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Dawn.com Paid Content Policies


This policy document outlines the standards and practices that will govern paid content on the DAWN Media Group’s online properties. It also defines the relationship between editorial and advertising content, with the highest consideration being given to maintaining editorial integrity and reader trust through transparency and standards that reflect the values of the DAWN Media Group.

The Advertiser accepts and agrees to be bound by these policies.

Given the pace of change in the online media industry, these guidelines will be revisited and updated from time to time through feedback, comments, corrections and learning from global trends, all stakeholders and especially our readers.

1. Definitions

Paid content: Any content that is paid to be published on DAWN Media Group’s online properties.

Advertiser: The individual/agency/company that is paying for content.

Dawn.com: Is individuals/departments of the DAWN Media Group authorized to work on paid content.

2. Separation of advertising and editorial

No relationship with any Advertiser will be allowed to compromise Dawn.com’s editorial integrity. Paid content will be distinguishable from editorial content through labelling in accordance with the Labelling Guidelines (see Section 10). In order to ensure maximum protection of editorial integrity, further labeling cues (visual or text) may be added to the paid content upon the discretion of Dawn.com.

3. Types of content

Paid content falls into three categories.

3.1 Advertisement: Content that is wholly produced by the Advertiser for publication on Dawn.com’s online platforms. All such content will go through a vetting and approval process by Dawn.com followed by basic edits to follow house style and improve on the content. All content that is produced by the Advertiser will be labelled “ADVERTISEMENT” in accordance with the Labelling Guidelines (Section 5).

3.2 Partner Content: Content that is collaboratively produced by Dawn.com and the Advertiser. Both parties use their resources and expertise to produce quality, engaging content that is aligned with the editorial expectations of the online property’s audience and the Advertiser’s objectives and intended audience. All content that is produced collaboratively by Dawn.com and the Advertiser will have the label “PUBLISHING PARTNER” with the Advertiser’s name, in accordance with the Labelling Guidelines (Section 5). Partner Content will be tailor-designed online experiences, featuring custom layouts and tools. It will feature no other forms of advertising (e.g. banner ads).

3.3 Sponsored Content: Content that Dawn.com produces independently, which a Advertiser pays to associate with. The content is commissioned and produced by Dawn.com with no editorial involvement by the Advertiser. All content that is produced solely by Dawn.com with the Advertiser paying for association will have the label “SPONSOR” with the Advertiser’s name, in accordance with the Labelling Guidelines (Section 5). Sponsored Content will be tailor-designed online experiences, featuring custom layouts and tools. It will feature no other forms of advertising (e.g. banner ads).

4. Form of content

4.1 Paid content can consist of any combination of the following:

  1. News reports
  2. Features - regular, long form, interactive, data-based etc.
  3. Reviews - products and services
  4. Interviews
  5. Listicles - image based, GIF based, video based, social media based etc.
  6. Videos – including reports, features, reviews, interviews etc.
  7. Slideshows – including events, features, profiles etc.
  8. Quizzes - test based and personality based
  9. Surveys - including published results
  10. Blogs - in multiple formats and editorially diverse (from recipes to satire etc).

4.2 Selecting form(s) of content: The Advertiser may request any of the forms of content outlined in Section 4, but a final decision will be reached upon mutual consent.

4.3 Reasonable timelines: Timelines for paid content production can be provided by the Advertiser, but a final agreement is based on the form(s) of the content and what is feasible.

5. Promotion of paid content

Paid content can be promoted in a number of ways using DAWN Media Group’s online properties. The Advertiser is free to choose any/all of the below.

5.1 The paid content will be published but will only be accessible through search engines.

5.2 Native embedding on site: where paid content will be placed on the homepage, sections, right hand column of story page or in custom options, or in any combination. Native embedding options may be requested by the Advertiser, but final approval is at the discretion of Dawn.com.

5.3 Social media: which can include Dawn.com accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), Images accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram), DawnNews.tv accounts (Facebook, Twitter), Herald accounts (Facebook, Twitter), Aurora accounts (Facebook, Twitter). One social media share is included for all Partner and Sponsored content, but further shares are at the discretion of Dawn.com or must be paid for. Advertisers also have the option to pay for boosting Facebook posts for greater reach.

5.4 Banner advertising: standard online ads served on DAWN Media Group’s online properties that lead to the paid content on click.

5.5 Duration of campaign: Reasonable timelines for paid content promotion can be provided by the Advertiser as per pre-defined periods offered by Dawn ranging from one day minimum to custom periods, but a final agreement as to the length of a campaign is at the discretion of Dawn.com based on the type and form of the content.

6. Approval of content

All paid content must first be approved by Dawn.com editorial staff prior to any agreement or production of the content to ensure it meets the standards expected of the platform(s), is of interest to the platform(s) audience, and is aligned with Dawn.com editorially and follows the guidelines outlined here.

The Advertiser shall provide a brief to Dawn.com for evaluation and ideation and will receive a response within 2-5 working days. The Advertiser can then evaluate and respond to Dawn.com on the content.

Advertisement: After approval, Dawn.com will require 2-5 working days to publish advertising content. Some exceptions may be made to expedite the publishing of content, but this may incur additional costs.

Partner Content: After approval, Dawn.com and the Advertiser will agree on an appropriate timeline based on the complexity of the project.

