ESMO Policy on Media Activities Organised by Third Parties

This policy applies to all media activities initiated by third parties during or in connection with ESMO events.

Media activities include, but are not limited to:

  • Meetings such as press conferences, media briefings, educational sessions for media representatives, as well as
  • PR activities, such as press releases, news, articles, interviews, etc.

This policy aims to guarantee proper and correct distribution of oncology and cancer-related information to media representatives in connection with the ESMO events.

All third parties are kindly requested to adhere to this policy.

Press events in or outside the congress centre but concomitant with or during breaks of the scientific programme of the ESMO events, are subject to ESMO approval.

1. How to request a press meeting

Requests for press meetings must be submitted for approval to the ESMO Press Office two months before the event, including the following information:

  • Type and purpose of the meeting, including if it is a closed meeting
  • Meeting initiator or sponsor
  • Topics and speakers proposed, with reference to any submitted abstract
  • Date and time requested

Please submit the first request for media activities to

Blackout times

During Blackout times any media activity initiated by third parties is not allowed.

For inquiries and preliminary 2018 events details, please contact

2. Scheduling a press event

  • Studies included in the official ESMO Press Programme cannot be covered by Third Parties in their own press conferences before the official ESMO press conference or press release
  • Studies not covered in the official ESMO Press Programme can be covered by Third Parties in their own media activities respecting scientific programme embargoes and blackout times, when relevant

The ESMO Press Office will confirm the requested date or propose a different date/time depending on the inclusion in the official ESMO Press Programme of the abstract being the subject of the media event.

3. Confidentiality Policy

Abstracts submitted to ESMO events are considered confidential until publicly released in connection with the relevant ESMO congress. Prior to public release, the author, co-authors, research sponsors, journalists and others may not:

  • Make the information public or provide it to others who can make it public (e.g. press);
  • Publish or present the information or provide it to others who can make it public
  • Use the information for trading purposes or provide it to others who can use it for trading purposes

If information from the abstract or additional study data are disclosed in advance of public release in connection with the ESMO event, the abstract will no longer be eligible for inclusion in the ESMO scientific programme and/or will be subject to removal.

Confidentiality policy exceptions

According to the Confidentiality Policy, data and other information in a research abstract is confidential from the time the abstract is submitted to ESMO until public release in connection with the relevant ESMO congress.

When a publicly traded company is required to disclose data or other information from a confidential abstract in advance of the public release to satisfy requirements of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or a corresponding body in another country, the abstract is still eligible for inclusion in an ESMO event provided that the company submits to the ESMO Programme Manager ( in advance of the release written notification of the requirement to issue information in accordance to SEC regulations.

In the interest of effective peer-reviewed presentation of data at ESMO events, and particularly if the abstract has been tentatively included in the official ESMO Press Programme, the company is required to get in touch with the ESMO Press Office in advance of the release to notify that a press release regarding an abstract included in the official ESMO Press Programme will have to be issued in accordance to SEC regulations.

  1. ESMO recommends that the company’s press release adheres to the Qualitative Sample Press Release and:
  2. Summarises data cited in the abstract in a qualitative way rather than providing specific quantitative information, including exact figures on the study
  3. Avoids interpretations about the implications of the data for clinical practice

Notes that full data has been submitted to, and will be presented at, the relevant ESMO event in an official programme session.

The ESMO Press Office will review the company’s press release (to be shared with at least 10 days before the publication) to ensure it adheres to the Qualitative Sample Press Release and evaluate if the abstract can still be included in the official ESMO Press Programme.

If the press release includes significantly more information than ESMO’s recommendations, the abstract’s placement in the ESMO Congress is subject to change and can be withdrawn from the official ESMO Press Programme.

4. Embargo policy

Third parties are required to abide by the embargo and confidentiality policies governing ESMO events.

Embargoes are different for each ESMO event and will be published on each conference website. For a list of ESMO events see here

PRESS RELEASES: indications for the different scenarios
A)  A Press Release issued BEFORE the abstract publication to announce that a trial will be presented during an ESMO event, may not contain or reveal any of the scientific data or results of the trial.

Only mention of “Title, Presentation Session Date, Authors names, etc.” and top line qualitative information will be accepted.

No data contained in the abstract or beyond the top line results can be included.  You can check the Sample Qualitative Press Release here.

The only exception is disclosure requirements for listed companies (please see the Confidentiality Policy Exceptions above).

B) A Press Release issued AFTER the abstract publication, may mention full data included in the abstract.

Embargo information (i.e. date and time of the presentation during the ESMO Congress) must be prominently displayed on all materials, together with the details of the scientific presentation, such as the name of the presenter, the title of the presentation, the session, as well as the abstract number and the journal reference (when applicable). These must be mentioned in all related announcements.

Third-Party media materials must be sent to ESMO for review 10 days before release at the latest.

If final data are reported prior to Congress embargos, the abstract is subject to withdrawal from the ESMO event.

Should the embargo be broken, both the Third Party and the journalist will be held responsible.

5. Use of logos in press material

The use of the ESMO logo and the Congress logo on Third Party's press materials is strictly forbidden.

6. Press badges

According to the ESMO Media Policy, press badges may only be assigned to journalists working for recognised media organisations. Should communication agency representatives require a badge for the purpose of preparing and/or developing third-party media events, please contact the ESMO Press Office ( to obtain a temporary badge.

7. Press Centre and Press Conferences

Access to the ESMO Press Centre and attendance at the ESMO Press Conferences are limited to media representatives duly registered as such at Congresses.

An official speaker at the press conference may invite one guest who will be allowed to attend the press conference ONLY during the presentation of the speaker by whom he/she was invited. Details regarding invited guests are to be provided to the ESMO Press Office ( two weeks before the Congress and the invited guest is requested to announce himself/herself at the Press Office Desk.

Third Party materials are permitted in the ESMO Press Centre only in a specific location clearly marked.

No posters, banners or markings by companies are permitted around the display location.

All materials are subject to review by ESMO and will be removed if they do not conform to this policy.

During Congresses, the distribution of industry press materials outside of the ESMO Press Centre and the advertisement for press meetings not sponsored by ESMO is prohibited.

8. Video, photography and audio recording

Photographing & video recording of Congress sessions is strictly prohibited.

Filming during ESMO events is subject to authorisation by the ESMO Press Office. Requests will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Filming crews will have to be accompanied by an ESMO Press Office representative.

A written request must be sent two weeks in advance to the ESMO Press Office (

ESMO reserves the right to exclude any entity that fails to adhere to this policy from the present Congress, at its own complete cost, and from any future event.

9. Abstract reprints

Reprints of all abstracts published in ESMO Abstracts Book and to be distributed by Third Parties must be requested through ESMO (

10. Media list publication

Contact details of journalists accredited to ESMO events are confidential and not made available to third parties. Information about outlets represented at previous events can be requested to

11. Disclosure

ESMO does not endorse any Third Party media activity and will not contribute in any manner to its content or promotion.

The organisers of media activities initiated by pharmaceutical companies will declare the identity of the sponsoring company at all media activities and in all related announcements or correspondence.

Third-party press briefings cannot be advertised as ESMO press meetings.

Reference to ESMO and the ESMO Congress, must be made in connection with the scientific presentations planned during events.


Thomas Balasso
ESMO Press Office
Via Luigi Taddei 4
CH-6962 Viganello-Lugano

Tel: +41 (0)91 973 19 04