Sponsor FAQs

See the sponsor deadlines.

How do I pay for my Midway space, sponsorship or exhibit package?

If you have a U.S. based bank, you can also pay via Bill.com. A pay link is provided on your invoice.

For checks, please include a copy of the invoice with your payment (payable to “Online News Association”) and mail it to:

Online News Association
c/o NPR
1111 North Capitol Street, NE, 2nd Floor
Washington, DC 20002
Attention: ONA18 Sponsorship Payment

For bank transfers and credit card payments, please contact Jessica Strelitz, ONA’s Head of Strategic Partnerships, for details. Additional fees may apply.

All payments must be received by Sept. 10 or ONA cannot release passes or space for ONA18. This includes groups that have secured sponsorships and exhibit space in September.

Who do I contact about sponsorships, exhibit space or the Midway @ ONA18?

Sponsor and exhibitor sales will close on Sept. 1, if not already sold out before that date. Please see the ONA18 sponsorship page for current availability.

Please email Jessica Strelitz, Head of Strategic Partnerships at jessica@journalists.org for questions about sponsorship, exhibitor spaces and supporter opportunities.

Midway sales will close on Sept. 1, if not already sold out before that date. See the Midway Packages page for current availability.

Please email Hanaa Rifaey, Midway Producer, at midway@journalists.org, for questions about Midway programming or logistics.

How do I register people for the memberships and conference passes that are part of my ONA18 package?

Sponsors and exhibitors will receive private correspondence to register for their memberships and ONA18 passes starting in June 2018.

What kind of passes do I have included with my package?

Please consult your individual sponsorship agreement for how many full or exhibitor-only passes you receive as part of your sponsorship. Please note: Exhibitor-only passes grant attendees access to the Midway, Lounge and Exhibit-only areas, but not to sessions, evening events or meals. Additional Exhibit-only passes can be purchased separately.

Passes to the Opening Night Reception, not included in the exhibit-only passes, can be purchased separately. There will be no sales on site for these passes and they are only available for purchase to exhibit/Midway-only pass holders. Contact Jessica for the link.

What’s the difference between a Midway or Exhibit-only pass and a full conference pass?

Exhibit-only/Midway-only passes grant attendees access to the Midway, Lounge and Exhibit areas, but not to sessions, evening events or meals. Passes to the Opening Night Reception, not included in Midway or exhibit-only passes, can be purchased for $50 each.

What are the Exhibitor & Midway hours, set-up and tear-down times?

Exhibitor Move-in: 

  • Wednesday, Sept. 12: 2-8 p.m.
  • Thursday, Sept. 13: 7-11 a.m.

Please note: All freight must be shipped to the Freeman’s Advance Warehouse no later than Sept. 6. Details below.

Lounge Set-up and Move-out: Public lounges can begin set up on Wednesday, Sept. 12, 8 a.m.  Lounge space on the 4th floor must complete set up by 5pm on Sept. 12, when Early Registration begins.

Open floor lounges (not in the exhibit hall or Midway) on Floors 2 and 3 can set up starting Sept. 12, at 8.am.  Set-up must be complete by 10am, Sept. 13 when general sessions begin.

Open floor lounge move-out can begin starting at 2pm on Saturday, Sept. 15 and the area must be clear by 5pm.

Open Lounge Hours (Note: Coffee lounges can adjust hours earlier on request)

  • Thursday, Sept. 13: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Friday, Sept. 14: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday, Sept. 15: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Private Meeting Rooms: Sponsors in these spaces on Floors 2-5 can begin set up after 6pm on Wednesday, Sept. 12, unless otherwise indicated. All spaces must be clear by 6pm on Saturday,  Sept. 15. Sponsors are responsible for any A/V or specialty furniture requirements and any food & beverage must be ordered via JW Marriott catering services.

2nd, 3rd + 4th FLOOR LOUNGE SET-UP:

  • Wednesday, Sept. 12: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. (5 p.m. on 4th floor)
  • Thursday, Sept. 13: 7 a.m.-9 a.m.


  • Wednesday, Sept. 12: 2-6 p.m.
  • Thursday, Sept. 13: 7-11 a.m.


