May

2

67 Comments

  1. fgjkj  

    the tennis link links to a staff editorial
    and as for the senior column by the eic...if you think spectator has been so reluctant to be making these changes then arent you yourself to blame? i mean here you are calling out spec's flaws but youve been running it to some degree. why couldnt you just take spec in that direction?

    • totally agree  

      if you're a COMPUTER SCIENCE major, isn't it doubly stupid to complain about spec's reluctance? isn't that just your biggest failure? shouldn't you just own up to it?

  2. hey!  

    why's that girl in the picture touching her nose? what did she just avoid having to do?

  3. Confused  

    Just for clarification purposes... Why would all four undergraduate councils meet to decide the way funding is distributed if a large portion of allocations for SGB and ABC come from the Columbia Student Life Fee. It seem unfair that Barnard gets to participate in dishing out funds considering that they are only provided by students represented by the other 3 councils. As an e-board member for an ABC club, I know that Barnard student life fees go directly towards Barnard clubs or those with joint recognition. Am I missing something here or is this another case of the need to be clarified relationship with our affiliated sister?

    • More confused  

      You could ask your ABC rep, who should ask an ABC E-board member, who should then ask the student council E-board members, who should then give you an answer. To post these kinds of questions on Bwog's comment list is just asking for false information. The fastest way would be to just send the council E-board an email.

      My guess would be that its either a typo, or they have them there for consulting purposes.

  4. SGA  

    it's a little more complex, but try explaining it in 800 words or less...SGA doesn't pay into ABC, first of all, and SGA has its own student life fee. SGA pays into its own groups separately.

  5. but  

    SGA does pay into SGB. For the groups it doesn't pay into it leaves the meeting and has no say.

  6. moph  

    it's a long complicated answer, but each student council only gets to sit in on the discussions regarding those governing boards that it funds. Barnard historically has funded CI, SGB, and possibly CSGB (can't remember), but not ABC.

    Each council has allocation approval over this portion of their school's student life fees. So no Barnard money goes to ABC and no CC/SEAS/GS money goes to SGA groups.

    Before the councils all met together (five years ago), governing boards would tell each council different things, to try to maximize their funding. It was a bad scene.

  7. hmmm  

    why does it seem like Okin is the only one consulted on this? there's more to student council than him

  8. 123  

    ABC told me that SGA and SGB LOL'ed when CCSC said OMG, told them to STFU and took their $$$. BTW, GS and SEAS beat CC in the NCAA pool. JK

  9. here  

    http://media.www.columbiaspectator.com/media/storage/paper865/news/2007/02/12/News/Implications.Groups.Compete.For.Finite.Funding.Allocations-2712661.shtml

    "Somewhat apart from this process is the Barnard Student Government Association which only contributes to the funding of the Student Governing Board and Community Impact and provides a donation to club sports. The SGA also oversees student groups for the Barnard Community."

  10. usually  

    I try to avoid ad hominem attacks because that's what the cool kids do, but steve's column was really, really inane, naive, and silly. I mean, tabloid?! wtf.

  11. grad

    spectator stagnated under megan greenwell's "leadership." it's not unreasonable for steve, as outgoing eic, to make far-ranging suggestions for spec's future. yes, it would have been nice for him to implement some of those ideas during his tenure, but as a former MB member i can tell you how difficult it is to execute your big plans. just taking care of the daily paper is at least a 40-hour-a-week job, and then the editors occasionally try to go to class. a senior column is a great place to encourage this kind of future thinking. (and the tabloid's not a crazy idea -- lots of papers are switching to tabloid right now -- but the paper does look way better in broadsheet.)

  12. steve\'s

    major failing was picking john as his successor. the paper may have stagnated under steve, but we all seem to agree it got worse this semester. everybody loves john, but he had no editing experience and no professional experience, so he was underqualified to get the job. (his opponent, owen heary, had both, i think).

  13. oh man  

    let's just eat cake.

  14. alum  

    Spec gets worse every spring semester and better every fall.

    See how John's doing in October, before you rank him.

  15. Anonymous  

    Steve's right about going back to tabloid. The Spec is perfect for reading before class and on the train. This isn't the Times - many students don't have a kitchen table.

