This article was originally published in the Tufts Daily on 10/18/2010.
With the official vote in from the Media Advocacy Board, I can now confidently and legitimately accept the position of public editor. Conceived back in 2008, the public editor position was created to encourage healthy, meaningful campus conversation by having someone outside the Tufts media universe provide critical opinions on what is written, how stories are reported and what crosses the line of community acceptability.
The idea of an ombudsman — an independent, critical entity expressing the views of media audiences — has been implemented by the country’s most popular media. Consider the New York Times, The Washington Post, National Public Radio, even ESPN, all of which have an office that basically calls out their bosses when they mess up. The position of the public editor is a testament to the organization of Tufts media, as well as their strength to truly open themselves up to criticism. Few other undergraduate bodies are willing to do so; in this regard, Tufts is on the cutting edge, and we should be proud.