Editorial and Advertising Policy
SkinCareGuide.com's Editorial and Advertising Policy
Since the Internet is a relatively new medium, there have been few established guidelines for handling editorial content and advertising on the Web. At SkinCareGuide.com ("SkinCareGuide"), providing you with accurate, impartial, well-balanced health information has always been our priority. This editorial and advertising policy explains:
- How we select and review the editorial content and tools you see on our site
- How we handle advertising and sponsored content and distinguish it from editorial content
- How financial or other influences from outside our company affect our website
- How you may contact us to ask questions or comment on our websites.
- About This Policy
- Websites Covered
This editorial and advertising policy applies to our websites that may be used by consumers and/or medical professionals that contain healthcare content and tools or offer healthcare services. Here is a list of those sites:
SkinCareGuide has a network of websites with a password-protected section for physicians. SkinCareGuide provides peer-reviewed articles, reference tools, medical and clinical information and resources, medical news, medical conference coverage, treatment updates, and accredited continuing education for healthcare professionals. It also has tools intended only for the use of a trained healthcare professional.
This editorial and advertising policy only applies to SkinCareGuide's network of websites. We are not responsible for how other websites handle editorial and advertising once you leave a SkinCareGuide site. After you leave our sites, you should read the editorial and advertising policy at each website that you visit.
Editorial and advertising Policy Changes
As our editorial and advertising policy changes in significant ways, we will make every effort to notify you of the changes. Minor changes to the policy may occur that will not affect the overall goals this policy is designed to achieve. When the policy changes in a way that significantly affects the way we handle editorial matters, we will clearly draw the attention of our users to the change. We will post policy changes on our websites in a timely manner.
SkinCareGuide is committed to providing you with balanced, accurate health information. Our websites employ editorial professionals who are responsible for content selection, development and maintenance process. Although we are a for-profit business supported in part by advertising and sponsorship, we recognize the importance of maintaining a clear separation between our independent editorial content and any materials that are advertising or any content that may be influenced by our sponsors.
Sources of Our Information
All materials on our websites that we present as our own is either created by us or is obtained from content providers whose editorial processes we have evaluated and find to be acceptable.
Materials we create are written by physicians on our International Advisory Board and other healthcare professionals. We generally intend our content for one of two distinct audiences: healthcare professionals and consumers. Information for healthcare professionals has been evaluated by in-house editors and, for most materials that are in the form of an article, has been sent to members of our Medical Advisory Board for peer review. Information intended for consumers is reviewed for medical accuracy by members of our International Advisory Board or other healthcare professionals who are respected and knowledgeable in their field of expertise. We require documentation to establish the credentials of all our authors and reviewers.
Sources for third party editorial content include government agencies, not-for-profit foundations, medical publishers, and for-profit companies that provide healthcare news and information. Our editorial staff reviews most content from outside sources for accuracy, balance, completeness and timeliness before we make it available on our sites. In the cases where a complete review is not possible, we rely on spot-checking and our previous evaluation of possible sources of information and of the editorial procedures used by the information provider (for example, in the case of our drug references. In most cases, content we obtain from others has also been reviewed by the provider's own in-house specialists, or, for most of the material on SkinCareGuide, subjected to review by independent authorities in the field.
In some areas of our websites, we make content available that comes from sponsors. We design these areas to make it clear to the user that the content has not gone through our editorial process.
SkinCareGuide reviews site content regularly to ensure that it remains relevant. Where necessary, content found to be incorrect or out of date is corrected, updated, moved to an archive (where it remains available), or purged. We often use editor's notes to indicate when this has occurred.
Linking to other sites
We provide company logos or links to other websites throughout our websites. These logos and links are not intended to imply that we approve of or recommend these entities to consumers. Where we are making a recommendation, we clearly state that fact in connection with the logo or link.
Financial Information and Outside Influence
Most medical and health information/education sites on the World Wide Web, like their counterparts in print publishing, rely on advertising and sponsorship, including banner advertising, grants, and sponsorship of Continuing Education programs. We discuss advertising later in this policy. With respect to sponsorship or other financial relationships, we observe the following principles:
- We may obtain revenues from third parties related to advertising and health information content sponsored by others on our health website, including advertising revenues, commissions on consumer purchases, fees based on consumer use of links to other websites, and revenues for transfer or use of information about users, including aggregate data.
