Effective Date:
January 28, 1993
Revised Date:
Review Date:
Approving Body:
Board of Governors
Vice-President (Administration)
Applies to:

Policy on Commercial Advertising Placed in or at University Sites or Facilities and in University Publications

1. Application and Scope

This policy applies to arrangements entered into by the University with advertisers or media brokers for displaying commercial advertising in or at University sites or facilities and in University publications, and specifies content guidelines and the available space for commercial advertising.

Explanation: A consistent and controlled response by the University to the sale of commercial advertising space in University publications and facilities would remove the risks inherent in our current ad hoc and unregulated approach. The factors to be considered include advertising content and locations and the maintenance of fair and open dealings with media brokers and advertisers. The policy, therefore, applies to these arrangements and addresses these factors.

2. Definitions

  • "commercial advertising" in this context means the promotional presentation, other than by the University, of a name, logo and/or message with the intention or possible result of creating market awareness or sales of a product or service on a larger than private scale. It is not intended for this policy to apply to the display or mention of the name and/or logo of a commercial enterprise when used in explicit acknowledgement of its financial contribution to an event, capital building project, or publication of the University.
  • "university sites and facilities" means all or any part of the sites and facilities owned or leased by the University.
  • "university publications" means publications, bulletins, learned journals and handbooks sponsored, prepared or distributed by the University. Explanation: The definition of "commercial advertising" does not include private advertising such as appears on bulletin boards around the campus.

3. Authorized Commercial Advertising Space

Commercial advertising is permitted only in the University sites, facilities, and publications listed in Schedule "A" to this policy.

Other space and publications not mentioned in the Schedule could be used as commercial advertising space, but only with the prior authorization of the Vice-President (Administration).

Explanation: By specifying the space or area where commercial advertising is permitted, the University is able to control proliferation of commercial advertising on campus, to manage requests for presentation of commercial advertising space in a more consistent fashion, and possibly to present more sophisticated advertising space packages.

4. Content and Standards for Commercial Advertising

Commercial advertising in Schedule "A" sites, facilities and publications should conform with general content guidelines, as set out in Schedule "B" to this policy.

Explanation: Content guidelines are important due to the public nature of the University and out of regard for the University's varied constituency.

5. Restriction on Bartering Commercial Advertising Space

The University shall not accept a good, service, product or financial sponsorship of a University event or program in exchange for providing commercial advertising space to an advertiser or media broker, other than through the Purchasing Department and without the prior authorization of the Vice-President (Administration).

Explanation: This ensures that protective accounting, legal and purchasing protocols have been followed.

Schedule "A" to Policy on Commercial Advertising at the University

Authorized Commercial Advertising Space at the University

University sites and facilities:

  • Sports Facilities
  • Vending Machines and Food Services Facilities
  • Bus Shelters
  • University Centre, under the direction of the Director of University Centre Services in consultation with UMSU
  • University Telephone Directory, Student Affairs Student Handbooks, learned journals, University Relations and Information Publications, including the Bulletin, and programs outlining or promoting University events.

Schedule "B" to Policy on Commercial Advertising at the University

Guidelines for Content and Standards of Commercial Advertising

These guidelines are intended to provide the parameters of acceptable commercial advertising at University sites and facilities or in University publications.

  1. The commercial advertising should be in good taste and should meet generally acceptable community standards as to form and content.

  2. The commercial advertising should not be in support of a political party.

  3. Tobacco products and alcohol products should not be the subject of the commercial advertising.

  4. The University, its faculties, schools and administrative units, must not endorse and must not be perceived to endorse the product, service and/or message of the commercial advertising.
The Vice-President (Administration) shall be the final arbiter in cases where there is doubt as to whether particular commercial advertising conforms with these guidelines.

Explanation: Guideline #3 may be the most controversial, however, it is consistent with the University's efforts under the Clean Air Policy and with the efforts of the University's Alcohol Advisory Committee to promote moderation in alcohol consumption.