This article is Guest Writer Spencer Davimos‘s precautious attempt to veer Columbia away from entering its Joker arc.
The day has finally arrived. Columbia has received a punishment worse than just being canceled once again by its own newspaper, The Spectator; its rankings in the U.S. News fell an unprecedented 16 spots, now positioned as the lowest rated Ivy League school (yes, in this instance, we are validating Cornell as an Ivy League).
Contrary to what might be expected in an article addressing this news, I am not here to chastise Columbia or summarize its history of misreporting data about the college. You can read about that in detail from several other, significantly more boring publications. Seriously—every single newspaper has published at least one article on this scandal; even The Daily Beast covered the story to feel included for once in its life.
To be completely transparent, I am not even writing this article in an effort to attract student readers but rather to give advice (and also send my condolences) to the marketing team that manages Columbia University’s social media channels. I am sure there’s a deep feeling of panic washing over all of you right now as all you’ve been accustomed to doing for Columbia’s Instagram is post photos of campus and write captions with corny animal-related wordplay like “campus is simply ROARING with excitement as students celebrate the end to their first week of classes! *insert lion emoji* *insert books emoji* *insert blue heart emoji*”. Navigating the social media presence of a college at the forefront of criticism in the world of academia is definitely a minefield. However, it is not an impossible feat.
Below I have provided potential posts you can use to address the wrongdoings of Columbia. You must credit me if you use any of these for the Instagram account. I am currently trying to build a strong and decorative LinkedIn profile, and having experience in doing digital design on a professional level could greatly boost my resume.
- Instagram Post Idea
Caption to accompany the above photo: We may be at the bottom of the food chain right now, but soon enough we will be CLAWING our way back up to our rightful spot at the top (through ethical means, of course *insert thumbs-up emoji*)!
- Notes App Apology on the Instagram Story
- Thumbnail for a Youtube Apology Video
Note: President Bollinger must open up the apology video with a 30-second clip of him crying in front of the camera to emphasize how sorry he is for his past mistakes. This suggestion is purely stylistic, but applying a black and white filter to the video might draw sympathy from the viewers and make them aware that this scandal is affecting the university WAY more than the students who are paying tuition!
- A Twitter Apology
This might be a more unconventional route, but it could definitely swing in your favor. Rather than show guilt when addressing the scandal, spin the story into something more positive, even celebratory. I mean, who could be mad at us for inflating data when we practically pioneered the women’s rights movement?!
- An Educational TikTok
A great way to navigate this scandal is to not just address what you did wrong, but also educate people on WHY it was wrong. Putting facts about the dangers of misreporting statistics over a TikTok of Charli Damelio’s renegade would help gain traffic to the video which in turn makes more people aware of this topic.
Photo of Columbia via Columbia News
Other Apology Posts via Author
PrezBo Apology Header via Science Editor Kyle Murray