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Editorial guidelines

Last edited February 20, 2018

These guidelines set forth professional standards for SynBioBeta’s relationship with its advertising partners and the relationship between editorial and advertising content. The overriding concern is that SynBioBeta increases its editorial quality, integrity, and the trust of its readers. We believe that establishing, sharing, and adhering to these guidelines is important to protect the trust and transparency that should exist among our organization, our readers, and our advertisers.

We recognize that no set of guidelines can address every situation or issue that may arise in the course of doing business. We expect to update and revise these guidelines from time to time and in response to new situations as they arise. We will strive to be teachable and open to suggestions, criticism, and correction from our readers and other interested parties.

These guidelines are humbly and gratefully drawn from The Atlantic’s Advertising Guidelines.

General advertising guidelines

These guidelines apply to all advertisements and sponsored content appearing in SynBioBeta digital or print publications.

  1. SynBioBeta will not allow any relationship with an advertiser to compromise SynBioBeta’s editorial integrity.
  2. All advertising content must be clearly distinguishable from editorial content. SynBioBeta may label an advertisement as such when, in our judgment, this is necessary to make a clear distinction between editorial and advertising content.
  3. Advertisers are responsible for ensuring that their ads are adequately substantiated and comply with all applicable laws, regulations, and guidelines. SynBioBeta may refuse or remove any ad in whole or in part if it comes to our attention that it contains false or unlawful content in our judgment.
  4. SynBioBeta may refuse or remove any advertising that is inconsistent with or may harm SynBioBeta’s brand or the integrity of the synthetic biology community as we see it.
  5. Although SynBioBeta will evaluate whether to work with advertisers on a case-by-case basis, some examples of advertising SynBioBeta will not accept are the following:
    1. Advertising that SynBioBeta believes, in its opinion, is indecent, vulgar, suggestive, profane, or offensive.
    2. Advertising for illegal products or services, including drugs, illegal substances, or any related products or services.
    3. Advertising that SynBioBeta believes includes hateful or violent text advocating against any individual, group, or organization.
    4. Advertising that SynBioBeta determines to be inflammatory.
    5. Advertising that SynBioBeta determines represents a personal attack against an
      individual, country, or organization.
    6. Advertising that SynBioBeta believes will undermine the intellectual integrity, authority, and character of its mission, brand, or our community.
  6. All determinations of the application of the foregoing standards to particular advertisements or advertisers shall be within the sole discretion of SynBioBeta’s business-side staff. SynBioBeta’s editors will not be involved in deciding whether to accept or reject specific advertisers.
  7. SynBioBeta may remove advertising content at any time if such content is inconsistent with the policies described herein, with or without prior notice to the advertising client and regardless of whether the advertising content has been accepted or displayed within SynBioBeta for any period of time.

Sponsored content guidelines

These guidelines apply to sponsored content appearing in SynBioBeta digital or print publications. These are in addition to the advertising guidelines above, which also apply to sponsored content.

  1. Sponsored content is content created or commissioned by advertisers in collaboration with SynBioBeta. SynBioBeta allows two forms of sponsored content: (1) content produced by SynBioBeta as commissioned by our advertising partners and (2) content produced by our advertisers.  
  2. As with all advertising, sponsored content does not necessarily reflect the views and choices of SynBioBeta’s editors and/or leadership. SynBioBeta will ensure that sponsored content is clearly differentiated from its editorial content and label it as such. SynBioBeta will include the specific author(s), affiliation(s), and (where appropriate) a statement of the involvement or non-involvement of SynBioBeta’s editorial staff in curating or creating the content.
  3. SynBioBeta does not require that sponsored content steer clear of controversy. We expect that sponsored content, like our own editorial content, will sometimes address contested issues and/or be written with a distinct point of view. That said, SynBioBeta will refuse publication of any content that, in our judgment, would undermine the intellectual integrity, authority, or character of our organization or the broader synthetic biology community as we see it.
  4. SynBioBeta may reject or remove any sponsored content at any time that contains false, deceptive, potentially misleading, or illegal content. SynBioBeta may similarly remove sponsored content that is inconsistent with or may tend to bring disparagement, harm to reputation, or other damage to our brand or the integrity of our community.
  5. SynBioBeta may enable readers to comment on sponsored content on SynBioBeta’s sites. The sponsor will not have any role in moderating such comments. SynBioBeta may moderate such comments to prohibit spam, obscenity, hate speech, or other inappropriate content.

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