Web Ad Specs

Houston Chronicle and Chron.com have the resources you need for web advertising.

Standard Ads

Banner Type Dimensions (in pixels) GIF/JPG/PNG
File Size Limit:
File Size Limit:
Half Banner 234 x 60 40k 40k
Leaderboard 728 x 90 40k 40k


300 x 250 40k 40k
Skyscraper 160 x 600 40k 40k
Half Page 300 x 600 60k N/A

General Specs:
  • No animation may exceed 15 seconds (with some additional restrictions on certain products as stated below) Ads may permit re-initiation of animation through user interaction if clearly labeled.
  • Limit of 3 animation loops and 15 seconds total animation time.
  • All in page ads must have a 1 pixel border to clearly identify where the page ends, and advertisement begins. If creative has a light colored or white background, creative must also have a visible border (a dark colored line) around the ad. chron.com reserves the right to add a border to non-compliant creative.
  • No more than three separate creatives/tags per ad placement allowed at one time.
  • Creative changes: when creative served by chron.com this is permitted once per week. Exceptions to be approved by chron.com sales and ad operations departments.
  • Material Due Dates: 3 business days prior to start of campaign; 7 business days prior for Rich Media.

Page Availability:

Different positions are available on different pages please talk to your account executive for availability.

Submission Guidelines:

Standard creative must be submitted to your designated Media Delivery Coordinator 4 business days prior to campaign launch or campaign launch may be delayed.

Mobile Ads

Dimensions (in pixels) GIF/JPG/PNG
File Size Limit:
320 x 53 15k
300 x 50 12k
216 x 36 10k

Click Thru:

If a user clicks on the ad, the click thru will open a new browsing window. Landing pages must be relevant to the ad. If there is a specific promotion on the ad, the landing page must have all details.

Page Availability:

Different positions are available on different pages please talk to your account executive for availability.

  • Your banner clicks through to a mobile page with more information regarding your products, promotions, services.
  • You can target by specific section or appear on all sections.
Top Stories
Houston & Texas
  The News Bizarre
High School Sports
  Special sections — such as hurricane guides,
election events and more — are also available.

Submission Guidelines:
  • We require ten business days in advance of desired start date.
  • A minimum of five business days prior to campaign start date.
  • 3rd part ad serving is available
  • Animation, audio or video is not allowed

Rich Media

Rich Media Dimensions
(expanded in pixels)
Leave Behind Size Flash/GIF/JPG/PNG
File Size Limit:
Watermark 1400 x 992 N/A 100k (no animation)
Peel Back 660 x 530 105 x 105 peel 80k / corner 20k
Sliding Billboard
w/o Pencil
955 x 400 N/A 100k
Sliding Billboard 955 x 400 955 x 30 sb 80k / p 20k
Pencil 955 x 30 N/A 20k
Expandable Ads 728 x 315
600 x 250
728 x 90
300 x 250
Varies 300 x 250 ol 60k / banner 40k
Interstitial 600 x 400 N/A 80k

Rich Media specs:
  • 100k polite download permitted for most creative
  • Up to 3 - 50k supplemental downloads on mouseover or click
  • Sound only permitted when user clicks on ad. Ads with sound must provide a clearly labeled Stop control
  • Video ads limited to 24 FPS
  • High Impact Rich Media ads to be frequency capped
  • All ads which automatically expand/display outside of standard dimensions must contain a 'close' button
  • Ads that expand/display outside of standard dimensions on mouse over must also contain a close button and must retract on mouseout

E-Mail Blast

  • HTML and Text versions are needed for email deployments.
  • There is a 5-day minimum for testing, scheduling and approving emails.
  • All emails provided by agencies or vendors will be responsible for any compatibility issues and/or revisions.
Subject Line:
  • 50 characters max
  • No symbols, CAPS, no punctuation (%, !, ?, etc.)
  • Avoid words like “FREE”, “GREAT”, etc.
  • Write out numbers
HTML Version
  • Accepted formats: .jpg and gif
  • Maximum width: 600 pixels (no height restrictions)
  • Max file size: 100k
  • If you are hosting your images, all images must have absolute paths (no relative paths accepted).
  • We recommend developing emails as one image (.jpg or .gif).
  • No animation or Flash accepted.

Accepted formats: notepad (.txt)

  • Physical Address is needed for all deployments. This is the permanent main office of the advertiser. Addressed must be the same for all of the client’s deployments
  • Suppression File/Opt Out List is required for email deployments. If this is an advertiser’s first email deployment a Can Spam compliance waiver will need to be signed.

Landing Pages

Dimensions (in pixels) GIF/JPG/PNG
File Size Limit:
980 x Varies 200k


Each landing page can only have a limit of 3 links.

Submission Guidelines:

Standard creative must be submitted to your designated Media Delivery Coordinator 4 business days prior to campaign launch or campaign launch may be delayed.

