Policy & Procedures
Membership Terms & Conditions as of January 2015
1. The purpose of these Rules and Regulations is to clearly define the rights and responsibilities of Central New Jersey Network (CNJN) and its membership in the use of facilities provided by CNJN. The primary purpose of these facilities is to assist Princeton residents and associates who are interested in producing non-commercial local television programming.
2. These Rules and Regulations have been developed and approved by the Board of Central New Jersey Network, the governing body which oversees CNJN. The Board of Central New Jersey Network reserves the right to repeal, revise, or amend these Policies and Procedures.
3. Any violation of these Rules and Regulations may, at the discretion of CNJN, result in withholding the use of its equipment and facilities from the violator.
4. All users of CNJN equipment and facilities should be aware that they may be held accountable for their actions by the same laws that govern any public activity.
5. Any violation of a CNJN policies may result in the patron’s right to use the equipment or facilities in accordance with these Rules and Regulations and will be reported to the Board of Central New Jersey Network for appropriate action.
1. A member in good standing will be defined as any Princeton resident or associate applying for use of CNJN production equipment and facilities.
2. Members or Non-Profit Groups must have paid in-full their annual members dues.
3. Any individual or non-profit group may use CNJN’s access channel and its facilities according to these rules. Access to the channel or facilities will be on a first-come, first-served, and non-discriminatory basis. Proof of age and residency are required with the submission of application to use access equipment and facilities.
4. If the member is less than 18 years of age s/he must have an adult co-sign the application form and agreement. The co-signer is then financially responsible, along with the applicant, for any damage or loss connected with the use of CNJN equipment and/or facilities other than normal wear and tear.
CNJN may authorize non-residents to use its equipment subject to meeting one of the following qualifications:
a. Full-time students of an educational institution located in Princeton.
b. Employees or authorized representatives of an institution or government agency that does business in Princeton.
c. Members of an organization that serves or is located in Princeton.
d. Others willing to submit their program for review and possible broadcast by CNJN.
5. Priority is given to Princeton residents for the use of equipment and facilities. CNJN equipment and facilities exists for community programming purposes and are not intended for commercial or private use.
III. MEMBER RESPONSIBILITY
1. Members assume full responsibility for use of CNJN equipment and facilities, other than normal wear and tear.
2. Members who use CNJN’s broadcast outlets may not present any material designed to promote the sale of commercial products or services. This includes any advertising by or on the behalf of candidates for public office. At the discretion of the executive director, use of CNJN equipment for such purposes if not intended for broadcast may be granted for a fee.
3. If the use of music or other copyrighted material is involved, the applicant must ascertain that the appropriate copyright clearances have been obtained.
4. With regard to the use of post-production equipment or check-out of portable production equipment, the following requirements will be observed:
a. Members are requested to arrive at least fifteen minutes before their scheduled time of appearance.
b. Members and other participants may not interfere with the production and/or post-production time of another Member.
c. Post production equipment is available on a first come first served drop in basis. Members may schedule time in advance. If demands on equipment warrants, time limits may be imposed.
5. CNJN reserves the right to refuse the use of any of its equipment and facilities to users found in violation of these rules. CNJN also reserves the right to temporarily refuse the use of any of its equipment and/or facilities to any person under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or otherwise not under full control of his/her senses. Making false or misleading statements in the application will be grounds for forfeiture of the privilege to use the access channel, equipment, and facilities.
6. CNJN may refuse to lend equipment to anyone who has, in the experience of the community access staff, misused the equipment, failed to return it on time, or in any other way abused the privileges of membership, or whose membership has expired.
7. The user is responsible for canceling reservations for production equipment, the studio or postproduction facility time that will not be used. All cable access users are expected to be prompt for their scheduled reservations. Any user who is over 15 minutes late may have their equipment and/or facilities given to other users. Any user who fails to cancel three unused reservations will be placed on a 30-day probation. If another offense occurs, a 60-day suspension from public access may be imposed.