- We do not intend any links to other websites, logos, or marks of other companies, or any co-branding to constitute recommendations unless we specifically indicate that we recommend them.
- We will disclose any cases where we have placed health information content on our website because of sponsorship or other support from a third party. In addition to identifying the sponsor, we will clearly disclose significant relationships between the commercial sponsor and our health information content by identifying the sponsor's involvement with that content. We will also disclose whether we have reviewed such content or are posting it as a service to our members for a fee or through some other arrangement.
- We will not make claims of therapeutic benefit without reasonable support, or deliberately provide false or misleading information. Where we offer self-assessment tools, we will disclose their source and appropriately describe the scientific basis for their operation. We will also describe how we maintain self-assessment tools, including a description of any formal evaluation process and the date of the last review or update.
- We will provide the credentials and qualifications (including any applicable licensure information) of persons responsible for healthcare services delivered to consumers via our websites. We will disclose whether we verify information regarding healthcare professionals or others who provide services on our websites.
Special Rules for Healthcare Professional Information
Any single-sponsored areas on SkinCareGuide are developed and maintained under the established rules for single-sponsored supplements outlined by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors. You can review these rules online at the following URL: http://www.icmje.org/#supplements
We develop and display all programs for which healthcare professionals may earn continuing education credit in accordance with the guidelines of the Canadian College of Family Physicians and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) in the United States, or other relevant accrediting bodies. These guidelines will apply to placement of commercial supporters' names, logos, information about specific brand name pharmaceutical products, date(s) material is posted, names of faculty/writers, and any relevant faculty/writer disclosure information.
At SkinCareGuide, we have always clearly separated the editorial content and process from advertising. Advertising spaces such as banners and badges are clearly marked. Likewise, any content provided by an advertising sponsor is clearly marked as such, and is physically separated from editorial content. We are also selective in the advertising we accept. Our advertising policies are as follows:
- We will clearly distinguish advertising from health information content, using identifying words, design, or placement. We will design our health websites to avoid confusion between advertising and health information content.
- Advertising on SkinCareGuide will comply with the laws and regulations of Canada, the country in which the site is based. Any other SkinCareGuide sites established in partnership within any other country will also comply with the laws of the country in which the site is established and maintained. We will comply with existing federal and state laws regarding any promotions, rebates, or free or discounted offers on our website.
- SkinCareGuide will have sole discretion for determining the types of advertising that will be accepted and displayed.
- Under no circumstances will SkinCareGuide's acceptance of an advertisement be considered an endorsement for the product(s) advertised or for the company that manufactures it.
- SkinCareGuide retains the right to reject advertising of any kind, and will not accept advertising that, in SkinCareGuide's opinion, makes unsubstantiated claims of therapeutic benefit for particular products or contains false or misleading information. In addition, SkinCareGuide will not accept advertising in any form for any products or services known to be harmful to health (e.g., tobacco products), nor knowingly accept advertisements or grants of any kind from companies that manufacture such products directly or through their subsidiaries.
- SkinCareGuide maintains a clear separation between editorial and advertising process and decision making; current or potential sponsors may not dictate the form or substance of the editorial content appearing on the SkinCareGuide network. SkinCareGuide's editors have full responsibility for ensuring compliance with the entire SkinCareGuide advertising policy.
- SkinCareGuide readers should be able to readily distinguish between promotional and editorial material. Toward this end, SkinCareGuide will not run "advertorial" content that is not clearly identified as such.
- SkinCareGuide will make every effort to avoid publishing advertisements from only a small number of sponsors and will seek to avoid having specific content within online peer-reviewed journals and journal articles either juxtaposed with advertising from or supported by single sponsors within a related therapeutic area.
- Advertisers will not influence the way any search results for specific information by keyword or topic are displayed on SkinCareGuide. SkinCareGuide will post all of the variables used to determine relevance ranking and the order of search results presented to SkinCareGuide readers. SkinCareGuide reserves the right to feature original SkinCareGuide material or content within search results, and any such hierarchy of search results will be free of any influence from advertisers. However, we will target advertising or sponsored health information content to users based on information about them or their use of our website, including searches they conduct.
- SkinCareGuide will consider for publication, within appropriate editorial context, all criticism of advertisements, or the SkinCareGuide advertisement policies.
We welcome any comments, questions, or complaints you have about this editorial and advertising policy or our websites. Please feel free to contact us by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Revision date: This policy was last updated on April 13, 2004.
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