I've started paying attention to The Muse again, which may or may not be a good thing.
It's probably no secret to many that I got my start in journalism by walking through the doors of the old Muse office in the TSC back one faithful day in September, 1990. I consider the four years I spent there to be some of the most important in my life. It shaped my professional career and most of my closest friends have come either directly or indirectly from my time with the paper. So I feel a strong sense of belonging to the paper years and years after my day was done.
I've always tried to keep track of what was going on with the paper, but refrain from commenting except when among friends. Back in my first year with the paper I recall an "old time" Muser came in the office. And by old time I mean he had been with the paper in the early 80s. And he began talking about his time with the paper, and how they did things different and boy didn't they cause a racket and wow, clearly the paper need to do something differently to get up to the standards they had set.
The fact that the staff who were in the office at the time listening to this didn't beat him to death borders on the miraculous. I vowed then and there to not be one of those people who would pop in the Muse office years after my time with the paper and start telling them what to do.
However, now I have the Internet and can read the paper online. Plus, thanks to the miracle of the Newfoundland and Labrador blogroll, I know several of the staff are online and that they sometimes come here and read things. This is all bad things because it makes me tempted to start talking about the Muse. And really, I shouldn't. Yes, it's a good idea to have people with more experience to come and offer suggestions and tips. But that's what conferences are for. Plus, you're invited to comment and offer suggestions. There is a big difference.
You know, I will say this. The paper looks good, the layout is coming along nicely and it's great to see some really nice colour photography in the paper. That LSPU Hall spread and the cover were very well done.
But no, what caught my eye was thisthis. Understand, I enjoy a nice crafted rant. And yeah, I can renew my longstanding complaint that The Muse ought to run editorial and not opinion pieces (editorials don't use personal pronouns). And yeah, maybe it's a touch rough and could use another pass to knock off some of the edges.
But then again, another pass might have ruined it. It might have watered down the bile and contempt. And that would have been a sad thing. This is a lovely thing. It stirred something dark and thought long dead or dormant in my chest. That being the seething hatred and contempt you can have for those in power when you're in university. It's a wonderful thing to read and I just wanted to post a link to it here so others could read it.
Plus, that's a great headline. The kind you can only get away with in the student press.
I also hope they ran that past a lawyer before running it because if CFS is as litigious as is claimed in this piece, then the lawyers are likely already sharpening their knives.
I almost feel bad picking on university student councils. I lived for it back in the day. If you think the three levels of government (municipal, provincial/territorial, federal) produce juicy targets, it's nothing compared to what your average student council can offer up. It's like a lame duck shoot every week for a budding journalist.
But then again, they're not that dissimilar from the people who work on student papers. You've got people who want to get involved who are often inexperienced, but want to learn more because this might be something they want to pursue full-time. And mistakes are going to be made. Quite often big ones. Lord knows enough people have ripped The Muse, and even tried to shut it down, over the years for mistakes in the paper.
So it seems a shame to pick on student council's in such a ruthless manner. Then again, the other part of me thinks that you're better off crushing them when they're young and weeding out the incompetent. After all, if you don't catch them then, well...wasn't Ed Byrne a former student council president?