D.4 Advertising, Promotion and Literature Distribution

I. Advertising

The Division of Student Affairs oversees all advertising, promotions, literature and publications distribution on the USC campus in order to:

  1. Protect the rights enumerated in the policy on Free Expression and Dissent.
  2. Help foster and maintain a campus atmosphere of personal responsibility and mutual respect.
  3. Allow for maximum promotion of student events.
  4. Ensure a safe environment of order and cleanliness on campus.

This will aid in creating a campus that promotes the well-being of its students, faculty, staff and visitors and will provide events with effective publicity and exposure.

II. General Regulations

  1. Content of all printed materials posted or distributed on campus must:

    a. Contain no material containing advocacy directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action

    b. Contain no advertisements for “term paper mills” or other products or services which undermine the academic integrity of the university.

    c. Contain no true threats or intimidation, meaning language where:

    i. The speaker means to communicate a serious expression of an intent to commit an act of unlawful violence to a particular individual or group of individuals, or

    ii. The speaker directs a threat to a person or group of persons with the intent of placing the victim in fear of bodily harm or death.

    d. Contain no advertisements or promotions for alcoholic beverages, illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia.e. Contain no “fighting words” meaning language where

    i. The speech, considered objectively, is abusive and insulting rather than a communication of ideas.

    ii. The speech is used in an abusive manner in a situation that presents an actual danger that it will cause a breach of peace.

  2. USC does not exercise prior restraint on printed materials to be posted or distributed on campus that may be libelous or slanderous. However, if such materials are posted or distributed, they may be referred to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards for action.
  3. Any material that is not written in English requires a translation to be kept on file with the SCheduling Office in Ronald Tutor Campus Center 425.
  4. Any student groups or organizations not recognized by the university will be considered either “commercial” or “personal,” including non-profit organizations.

III. Publicity

All advertising and communication plans/timelines must be submitted in advance to the approving departments. No advertising is permitted until all approvals, paperwork and final payments have been received.

The use of third party promoters is strictly prohibited.

All printed publicity such as flyers, posters and postcards, must include the following entry guideline in accordance with the level of event identified during the dance agreement-planning meeting.

The following must be indicated on all materials to be posted:

  1. The full name of the sponsoring organization
  2. The time, date and place of the event
  3. Any entrance fees or costs to participate
  4. Entry guidelines

Entry Guidelines

Level 1 Open to USC student members of the student organization only, with valid USC ID

Level 2 Open to any USC student with valid USC ID

Level 3 Open to USC students, with valid USC ID, and guest

Level 4 Open to USC students, guest(s) and other college student(s). Valid USC ID or other valid college photo ID and proof of 18 years or older required.


The Division of Student Affairs maintains several posting kiosks across campus where university students may staple posters or flyers without prior approval. Posting on bulletin boards not controlled by the division must be approved by the staff of the principal department in that building. It is the university’s intent to limit the use of departmental bulletin boards to information relating to that department, unless otherwise posted.

In order to advance the university’s objectives, to control the number of posters or flyers posted, and to ensure appropriate use of university facilities and property, limits may be placed on the number of posting locations that commercial or personal groups may use.

The individual or organization responsible for the posting must be identified.

Posting or flyer distribution is prohibited in the following areas or in the following ways:

  1. all trees and hedges
  2. the ground, taped or loose
  3. buildings (including glass windows, doors, walls and columns)
  4. Tommy Trojan and all other statues
  5. trash cans
  6. all lamp posts
  7. telephone booths/telephone poles
  8. parking lots and structures
  9. on top of other previously posted materials
  10. fountains
  11. chalking
  12. electronic flyers or materials distributed via USC listservs
  13. on cars, bicycles or other individual property
  14. freestanding advertisements such as signs on stands, sandwich boards, other displays, etc.

The individual or organization responsible for posting will be held accountable for any violations and associated fees.

Revised August 2014.