  16. just saying  

    i generally agree with steve's column, but it all sounds sort of ridiculous coming from him, given that he took little initiative to this end during his tenure (and don't give me that "how is a full-time editor supposed to implement these changes?" excuse, because, under that logic, spec is never going to experience big changes). i also think it's ridiculous to frame various editors-in-chief as being radically different in terms of ability/competence, especially when the recent ones (megan, steve, and john) have all ended performing at about the same levels. every one of them has made mistakes, but they also got a lot of things right. at least on this board, criticism directed against any of them seems less like an evaluation of leadership and more an indication of how much the commenter at hand liked one relative to the others.

    • grad

      you're right, saying they're too busy to make big changes is no excuse. but the time when that's going to be most feasible is right in the beginning of one's tenure, so i guess all i was saying is that it makes sense to reflect back and make some suggestions for the future at this point.

      spec has definitely gotten better over the past few years, but the best reform it could make is a total overhaul of the process for choosing new boards. the chaotic overnight system has produced some monumentally bad decisions in recent years.

  17. wow  

    ouch. you sure that's public knowledge?

  18. having  

    read the spec for 7 years (four years at columbia and three back in high school with the science honors program) the spectator has certainly gotten better over the years. anyone who doesn't believe me should look at an issue from around 2000. the paper was a much smaller deal with never more than one section, certainly no big special features or the eye. plus, it was black and white and a smaller site. nor was the content tremendous.

    before you start complaining, actually look at existed before. sure the spec has douchebag columnists and the occassional completely un fact checked story, but whatever, they are students after all.

  19. spec  

    First of all, Steve did not technically run for EIC--he wrote a proposal for Managing Editor, then was offered EIC. Second, I have it on very good intelligence that Steve actually aced his ethics test, whereas the EIC candidates did not. I'm not sure about his copy test but that shouldn't be the EIC's job anyway--that should be Head Copy's concern. Third, I think it's ridiculous that anyone who hasn't been on the Executive Board (MB doesn't even fully appreciate the responsibility of EB) of Spectator criticize Steve (or John or Megan) for changes they may or may not have made. As #17 pointed out, the day-to-day responsibility of running the paper is a tremendous task, and little change can actually be effected by one person at Spec. Steve and his board got The Eye off the ground; asking much more would be nearly impossible in one year. Regardless of whether or not you like The Eye, it had been a long-term goal of Spec's, and Steve helped to make it happen. His presenting his opinion about how to improve Spec in the future is very brave, and I think we should be grateful to him for it. After all, who else is wiser at this point in time about the goings-on of Spectator?

  20. Anonymous  

    I think Spec's a pretty decent paper, and on the upswing. Davisson's Board's decision to hold the town hall steps in the right direction for Spec. Sure, they've screwed up stories, but they've stopped repeating mistakes. Tom Faure, for example, is one reporter who's taken a lead on getting things right, cross-checking facts, and elevating Spec's ability to be an authoritative voice in a way that Bwog's snarky, editorialized tone does not attempt.

    The key for Spec to keep its relevance is not to go more tabloid and more instantaneous like Bwog. Rather, the more in depth, careful, and well written it becomes as a conventional print publication, the better it will complement, and be complemented by, Bwog.

  21. hmm  

    yeah, that pretty much foreshadows his ethical flop in october.


    also, i think it is abundantly clear that these comments are being written by generally informed spec staffers. i don't think they're coming out of left field.

  22. i mean  

    that's total bullshit and you know it.

  23. ian c-b  

    just thought i'd say hello to all my current and former colleagues posting in this thread.

  24. ...  

    spec is a lumbering institutional giant that desperately needs change. steve's column articulately points this out.

    so instead of all of you people bitching, whining, and burying your fucking heads into dead spectator history, i suggest that you look at the fundamental message in the column and try to be proactive in making change instead of being petty little shitheads haggling over useless details.

  25. Peter Nalli  

    People are stupid for attacking a column that acknowledges the shortcomings of a publication Steve clearly cares about greatly. As a friend and colleague at Spec, I can say that Steve was a rare editor, one who didn't get off on power-trips or use the paper for ego fulfillment. I say bravo to his tenure as Production Editor and Editor-in-Chief, for improving the quality of the paper and making all staffers at Spectator feel valued.
    To those obnoxiously bitching, get over yourselves, log off Bwog, and move on to real life.

