The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Editorial: Respect student journalism

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Photo by Photo by Robert O’Brien

The Battalion’s editorial staff addresses the importance of respecting the work produced by student journalists. 

Respect is an Aggie Core Value. Plagiarism and copyright infringement are not.
From national broadcasters to our own peers, The Battalion has faced too many instances in which our work has been stolen. And we’re tired of it.
Student journalism is hard enough, from getting called “amateurs” to having doors literally closed in our faces, but having others use our work with neither permission nor credit is the icing that sends the cake toppling over. We may be a bunch of 20-somethings huddling in a windowless basement until 1 a.m. working on Google Docs and Adobe InDesign, but that does not make us any less professional, hard working or — God forbid — passionate than the reporters over at the New York Times. We practice AP Style, the most widely used journalist writing style, too. We break hard news and investigate, too. We follow media law and ethics, too. We report on nationally recognized issues, too. So do not treat us like we don’t know what we’re doing or we don’t deserve the same amount of credit and respect.
In fairness, sometimes we do get it wrong. Every newsroom does, and we’re not above our own flaws. But if you don’t like our content or wish things were done differently, please, feel free to come work for us or leave us some constructive criticism. Don’t mistake the work of a student as an opportunity to illegally use quality content as if it is your property.
And if you do like our work, wonderful. We appreciate compliments and praise (and retweets, too!). But don’t steal our articles, quotes, photographs, graphics or videos and republish them as your own. That is not only illegal and unethical, but it is downright disrespectful. Excellence is something Aggies take very seriously, and we, at The Battalion, work our hardest to produce the best content possible for our audience. We Respect our readers by providing the most transparent coverage of notable events, weather and sports, and we ask for Respect in return by recognizing the importance of student journalism.
Thanks for the backward compliments, but next time, please ask first. After all, Aggies do not lie, cheat or steal — or tolerate those who do.

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