PRESS AND PUBLICITY GUIDELINES FOR CONTRIBUTORs
It is possible that there may be significant media and social media attention surrounding the broadcasts of First Dates (working title) (“the Programme”).
This guide has been prepared to help you understand what you can and can’t do when it comes to posting photos or comments or talking to journalists and others including on all social media sites e.g. Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
We also hope this guide will assist you in how to deal with the range of comments and enquiries, friendly and unfriendly that may come your way. We can’t guarantee that everything you read about yourself will be nice. But we can help you be prepared for what lies ahead.
1. Press & Other Enquiries: Should you be contacted by the press or indeed by anyone else asking questions about the show or your appearance within it, please do not respond directly. Instead, please let a member of the COCO Television’s production team know immediately, and direct the press or others to contact him or her directly.
2. Be Prepared: You may want to reflect upon whether you have done anything in the past that could become the focus of unwanted media attention around your TV appearance. Examples include a teenage indiscretion, a string of late-night tweets, a naked photo shoot. Everyone has a past, it’s part of who we are, and it’s by no means always something we should be ashamed of. However, others may not see things this way and the press or others may seek to bring up things you would rather forget in order to ridicule or embarrass (or worse) you and/or the Programme.
3. Keeping Schtum: We want to save the surprise of what happens in the Programme for broadcast of the Programme so please don’t post anything on social media or talk to the press or others before the Programme transmits (unless we have specifically set up a press interview). This includes posting any photos of your experience on the show.
At no point and this even includes after the Programme has been broadcast, should you divulge any information regarding the Programme which hasn’t already been made public.
This includes, but is not limited to:
• Location filming details.
• Production details including the production process.
• Information about or relating to other contributors.
• Images of the location, staff and behind the scenes activity.
4. Press for the Programme: COCO Television and RTÉ will be planning a press strategy for this series nearer the date of transmission. If (and only if) they want you to be involved, COCO Television, will be in touch. This may be for interviews, photos or just simply asking those who want to tweet to support the Programme using the agreed hashtag
5. Restrictions: Please ensure you have read and understand the restrictions in your contributor agreement. If in doubt, make sure you check with us before referring publicly (to include to the media or on social media) to the Programme, COCO Television, RTÉ or anyone involved in the Programme. Once the Programme has been broadcast, you may refer to and/or make a factual non-derogatory statement solely in respect of your participation and/or contribution in the Programme but you still need to check with us before you issue any press release and/or statement regarding your participation and/or involvement in the Programme. Please refer to your contributor agreement for full details.
6. Social Media Guidelines: Contributing to conversations on social media can be exciting and rewarding. You are connecting with people with whom you have a common interest, and the tone is frequently relaxed and intimate.
However, other people may use this as an opportunity to say what they didn’t like about the Programme and/or you. Be prepared to receive or read ANY type of message/comment from the general public – from compliments to extremely hurtful comments about your appearance, sexuality, mannerisms… you name it, if they can think it, they can Tweet it.
Below are a few tips below on how best to deal with potential online criticism and upsetting comments: It’s exciting, interesting, intriguing to see what others think about you but before you go Google your name, please STOP and THINK. For every compliment, there may something not so good. Are you going to focus on the good or the bad? It’s tough to not get upset by others comments so we strongly recommend you don’t look.
• Got some unflattering photos on your Facebook page or some derogatory comments or statuses on your Twitter or Facebook accounts? It’s advisable to take these down before the Programme is shown on TV.
• Remember if people can’t see your social media sites, then they can’t contact you directly. The media may try and access your social media accounts while the Programme is airing and therefore any information shared on these sites could be made public. It’s a good idea to temporarily close your social media accounts until the Programme has aired. If you don’t want to take down your social media sites then we strongly recommend making sure your privacy settings are set so that press and others cannot contact you directly through these means.
• If you are on Facebook, review your privacy settings so only people you know and trust can see your profile. See Facebook’s FAQs here: http://www.facebook.com/help/?page=806 .
• Twitter tells you who can read each type of tweet here: https://support.twitter.com/articles/119138-types-of-tweets-and-where-they-appear
If you do operate a blog, Twitter page, Instagram account, Facebook page or any other social media accounts, we recommend you ensure that your confidentiality/security settings are at their highest.
• You can block someone on Facebook and Twitter if you find their comments offensive or they’re spamming you. Learn how to do so here: https://www.facebook.com/help/168009843260943
• If you absolutely must tweet/post remember that personal blogs, Facebook, Twitter, websites and other means of electronic communication must never be used to attack, abuse or ‘troll’ other individuals – whether or not they are involved in Programme. Consider all your comments at least twice before posting. If in doubt about their impact upon another individual, or upon your reputation, don’t post them. If someone has written something you find hurtful or irritating, take a deep breath and sufficient time to think through your response.
Do you really need to respond? A quick retaliation could fuel an argument that might otherwise have been avoided. Consider anything you write to be permanent because it’s out there even if you’ve deleted it. And never post online comments while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.