A newspaper is never laid out as the reporter initially wrote his or her story. The article written by a reporter changes over the course of time until the newspaper is completed. If something is revised at the time of editing, it will be written differently than the original version. A topic is discussed according to the direction of the coverage.
I was surprised when I joined the school newspaper for the first time, finding out that what journalists wrote could be revised in a way that was not originally intended. Most school newspaper reporters see that their articles were edited with a final cut at least once. I also learned from academic affairs that an article was not guaranteed to be published in a newspaper. I learned from being a student reporter at the school newspaper that we should not lose the courage to speak out. If a reporter finds anything unfair regarding school activities, he or she should be brave enough to talk about it. It is the duty of a reporter at the school to inform and convey absurdities or improvements for the readers, including classmates and school personnel.
A college newspaper is both a newspaper and a media organization that represents the school, and operates through students’ tuition. Student journalists must observe balanced reporting. When they write an article, they should pursue truth and fairness, and should not only speak about the merits of the school. If the school can grow toward a better direction because of the student reporter’s writing, he or she should pursue the story. It’s his or her role to represent the perspective of the students, especially if there are unfair or unreasonable issues. However, the environment in which student journalists can speak out for the students is not always ideal. As I said earlier, if a newspaper is to be published, it needs to be rectified because, if it does not agree with the professor in charge during the editing process, the direction of the original article will eventually disappear, or the article will be changed overall. It doesn’t mean that raising arguments with the professor in charge during the editing process is wrong. Any controversy that allows newspapers to flow in a more constructive direction during the editing process should be discussed. On the other hand, if the debate in the editing process does not produce articles that genuinely represent the positions of the students and works to prevent them from causing further damage to the school, it should be stopped immediately. The debate itself is nothing short of insulting readers and the writers behind those stories.
The college newspaper should be an ignition point for the school to develop by approaching events that take place within the university fairly, and not just for the school’s promotion. Isn’t it possible for current academic institutions to be a flashpoint across the board?
[The Department of Korean Language and Literature, 18, Konkuk University]