Websites are available for the whole world to see, so it’s important that the policies and procedures set forth in this chapter are followed. Some of the most critical requirements are listed in this section. Under the Acceptable Use and Responsibility Policy for Electronic Communications (“Archdiocesan AUP”), see Prohibited Practices and Guidelines for Email Correspondence and Other Electronic Communications.
Websites must be owned and controlled by the location. An individual may not personally maintain anything that can be regarded as owned, sponsored, endorsed, or supported by the parish, school, or any related or affiliated ministry. Locations must be able to control the content posted on their own websites as noted in the AUP. Only the person in charge at a location has the authority to establish any website affiliated with that location and should designate one or more individuals to monitor and manage content. Petitioning a web hosting service to take down a site that does not belong to the location is an exercise in futility; generally, only a court order will suffice.
Assume that all content accessible via the Internet, including emails, is private property. The use of any content created by another person (photos, videos, words, designs, or music) requires the express permission of its creator. Certain limited exceptions are given for educational and liturgical purposes. Significant financial penalties may ensue for copyright violations. Don’t copy trademarked logos or icons without permission. And once you have permission, be sure to credit the source. See the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Copyright and Video Screening Policy.
Make every effort to validate information and sources before posting content. Ensure that what you post conforms to Catholic teaching and values. And be familiar with and follow the Electronic Communications, Copyright, and Acceptable Use Policies.
Consult with the Office of Financial Services or Office of the Legal Counsel BEFORE using the website for fund-raising purposes. Strict regulations apply to conducting financial transactions on the Internet. Certain activities such as online auctions, "GoFundMe" pages and similar services may raise sales/use tax or unrelated business income tax issues.