What is underwriting?
An underwriting spot is an announcement made on public broadcasting outlets, especially in the United States, in exchange for funding. These spots usually mention the name of the sponsor, and can resemble traditional advertising in commercial broadcasting, but there are usually legal restrictions, such as a prohibition of making product claims, announcing prices, or providing an incentive to buy a product or service.
FCC Guidelines for Underwriting
Several examples of announcements that would clearly violate the rule may be helpful:
- Announcements containing price information are not permissible. This would include any announcement of interest rate information or other indication of savings or value associated with the product. An example of such an announcement is:
- "7.7% interest rate available now."
- Announcements containing a call to action are not permissible. Examples of such announcements are:
- "Stop by our showroom to see a model";
- "Try product X next time you buy oil."
- Announcements containing an inducement to buy, sell, rent, or lease are not permissible. Examples of such announcements are:
- "Six months' free service";
- "A bonus available this week";
- "Special gift for the first 50 visitors."
“This program is underwritten in part by (Business Name. On March 21st through April 4th, (Name of Artist/Event) will be at (Location) at (Time) for more ticket/information call (Phone Number) or visit (Website).”
“This program is underwritten in part by (Business Name). (Business Name) is now accepting applications for children 6 wks – 12 years old. Open (Days and Time) located at (Location), for more information please call (Phone Number).”
“This program is underwritten in part by (Business Name) located at (Location) for more information call (Phone Number).”
*The underwriting samples are just that, samples. They are not definitive; we will tailor the underwriting to fit your needs.