To the members of the Columbia community,
We owe you an apology.
This Saturday we received a tip regarding a “strategy document” that had been circulated to leaders of many Columbia student organizations. It was our understanding that the names included in the document were on the public record. Students who spoke at the Town Hall were instructed to speak their names and affiliations on the recorded microphone; the transcript of this recording will be released by Columbia shortly. However, it was brought to our attention by multiple student activists that there were individuals named in the document who did not speak on the public record at the Town Hall.
Due to a miscommunication, the post went up before we were able to confirm that all of the individuals listed in the document had their names on the public record. When we became aware that several students in the document had not spoken at the Town Hall, we immediately redacted all of the names of student activists in the post in the interest of protecting their safety and privacy.
Bwog exists, first and foremost, to serve the students on this campus and to provide a forum for safe, open discussion. In this instance, we have failed to live up to those responsibilities.
When Bwog was founded in 2006, it was primarily a source for stories that warranted immediate attention, such as free food alerts and breaking news. As our readership grew, we evolved into a preeminent independent source of student news and information. After the events of this weekend, we are reevaluating our responsibilities to the Columbia community and we would like all of you, our readers, to be involved in that process.
We would like to actively change what information is posted on Bwog, the factors that inform such decisions, and how we present that information to you. We will be meeting personally with many of the student activists who were most affected by this weekend’s events in order to get their input. In addition, we invite any student who wishes to contribute to the redefining of Bwog to send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or to attend our open forum next Sunday, October 26th, from 8-9pm in the Lerner SGO.
We deeply regret the events of the past few days, but embrace the opportunity to look critically at ourselves and reaffirm our commitment to our readers. We look forward to beginning what we feel is a necessary process in ensuring that Bwog has a role in the Columbia community.
Julia Goodman, Editor-in-Chief
Claire Friedman, Managing Editor
Maud Rozee, Internal Editor
Jake Hershman, Publisher