8. CNJN is a private non-profit corporation. Members and producers are not agents or employees of CNJN. They are considered to be independent producers and create programming for themselves or the organization they represent. At no time may any individual or organization identify themselves as an employee or agent of CNJN or any of the funding jurisdictions unless hired by CNJN or the jurisdictions to perform a service.
IV. CNJN RESPONSIBILITY
1. CNJN will provide the use of production equipment and post-production facilities on a first-come, first-served, non-discriminatory basis to its members.
2. CNJN will provide qualified personnel to offer technical and programming assistance to members in order to assure optimum production quality.
3. CNJN will not edit, or alter in any way, the content of user material without the permission of the user. CNJN reserves the right to refuse to broadcast programs that are inflammatory, sexually explicit or are in violation of FCC regulations.
V. EQUIPMENT AND FACILITIES
1. CNJN will make available production equipment and postproduction facilities on a first-come, first-served, non-discriminatory basis to the residents of Princeton and members. CNJN equipment and facilities are to be used only for the production of public access programming. However, this does not prohibit producers from also posting their videos on their own websites, YouTube, allowing other TV stations to broadcast them, or exercising other secondary rights.
2. For field production, camcorders and the necessary supplemental equipment will be supplied free of charge to any member in good standing in accordance with these Policies and Procedures on a schedule determined by the facilitator. To ensure availability, check-out times should be requested at least 24 hours in advance. Users will be responsible for their recordable media.
3. For post-production, editing facilities may be used free of charge by any applicant qualifying under the terms of these Policies and Procedures on a schedule to be determined by the facilitator. To ensure availability, editing times should be requested at least 24 hours in advance. At the discretion of the executive director, use of CNJN equipment for commercial purposes may be granted for a fee.
CNJN staff may not have the time to mentor with members with post production equipment. Members are urged to take the editing class to ensure a level of independence.
4. Portable equipment and post-production equipment may not available during the time it is used for training sessions. In this case, priority is given to educating and certifying CNJN members.
5. To take equipment offsite members are required to take the basic camera class.
6. Access users are required to complete and sign an equipment check-out form listing all borrowed equipment, including a statement that said equipment is in good working order at time of check-out, and that the user assumes responsibility for any damage. Upon return, equipment will be thoroughly checked by the facilitator to determine whether anything is missing or damaged. The user will be given a copy of the form indicating full return of the equipment.
7. If the equipment is damaged, lost or stolen, the user will be responsible for the cost of repair or replacement.
VI. PUBLIC ACCESS SCHEDULE PROCEDURE
1. In exchange for use of the video equipment, the user agrees that CNJN may broadcast the material produced. This agreement does not guarantee that the material will be broadcast. CNJN will determine the appropriate time schedule for the material.
2. Users must assume all liability for program content and agree to indemnify CNJN for any injury due to program content. The following rules govern the content of all community access programming.
3. Community access programming must not contain:
a. Obscene or indecent matter.
b. Advertising material designed to promote the sale of commercial products or services. This includes advertisement by or on behalf of officially announced candidates for public office.
c. The direct solicitation of funds for any and all purposes.
d. Material requiring union residual, or other payment including but not limited to talent and crew, unless those payments have been paid or waived.
e. Material which constitutes libel, slander, invasion of privacy, or publicity rights, unfair competition, violation of trademark or copyright, or which might violate any local, state, or federal law.
f. Materials requiring appropriate rights from broadcast stations, networks, sponsors, music licensing organizations, performers, representatives, copyright holders and any other persons as may be necessary for cablecast unless the community producer presents written authorization for the use of such materials.
4. Submitted material of unacceptably poor technical quality may be withheld from broadcast.
5. There are no theoretical limitations imposed on the running time of any program. However, practical and logistical factors, such as channel time availability, may dictate limitations on program length.
