What does it mean if information is embargoed?
The embargo means information concerning the study cannot be published, broadcast, posted online, shared with non-journalists, or otherwise placed in the public domain until the time of the embargo.
What is the embargo policy of JAMA and JAMA Network Journals?
The JAMA Network grants prepublication access to articles to selected members of the media who agree not to publish, broadcast, post online, or otherwise place information about embargoed content in the public domain until the time of their publication. During this embargo period individuals granted access to articles may read them, discuss their findings with the authors, and consult with other experts for the purpose of drafting reports, news stories, or other coverage for release at the time of article publication. The rationale for maintaining an embargo system is summarized by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (http://tinyurl.com/pdcntkg):
“Doctors in practice need to have research reports available in full detail before they can advise patients about the reports’ conclusions…. For the media, the embargo creates a ‘level playing field,’ which most reporters and writers appreciate since it minimizes the pressure on them to publish stories before competitors when they have not had time to prepare carefully. Consistency in the timing of public release of biomedical information is also important in minimizing economic chaos, since some articles contain information that has potential to influence financial markets.”
By requesting access to JAMA Network embargoed materials, members of the media agree to adhere to the above restrictions and also to the following specific policies. For additional questions regarding The JAMA Network embargo policies, call JAMA Network Media Relations at 312-464-JAMA (5262) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Embargoes lift the time and day articles are published online or in print (whichever comes first).
The print issue of JAMA is published on the first 4 Tuesdays of each month. The embargo for the contents of JAMA lifts on Tuesday’s at 11 a.m. Eastern time. Many articles are also published “Online First,” ahead of print, on varying days of the week, and the embargo on those articles lifts at the time of publication. Typically, embargoed JAMA content for scheduled issues is posted on media.jamanetwork.com on the preceding Thursday. For example, an article appearing in the Tuesday, January 20 issue would be available on media.jamanetwork.com beginning Thursday, January 15, and would be under embargo until Tuesday, January 20, at 11 a.m. Eastern time. Articles scheduled for “Online First” release are often available in advance and JAMA will specify embargo dates and times.
The JAMA Network
The JAMA Network specialty journals publish most major articles “Online First” on a weekly basis. Typical publication and embargo schedules for the JAMA Network specialty journals are as follows:
Embargoed for Mondays, 11 a.m. Eastern time
JAMA Internal Medicine
Embargoed content available on Thursdays.
Embargoed for Wednesdays, 11 a.m Eastern time
Embargoed content available on Mondays.
Embargoed for Thursdays, 11 a.m. Eastern time
JAMA Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery
JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery
Embargoed content available on Tuesdays.
JAMA will grant credentials to its embargoed content to:
- Reporters, writers, editors, and producers with staff credentials from newspapers, magazines, online news services, wire services, radio or television networks and stations
• Freelance writers (including bloggers) and editors who regularly cover health-related topics (Note: Freelancers will be required to provide examples of recent work)
The JAMA Network will not grant access to its embargoed content to:
- Public relations firms, advertising agencies or production companies with no immediate affiliation to the authors or a specific article
• Writers/editors or other contributors for patient publications created and distributed by industry, such as pharmaceutical companies or device manufacturers
• Representatives of industry including pharmaceutical companies or device manufacturers
• Financial or industry analysts
• Publications or websites supported by industry including patient advocacy groups
• Representatives of corporate, academic or hospital public relations, advertising, or marketing departments
Penalties for Breaking Embargo
The JAMA Network reviews embargo breaks on a case-by-case basis. Circumstances of the embargo violation will be evaluated before a determination is made regarding appropriate penalties. Penalties for breaking an embargo may include but are not limited to loss of access to embargoed materials and loss of media credentials to JAMA Network events. The media outlet that employs the reporter also may be suspended from receiving embargoed materials. If a media outlet/reporter has been suspended, it will be the responsibility of the reporter and media outlet to reapply for access to embargoed materials after the suspension period ends.
Are there ever exceptions to the JAMA and JAMA Network embargo?
The embargo is strict and only the JAMA Network Media Relations Department is authorized to make changes to a study’s embargo time. Contact the department if you have a question concerning an embargo.
For Public Affairs Officers:
I’m a new PIO. How do I hear about new JAMA and JAMA Network studies?
If the JAMA Network Media Relations Department is distributing a release about a study, we will contact the press office of the lead or corresponding author’s institution.
Am I allowed to post a news release on my website?
Embargoed news releases may be posted only to restricted-access websites for journalists. Do not post embargoed news releases to open-access sites. JAMA and JAMA Network studies can not be posted on another website, but it is permissible to provide a link to the studies from another website.
Can I distribute my researcher’s JAMA or JAMA Network study to reporters?
Although mass distribution of JAMA and JAMA Network papers to the media is not allowed, journalists can be directed to the JAMA Network Media Relations department and/or the For The Media website for the study.
What are the guidelines concerning writing and distributing our own news releases on JAMA and JAMA Network studies?
Any news release or media advisory should the have the study’s embargo time, date, and time zone at the top of the release or advisory, and cite in which journal the study appears. Embargoed news releases should only be distributed to journalists. Embargoed information cannot be posted to openly accessible web sites; routed to electronic wire services such as PRNewswire, Ascribe, or BusinessWire; or otherwise placed in the public domain. (These and other open-access services may be used as soon as the embargo lifts, as desired.)