Welcome to NOWCastSA’s Terms of Service page. We feel the terms of service are necessary for both you and the NOWCastSA team, but we’ve tried to keep this short and informal for you (so please read). If you have any questions, concerns, feedback, or the like, please contact us.
Users of NOWCastSA attest that they understand and agree to the following policies:
No running amuck
NOWCastSA is about community, your stories and trust. We’re all adults here (or at least 13). Therefore:
- Before your article, event listing, photo, video or slideshow is published, it will be reviewed and edited by a member of the NOWCastSA team. We may request additional information or revisions before it is published. (Even editors need editors!)
- Account holders may not, in any way, shape or form, post material or comments that are libelous, unsubstantiated, include foul language, hate speech and/or cyber-bullying (i.e. Don’t be a jerk).
- We reserve the right to remove any posts that contain any of the above language, but also know we are under no obligation to do so, hence:
- Users who submit content on NOWCastSA attest that they accept full liability for their submission and are solely responsible for any claims they make.
Consider Your Audience
Please note that while anyone is welcome to contribute stories, news releases and events, NOWCastSA is primarily a hyperlocal news site serving the San Antonio Metropolitan Area. Thus, if your story or event is targeted to a geographic region outside of South Texas, we probably aren't going to publish it, and might flag your account as spam. If your content isn't specific to our community or region and/or doesn't clearly fit into any of our categories (Health and Environment, Politics, Culture, Education, Affordable Care Act, SA Tomorrrow or SA2020) then ours is probably not the right audience for your content.
Accountability, Transparency and Corrections
From the Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics:
Ethical journalism means taking responsibility for one’s work and explaining one’s decisions to the public. As journalists, we will:
- Explain ethical choices and processes to audiences. Encourage a civil dialogue with the public about journalistic practices, coverage and news content.
- Respond quickly to questions about accuracy, clarity and fairness.
- Acknowledge mistakes and correct them promptly and prominently. Explain corrections and clarifications carefully and clearly.
- Expose unethical conduct in journalism, including within their organizations.
- Abide by the same high standards they expect of others.
Commercial Advertising, Sponsorship and Underwriting
Account holders may not post material or comments that constitute commercial advertising. We want to share your community events and stories - but we aren't here to sell your stuff (drink specials, 3-day sales, items for sale or rent, free puppies, etc.). We reserve the right to remove any posts that we consider to be commercial advertising. If you are not sure whether your story or event constitutes advertising, ask us!
If you are interested in promoting a product or service, we have sponsorship and underwriting opportunities that may fit your needs. NOWCastSA has many ways to recognize organizations that support its operations, and will clearly label any paid sponsorship content/sponsor recognition. All financial contributions made to NOWCastSA are disclosed to the IRS and to the public. Sponsors and underwriters do not have any editorial control over NOWCastSA content beyond the display of their own logos and messaging.
Policy on Editorial Independence
We subscribe to the standards of editorial independence outlined by the Institute for Nonprofit News and quoted here:
"Our organization retains full authority over editorial content to protect the best journalistic and business interests of our organization.
We will maintain a firewall between news coverage decisions and sources of all revenue. Acceptance of financial support does not constitute implied or actual endorsement of donors or their products, services or opinions. We accept gifts, grants and sponsorships from individuals and organizations for the general support of our activities, but our news judgments are made independently and not on the basis of donor support.
Our organization also may consider donations to support the coverage of particular topics, but our organization maintains editorial control of the coverage. We will cede no right of review or influence of editorial content, nor of unauthorized distribution of editorial content.
Our organization will make public all donors who give a total of $1,000 or more. We will accept anonymous donations for general support only if it is clear that sufficient safeguards have been put into place that the expenditure of that donation is made independently by our organization."
For a list of NOWCastSA underwriters and sponsors, click here.
NOWCastSA is committed to creating an online platform where people in the community can take ownership of news and information important to their neighborhood.
We invite people to actively participate in the conversations happening alongside stories on the site, and we want to make this a place where everyone is comfortable talking to each other about local issues.
Because of this, we will actively be moderating the comments and posts on our site.
We are committed to providing a forum where you can talk to us and to each other in a neighborly way.
Here are our guidelines:
- The best comments are those that add more information to a story, express a different viewpoint or create intelligent debate.
- Don’t be a jerk. Seriously. We welcome constructive debate, but please play nice. We’re a community. We’re in this together.
- Avoid comments that are off-topic and do not further the conversation.
- We will remove comments that are offensive, contain personal attacks, foul language or libel. We do not tolerate defamation of any kind.
- NOWCastSA is about having a conversation. So make observations, get involved, interact, be smart, be ethical, have a sense of humor. Can’t do this without continuously having a potty mouth or making personal attacks? Well, then, NOWCastSA reserves the right to suspend or cancel your account.
We also reserve the right to update and change these guidelines, however, we plan to be completely transparent at all times. We feel it is very important for you to know how we come to make our decisions.
When you submit content to NOWCastSA (whether it be photos, video, audio or text), you:
- remain the owner of the content but are giving permission for others to redistribute your submissions according to Creative Commons licensing
- attest that you have obtained proper rights and permissions necessary to legally distribute the content under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0
The paid staff, interns and volunteers of NOWCastSA have other lives outside of work. Several of us are involved in the community and with activities that may or may not overlap with what is covered on our site. What does this mean to you? Well, we just want you to know that to make ourselves credible, we pledge full disclosure and transparency.
Unless otherwise specified, neither NOWCastSA nor its funders or sponsors are responsible for the actual content of any live event, webcast or video production. The views of individual speakers are their own and do not represent the opinions of NOWCastSA or its sponsors. NOWCastSA does not endorse any political candidate, political organization, commercial product, process or service, and the views expressed in its communications do not constitute an endorsement, recommendation or favoring by NOWCastSA.
Please don’t sue us. Users hold harmless NOWCastSA in all issues related to submitted content. That is all.