Posts Tagged ‘Daily Northwestern’

The latest rankings report listing the country’s “Best College Newspapers has been released by Princeton Review.  The papers are listed below, in order of their selection.

Penn State’s Daily Collegian vaulted to the top, following in the footsteps of its CMM “College Newspaper of the Year” honors earlier this summer.

The Daily Kansan moved up dramatically as well.  The Red & Black, The Michigan Daily, The Daily Nexus at UC Santa Barbara, The Rocky Mountain Collegian at Colorado State University, and The Technician at North Carolina State University all jumped onto the list after not appearing on the 2011 version.  Meanwhile, The Daily Northwestern and The Daily Texan suffered big drops.  The Battalion at Texas A&M had the biggest spiral– dropping from the list after appearing at #5 last year.  The Minnesota Daily, The Daily Mississippian, The Daily Campus at UCONN, and The Hilltop at Howard University also disappeared from the current version.


The Princeton Review rankings are not without controversy.  As Bryan Murley from the Center for Innovation in College Media confirmed two summers ago, the process by which these papers achieve the “Best” distinction is, well, fairly ridiculous.

Yet, the rankings receive more attention from the public and mainstream media than every other student journalism contest and competition, including the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker awards (the closest the student press has to the Pulitzer Prizes).  Why?  My guess, without sarcasm or cynicism: It’s an offshoot of the attention given to the sexier rankings such as “Best Party Schools.”

1. The Daily Collegian, Penn State University

2. The Daily Tar Heel, University of North Carolina

3. Yale Daily News, Yale University

4. The Brown Daily Herald, Brown University

(Tie) 5. The Badger Herald, University of Wisconsin-Madison

(Tie) 5. The Daily Cardinal, University of Wisconsin-Madison

6. The University Daily Kansan, Kansas University

7. The Diamondback, University of Maryland

8. The Independent Florida Alligator, University of Florida

9. The Daily Nexus, UC Santa Barbara

10. The Red & Black, University of Georgia

11. The Cornell Daily Sun, Cornell University

12. The Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University

13. The Daily Orange, Syracuse University

14. The Daily Gamecock, University of South Carolina

15. The Tufts Daily, Tufts University

16. The Michigan Daily, University of Michigan

17. The Post, Ohio University

18. Technician, North Carolina State University

19. The Daily Texan, University of Texas at Austin

20. The Daily Northwestern, Northwestern University


College Newspaper of the Year, 2011-2012: The Daily Collegian, Penn State University

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Students like LikeALittle a lot.  An increasing number of campus newspapers have turned to that tongue-twister to describe the rising popularity of a unique web service.

Simply put, LikeALittle lets students flirt with each other… anonymously.  The site offers campus-specific platforms for students to reveal their feelings for someone they know or strangers who just walked by or sit near them in class.  In respect to the latter, the whole shebang sports a Craigslist Missed Connections-feel, with a campus twist.  Begun last October at Stanford University, LikeALittle is now available at hundreds of schools worldwide.

As its co-founder Evan Reas tells The Daily Northwestern, “We really see it as a location-based communication platform.  We wanted to bridge that divide to make it easy to communicate with people in the same location, and change the psychological dynamic of the way we interact with other people.  There is this huge fear of rejection.  There is that barrier when it’s a person-to-person interaction, and it’s much lower when it’s anonymous or online.”

The quick four-step flirtation process involves choosing your flirtee’s gender, hair color, the spot he or she crossed your path, and a brief message you want them and web browsers to read.  No names are submitted.  A review of the messages posted by students at schools across the U.S. reveals four running themes: When crushing anonymously, students are idealistically romantic.  Their pick-up lines are cheesy.  The first things they notice are eyes and clothes.  And they fall hard, fast.

Among the many messages students have sent: “You held the door open for me today.  I was shocked that guys still did that.  Chivalry isn’t dead!”; “Girl in a large purple hoodie.  I think you’re cute.  I hope you’re not wearing your boyfriends hoodie.  Come talk to me sometime?”; “I think you’re too cute.  Your eyes are absolutely gorgeous.  I wish I wasn’t so shy and awkward with guys…no worries though, you’ll be my summer goal…baby steps.”; “You are most likely on the basketball team since you were on the floor for 90% of tonight’s game.  You were bleeding at one point and seemed tired and frustrated by the end of the game, I would love to nurse you back to health.”; and “At Chem 101: Male, Brunette.  I wish I was an ion so I could form an exothermic bond with you.”

To read the rest of the piece, click here or on the image below.


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As I wrote in early October, “The story of the student press so far this semester: The existence of the first sustained crack in college print papers’ seeming invincibility to the online takeover and economic downturn.”


Since then, the economy has continued to collapse faster than Amy Winehouse’s career, prompting an unprecedented ad-revenue slowdown and a cost-cutting mentality at some student papers nationwide, according to a new Daily Princetonian report.


With the “bottom dropping out of the economy,” as the business manager of The Daily Pennsylvanian put it, the biggest disappearance from the ad blitz of times past’ has been financial and consulting companies, who typically place advertisements in papers prior to appearing on campus to recruit students.  Stanford Daily business manager and COO: “There’s a huge gap between last fall and this fall.  Last fall we had all these recruiters for advertising.”

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Examples of cutbacks that papers have instituted or are considering due to the ad gaps: The Daily Northwestern is publishing “smaller papers with fewer pages because we don’t have advertising revenue to support our editorial news hole”; and The Indiana Daily Student is “looking at ways to economize in every area,” including staff pay rates and the paper’s travel budget.


Interestingly, The Daily Tar Heel continues to be a voice of optimism.  The DTH general manager notes that increased political advertising from the recent campaign season and current reader interest in men’s basketball puts the paper in “a unique position here to do better than some of our buddies.”  This echoes earlier statements about the paper’s financial robustness.


Aside from the DTH, is college papers’ current pessimism a sign that the end is growing ever-nearer for their print news products?  As I’ve stated before, I don’t think so.  This latest report and the in-the-red reality it presents for some papers is simply proof that college newspapers are not immune from the economic doom and gloom.  When an Obama-fied economy (hopefully) bounces back, the financial companies’ recruiting efforts and related ads will return, something The New York Times notes this morning is in the recruiters’ best interests.  And in turn, hopefully student papers’ ad-revenue stream will return to the black.

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