MyrtleBeachSC Standards and Guidelines

Publisher/Author Network Standards and Guidelines

All applicants must sign and submit the form at the bottom of this page to be approved.

*For the terms of these guidelines, an author is a publisher of his or her own content when they select and publish using the publish button on the back end of the MyrtleBeachSC News platform. The term author and publisher are considered one and the same through out these guidelines.

At MyrtleBeachSC News, we strive to foster strong connections between local audiences, contributors, and businesses. Our ultimate goal is to support individuals in living safer, more vibrant, and genuinely connected lives. With reliable information at their fingertips, communities are empowered to make informed decisions about their well-being. We recognize the value of original reporting and cultural coverage from our trusted network of local outlets and publishers. These voices offer a diverse range of perspectives and stories that enrich our ecosystem. Quality is of utmost importance to us at MyrtleBeachSC News, which is why we proudly feature reputable publishers of all sizes from every community within our operating markets.

These Standards and Guidelines apply to all Publishers on MyrtleBeachSC News. Failure to comply with these guidelines can lead to disciplinary action such as restricting future distribution and/or up-to and including removal and being permanently banned from the platform. Publisher’s content may be removed if they do not comply with these policies.

All of these policies and guidelines are non-exhaustive, and MyrtleBeachSC News reserves the right to remove content or profiles at any time.

MyrtleBeachSC News Publisher Network Standards + Guidelines:

To be distributed on MyrtleBeachSC News as a publisher, you must:

  • Be the editorial source for your own content, with you (or your support staff) creating original editorial work.
  • Sites or persons predominantly focused on listings (e.g. event listings, marketplaces) will be categorized as “Information” not “Publishers”
  1. Be who you say you are
  • Have a reporting presence in any communities you cover.
  • Understand that you are personally responsible for the quality and factual basis of any content you publish.
  • In order to establish credibility and accountability, all content on MyrtleBeachSC News must have the contributor clearly stated. Content that is created by an individual can not be from an anonymous source or through methods that deceive the public on publication. The publisher must be a real person known in his or her local community.
  1. Operate in an ethical manner, and at the accepted standards of the industry
  • As an example, have a clear understanding of accepted editorial policy that at least meets, or exceeds the standards outlined in the Code of Ethics from the Society of Professional Journalists.
  • Be guided by the Code of Ethics from the Society of Professional Journalists
  1. Maintain editorial independence from funding, and provide transparency to the user by:
  • Disclosing ownership of your published content
  • Adhering to FTC guidelines on advertising, including branded, sponsored, and affiliate marketing
  • If nonprofit, adhere to industry standards of disclosing funding practices, including large gifts or donors, and have policies to maintain independence from funding.
  1. Be accountable that everything on you publish on the MyrtleBeachSC News platform adheres to these policies by being the owner, creator, or licensor of the work.
  • If you use a community-generated model or have forums, you must either ensure every submission adheres to MyrtleBeachSC News’ guidelines, or omit this portion from your publication or feed.
  • If you use wire services, you are responsible to ensure these services also adhere to the policies or you must omit them from your feed. Plagiarized content from news sources such as AP, Reuters, NBC, CBS, ABC, USAToday, NPR, etc can not be published on the MyrtleBeachSC News platform. Any material or quotes from any news outlet must be attributed to that news outlet with a direct link to any associated content.

1. Opinion and Fairness

MyrtleBeachSC News believes in highlighting diverse voices, stories, opinions, and sources. We favor work that presents all relevant sides of a story and provides the necessary context. It is equally important that our partner publishers do not draw false moral equivalencies where none exist.

Excessive bias that distorts or misrepresents facts are not allowed.

What is in violation of the policy?

  • Opinion content with no factual basis, such as no evidence or citations to back up claims, or that relies on unverified facts or information.
  • Insinuation of the opinion or belief of another individual without direct quotation or citation.
  • Opinion content that relies on excessive vulgarity, profanity, obscenity, insults, or demeaning language to argue a point.

2. Original Content

MyrtleBeachSC News prioritizes original reporting and prohibits plagiarism of any kind. When work comes from a third party, either open-source use or is licensed, it must be properly credited, and the origin must be clear to the user at all points.

Official announcements or press releases must be framed as such, with the originating organization clearly written. MyrtleBeachSC News prioritizes original reporting over such aggregation in terms of how content is amplified and distributed.

We do not permit:

  • Rewrites of police blotters that do not include editorial improvements, added information, and/or added contextual value
  • Verbatim press releases designed to appear as original reporting via the addition of bylines, editorialized headlines, or lack of citation for the source of the release
  • AI-generated rewrites of press releases or the original reporting of other outlets
  • Aggregation of the work of others without proper crediting
  • Articles with mugshots of individuals who have been arrested, but not charged (An exception to this rule is if the person in question is named by police because they are a fugitive and considered dangerous.)

3. Credibility and expertise

MyrtleBeachSC News seeks to create a trustworthy ecosystem for its users by providing content from sources that are credible, that have proven expertise, and that are accountable for what they provide. Content designed to mislead is not permitted.

In order to establish credibility and accountability, all content on MyrtleBeachSC must have the publisher/author clearly stated.

