Media Relations Policies

The Division of Public Affairs, Media Relations is officially designated by the Office of the President as the University’s liaison with press outlets and is responsible for planning and coordinating the University’s media efforts.

  1. It is FAU’s desire to maintain an attitude of openness with the press.
    1. Personnel in all departments and areas should feel free to respond to questions posed by the media concerning their departments or areas. If they are concerned about speaking with the media or with formulating a response, they should contact Media Relations for assistance.
    2. Questions raised by the press about an area other than the one an employee represents, or a topic outside of an employee’s area of expertise, or about the University in general, should be referred to the Media Relations team.
    3. In order to avoid confusion or duplication of effort and to assist the University in building strong relationships with the press, we request that employees notify Media Relations of contacts with or interviews by media representatives.
  2. The proper procedure to release information to the media is to go through Media Relations –the official source of information for media representatives. (NOTE: The release of information as related to public information requests is covered in Section G of this policy).         
    1. All news releases are issued by Media Relations, unless a special arrangement has been made.
    2. The release of information about University athletic programs and athletes is the responsibility of the sports information director within the Department of Athletics.
  3. Media Relations makes the final decision regarding the newsworthiness of a potential story and can assist other departments with discussion on how to make a story more attractive to the press so that it may obtain the greatest amount of news coverage.
  4. When a formal request for information is made of the University by the press, Media Relations will contact members of the University to respond to that request.
  5. Upon receiving an interview request from the media, Media Relations will contact designated staff for the particular college or unit involved. It is strongly encouraged that faculty and staff agree to be interviewed, as they have the expertise to provide valuable information for the press while raising FAU’s profile in the news media.
  6. If a member of the media is observed on campus, Media Relations should be contacted to allow staff to assist the individual.
  7. FAU, as a public state university, has a responsibility to be open and responsive to information requests from the public and the press. The University is committed to a policy of openness, honesty and cooperation. FAU adheres to state regulations on public records, which define the parameters of legal access to information by the media and others.
    1. If a public information request by the press is received, contact Media Relations as soon as possible to begin the process of replying to that request in a timely manner.
    2. Media Relations will work with the General Counsel’s office to ensure that state regulations are followed in responding to all public information requests.
  8. When approached by a representative from the press, the following guidelines apply:
    1. If the issue relates to one’s own area of expertise, one should feel free to respond. Responses to media inquiries should occur in a timely fashion. It is best practice to ask a reporter what their deadline is and work to respond before that time. As a courtesy and to ensure successful communications, the responder or appropriate department head should notify Media Relations about the conversation.
    2. If questions are raised regarding issues about which one is not informed, it is acceptable to state, “I don’t know, but someone will get back to you regarding that issue,” then contact the Division of Public Affairs, Media Relations to route the reporter to the most knowledgeable information source.
    3. Issues of a sensitive nature might best be answered with a statement prepared in cooperation with the Media Relations. Contact us to discuss options in situations of this kind.
    4. When contacted by a reporter, one should be aware that:
      1.  Anything said can be quoted. 
      2. When called by telephone unexpectedly, one can ask for time to prepare a response.
      3. If asked in advance for an interview, one should ask what questions he/she will be expected to answer or what topic is expected to be discussed.
  9. When a person or department desires to release information to the media, the proper procedure is to contact the Media Relations team. The project will be routed to the proper media relations team based on the topic. Note: there are various tools that may be used to communicate to the press. Examples of these tools include a press release, media advisory, calendar release or post event release. Plans for publicizing events should include contacting the Division of Public Affairs, Media Relations at least three weeks in advance.
  10. Division of Public Affairs, Media Relations should take the lead role in arranging news conferences, including deciding as to whether a news conference is warranted. This will help ensure that the press is contacted and that the time and place of the news conference will encourage the best possible news coverage.
  11. In a crisis situation, contact your supervisor and Media Relations.
    1. All official statements, announcements or interviews relating to the emergency will be coordinated through the Division of Public Affairs. A person will be designated as the spokesperson for media inquiries. Other efforts will be coordinated as the crisis communications plan directs.
  12. The Division of Public Affairs, Media Relations is available to assist in the creation of letters to the editor or op-ed pieces, if such assistance is desired.
  13. The Division of Public Affairs, Media Relations has created an Experts Database too that serves as a source for the press and community at large to search for FAU experts by either name or subject area. All faculty and selected staff are encouraged to sign up to be a member of the database. Please note, the Experts Database also allows for members of the FAU community to become part of the University’s speaker’s bureau.
 Last Modified 9/29/17