Doing it right

I am on fire with writing here tonight. So many things, so much to talk about!

Or I’m just bored. An update to this story we talked about here. Myself and Dicker went back and forth in the comments and thankfully both came out with nothing more than a few scratches. The decision of the CSU Board of Student communications was not to fire the young alleged learned editor (I’m being sarcastic about his learned status and you’ll see why in a second) but to admonish him in regards to several handbook rules he broke.

9News reports,

“By definition the September 21st editorial was an expression of opinion which we regard as protected by the first amendment,” said Jim Landers, the chairman of the CSU Board of Student Communications. “As editor in chief of the Collegian, you are ultimately responsible for publication. The editor has caused harm to the Collegian, student media and the university community. It is our judgment that your decision was unethical and unprofessional.

The emphasis above is mine and it serves my point I made in the original post this past week. His behavior was that of someone not learning to do this for a living but someone trying to pretend he was doing this for a living. I would have expected this kind of behavior from a High School student. Needless, they’re words are right on target. You’ll notice they reference the rule book as well.

The board admonished McSwane for violations of two standards specified by the manual. The board members say he violated the code of ethics for student media at CSU, specifically Item 29: Profane, Vulgar Words, Explicit Sexual Language, subset, “Profane and vulgar words are not acceptable for opinion writing.” The board says he also violated the Rocky Mountain Collegian Code of Ethics, specifically Item 6: Be Professional, subset, “Profane and vulgar words are not acceptable for opinion writing.

Emphasis mine again. My only hope is that this gentlemen will accept the admonishment and understand that his actions brought about the reaction that occurred. This is simply called, “The Rule Of Life” in my book. Course, my book has different chapters than others of you, but you get my meaning. Everybody has to learn that you do things, things happen. Can’t change physics. My hope is that David Lane (who I would love to sit down and interview someday…David you out there?) will not take the Ward Churchill road and run this into the ground.

My hope is that he will accept the decision as the right and balanced one. I never wanted this kid fired or removed from the staff. I wanted him to weather this matter in the way anybody in the public world would. And he did just that. The CSU Board of Student Communications handled it just as it should be in the public world. Now J. David McSwane should do the right and mature thing.

Accept responsibility. Understand what he did. Accept the decision. And get on with business at hand. Make a opinion piece about why he’s still right or something. Show the world you can explain something in more than just florid curse words and short sentences. Show us those journalistic stripes you earned to get the position you’re in.

Lord knows the rest of the media might be good for a lesson like Mr. McSwayne.

1 Comment so far

  1. dicker (unregistered) on October 5th, 2007 @ 6:45 am

    Sounds like by the book he was rightly admonished, but my beef is with the book… I just don’t think college media should have to be “professional” because it discourages people from taking chances. And let’s face it, you’re taking 15 credits a semester, racking up debt, living on a futon… you’re not a professional.

    Especially with newspapers, the mainstream daily is a dying institution for a lot of reasons, one of which is that generally speaking their coverage borders between the banal and the mind numbingly predictable. While I certainly don’t think a Fuck Bush editorial is inventive, neither is it a stroke of genius to model yourself on a media institution that for reasons good, bad and inevitable is being driven into the ground.



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