Something that frequently gets brought to my attention at school is when seemingly intelligent people (like professors, administrators, the news media) inquire or complain to ITS or the school’s public affairs department about something we’ve posted here as if we were an officially ordained outlet. This disturbs me. On number of levels.
The reason we had to put that disclaimer that used to be at the bottom of the page up to the top is literally because the Washington Post called the department of public affairs at Wesleyan asking them to confirm my opinion about the rankings for an article, thinking it was Wesleyan’s official stance. Yeah. I’m actually (sadly) serious. While the school did not force us to make this change or any changes we are considering, we’re doing this because we feel bad for the public affairs department as this is not the first time they’ve had to deal with national media outlets confusing our blog for something official (why they never contact us is actually just beyond me, since our email is literally *right* there).
So please don’t think while we rework the site that we’re getting “forced” to do it. A lot of the administration actually adores us because we’re lovable little scamps and they realize we drive a significant amount of traffic to the official site. They’ve never reprimanded us about anything we’ve ever written thus far and they respect our right to write what we want. We appreciate their efforts to adapt to a new campus medium and its positive effects on both the student community and the larger community that reads us (like other college students, prospective high school students, parents, media outlets, alumi, etc). It’s also forcing them to recognize that the medium has the potential to hold them accountable to a much larger audience for their actions and we realize that this is something new for them. So while we rag on them once in a while, we still appreciate that they’re trying.
And outlets like Washington Post really need to hire really anyone with some critical thinking skills to explain to them what a clusterfuck web 2.0 really is. Like me. Hire me. I’ll tell you the difference between a blog and a school website. Call me.