  • Thursday, Sept. 13: 12-5 p.m.
  • Friday, Sept. 14: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Saturday, Sept. 15: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.


  • Saturday, Sept. 15: 2-5 p.m.

What are the ship-to procedures and addresses for exhibit items?

Freeman is the ONA18 exhibit services and drayage company. Click here for  ordering forms for furniture and shipping and details for the show.

Who do I contact if I have questions about shipping to Freeman’s warehouse: 

Phone: (800) 995-3579 Toll Free US & Canada or +1 (512) 982-4187 or +1 (817) 607-5183 Local & International Shipping Services
Fax: (469) 621-5810
Email: exhibit.transportation@freeman.com

Freeman shipping details:

The warehouse shipping address for EXHIBIT + SPONSOR LOUNGE MATERIAL:

Exhibiting Company Name / Booth # ______ or Lounge Space _____
AUSTIN, TX 78728

Freeman will accept crated, boxed or skidded materials beginning Thursday, Aug. 16, at the above address. Material arriving after Sept. 6, will be received at the warehouse with an additional after deadline charge. Warehouse materials are accepted at the warehouse Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00 AM – 3:30 PM. If required, provide your carrier with this phone number: (210) 554-2021.

Show Site Shipping Address:
Exhibiting Company Name / Booth # _____ Lounge Space ____
AUSTIN, TX 78701

Freeman will receive shipments at the exhibit facility beginning Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018. Shipments arriving before this date may be refused by the facility. Any charges incurred for early freight accepted by the facility are the responsibility of the Exhibitor. If required, provide your carrier with this phone number: (210) 554-2021.

Please note: All items and materials that must be brought into the facility may be subject to Material Handling Charges and are the responsibility of the Exhibitor. This also applies to items not ordered through the Official Show Vendors.

How big is my booth?

Details on your booth space are included in your invoice. All exhibitors must follow IAEE rules.  As a note, in-line booths should not exceed 8’ in height and the ceiling in the hall is 11′. Download the IAEE rules.

What is my booth number?

Booth numbers will be assigned by Jessica Strelitz at a first-come, first-serve basis and also based on your sponsorship type or package. Please consult your agreement for which type of booth or lounge you have included in your package. For your specific booth number, please contact Jessica at jessica@journalists.org. See the master hotel map.

What are you print guide ad specs? 

The printed onsite guide size is 8” x 10.5”. High resolution PDF format is preferred for all files. All images and fonts should be embedded and colors must be in CMYK mode. Please do not include bleeds and crop marks.  Ads can be color OR black-and-white. Deadlines for ad creative is July 27. 

  • Full-page ad:  7.5”(w) x 10”(h)
  • Half-page ad: 7.5”(w) x 4.875”(h)
  • Quarter-page ad:  3.625”(w) x 4.875”(h)

How do I ship materials for ONA18 Attendee Bags?

There are two options for sponsors, exhibitors and most Midway participants to share promotional items with ONA18 attendees. As part of our efforts to be paper-light, we will no longer include paper-based items for our attendee bag, including postcards, flyers, brochures or one-pagers (notebooks are OK to include!). Sponsors + exhibitors can still create the paper collateral, but it will be displayed on official ONA18 information tables outside the keynote/large format ballrooms on the 4th floor of the JW Marriott, and not included in the attendee bags. The only items included in these tables will be from official sponsors, exhibitors, Midway participants and supporters. All other materials will be removed.

Sponsors that plan to include a non-paper item for our attendee bags are responsible for shipping to Freeman warehouse by the Sept. 6 deadline. ONA will pay for receiving fees and will place items in ONA18 attendee bags. Any attendee bag drop shipment sent to Freeman warehouse that contains paper materials will not be included in ONA swag bags and will be sent back to the Freeman warehouse. Suggested total: 2,500 pieces, sent in as few boxes as possible.

Use the attached label for shipping all non-paper items for ONA18 attendee bags.

