A new school year has begun, meaning a fresh face to The Daily Evergreen and a recreated vision for the newspaper. This semester, our staff reevaluated our purpose behind producing this paper and established new goals and values as journalists.
It is our duty to provide a learning opportunity to students, to question the institutions which govern us, to exercise our First Amendment rights and educate the community about local issues, all through the combined use of social and print media.
Part of this means embracing the changes to our industry. Newspapers around the world are facing an identity crisis due to increased use of virtual media and must work to remain relevant in a new era of journalism.
While posing new challenges to our field, the Internet should not be seen as a deterrent, but rather as a catalyst to a better future. We must learn to use social media to add to our newspaper content and make it easier to provide the best news possible to our readers.
However, while the Internet has provided many people with the opportunity to say what they want, it can never replace the value of actual reporting. Knowledge is power, and high quality, informative news that the public has access to has always been an intricate part of functioning democracies.
There remains a power in the written word and even more so in silence. As dictators have demonstrated in controlling media, uninformed citizens are easier to control.
The United States has a truly unique emphasis on the freedom of the press that has often been taken for granted in this country. Many other places in the world cannot speak out frankly against their governments or question the actions of their leaders.
In 2011 alone, 66 journalists were killed and more than a thousand arrested, according to Reporters Without Borders, a non-profit dedicated to preserving press freedom.
It is within our power to hold accountable the mighty, to protect the weak and most importantly to bring to light all that cowers in the dark.
The Daily Evergreen provides students with an outlet to express themselves, challenge institutions and, most importantly, to learn and grow as writers. When students first come to college, many of them face the sudden realization that the world may be bigger than their immediate surroundings. This can cause some fear and anxiety, but the Evergreen provides students with an opportunity to be active and involved, and perhaps make an impact on the community around them.
We have an obligation to provide the highest quality, and most professional reporting possible to the local populace.
Remember, this newspaper cannot survive through the efforts of individuals. It is a community paper. That means that we need you, our readership, to hold us accountable for our quality and hold us to your expectations. If you like something we have done, please tell us. If you don’t like something we’ve done, also tell us.
We plan to make this year the best that we can, and that means some big changes for The Daily Evergreen as we change our look and push to have better content. We hope you enjoy our transformation and help us face our challenges as we work to serve you.