Sponsored Content: Advertiser may approve or reject association with Dawn.com content that is to be published at least five working days before the content is published. The Advertiser will appoint a single contact person who has the complete authority of the Advertiser to act on their behalf in all matters concerning paid content. This contact person will be made accessible to Dawn.com for a response on all matters concerning the content. If the contact person is contacted by Dawn.com but is unavailable, unresponsive or unable to act for the Advertiser for any reason, then after a period of three working days, resolution of the matter, except in the case of the Advertiser’s branding, will be undertaken by Dawn.com in whatever manner considered appropriate, which the Advertiser will accept in good faith.

7. Review of content

7.1 Review of Advertisements: Any content that falls under the Advertisement category may be reviewed by the Advertiser after it is edited as defined in Section 3.1. Prior to publishing, the Advertiser may request a maximum of two rounds of amendments to the content. Dawn.com shall not be obliged to make changes in Advertisements where such changes would conflict with house style, expose Dawn.com to legal liability or breach internal standards, policies and positions on issues (see Section 6 for more details). The Advertiser will be given 2-5 working days for review and amendments.

7.2 Review of Partner Content and Sponsored Content: Any review of Partner Content and Sponsored Content in full prior to publishing may be requested, but Dawn.com reserves the right to incorporate or decline any suggested changes.

In the case of logo layout/placement or other branding changes, the Advertiser may review and suggest amendments that will be incorporated into the content.

8. Ownership of published content

Other than intellectual property rights existing in Advertisement material, Partner Content material and Sponsored Content material provided by the Advertiser, all paid content published on the DAWN Media Group’s online properties will be the intellectual property of Dawn.com and the Advertiser.

The Advertiser or Dawn.com may reproduce the paid content as long as (i) they do not make any editorial changes to the content that impacts its meaning or (ii) not publish any content used by either under a license agreement (e.g. wires agencies), unless otherwise agreed in writing by the party, and only then in accordance with the applicable licence for such material (iii) promptly comply with any request by either party to remove the content for any legal or ethical reasons that may occur.

9. Termination of agreement, removal of content

Both Dawn.com and the Advertiser will have the right to suspend or cancel any agreement and/or temporarily or permanently unpublish paid content based on any deviation from, or violation of these guidelines or any other justifiable reason provided. The justification of such a request will be agreed upon mutually by both parties.

In the case of agreement by the two parties on the termination of any agreement and/or the temporary or permanent unpublishing of paid content (i) Dawn.com will be reasonably compensated for any work already undertaken (ii) If the Advertiser agrees, Dawn.com may publish the content without the Advertiser’s branding/association, or remove the Advertiser’s branding/association on published content instead of unpublishing the content.

Dawn.com reserves the right to publish or not remove content that has already been published only for that content which is solely the intellectual property of Dawn.com (Section 8).

10. Labelling Guidelines

All paid content published on the DAWN Media Group’s online properties will clearly be labelled and presented in a manner that identifies the content as paid for by the Advertiser. There will be no exception to the transparent labelling of paid content as paid, and inclusion of the Advertiser name. Such labelling and presentation may include any/all of the below:

10.1 Author Label: where the Advertiser is clearly identified as a part of the production process by being added as an author to the post with the label ‘ADVERTISEMENT’, ‘PUBLISHING PARTNER’ or ‘SPONSOR’ in accordance with the type of paid content. The format for the author label will be ‘ADVERTISER NAME - PAID CONTENT LABEL’ e.g. ‘XYZ PUBLISHING PARTNER’.

10.2 Written Disclaimer: A line will be added at the start and/or end of content dependent on the type of content production. Advertisements will carry the line “This content is a paid advertisement by ADVERTISER NAME and is not associated with or necessarily reflective of the views of Dawn.com’s staff”. Partner Content will carry the line “This content is produced in paid partnership with ADVERTISER NAME”. Sponsored Content will carry the line “This content has been independently produced by Dawn.com. ADVERTISER NAME has paid for association with the content.”

Where applicable, a ‘What’s this?’ embedded link will be added at the end of the disclaimer, which will lead to the online copy of these guidelines.

10.3 Advertiser Logo/Branding: Based on what is provided by/requested from the Advertiser, the use of logos and other branding may be added to further distinguish paid content from regular content.

10.4 Design and Layout: As and when determined by Dawn.com, the design and layout of paid content may be changed to further identify it as paid, inclusive of the term ‘ADVERTISEMENT’ or ‘SPONSORED’ used in site section layouts, above the headline/thumbnail of the paid content.

11. Compliance with policy, the law and intermediary liability

Advertisers will be responsible for ensuring content they provide is adequately substantiated and complies with all applicable Pakistan laws, regulations, and guidelines. Dawn.com will not be liable for content provided by the Advertiser, but will, to the best of its ability, carefully vet such content to ensure it meets standards, is consistent with Dawn’s policies and does not bring any disparagement or harm to reputation or any form of damage to Dawn.com.

If the provided content does not meet these standards, it will be refused, or if published, removed in whole or in part. Such determination will be made by both the editorial department of Dawn.com and the marketing department and communicated to the Advertiser.

12. Paid content metrics

The Advertiser can request analytics data for paid content. Analytics reports from Google Analytics, Chartbeat and Facebook can be provided as required.

13. Paid content costing

The cost of paid content is calculated based on multiple variable including type(s) of content (Section 3), amount of content to be produced and form of content (Section 4), promotion of content (Section 5), requests for content metrics (Section 12).

To request a quote or for more information, email us, or fill out the form below: