‘Red & Black’ Update

By on August 17, 2012

The news is arriving fast and furious out of Athens, Georgia, where the former editorial staff of award-winning independent student newspaper The Red & Black met with members of the paper’s Board of Directors this afternoon to discuss their reasons for resignation and the possibility of reversing the deeply problematic staffing and editorial changes recently imposed upon the paper.  

For background on the troubling dispute, see the staffers’ blog, Red and Dead, or the impressive and encouraging amount of coverage the board’s power grab has generated in just 48 hours.

The former staffers’ Twitter feed, @redanddead815, is the best source of breaking information. 

Here’s what’s new following today’s meeting as of the time of this writing: 

  • Ed Stamper, the board member who authored the infamous "GOOD" and "BAD" journalism memo (PDF) that prompted the mass resignation, has resigned from the board and offered an apology for his actions, and the board has issued a statement confirming as much;
  • An undetermined number of the new, professional, non-student hires made by the board have also resigned
  • Ed Morales, the professional, non-student employee who had been promoted from editorial adviser to editorial director, has been demoted back to editorial adviser; 
  • Under questioning from the former staffers, Morales indicated verbally during the meeting that there will be no prior review of content; 
  • The former editor-in-chief and managing editor have signaled that they will reapply for their positions; 
  • In a bizarre and troubling turn, Red & Black publisher Harry Montevideo became involved in a physical altercation during the meeting, tackling a local reporter covering the event. 

With news breaking rapidly, I encourage you to stay up to date via the staffers’ account. For a thoughtful and eloquent discussion of the pedagogical stakes of the board’s initiative, I urge you to read Adam Goldstein’s excellent Huffington Post article from yesterday. 

Schools: University of Georgia