College Media News: Peace, Love, Weed, Theft, Transparency Issues & March Madness Memories

Here’s a rundown of recent college media and journalism education news, a smidgen of student press history, some student journalist perspectives and a few funny headlines and tweets.

To pass along tips, stories, links and tweets for the next college media news rundown, email me ASAP.

Peace, Love, Weed … Theft? This past Tuesday, hundreds of copies of The Daily Gamecock at the University of South Carolina were swiped and trashed. The top story on that day’s front page was about a pro-marijuana rally, accompanied by a prominent photo of a student holding up a sign reading “Peace, Love, Weed.” The student is smiling in the shot but requested Tuesday that the pic be removed from the Daily Gamecock website and social media feeds. Might the peace-love-weed supporter be the student newspaper thief? Editor-in-chief Hannah Jeffrey tells the Student Press Law Center: “I don’t want to directly link it without the proof. All we know is that he came up and talked to our student media director and asked for the picture to be taken down. … And right around that time, someone came in and we have video of them taking the papers. I don’t want to connect A and B without that link but that’s our hunch.”

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1“Things I Want to Say Before I’m Yesterday’s News.” Soon after the theft, Daily Gamecock EIC Hannah Jeffrey wrote a spirited farewell column. My favorite snippet: “I’ve gone places (literally and figuratively) and won awards and introduced myself as a member of this staff. I go to the newsroom like most people go home. I’ve screwed up there. I’ve cried hard and laughed way harder there. I’ve gotten and delivered the best and worst news there. I’ve moved on there. I’ve answered my cell phone with ‘Daily Gamecock, this is Hannah’ more times than I care to count.”

Finalists for Best Student Media Site. The Associated Collegiate Press (ACP) 2015 Online Pacemaker finalists have been named — spotlighting the digital homes of 30 top student newspapers, magazines and online-only outlets nationwide. Of course not every outlet made the cut. For his part, Mark Plenke, a j-prof and The Orion faculty adviser at California State University, Chico, shares in a post-announcement blog post, “I’m totally not objective about this, of course, but I’m left scratching my head about what the judges are or aren’t seeing in theorion.com.”

Student Newspaper Apologizes for Story. A journalism student at Miami University in Ohio apparently didn’t tell sources a class assignment may be published in The Miami Student. And they also quoted someone by name in the story who later told the Student he never spoke those words. The paper has apologized and pulled the piece online.

1Digital Kaleidoscope. After a hiatus, The Kaleidoscope student newspaper at Kishwaukee College in Illinois is back in action — and online only. Co-editor-in-chief Hayden Perkins: “Print is nice, but with print, we would only do it a couple times a month. With a digital medium, people have to get out and be used to running around. The speed of it is really nice.”

1Duke Chronicle Sports Editor Says Goodbye. The most memorable moment in outgoing Chronicle sports editor Nick Martin’s journalism career so far: being on the court a few weeks ago right after the Duke University men’s basketball team won the national championship. A snippet from his farewell column recounting the scene: “Everyone had to wait for the teams to clear the court — even ACC Commissioner John Swofford couldn’t slip through. … Once the trophies had been awarded, the guard stepped to the side and I led the flood of reporters onto the court. Everybody was scrambling for any sort of sound bites they could get….”

1‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Way of Thinking. A new editorial in The Union student newspaper calls out officials at California’s El Camino College for being less than transparent with the campus community about criminal activity including sexual violence. As the editorial argues, “‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ seems to be El Camino’s way of thinking for the past year or two. … Crimes happen here, but for far too long has El Camino’s way of dealing with them has been not saying anything. It’s not going unnoticed by students and those employed here. El Camino is ranked highly in many categories, but response time to crimes probably isn’t one of them.”

1“Transparency — Our Primordial Need.” Esther Castillejo, the outgoing editor-in-chief of The Loyola Phoenix at Loyola University Chicago, says one word is most important to the paper’s staffers: “Transparency. Transparency. Transparency — that’s our primordial need, the value we championed and defended. This is the life we chose — to shed light on officials, to hold everyone accountable and let this university community know that we can do better, that we can be better.”

“Coffee with the Copy Editor.” The latest edition of this geeky fun series from Xpress Magazine staffer Meira Gebel at San Francisco State University breaks down that, which, who, whom and whose.

Student Media Shot Glasses. BlogDailyHerald, the blog affiliated with The Brown Daily Herald at Brown University, is selling souvenir shot glasses. As the blog team asks readers, “Trying to find the perfect graduation gift for your favorite senior? Looking to celebrate the end of the year with new kitchenware? Want to support BlogDailyHerald while getting drunk? Then look no further! For only $5 dollars, you can be the proud owner of your very own customized shot glass outfitted with our signature bear head logo.”

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Daily Show Sentiments. The Harvard Crimson editorial board at Harvard University wants the Internet ragers to relax and give incoming Daily Show host Trevor Noah a chance to win them over or truly earn their ire via his on-air performance — not because of some old tweets. As the board writes, “[T]he strong negative reaction to Noah’s appointment is far from warranted. When he takes over this fall or next spring, we will surely quickly discover the answers to all our most pressing Daily Show questions. But until then, we can only wonder about our fake news and laud Mr. Stewart for the tremendous job that he has done.”

Former West Virginia University j-prof Paul Atkins passes away. Lasting advice: “You have to get the story, but then you have to tell it.”

“How Community Service Can Help Educate Journalism Students”

The Yale Daily News welcomes incoming staffers

“Photography project aims to tell Ithaca College students’ stories”

Journalism is merging with theater program at University of Alaska Fairbanks

Seven Funny Tweets

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