We do not permit:

  • Formats or edits designed to mislead, including:
  • Articles with quotes in a headline that never appear in the story body and are not attributed to any source
  • Headlines or titles that withhold information, or use inflated and/or salacious language to encourage clicks
  • Digitally manipulated video or images intended to obscure facts and/or distort information
  • Deepfakes of any kind
  • Content that contains links that lead to unrelated or deceptive websites, or that encourages accidental and/or inflated clickthroughs.
  • Outdated content presented as new content and where originating date is not clear
  • Satire news stories when they are not labeled clearly.
  • Wholly-fictional pieces, with exceptions for editorial coverage of newsworthy excerpts.
  • Potentially harmful or misleading advice, including:
  • Providing answers, responses, comments, or opinions that you are not properly licensed or otherwise qualified to provide (such as providing medical, financial, or legal advice, without appropriate licenses or professional background)
  • Horoscope content that is fear-mongering in nature and includes actual instruction for people’s life
  • Promotion of content, products, or services using false, dishonest, or deceptive claims

4. Commercial and Promotional Content

Sponsored, branded, promotional, and affiliated content (defined below) is allowed on MyrtleBeachSC News only if the relationship is disclosed and it does not violate any other community guidelines, policies or terms of use. We do not allow content that conceals or misrepresents sponsored content as editorial content. Sponsorship, including, but not limited to, ownership or affiliate interests, payment, or material support, should be clearly disclosed to users. You must also comply with all applicable laws and regulations, which vary by jurisdiction.

Outlets that are entirely commercial in nature, such as the websites, publishers of brands, publishers for stores, or publishers for professional services are not allowed as publishers or contributors on MyrtleBeachSC News even if they have an editorial feed. Publishers whose sole purpose is to sell a commercial service they provide (e.g. travel bookings, financial services, real estate) are not allowed.

Sponsored, branded or promotional content is any content in which the content producer has a material connection with the brand. A material connection includes any personal, family, or employment relationship or a financial relationship – such as the brand paying you or giving you free or discounted products or services.

Any promotional links should not be excessive or distracting for the user. It is recommended that even if your post is promotional, a majority of the content is not and the content should still provide value to the user. If video content is branded, it should be disclosed at the outset of the video feed produced on your published page.

This policy applies to any content on our Platform, including verbal statements, demonstrations, or depictions of a name, signature, or likeness.

We do not permit:

  • Affiliate content without a proper disclosure before the link appears (“proper disclosure” is a clear and conspicuous description of how you benefit, such as: This post includes affiliate links. If you purchase anything through these affiliated links, the author/website may earn a commission.)
  • Sponsored or branded content without clear disclosure using the words “Sponsored” “Ad” or “Paid” at the top of/ beginning of the piece of content
  • Promotional or advertising pieces created directly by a brand
  • Excessive links to products, brands, or services in article or video descriptions.
  • Content or sites that promote religion, or primarily publish religious texts, without any relevance to current news or events.
  • Major financial services (loans, mortgages, credit cards, retirement) where the commercial relationship between the publisher and the brokers for those services is not clear to the user at all touchpoints
  • Direct money transfers or donations, with some exceptions and determined on a case-by-case instance.

5. Obscenity, Profanity, and Vulgarity

Contributors, Publishers, and Community Organizations should refrain from excessive use of obscene, profane, or vulgar language that may be inappropriate for audiences under 18 years old. This includes:

  • Severe profanity, obscenity and vulgarity in a headline. Exceptions can be made for editorial coverage of newsworthy events, where the profanity, obscenity, or vulgarity is appropriately self-moderated. 
  • Excessive unblocked obscenity, profanity and vulgarity throughout the body text.
  • Unblocked crude gestures or vulgar motions. Exceptions can be made for editorial coverage of newsworthy events, where the gesture or motion is either appropriately edited, or a content warning is included before the gesture or motion could be viewed.

Exceptions are made for editorial coverage of newsworthy events, where the obscenity, profanity, or vulgarity is appropriately self-moderated.

6. Style Guidelines

Content on MyrtleBeachSC News must be legible, understandable, and easily viewable by the majority of users. Content must also be in one of our supported languages.

For anyone posting as a contributor/publisher, or official organization, posts cannot have excessive grammatical or typographical errors that would make the reader question the validity of the published content. MyrtleBeachSC News prefers publisher or contributor content that meets or exceeds the following guidelines.

  • The headline or title is clear, complete, and concise (preferably no more than 20 words)
  • The headline is in title or sentence case, and avoids overuse of emoji, all caps, or other typographical emphases.
  • Articles are at least 250 words, with exceptions for breaking news.
  • Articles contain a clear lede image and videos contain a thumbnail image
  • All imagery or video in articles are directly related to the content. 
  • All photos are captioned with photographer or licensor credit.
  • Articles contain the name of the writer, preferably at the top of the article.
  • Videos contain clear production credits.

All content on MyrtleBeachSC News should be primarily focused on the subject indicated by the headline or title. Clickbait is discouraged, as is overly promotional content, or content that encourages inflated accidental clicks.

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