail addresses in the advertisement.)
Advertising copy that is libelous or derogatory and cannot be substantiated is not acceptable.
USE OF SEATTLE TIMES CONTENT IN POLITICAL ADVERTISING
Seattle Times content, including its opinions and the endorsements of candidates and issues by the Seattle Times editorial board, is protected by copyrights and trademark and is the exclusive property of The Seattle Times.
For specific guidelines, please refer to Acceptable Use and Licensing of The Seattle Times Content, Opinions and Endorsements by Political/Advocacy Campaigns and Candidates.