Paper-based promotional items (provided by the sponsor) which will be placed on official ONA18 information tables outside the keynote/large format ballrooms on the 4th floor of the JW Marriott. Sponsor is responsible for any shipping and receiving fees or delivering these materials to the hotel, and can place these materials on the designated tables starting Sept. 12; ONA will coordinate on storage and replenishment during the conference. All other items will be removed from these tables. Suggested print run: 1,500.

There are 4 ways to get ONA your printed materials to ONA18 to be placed on the official ONA sponsor information tables:
  • Bring the materials to the JW Marriott, Rm 201-202 from 8am-4pm on Wednesday, Sept. 12 – ask for ONA’s Kelly Jones.
  • Bring the materials tot the JW Marriott front desk for ONA’s Jessica Strelitz. ONA is not responsible for any receiving fees so please do not ship to the hotel for ONA to pick up.
  • Drop boxes off in Rm 210 anytime on Sept. 12. This is a storage space for ONA18.
  • Place the paper materials on the sponsor information tables yourself, starting the afternoon of Wed, Sept. 12! They are located outside the main ballroom on the 4th floor of the JW Marriott.
Materials for replenishment can be left at Rm 210 or left at the Help desk at Registration on the 4th floor.

Can I post a job, internship, fellowship or education opportunity on the white boards near registration?

Yes! It’s $250 for one, $400 for 2, $500 for 3 and $100 for each additional listing, and they will be up from when registration opens on Wednesday afternoon through our awards (gathering 600+ of the top digital news leaders in the world) on Saturday.

Each job needs to fit on a standard sheet of paper (B+W or color) and  include information for a contact on site (if there will be one) for applicant questions/interviews. ONA will take care of printing and posting. Contact Jessica for payment link. Jobs will be posted after payment is complete.

If you are an ONA member, you can post a 30-day listing for $200 on our Career Center. Pricing for multiple postings and non-member rates here.

What about FedEx?

For non-Freeman (small) shipping needs and printing, there is a FedEx office located on site at the JW Marriott, 5th floor.

All guest and event packages being shipped to the hotel must follow the address label standards  to prevent package routing delays. Please schedule your shipment(s) to arrive 3–4 days prior to the event start date to avoid additional storage fees. Use the name of the recipient who will be on-site to receive and sign for the package(s). Please do not ship any items to the attention of the Hospitality Manager or Catering & Conference Manager, unless the items are specifically for their use (i.e., hotel specifications, rooming lists, signed documents); this includes any room drops or deliveries to any other area of JW Marriott Austin. Shipments are held for a limited number of days. If a package has not been picked up and no contact information is provided, the package will be returned to the sender, who will be responsible for all additional shipping fees. For more information on package retention, the Return to Sender process, or to schedule package deliveries, please contact the FedEx Office Business Center at 512.391.1816. Package deliveries should only be scheduled after the recipient has checked into the hotel.

FedEx Label Requirements:
Hold For Guest: (Guest Name) (Guest Cell Number)
c/o FedEx Office at JW Marriott Austin
110 E 2nd Street
Austin, TX, 78701

Additional details, as well as information on outbound shipping, delivery and handling fees, can be found here,

What snacks and drinks can I offer?

Attendees love to eat and drink! We have three exclusive sponsors for lounges (coffee, hydration (flavored water and non-alcoholic drinks) and refreshments (green snacks) with right of first refusal for those items, so please keep this in mind when ordering for your exhibit space/exhibit floor lounge. If you have any questions, just ask Jessica and she will check for conflicts.

Note: Private lounges/meeting rooms don’t have restrictions on F&B, but they must be ordered via JW Marriott catering.

How do I order show services, including exhibit/lounge furniture or custom booth work?

Click here for Freeman’s ordering forms for furniture and shipping and details for the show.

How do I order computers, screens or other A/V hardware?

ONA is working with Markey’s Rental & Staging, located at the JW Marriott Austin for these orders.  The official order form and contact information can be found here. It’s for all 3 days of the show.

How do I order electric service?

ONA is also working with Markey’s on electric. ALL Exhibitors, Sponsors with lounge space and Midway participants are responsible for securing their own electric.  Please use this form to order;  if you want to order basic 5 amp electrical service a total 3-day price, after service charge and tax, is$134.23.

