The IUSB Vision Weblog

The way to crush the middle class is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation. – Vladimir Lenin

Where Do We Stand?

Posted by iusbvision on December 6, 2006

December is here and almost as if on cue, it is snowing outside. Apt, somehow, for the atmosphere of journalism on campus – somewhere in between two rows of doors, with hints of snow and hints of central heating, all depending on which way you are going.

On one hand, the Preface has strongly opposed the Vision’s stand on whether it was correct to publish the news of the alleged rape on campus. In this arena, the Vision still feels it necessary to clarify its stand on some of the issues raised.

The emphasis of the Preface editorial was placed on their legal right to publish the article of an alleged rape on campus. The Vision never stated they did not have a legal right and it is unfortunate the Preface used so much space responding to an argument we never made. The request was to acknowledge whether they had the ethical  right. In this, the Preface defended itself on the grounds of holding the university accountable. This is understandable if there was something to hold the university accountable for, however, no claim ever held IUSB administration in any way deficient in conduct. 

Let us take just one page from the official campus newspaper, which states itself as being accredited by the Associated Collegiate Press, regulated by the Publications Board, and whose faculty advisor works in the field of journalism. The Preface wrote, “After allegations were filed, the university has [sic] installed deadbolt locks in the music rooms… If no one was informed, how would the university be held accountable for making the necessary safety precautions?”

The Vision agrees that both publications should hold people accountable for their actions, and yes, through this, positive action can be taken. However, the argument is this: the decision to take safety precautions was made before the Preface reported the incident.

As for the idea of journalistic principles: if the Preface is adamantly willing to hold others accountable, it appears they should respectfully – or is not the word here is laudably? –  accept those who attempt to hold them as accountable as well. Otherwise, they risk jeopardizing their own journalistic integrity – integrity which one can have with or without accreditation by the Associated Collegiate Press.

On the other hand, editor of the Preface Jason Cytacki has put forward a somewhat reconciliatory tone in comments on the weblog of the Vision. “This is just an idea, but what about two autonomous publications that worked together to cover create something greater than both separate parts?” he wrote, though making it a point to add that any charter would be advisory rather than binding.

To this, the Vision views some hope at moving forward with the Preface, but stands firm that a charter should have some real value. This real value can only stem from having a stand. Freedom of speech is one of them. The choice of self-restraint is another. Are these two not compatible? Jason Cytacki mentions the need to “engage in a thoughtful discussion”, and through this perhaps we shall move forward, and perhaps we may not. Once again, time will tell.

In the end, the real issue is this: when the Preface came out with its response to the IUSB Vision, Northside Hall’s stack of Vision copies all but disappeared. The IUSB community is reading, and people are discussing: though only a few do so publicly on the weblog. If nothing else, this debate has brought different ideas to the table. Above all else, ideas are what really move us forward, even – or especially – when they are ones you do not agree with.

When newspapers are not determined by sales figures, the quest to determine the way forward for campus journalists must include four very important words to our readers: Where do you stand?

Which of course, tags the question: Where are you going?

The Editorial Board of the Vision

12 Responses to “Where Do We Stand?”

  1. Angelica Johnson said

    In the above article are you suggesting with

    “In the end, the real issue is this: when the Preface came out with its response to the IUSB Vision, Northside Hall’s stack of Vision copies all but disappeared.”

    that the Preface stole your stack of issues. If you are writing with integrity and all you have been preaching about then why are you hinting that the staff would steal your papers, that would one make them imature and two immoral. The point stands that if seems as if you are accusing them of stealing your stack of papers, my question to you is what proof do you have.

    And when it comes down to do they have moral integrity to write about a rape, I was discussing this with my friends and they were mad the University didn’t make a statement on the matter. It was their moral duty, whether or not the University felt there was a threat, to let the rap go under wraps would be saying that what happened was wrong,and could to an emotional person view it as if the paper feels that it is not something that should be spoken about than I should hid it too. This can be looked at from many perspectives. When it comes to moral responsibility, I feel it would be irresponsible not to inform the students there was a rap, it goes along with do you inform the students about cars being broken into, whether or not the University sees any more cars at risk.

    No matter what anyone says, there is always a risk. There is always a need to be informed.

  2. Rachel Custer said

    Lol. I think you have misunderstood the statement you quoted, Angelica. I believe the author of that quote was referring to the fact that, when the article from the Preface came out, students removed our issues from the stand in order to read them. Perhaps you should be more careful before flinging accusations, lest you become the object of ridicule.

  3. Craig Chamberlin said

    Angelica,

    I appreciate your comments, Rachel was correct, this was in reference to students looking to see our issue for that week. This is why it was followed up by “students are reading”.

    Also, you stated,
    “It was their moral duty, whether or not the University felt there was a threat, to let the rap go under wraps would be saying that what happened was wrong,and could to an emotional person view it as if the paper feels that it is not something that should be spoken about than I should hid it too.”

    If you were the victim of a crime and it was a secluded incident, would you want the situation exploited on the front page of the campus newspaper if no one else was at risk?

    I wouldn’t but perhaps this is just me. It isn’t anyone elses business if no one is at risk.

    You also stated, “No matter what anyone says, there is always a risk. There is always a need to be informed.”

    This you are absolutely right on, and this particular incident did nothing to contribute to that risk. This is why it is more important to cover the issue of rape without reference to the incident. It makes no ethical sense to do it otherwise.

  4. Andrew Filmer said

    Angelica,

    As Rachel and Craig have mentioned, your allegation that the Vision claimed theft is in error. That’s what the issues are meant to do – be picked up and read. Thesis statements do not always appear in the first sentence and I doubt you will find any English lecturer that will read that sentence as suggesting theft.

    Trust me, if the Vision were to make such an claim, we would back it up with evidence… or not print it.

    “And when it comes down to do they have moral integrity to write about a rape, I was discussing this with my friends and they were mad the University didn’t make a statement on the matter.”

    You are barking up the wrong tree, and the squirrels are perplexed.

    If you believe that the University was in error in not making a statement on the matter (which means that you also believe that the University is in error in saying that there is no risk), then you should speak to the Preface about having THAT as the main thesis, and thus main justification, of publishing the case. And, as mentioned, back it up with evidence.

  5. Rachel Custer said

    Craig…

    I think some moderation is in order.

  6. Sam said

    Whoa! Someone one decided to liven up the IUSB blog. I wonder if this was Chuck Norton under a pseudonym. Naw. Anyway this place certainly needed a dose of expresso (but maybe not this strong)!

    :)

  7. Rachel Custer said

    LOL. Yes, I thought it fairly amusing as well…especially given the usual tone of the blog. I think all of us need a dose of expresso after those finals! Good to hear from you again, Sam.

  8. Anonymous said

    The post from “Teen Girl Movie Post Clips” is totally misleading. For example, consider the fragment, “Free movies of mom and sun [sic]”; if a reader were to follow the link he’d likely be disappointed to see that the site has nothing to do with maternal interest in stellar phenomena. Chuck’s articles are quite forthright in comparison!

    Happy New Year! ;)

  9. Anonymous 2 said

    This stuff is way more disgusting than a Norton column, and it’s almost as offensive too!

  10. Rachel Custer said

    Craig or Jarrod,

    Hey, can you please get this stuff off the site.

  11. Sam said

    With all due respect, this blog could be managed better. Posts #5-10 have no reason to still be displayed.

  12. Erkki KochKetola said

    You folks planning on updating this blog (or your homepage) anytime soon? I know there are lots of people waiting at the edge of their seats to see the brouhaha that develops over the impeachment article.

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