  26. Tom Faure  

    I HATE AC MILAN AND THE YANKEES.

  27. No Peter  

    Peter, you were abroad and not in the office during his time as editor in chief. Your comments are inherently biased because of friendship with him. The truth is, unless someone is actually friends with Steve independent of their work on spec, the overwhelming opinion is that he was a shitty editor. Those who are friends with him go to great lengths to lie and protect him (See 31, blatantly false, he did fail and he was second to last in ethics).
    We know now what Steve was, a passionate guy who loved spec and didn't have the brain or the leadership to make meaningful change as an EIC.

  28. Tom again  

    ok, since this seems to be a forum for discussion and not ad hominem--see comment #45--I would just add that I believe Spec is on the rise in terms of solidifying content and expansive ventures but that is probably--though I'm no way certain--a product of current AND former boards.
    If anything, we need to live up to our proffered belief in transparency when we do turkeyshoots (selecting the next board) just so everyone not on the exec board knows what the hell's going on and such. It'll solidify internal confidence, methinks.
    Love and kisses to all the speccies and stray bwoggies on this discussion.

  29. Peter Nalli  

    I was in the office with Steve as editor for a year and a half (1 Production + semester EIC), then abroad for one semester. Plus, shut up and write your name.

  30. you rock peter  

    keep it up with the voice of reason

  31. asdf  

    bwog=troll magnet

  32. No need for anger  

    Peter, see my response, I mentioned only his time as EIC. Your position last fall was not exactly in the loop of day to day activity. Steve was a great production editor, no doubt about it, but that success did not translate to EIC. He had the luxury of an excellent managing board, which ran the paper day-to-day. With the freedom to make structural changes, he did very little.
    As for making people feel valued, he had a significant number of dropouts from races for managing board positions because people were upset specifically with him and his management style. That's a fact, and you're just citing your opinion.

  33. A Martin  

    I think what everyone is declining to say (probably out of respect for the sensitive editors of the other sections) is that the Arts section at Spec is the only thing keeping it afloat. Many a day I have observed people literally picking up the paper and tearing every page except the arts page to shreds, then taking a foldable frame out of their pocket and framing the arts section. Who knew so many people had foldable frames?
    PS Hey Ian, copy edit THIS (obscene gesture)

    • trip  

      yeah, down with Spec copy editors, up with Spec arts! etc!

    • Agreed  

      Joking, Andrew Martin, but you're probably right. The A&E section really has no rival on campus (sorry Bwog, you've seemed to delve a little into this, but it hasn't really taken off), and it always makes for a great read. Plus the news section ain't half bad - Moncada's right in what he says.

      I'd have to say the thing that upsets me the most about the push for online content is that you don't have the universality of print media. Not everyone owns a computer or wants to spend their evenings staring at a screen, but print media appeals to and is available to everyone from student to professor to homeless person. A reduced presence just seems a little unnerving.

  34. Tom  

    I know why: a frame of the Arts section is much easier to read in class.

  35. ttan  

    Can I do Spec copy?

  36. but....  

    But What About Felipe Tarud???

  37. Avi  

    Basic Rule, since most of the people posting are obviously speccies: If you imagine yourself as a journalist, with any sort of commitment to getting things right and accountability (and "objectivity"), please put your name or initials behind comments you make. I'd suggest that you do it even if you don't consider yourself one, but it seems especially hypocritical and egregious for reporters not to. It's bothered me all year, but this seems like a good time to say so.

    1) I think the Eye is overextending Spectator.
    2) I think the news section the past couple years has gotten too dependant on event stories--except for Manhattanville coverage and the glorious space supplement it was mediocre last year--and should probably focus its efforts on longer, more investigative stories with hard data that spur debate and provide hard facts and give insight to the way things actually work around campus. (Which, is to say, it should fill a different niche than Bwog.)
    3) Color tabloid would be glorious.
    4) To anyone who disses 130--I'd probably agree with you, but there's something to be considered: certain elements of 129 seemed to go out of their way to deliberately alienate Spec's top editorial talent, and when it played favorites, it picked favorites wrong, setting up itself for further institutional failure.
    5) Who on this campus doesn't love grinding two year old axes? My hatchet ages like wine.

