Harvard University: Threat to Discipline Student Newspaper Staff for Publishing Satirical Cartoon

Category: Free Speech
Schools: Harvard University

The Harbus, a student newspaper at Harvard Business School (HBS), ran an editorial cartoon that criticized the school’s Career Services for severe and chronic technical problems during a crucial week for student job searches. The cartoon showed a computer screen with pop-up announcements about the incompetence and inefficiency of the program. One announcement had two words expressing the exasperation of HBS students: “incompetent morons.” The administration issued a verbal warning, causing the editor-in-chief to resign. Following public criticism by FIRE, HBS issued a statement detailing its regret that the incident chilled free expression on campus and affirmed its commitment to the free and open exchange of ideas.