There are a couple of issues covered in this week’s paper that have raised the question of what we should or should not print in the paper. The term “freedom of the press” is loosely defined as the ability of media in general to act autonomously apart from government and other influences in order to fulfill their obligation of responsibly informing the public about important issues.
The fact that Casey’s has temporarily been suspended from serving alcohol has been the subject of many rumours around campus. We have tried to cover the issue responsibly by getting the Student Union Society’s (SUS) take on the story and trying to dispel these rumours. We don’t necessarily want to side with Casey’s on this issue, however, despite the fact that SUS, which is responsible for the management of Casey’s, is one of our major advertisers. Instead we have endeavoured to fairly cover the issue for the benefit of the student body, which is our constituency in that they support the paper with their student fees.
In a world where media is increasingly beholden to special interest groups, via the payment of advertising dollars, student media occupies a unique niche in which our content is directed primarily towards the interest of informing the student’s of UFV, rather than increasing our advertising budget.
If you feel we have covered a story unfairly, however, we welcome student feedback in the form of letters to the editor or, alternately, not-for-print emails informing us of potential factual errors we may have printed. Freedom of the press does not mean the freedom to print whatever we want. We endeavour to give the students of UFV the most accurate version of the facts in the stories we cover, and in this regard, your feedback and letters are greatly appreciated. Letters to the editor can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can comment on individual stories at ufvcascade.ca.