  38. Moses Namkung  

    There's a time and place to grind the ax, but after it's done, it should stay done except in the rare case that it is somehow useful in current discussion.

    Bwog is fantastic and is the first place I go to when I need instant Columbia information... but bwog comments almost always showcases the worst of Columbia. The comments aren't even a discussion - the anonymity of it all allows people to fill it with useless rants, sarcastic comments, and personal attacks. If they had their names or an identity attached to those, they would never have the balls to write the shit that they do.

    Avi, I did laugh when I read 5). But... why grind the ax for so long? It's unhealthy and counterproductive.

  39. bwoggie  

    this bwog member is happy our medium is so relevant even speccies use it to hash out debates they would have kept under their breath otherwise.

    old media isn't dead, but it's obviously pretty damn tired. long live new media!

  40. The Eye  

    ...but Avi's not even cute!

    xoxo

  41. Liz Fink  

    This is the real Liz Fink. I am writing to say that whoever posted as "esf" had absolutely nothing to do with me or my opinions. What's more, Bwog took down the "esf" posts because the IP address proved conclusively it wasn't me. I disagree entirely with what was posted under "esf." Actually, I'd like to punch whoever "esf" was in the face for trying to impersonate me and use my name to give credibility to lies.

  42. HEOP story

    Christ, what a boondoggle! Rewarded for underperforming on your SATS? I can't believe how screwed up the NY education system is...

  43. isnothere  

    "I think the Eye is overextending Spectator."

    I politely disagree. The staffs are all but separate now, and they share little more than office space and printing facilities.

  44. Julia  

    I think this thread has to end, but before it does, here's my first bwog post ever: That was NOT the general consensus in the room. I'm a graduating senior with 4 long years of Spec experience under my belt, and I can say with 100% assurance that Steve was the best of the 4 editors-in-chief. Every single one of the past 4 MB/AB boards has been disrupted by conflict. It happened again this year, but it's not Steve's fault. If anything, he was the least egotistical EIC I have ever met. In the past year, whenever I had trouble with a fellow Spec person, Steve was always there to mediate and help the problem work itself out.

    And as for the tech stuff, he was very dedicated. I don't understand how no one has mentioned the website he built for assigning news stories--Piana--or the fact that he spent the summer desperately trying to talk sense into the company that runs our website, college publisher. He uploaded the PDF of The Eye every week--a completely inane task that he did just to help our meager little website be a bit better.

    And by the way, the Eye is not an overextension of Spectator. It's an amazing opportunity for kids to learn how to work at a weekly magazine. What other campus publication runs elaborate photo shoots and 4,000 word trend pieces? Every new project has its rough patches, but in just a year, The Eye and Spec have worked theirs out.

  45. speccie/bwogger

    Let's keep in mind that Bwog didn't take off in a big way until relatively late in Steve's term as EIC, at which point it would have been difficult for him to implement the changes he discussed in his senior column.

    • also  

      keep in mind that steve was one of the biggest critics of bwog. like, he basically deliberately drove the wonderful ms. ldp away because she worked for both. we all know he hates avi. and he constantly made decisions that limited our coverage/acknowledgement of bwog. that's why his whole 'hug it out' concept amuses me.

      • Lydia  

        Agreed, this thread needs to end, but in case anyone else is reading, the above comment about me vis-a-vis Steve is incorrect. Spec has a tendency to drive people away, but Steve personally did not play a role in my decision to leave.

        • no, lydia  

          he may have not played a direct your role in your decision, but i know that he was involved/very intent on you leaving. you just didn't know it.
          yes, the thread should end. sorry, but just wanted you to know.

  46. RSK

    How is that in any way helpful? If you wanted Lydia to know, tell her to her face, not in an anonymous comment. I guess the point of this thread has just been to make as many people feel bad about themselves as possible. At least one part of Steve's column has been overwhelmingly proven right: Spectator should "be at the forefront of comment authentication badges so that you can circumvent the anonymous commenter problem that plagues the Bwog."

  47. Bwog censor

    All your base belong to us!

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