Definition: Editorial use

Where a Professional Editorial License is given, this allows publication in an "editorial context".

The dividing line between editorial use and commercial use is clear if the commercial use is Christmas Cards, T-Shirts or Mugs. It is less clear though with web pages that are used purely as click-bait, or when content is placed adjacent to a related advertisement, or if a graphic is used on a poster advertising a magazine or newspaper.

Particular care should be taken when using event logos to avoid conflicts with commercial sponsors. They would undoubtedly notice and object (and would take legal action) if you used the official logo on the front of a magazine or on a bill-board! They do however want coverage of the event, so use of logos in association with graphics giving information about an event is usually acceptable. After all, any artist could create an alternative logo to get around a ban. It is much better for everyone if the official logo is used.

So whether a use is editorial or not depends on how the Content is used. Publishers are therefore advised to consult with their legal representatives if they are uncertain whether the usage they proposed would be considered as editorial or not.

What is acceptable can also vary between countries. For example, the publication of personal data is banned in some countries. There can also be sensitivity about words such as "terrorist" or "freedom fighter". There are large numbers of disputed borders and territories in the world, and even the names of some seas are sensitive (such as reference to the East Sea or Sea of Japan). And some issues that were contentious 20 years ago are forgotten now (such as the publication of Premier League fixture data, or of drawn "mouse-like" images).

Faced with these difficulties, users must be responsible for what they publish. They must make sure that Content as used does not breach any applicable laws, rules, regulations or local market conventions.

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