MEDIA REPORTING/FILMING ON CAMPUS
The Division of Public Affairs 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.
- It is FAU’s desire to maintain an attitude of openness with the press.
- Personnel in all departments and areas should feel free to respond to questions posed by the media concerning their departments or areas of expertise. If they are concerned about speaking with the media or with formulating a response, they should contact Media Relations for assistance.
- Questions raised by the press about an area other than the one an employee represents or about the University in general should be referred to Media Relations.
- In order to avoid confusion or duplication of effort and to assist the University in building strong relationships with the press, we request employees notify Media Relations of contacts with or interviews by media representatives.
- 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).
- All news releases are issued by Media Relations, unless a special arrangement has been made.
- The release of information about University athletic programs and athletes is the responsibility of the sports information director.
- 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.
- 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.
- Upon receiving an interview request from the media, Media Relations will contact the communications officer for the particular college or unit involved, or, in the case of a unit that does not have a communications contact, selected faculty or staff members. 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.
- If a member of the media is observed on campus, Media Relations should be contacted to allow staff to assist the individual.
- FAU, as a public 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.
- If a public information request by the press is received, contact Public Affairs as soon as possible to begin the process of replying to that request in a timely manner.
- Public Affairs will work with the General Counsel’s office to ensure that state regulations are followed in responding to all public information requests.
- Official University social media sites may be developed to provide detailed and personalized information on a specific unit’s programs and activities and to foster interaction among interested parties. For more information, refer to the social media policy and best practices document.
- No confidential or proprietary information about the University or its students, faculty, staff or alumni shall be posted on a social media site. Employees who share confidential information do so at the risk of disciplinary action or termination.
- All applicable laws, regulations and University policies must be strictly adhered to, including without limitation, those pertaining to copyright and intellectual property rights, employee or student conduct, use of University resources, information and data, student privacy, and NCAA rules and regulations.
- The following disclaimer should be added to all University sites: “Please note that content shared or posted may be subject to Florida’s Public Records Law.”
- A permanent link to the official University website (www.fau.edu) must be included on all University sites.
- No single unit’s social media site represents the University as a whole. Consider this when naming pages and accounts and selecting profile pictures or icons that it clearly specifies the University unit being represented.
- University units that have one or more social media pages or would like to start one should contact Public Affairs or the communications officer assigned to that division or college.
- Social media websites on behalf of University units should be kept up to date. Sites that are not kept current may be de-activated.
- The University name, logo or trademarks may not be used on personal social media pages or sites or to endorse a product or support a cause, political or otherwise.
- When approached by a representative from the press, the following guidelines apply:
- 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.
- 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 Media Relations to route the reporter to the most knowledgeable source.
- Issues of a sensitive nature might best be answered with a statement prepared in cooperation with Public Affairs. Contact Public Affairs to discuss options in situations of this kind.
- When contacted by a reporter, one should be aware that:
i. Anything said can be quoted
ii. When called by telephone unexpectedly, one can ask for time to prepare a response.
iii. 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.
- When a person or department desires to release information to the media, the proper procedure is to do so through the appropriate communications officer or the Division of Public Affairs. 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 Public Affairs at least three weeks in advance. Public Affairs strongly encourages all faculty and staff to contact their communications officer or Media Relations with ideas for possible stories that can be shared with the press.
- The Division of Public Affairs should take the lead role in arranging news conferences, including making the decision 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.
- In a crisis situation, contact your supervisor and Public Affairs. If media interest is anticipated, the administrator, in turn, will notify the associate vice president for public affairs or his/her representative.
- All official statements, announcements or interviews relating to the emergency will be coordinated through Media Relations. A person will be designated as the spokesperson for media inquiries. Other efforts will be coordinated as the crisis communications plan directs.
- The Division of Public Affairs is available to assist in the creation of letters to the editor or op/ed pieces, if such assistance is desired.
- Media Relations has created an Experts Database that serves as a source for the press and community at large to search for FAU experts by either name or subject area. To view the Experts Database, visit www.fau.edu/experts.