6. It is the intent of CNJN neither to inhibit nor restrict the use of the access channel, but to ensure that all qualified persons and groups wishing to use its facilities have an equal and fair opportunity to do so, CNJN reserves the right to impose limitations where it deems the public interest is not being maintained. The monopolization of the public access channel by one or a few select users is not deemed to be in the public interest.
7. CNJN maintains an online archive of programs produced with its equipment. CNJN may, with the permission of the content producer post work to its online archive. However, CNJN reserves the right to determine what material it will post to its online archive.
8. Members give CNJN the right to use their materials in promotional material.
9. The end of each program produced using CNJN must include the following: “Produced at Central New Jersey Network”
VII. TRAINING PROGRAM
1. CNJN will conduct a series of workshops to make users aware of the production capability of the community access facilities. These workshops are designed to train and certify users to operate community communications equipment. In order to be certified, a user is required to complete a workshop series that covers rules and equipment operation. Experienced video participants may be issued certification by passing a standardized performance test.
2. These regular workshops are open to the public on a first-come, first-served registration basis. Groups having special needs, however, may request special workshops.
3. A standardized performance test before a user may be certified to use access facilities and equipment.
4. Members are strongly encouraged to attend classes, training sessions or workshops that are offered to enhance the production values of the programs. CNJN may give preference in its broadcast schedule to those members willing to make an effort to improve the production value of their programs.
VIII. DISCIPLINARY ACTIONS
Engaging in any of the acts prohibited described below may result in immediate revocation of all member privileges.
Violation of any other CNJN policies may result in suspension or revocation of privileges. The CNJN Executive Director will determine the termination or length of any suspension based on circumstances surrounding and the severity of the incident(s) that resulted in the suspension. Services may also be suspended or prohibited to individuals for criminal activities off-site that may pose a danger to CNJN or its operations.
The following acts are prohibited:
A. False information: Intentionally providing false information to CNJN for the purpose of obtaining membership services, access to channel time, or to avoid determination of facts in accordance with any CNJN investigation or hearing.
B. Misrepresentation: Individuals and organizations must not identify themselves as being an employee or agent of CNJN or the funding jurisdictions unless hired by CNJN or the jurisdictions to perform a specific service.
C. Destroying or damaging property: Intentionally and/or recklessly destroying or damaging CNJN property or the property of others on CNJN premises or at CNJN sponsored events or activities.
D. Drugs/alcoholic beverages: Use, possession or distribution of any controlled substance, illegal drug, or alcoholic beverage on CNJN premises or at CNJN sponsored events without the consent of CNJN. Appearance at any CNJN sponsored event while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance is prohibited and will be considered a violation.
E. Weapons, firearms, explosives and dangerous chemicals: Use or possession of any weapon, explosives, dangerous chemicals, substances or instruments or other weapons, as defined by state law, which may be used to inflict bodily harm on another individual or damage upon CNJN premises or CNJN sponsored events is prohibited, except when being displayed or demonstrated in conjunction with a bona fide production, for which prior permission has been granted by the CNJN Executive Director.
F. Harassment, threats and/or physical harm: threatening, intimidating or harassing another with intent to substantially harm the person with respect to his or her physical safety or mental health and unwanted sexual behavior towards another member or CNJN staff. This includes causing physical harm to any person or property on CNJN premises or at any CNJN sponsored activity or causing reasonable apprehension of such harm to another person. Verbal or written threats of violence will be taken seriously. Individuals making threats toward CNJN or any individual in the facility or at a CNJN sponsored event will be escorted from the premises and banned from the CNJN facilities.
G. Disrupting CNJN functions: Intentionally and/or recklessly interfering with the normal CNJN operations or with CNJN sponsored activities.
H. Smoking is prohibited inside the CNJN facilities.
I. Theft or conversion: Deprivation of another person’s property including CNJN property or services without that individual’s or CNJN’s authorization.
J. Use of CNJN name/logo: Unauthorized use of the CNJN logo, name, indicia, motto, or symbols for any purpose without prior consent by the CNJN Executive Director.
