From The Herald Bulletin (Anderson):

Q: We have a nonprofit entity opposing a proposed reservoir. The entity wants to run an ad against the project. With this type of advertisement, do we need to state the group’s name in the ad? For example, should we require “paid for by XYZ association” in the ad?

A: If a private individual writes the check for the advertising, can the disclaimer list the organization or does it need to list “paid for by John Doe for XYZ association?”

The legal requirement to identify who placed an ad concerns political ads where the ad advocates the election or defeat of a candidate. That doesn’t apply to this situation.

Whether or not you require identification of who placed the ad in the text would be a matter of your policy, not the law. You don’t have to list either the person who writes the check or the organization.

Contact Steve Key, HSPA executive director and general counsel, with media law questions at or (317) 624-4427.