At the beginning of this semester, I welcomed readers to our newspaper with a message previous Badger Herald editors never would have imagined writing: “This might be the last point in our lives in which we have the privilege of either working for or reading a traditional newspaper without paying obscene sums for the novelty.”
Although I anticipated a change in the way the Herald approaches its publication model, I never believed that our staff’s desire to change and adjust would come so early in the year. This has been a semester of unprecedented upheaval at the Herald, and a resilient staff and base of readers faithfully committed to student journalism and the Herald’s unique role in the community are the main reasons for this positive upheaval.
For the last month, one of my main roles at the Herald has been to act as a spokesperson for the paper after our decision to cut Friday printing in favor of online-only production on Friday. I mostly find myself repeating answers to the same questions. Is print dead? Is the Herald dying?
No and no. This newspaper will continue to serve an important role in the community, and we’ve responsibly charged a task force of current, recent and seasoned alumni to advise us on how to step into a new age for college journalism. Eighty miles east of here, another student newspaper hastily and pessimistically announced the killing of its print edition last week. That’s not how we will make our changes. We will do them responsibly, with an understanding that what our readers want and what our employees need takes precedence over an emotional attachment to a print product.
For now, our print edition isn’t going anywhere, and I’m happy about it. This semester, we produced some of the best papers recent memory, including our Election Day issue and yesterday’s edition about Bret Bielema’s departure. Our management team next semester, which includes Katherine Krueger at managing editor and Pam Selman continuing in her role as editor-at-large, are incredibly equipped and talented editors who will maintain this tradition.
Next semester, a new staff of capable student journalists will walk into our freezing office and do the business of putting together a newspaper. We will continue to do the business of improving our online product so the future classes of University of Wisconsin students native to the web can be confident that we still provide the most relevant and meaningful news about their lives.
And we will continue to do this throughout the semester with a realization that this is a unique and thankful moment in our lives.
This organization has changed the lives of hundreds of student journalists since its inception in 1969 and will continue to do so for long in the future. And if you’re excited as I am about where we are headed for the next several years, I encourage you to visit our office next semester and become part of the Herald family. With the appropriate dedication to learning, you will never experience anything like it again in your life.
SPRING 2013 EDITORIAL STAFF
Editor-in-chief: Ryan Rainey
Managing Editor: Katherine Krueger
Editor-at-large: Pam Selman
News Editor: Katie Caron
News Content Editor: Camille Albert
Deputy News Editor: Tara Golshan
Senior Beat Editors: Julia Skulstad (Campus) and Polo Rocha (State)
Beat Editors: Noah Goetzel (Campus), Allie Johnson and Sarah Eucalano (City), Alice Coyne (State)
Sports Editor: Nick Korger
Editorial Page Editor: Charles Godfrey
Editorial Page Content Editor: Joe Timmerman
ArtsEtc Editors: Tim Hadick and Colin Kellogg
Editorial Board Chair: Adelaide Blanchard
Photo Editor: Andy Fate
Associate Photo Editors: Jen Small and Kelsey Fenton
Web Director: Will Haynes
Design Director: Sigrid Hubertz
Deputy Design Director: Angus McNair
Copy Chief: Kristin Prewitt