K. Inappropriate Behavior: Engaging in lewd, indecent, erotic or obscene behavior on CNJN premises or at CNJN sponsored activities.
L. Unlawful acts: Engaging in any unlawful act while on CNJN premises or while participating in a CNJN sponsored event or activity.
M. Trespassing: Unauthorized entry into restricted areas.
IX. DISPUTE RESOLUTION & APPEALS PROCESS
It is hoped that disputes over policy interpretation can be resolved by a good faith effort to reasonably discuss the problem to arrive at an acceptable solution for everyone involved. When this is not acceptable or practical, a user may file a written grievance with the Executive Director. The Executive Director will review the grievance and attempt to mediate a solution. If a mutually acceptable solution cannot be reached, the Executive Director will make a determination.
If an individual wishes to file an appeal to a staff decision they should submit a Request for Appeal of Decision to the Executive Director within 30 days of the staff decision. The Executive Director will notify the CNJN’s Board of Directors and set a meeting date within 30 days of the receipt of the request. The appellant will be given the opportunity to address the Board of Directors during the meeting. Decisions of the Board of Directors are the final determination regarding the issue. Grievances relating to CNJN staff conduct should be addressed to the Executive Director. Grievances relating to the conduct of the Executive Director should be addressed to the president of the CNJN Board of Directors.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Who owns the copyright?
Content Producers own the copyright of their work. CNJN reserves the right to broadcast the work made with its equipment. Content Producers are free to distribute their work for non-commercial use in any manor they choose.
2. What is commercial programming?
Representatives of for-profit enterprises are welcome to appear on the channel in order to discuss or demonstrate aspects of a profession or business. For example, an author may discuss and show her book and may mention where it’s available. Programs that include representatives of for-profit enterprises may contain, in a limited manner, service descriptions, photographs or video, Web addresses, e-mail addresses and telephone numbers if such information is related to program content.
CNJN will apply a good faith, reasonable interpretation to questions of commercial content and expects producers to respond with a commensurate degree of caution and care.
3. How do I keep my weekly time slot?
Content Producers must produce a minimum of one new show a month to keep a regular time slot.
4. What about political Programming?
Any program describing or endorsing declared political candidates or describing ballot issues that is directly related to a current campaign is considered “Political Programming.” Programs, which include appearances by incumbents acting in their current elected or professional capacity, are not included in this definition.
Each political program produced by CNJN and for which CNJN has direct editorial control will be non-partisan and will provide an equal opportunity for all candidates or parties concerned to participate. If a candidate or issue representative declines to participate, CNJN will not be obligated to provide other opportunities.
CNJN encourages local community producers to provide like opportunities when they produce programs about political candidates or ballot issues.
5. What types of programming are prohibited?
A. Lotteries / Contests: Lotteries or contests that involve directly or indirectly the elements of a prize, chance, and/or consideration.
B. Illegal Material: Material which would subject the producer or supplier to civil or criminal prosecution under any applicable local, state, or federal law for production or presentation of obscene or erotic material, slander or libel, invasion of privacy.
C. Licensed Material: Material that is copyrighted or subject to ownership or royalty rights, union residuals, or other payment (e.g. music, written works, photographs, film, video) unless producer has obtained all necessary permission, releases, licenses and made all necessary payments to authorize televising of any such material. CNJN may require producers to provide evidence of such payment or permission.
D. Advertising / Commercial Endorsements: Advertising or other material that is designed to promote commercial businesses, the sale of commercial products, or purchase of professional or commercial
E. Services: This includes but is not limited to, product or business endorsements and/or service descriptions. For example: A program guest may be identified as “John Doe – Owner ABC Business Supplies” but not “John Doe, owner ABC Business Supplies, the best selection and the lowest prices in town.” To advise viewers how to get more information about program topics, program credits can include a contact name, phone number, web site or e-mail address.
F. Unauthorized Fundraising: Solicitation of funds by organizations other than those that have been granted 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status by the Internal Revenue Service.