Won’t there be outlets we can just plug into with an extension cord to our booth?

No. If you need power, you must order it through Markey’s (unless you have a recharge station or are in the Start-Up Alley).

If we order electrical from Markey’s, do we have to use their power strips and extension cords too?

Not at all! You can use your own.

Do we have to use Markey’s monitors/tvs/etc. or can we bring our own?

You can bring your own. Please keep in mind rules about what you can carry in by hand and remember that you cannot use a luggage cart, etc. You may ship your AV equipment to Freeman if that would be helpful and they will place it in your exhibit space during set-up on Wednesday, Sept. 12. Please use this form to order.

What about hard-wire internet?

ONA provides free wireless access for all ONA18 conference-goers, including sponsors, exhibitors and Midway participants.  If you would like to order hard-line drops, order from Markey’s.

Where will boxes and crates be stored during the conference?

There is limited storage space for Exhibitors/Sponsors available on a first-come, first-served basis. Small boxes and materials can be kept under exhibit/lounge tables. Do not leave anything of value in your space unattended.

Will there be security?

ONA will provide security for Exhibit/Midway/Sponsor/Lounge spaces during non-show hours, but ONA is not responsible for theft. We strongly recommend exhibitors store valuables in their rooms when they are not in these areas.

When will exhibitor and Midway booths be assigned?

Exhibitor Booths are assigned based on sponsorship level and a first-come, first-served basis and finalized by August. Contact jessica@journalists.org for space assignments.

The Midway Premium Booths, Standard Tables and Start-Up Alley will be assigned in May.

Is there a layout for the conference area so I can see where we are located in relation to the session rooms?

Yes. See the exhibit hall floor plan and master hotel map.

What is provided for exhibitors in the Exhibitor Ballroom space?

Please see your individual agreement for your exhibitor space size. Each standard 10×10 space includes a table, chairs and pipe and drape.

Electric and hard-line Internet are NOT included, and must be ordered in advance if you need either service. Wireless access will be provided by ONA for free during the conference.

Who do I contact on-site if I need help at my booth?

Markey’s and Freeman will have staff on-site to assist exhibitors for hardware needs. For needs related to your sponsorship package or agreement, please reach Jessica or Hanaa (Midway) on-site. There will also be volunteers monitoring the space at all open times and during set-up/tear down.

Do we have have access to the ONA18 attendee list?

Jessica sends regular updates to sponsor and and exhibitors, and Hanaa to the Midway participants, in the weeks before the conference. We will share a more updated list prior to the conference. The list contains only names and affiliations; we do not share contact information including e-mail addresses or mailing information. You will note there are some duplicate names — this is because the list is a merger between the general conference attendees and the Online Journalism Award banquet attendees. We kindly request that you refrain from any pre-show mass mailings to this list.

Important Deadlines:

  • Thursday, Feb.15 — Midway applications open
  • Tuesday, Feb. 21 – Volunteer registration opens
  • Wednesday, Feb. 28 – Suggestion Box opens
  • Friday, March 30 – Suggestion Box and volunteer applications close
  • Wednesday, April 4 – Registration opens
  • Thursday, May 3 – First cut at program announced
  • Friday, May 4 — Midway applications close
  • Mid-May — Midway applicants notified
  • Friday, June 1 — Release Midway participants + schedule
  • Thursday, June 7 — Early Bird registration rate end
  • Thursday, July 12 – Midway schedule announced
  • Friday, July 27 – Ad/Sponsor Info Deadline/Program
  • Tuesday, July 31— Sponsored Session Deadline
  • Tuesday, July 31 — Group room reservation release date
  • Thursday, Aug. 2 — Getting Closer rate ends
  • Thursday, Aug. 16 — Freeman shipment window opens
  • Thursday, Aug. 23 — Freeman discount pricing deadline
  • Friday, Aug. 31 – Registration closes
  • Monday, Sept. 3 — Sponsor cut-off/no more sales
  • Thursday, Sept. 6— Freeman shipment window closes
  • Sept. 12-Sept. 15 — ONA18