Advertising Guidelines

*Please note that this is not a comprehensive list of our policies. All guidelines and specifications listed on chron.com/adspecs must be met. Chron.com also reserves the right to accept, retract, or reject any advertisement at any time.

  • Advertisements cannot resemble Chron.com content. Ads must have a distinct border or a highly contrasting background to clearly identify where the ad ends, and the page begins (not white, or very light blue/gray).
  • Creative must match ad size and cannot exceed the specified file size limits. Please refer to the guidelines listed in the ad specification document.
  • Advertisements cannot mislead the user. For example, they may not mimic or resemble Windows/Mac/Unix dialogue boxes, error messages, or the like.
  • Advertisements cannot mimic news headlines in design, tone, 3rd person sentence structure, or topic.
  • The sponsor of any advertising message, must clearly identify itself on the ad
  • Advertisements cannot contain graphics that simulate interactivity (i.e., drop down menus, search boxes, etc.) without that functionality actually existing. NO fake or simulated HTML interactivity.
  • No obscene or otherwise objectionable images.
  • No 'FREE' offers in the ad unit with out pre-approval from Chron.com.
  • Creative cannot use the Houston Chronicle or Chron.com name or logo without pre-approval.
  • Creative containing a sweepstakes or contest must be pre-approved by Chron.com. (2-3 business days lead time required).
  • Cookies may not be set on the Chron.com network except by parties with a third party ad serving agreement.
  • Chron.com reserves the right to preserve the user experience of its sites, and reserves the right to remove any advertisement which is deemed annoying and/or harmful to our users at any time.

Yahoo! Guidelines

Guidelines are subject to change. For the most up to date guidelines, please refer to: adspecs.yahoo.com

Technical Requirements

  • Audio must be initiated by User Click.
  • Audio must end either simultaneously or before the ad finishes playing.
  • Audio must be encoded at a maximum volume of -12 db.
Flash Ads
  • Chron.com allows Flash versions 5,6,7,8 & 9
  • 40KB download and up to 4 additional download streams upon user click are permitted. Each additional stream may not exceed 100KB.
  • Frame rate may not exceed 24 frames per second. Banners that exceed 24 frames per second will not be accepted. 12 frames per second is recommended.
  • Both flash 5-6 swf files will be displayed for Flash 6.0 to plug in browsers only. If the browser does not support Flash 6.0 and above, the alternate image will be served (see submission guidelines).
  • Loading files from cross domains is not permitted for security reasons.

    on (release) {
    if (clickTAG.substr(0,5)=="http:" || clickTAG.substr(0,6) == "https:") {
    getURL (clickTAG, "_blank");}}

    For step-by-step instructions on how to create a clickTAG button click here..
  • Loop Cap (Place the following code in the approapriate frames to limit the loop count.)

    First Keyframe: var loop:Number = 0;
    Last Keyframe: loop = loop + 1;
    if (loop < 3) {
    } else {
    Change loop number in the script on last frame to affect number of loops and loop start frame.
Flash Specifications
  • The Flash swf files can be published as compressed.
  • Loading jpgs, wavs and mp3s are allowed and must follow the same rule as additional .swf files of no more than 4 at 100KB each.
  • The use of Shared Objects is not permitted.
  • Accessing the user's microphone or WebCam is not permitted.
  • Streaming video is allowed when using FLV streaming format. FLV files are treated the same as additional .swf files of no more than 4 at 100k each. If larger files are required, you can serve the ad with one of our Rich Media Technology Vendors.
  • The use of Clip board is not permitted.
  • HTML code cannot exceed 3k.
  • 2 images maximum, total file size of images cannot exceed 40k
  • Client-side image maps are acceptable and must be provided by the client.
  • Forms tags in HTML code must use "get" in the method.
  • CGIs referenced in the HTML code must be active at the time of ad submission for validating/testing the ad HTML code, and able to handle the traffic load. Ads with CGIs, which are not active and/or cannot handle the projected traffic will not be accepted.
In Banner Streaming


  • There are no frequency caps on the video portion of banners containing streaming video; the video can play every time the user sees the banner.
  • True Streaming solution.
  • The User Click can activate progressive download streaming.
  • There is a 30 second maximum on video stream length. For campaigns that exceed 30 seconds, you’ll need additional guidance: onlineops@chron.com.


  • The User Click must activate audio.
  • There is a 30 second maximum on audio served in conjunction with a video stream.
  • Audio served independent of a video stream may be 15 or 30 seconds.
  • Play, Stop/Pause, and Mute buttons are preferred; Stop/Mute and Start buttons are required.

Cookie Setting

  • Only vendors can set cookies.
  • Fourth party cookie setting is only permitted by Yahoo!-approved third party servers.

Linking URL

Polite Download

  • Polite ads must be broken down into three files:
    • The alternative image (either .gif or .jpg), with a 40k maximum.
    • An initial Flash file, with a 40k maximum.
    • The final Flash portion, with a 100k maximum (for the entire ad).
    • The Polite portion of the ad will load after the rest of the Chron.com page finishes loading.