University of California, Davis: Administrator-Appointed Board Holds Power Over Student Media Content


University of California, Davis

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FIRE Victory closed

In the early 1970s, the University of California regents declared that they “deplore[d] the frequent use of campus student newspapers as instruments of socio-political advocacy and for the dissemination of lewd and obscene articles and photography.” In response, University of California, Davis created the Chancellor-appointed Media Board to select student media leaders and evaluate whether outlets “serve the general campus community,” “serve the interests of the students,” and “use propriety and good taste in expression.” These responsibilities unlawfully placed power over student media content in the hands of administrators’ appointees. After FIRE, wrote UC Davis in May 2020 (joined by the Student Press Law Center), the university amended the responsibilities of the Media Board to give the power to determine content to student editors.