Website advertising policy
These guidelines are intended to clarify what website advertisements are acceptable or not acceptable to Wandsworth Borough Council on its website www.wandsworth.gov.uk.
Wandsworth Council wishes to maximise revenue from advertising on its website and therefore, wherever possible, will permit advertising.
However, there is clearly a need to ensure that the process of accepting and displaying advertising does not conflict with other, more dominant policy or operational objectives.
Such broader objectives can include the need to generate revenue through promoting certain services provided by the council. In this case it would not be appropriate to display advertising for 'competing services.' What constitutes a competing service will change from time-to-time and will therefore be judged on a case-by-case basis.
The expectation, however, is that most advertising from local and other businesses will generally be acceptable. The council does not take a 'white listing' approach (i.e. defining permitted advertising) but rather follows a 'black listing' approach (i.e. assuming that advertising is permitted unless it falls into a number of prohibited categories, as defined in more detail below).
Any advertising must comply with all and any relevant regulations and must not conflict with council's aims and priorities as set out in the Corporate Business Plan.
Wandsworth Council also takes note of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008, which seek to protect consumers from unfair, misleading or aggressive marketing practices and requires all advertisers to strongly comply with not only the letter but also the spirit of these regulations.
The appearance of an advertisement on the council's website is not an endorsement by Wandsworth Council of that company, product or service.
Political organisations may not advertise on the web site. Wandsworth Council actively encourages the engagement of citizens and community groups in policy setting and other democratic processes, but it does not encourage and will generally not permit advertising from what might broadly be called 'lobby groups'. This applies to lobby groups which may be very local and temporary in nature, perhaps centred on a particular planning decision, or national or international and more permanent.
Equally, it would not be appropriate to display advertising which in some way touched on socially contentious issues or which contained messages which could be regarded as contentious. The council reserves the right to decide whether an issue is or is not contentious and if the advertising may or may not be displayed.
Advertising for gambling or betting services is not permitted.
Any content or advertising which has an overtly sexual 'tone', which features partial or complete nudity or which appears to promote or give undue publicity to illegal or inappropriate behaviour or lifestyles will also be excluded. The council reserves the right to determine what behaviour it considers inappropriate.
Advertisements that the council considers mocking of groups of citizens or that contains innuendo or subtext which could cause offence will not be accepted, regardless of tone.
In addition to the categories listed immediately below, there may also be some specific controls and policies associated with individual placements. This are listed on separate departmental guidelines which are available on request.
The specific categories of organisations, products or services which may not advertise or be advertised on the Wandsworth Council website are as follows:
Types of organisations:
- Political organisations
- Lobby groups
- Manufacturers and distributors of tobacco products
- Manufacturers and distributors of alcohol
- Pornography and adult content
- Gambling and betting services
The above rules apply to sponsored links. The inclusion of a sponsored Link on the council's website does not imply that that product or service is endorsed by the council.