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George A. Smathers Libraries
Media Relations Policy

Policy
The Director of Communications is the official source of information for media representatives. All news releases on behalf of the George A. Smathers Libraries are issued by the director.

  1. Cultural events (lectures, workshops, exhibits, information fairs) are publicized by the director, working in coordination with a designated person(s) representing the event.
  2. The information function is coordinated with members of the administration when media request information on (a) questions of policy or issues for which a spokesperson has been designated; (b) questions for which a library response has been prepared; (c) responses that require two or more library sources; and (d) library safety reports.
  3. In the event of a news story, from a minor negative happening to a rumor to a true crisis* situation, it is the job of the director to:
          • coordinate the flow of information to the media and concerned publics;
          • assist library administration in preparing public statements if necessary, and
          • assure that public information is made available accurately and in a timely    manner.
  4. In the event that other library officials are not available for comment, the director serves as the designated spokesperson.
  5. In dealing with the news media, anyone is free to speak with the media, except as noted in the policy above during a crisis* situation or about sensitive information. We ask that you refer those inquiries to the director.

*A crisis is an unforeseen critical event, violent or non-violent, caused by nature, by accidents or by deliberate acts, about which the media and the public will expect information.

Purpose
This policy helps to ensure the Smathers Libraries is represented with consistent messages and with one clear voice to all of its publics, both internal and external.