Annual Meeting Media and Recording Policy (updated 2018)

Credentialed working journalists will be provided complimentary press registration to cover the American Historical Association's Annual Meeting. Members of the press should read the AHA Annual Meeting Media and Recording Policy before submitting registration.

Information about registering as a member of the press is available here.

Press Credentials

Representatives of local or national newspapers (including local student newspapers); reporters for wire services; TV and radio reporters, producers, and crews; and representatives of news-oriented websites are eligible for complimentary press registration. When registering, members of the press should present an official press badge, a business card with their name and title and the name of their employer, or an original copy of a masthead with their name on it. Freelance journalists are welcome, but should provide a letter from an assignment editor or evidence that they have written two recent articles on a topic related to the annual meeting.

Registration and Attendance

Members of the press who have secured complimentary press registration will be provided badges identifying them as working media. To pick up their badges, journalists must come in person to the conference headquarters and must present press identification. Walk-ups will also be honored. Press badges must be worn at all times when attending meeting sessions and events. 

Members of the press must also identify themselves as such whenever speaking with presenters or attendees. This includes when participating in the question-and-answer portion of a meeting session or when interacting with attendees informally, as at a reception. Members of the press may not quote or otherwise report on what a meeting attendee or presenter has said without that person’s expressed permission. 

Filming or Recording Sessions

The AHA does not allow audio or video recording of sessions or events without advance written permission from each participant on a session or event. Journalists must obtain written approval from panel members using wording in the “Permission to Record” language below, modified as appropriate. Written permission, which could consist of copies of e-mails agreeing to recording, must be submitted to the AHA at annualmeeting@historians.org before the annual meeting. The requesting journalist or organization bears responsibility for obtaining recording approval and providing this confirmation in writing to the AHA.

AHA staff cannot release room numbers, hotel information, and/or cell phone numbers for participants in the meeting or officers/staff of the AHA. Journalists should therefore leave ample time to contact participants before the meeting.

Please note that some panels may have elected, in advance, not to be recorded. These panelists and chairs should not be approached. Contact annualmeeting@historians.org for a list of sessions that may not be approached for permission to record.

In order to encourage open debate and allow members to speak as freely as possible, the AHA does not permit audio and/or video recording of its business meeting. The business meeting is restricted to members only.

The AHA reserves the right to revoke registration of anyone who records sessions without appropriate permissions.

Approved by AHA Council June 2008, and amended June 2009, October 2013, and June 2018.


Sound and Electric

Journalists requiring electrical access, lighting, or use of the sound system are responsible for their own audio-visual costs and must order directly from the in-house vendor. Vendors may require a credit card to secure the order.

The AHA does not order microphones for all sessions. Journalists might not be able to patch in to house sound in certain meeting rooms. Journalists should not plug equipment into electrical outlets without the venue’s permission. There is often a fee for electrical access. Journalists with further questions should contact the venue directly. The AHA’s policy of preference for union conference venues extends to a commitment to adhere to the requirements of union contracts, including audio visual services.


Language for Requesting Permission to Record

It is the policy of the American Historical Association that your presentation cannot be filmed or disseminated without your permission. If you are amenable to having your presentation recorded (audio and/or video), we ask that you indicate your approval in writing. This agreement is not intended to restrict your exploitation of your intellectual property rights in the material presented in any way, but it does grant the recording organization a perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free right to record and distribute your presentation in electronic or other media formats for promotional and educational purposes.

If permission is granted for audio or video recording of a meeting session, a notice that the session will be recorded will be posted at the entrance to the room where the session will take place and will be included in the meeting program (online and, if the request to record is granted before the program goes to press, in hard copy).