Advertisement

Opinion: The Michigan Daily reporters should not be punished for doing their job

February 4, 2014

rogers.746@osu.edu
Michigan coach Brady Hoke. Michigan student newspaper The Michigan Daily recently broke a story about former Michigan kicker Brendan Gibbons violating the Student Sexual Misconduct policy.

Michigan coach Brady Hoke. Michigan student newspaper The Michigan Daily recently broke a story about former Michigan kicker Brendan Gibbons violating the Student Sexual Misconduct policy. Credit: Kaily Cunningham / Multimedia editor

As a journalist, it is your duty to report the news. The real news. Not a fabricated story, not leaving important details out, but the honest to God news.

That is all the writers at The Michigan Daily, the University of Michigan’s independent student newspaper, were doing, and now they are being punished for it.

Sports writer Matt Slovin and staff reporter Adam Rubenfire broke the story on former Michigan kicker Brendan Gibbons being separated from the university for violating the Student Sexual Misconduct Policy.

This in turn saw the paper’s reporters not invited by the school to a press conference Monday where coach Brady Hoke discussed the violations, according to Slovin and Detroit News writer Tony Paul.

In a day and age where people will go out of their way to defend the free speech rights of just about anyone that speaks, seeing the school turn away their own paper because they were doing their jobs is outrageous.

What would have happened if The Associated Press had broken the report, or ESPN? Would the school have been as keen to block their reporters from attending the press conference?

The report from the paper is well written, well reported and factually correct. There have been no corrections issued for this story, they didn’t flat out lie — these journalists were just doing what they had been trained to do.

According to the paper’s website, they are financially independent from the school, but that didn’t stop Michigan from making a statement about the content that was being run.

As an editor for The Lantern, a rival Big Ten paper, I have immeasurable respect for these journalists. This story had to be reported on whether it made Michigan happy or not.

In the end, I’m not sure what the program gained by blocking these reporters from entering. With the speed that news is reported in today’s world, it was guaranteed this story would get out. Michigan comes out as the bad guy and The Michigan Daily ends up having more power than it did before.

The school failed in what it did and should be questioned for the decision. But more importantly we should celebrate the newspaper. Not for doing something extraordinary, but for simply doing their job: reporting the news.


The Lantern uses two-click social media buttons to protect your privacy. Click once to load the button, then again to share!

Comments (3)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. BRIAN BERTHOLOMEY says:

    I FIRST HEARD OF GIBBONS ACTIONS WHEN I READ THE BOOK BY JOHN BACON, “FOURTH AND LONG”…I WAS AMAZED THAT NOTHING WAS EVER DONE ABOUT IT AND HE CONTINUED TO PLAY FOR UM…IT WASN’T THE FIRST TIME UM HAD PROTECTED FOOTBALL PLAYERS AND ALLOWED THEM TO PLAY WHILE UNDER POLICE INVESTIGATION….THE SAME OCCURRED AT PSU UNDER PATERNO WHEN SEVERAL PLAYERS WERE IN AN OFF-CAMPUS FIGHT…ATHLETIC DEPARTMENTS NEED TO STOP PROTECTING ATHLETES AND TREAT THEM THE SAME AS THE REST OF THE STUDENT BODY!!!

  2. PhillyBuck says:

    Meanwhile Taylor Lewan threatens Gibbons alleged victim – threatens to rape her, no less – and what happened to him? Police warned him to cool off.

    Covering up for athletes happens at every school and it’s not justifiable. However, how you could cover for a rapist and not get queasy is beyond me.

  3. Keyser Soze says:

    Can we get a representative for The Lantern to go up there and find as much dirt as you guys did on your own school when the tat gate was going on? It sure would make up for the stories about the home team a couple years back. Here is a link to the story that George Dohrmann broke in SI today, http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-football/news/20140214/michigan-rape-case-fallout/?eref=sihp

    I’m sure some have contact with him from when he moved to Columbus to sink the Buckeyes.

Leave a Reply

Current ye@r *