“That thingy’s gonna haunt you forever, isn’t it…”

The most recent issue of Muse, an intelligently-written local feminist magazine, contains an article written by an ex-student editor about the Aotearoa Student Press Association’s annual conference last year. Apparently one of the topics under discussion was “Student media controversies: how to pick ’em and how to deal with ’em”.

Every now and then student newspapers get in trouble for publishing articles which are deliberately provocative, usually to do with sex or drugs. At their best, these articles seek to push journalistic boundaries. At their worst they’re childishly offensive for the sake of offence, and win their editors some free publicity and an interview on Campbell Live. I was distressed to see that one of the examples given was a certain Salient cartoon:

“depicting a young women [sic] sleeping with an entire rugby team”

I’ve sent the writer an e-mail and some links, respectfully suggesting that it shows no such thing. Either she’s deliberately misrepresenting it, or she’s never seen the original. Luckily I’m not named, but I resent the implication that it was drawn and printed as a malicious stunt to generate controversy when there was no such intention. As a friend of mine said, “That thingy’s gonna haunt you forever, isn’t it…”

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