As journalists, we take the facts and interpret them to find the truest meaning. That means, although pure balance is often preached in journalism school, there are not two equal sides to every story. It is our duty to use our platform in a responsible way that adds to the current conversation rather than detracts from movements demanding progress on human rights like Black Lives Matter.
Our paper has historically had a predominantly white staff, which was bound to have influenced our coverage in the past. We haven’t always followed up with difficult stories that have arisen around campus, and we haven’t covered a diverse range of topics, groups, events and perspectives that should have been covered.
This needs to change.
We will actively address and work to overcome our implicit biases with workshops, discussions and improved coverage that ensures fair, representative journalism for the UMass community and gives everyone on campus and in the greater community a voice.
We stand with those who protest and use their voice to speak up. Our core values, along with the protestors’, are cemented in the First Amendment, and it is an outlet’s duty to accurately represent the movement against police brutality and systemic racism while highlighting the underlying complexities. Without accurate media representation, the misuse of power by authorities goes unquestioned and a just movement can be egregiously misrepresented and harmed.
We must hold ourselves accountable for mistakes and learn from them. With a platform that can guide the public conversation, it is up to all news organizations to use sensitivity and common sense, especially when people are protesting for human rights that have been ignored for centuries.
Through sharing insightful opinion pieces, publishing educational resources, and striving for accurate and truthful reporting, we will do our part to better serve our community. We long to be an institution that everyone in our community can trust, and we will always listen to you, the people we write for.
Hold us accountable. We work for you.
This unsigned editorial represents the majority opinion of The Massachusetts Daily Collegian Editorial Board, members of which can be reached at [email protected]