Letter from the Editor / Opinion / Staff Editorial

The Daily Nexus and Journalistic Ethics

We, the editors of the Daily Nexus, place the interests and needs of you — our campus communities — above all else, and seek to provide meaningful and essential news, editorial and feature coverage. We do this using a strict editorial code of conduct and ethics.

On Sunday, April 20, one of our fellow students submitted an op-ed accusing another student of sexual assault. At the time of the request, the accuser had not gone to the police or filed a report, and she had not gone to Judicial Affairs.

We did not publish this piece because to print a story of an alleged crime without a formal complaint or police report is irresponsible and unethical. It is not only against the journalism code of ethics, it is also harmful to the individuals involved, harmful to the truth and harmful to the community.

Since Sunday, the accuser has posted a blog entry stating she has now contacted Judicial Affairs and the police. We will investigate these claims and once they are confirmed, we will report on this story, as we will with all stories of interest and concern to our campus community. However, we will continue our policy of not printing unsubstantiated claims or allegations.

Our doors are always open to investigate important stories and hear from both sides. We take sexual assault very seriously, and we will report on serious crimes once they have been filed through the proper channels. We’re here to serve you.

 

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14 Comments

  1. The Daily Nexus cannot say something is fact simply because it sounds convincing. Otherwise, the most charismatic or affluent people would always have the floor and those people aren’t always going to represent the truth, are they?

  2. Excuse me I just got out of wine tasting class. :)

  3. “We did not publish this piece because to print a story of an alleged crime without a formal complaint or police report is irresponsible and unethical. It is not only against the journalism code of ethics, it is also harmful to the individuals involved, harmful to the truth and harmful to the community.”

    by this statement I assume you believe that edward snowden was wrong to expose NSA plans and that his efforts, as well as the guardians, are not proper journalism.

    & the blog post was clearly posted on April 23rd.

    As well, as the blogger clearly stated that they do not feel safe handling this through institutional channels which is why they came to you, the daily nexus. i believe this is the same thing snowden did?

    #SHAME

    • I wish DP would just suck it already.

      • truth in justice says:

        lol

        to reduce sexual violence to a party issue would be straight up stupid. sexual violence is a serious issue that should be taken seriously, especially given how frequently it occurs at UCSB, and it takes courage for anyone to come forward and share a very intimate and personal story.

        the only person that needs to suck it are people like you who fail to see the bigger picture and how comments like this are unproductive and further detracts from getting at the truth, whatever it may be

    • Well then yes obviously you just answered your own question. Then The Guardian committed an act of improper journalism. But of course why pass up such a juicy story that will gain you national coverage when we can make so much publicity and money off of this? Oh no, let’s protect the identity of the NSA, because that’s ethical journalism.

      Profit-making and protecting the identity of a fellow student are two very different things. Stop making such a bullshit comparison.

    • Not the Same says:

      Steiv, are you kidding? That’s not the same at all. Snowden had documents to verify his story. That’s why The Guardian printed it. The Nexus didn’t print the opinion piece because there weren’t any documents to go with the story. It sets a dangerous precedent to print anything that people tell you.

      Now, that there may be something official to investigate, they’re going to follow up. I don’t see a problem with this.

      • No. Lol. Really? We are talking about sexual assault here…documentation? Did you see the statement AS shut believing survivors because larger society generally victim blames.
        My point is that the author if the big could not go through the institutional means because, which even if it did/could provide”documentation of the alleged incident” wouldn’t that be confidential? How could the nexus even get information about that? Idk what your definition of proper journalism is but for me it’s to inform the community on important issues even if it is not of interest to the community or if there are legal issues because that is simply ethical.

        • Not the Same says:

          Yes, we are talking about the topic of sexual assault here and it is serious. When someone reports an assault to the police, it is not confidential. It becomes public record.

          The accuser claims to have gone to the police now. If this is true, an investigation can begin and everything will be by the books and will be reported by the Nexus. This is a good thing. I don’t like to put words in people’s mouths, but it sounds like you are advocating for a system in which the burden of proof is placed on the accused to show that they are innocent. That is as slippery of a slope as you can get, especially for a justice system. Please reflect on the ramifications of what you are advocating.

          In the meantime, I would like to say to all survivors of assault out there, please know that you are not alone and I truly feel for you. There is support out there. Here is one such place: http://www.sbrapecrisiscenter.org/

          • all of these counter arguments are beside my point and that of the bloggers. but i shall reply. I was not talking about the police. that’s not the only institution involved. There is judicial affairs which the findings there will not be public record. There is also Associated students involved because of the relationship to positions of power that aren’t necessarily transparent. regardless, as you state, I’m prettttyyyyy sure that is exactly how our federal judiciary system works. you or your lawyer try to prove whether or not you are guilty or not in front of a judge…that’s what all the framing of arguments and facts presented are all about. its not about justice anymore. its about following the rules of the legal system to prove a point to someone that obviously has biases. Also, if you don’t want to put words in people’s mouths, then please dont do it!!! dont tell me to reflect on some bullshit assumption you just made about me! You said those words, I did not. so reflect yourself. I absolutely don’t appreciate it and am laughing at the hypocrisy of that statement. please and thanks!

            • Not the Same says:

              The system is innocent until proven guilty. Not guilty until proven innocent. This is where you failed.

              You are welcome to laugh all you want, but in the morning when you wake up, I’ll still be right and you’ll still be wrong.

              • your thinking process is basic af. first i did not say that. you said it and you are hugely naive to think that public discourse does not affect the outcomes of the legal processes. the alleged is well connected within the university you are stupid to think that and her affiliations with other students in power will not affect the outcome. people have unconscious bias and that is truly a fact. I do not affiliate with basics so peace out and have a good life being conventional :]

        • Are you living in the 1950′s? Society is way past knee jerk blaming of the victim reaction. If anything people are very willing to accept someones word about sexual assault.

          The strong reaction that this is generating is reflective of it.

          • Not the Same says:

            Tommy gets it. Steiv, you admit that public discourse can affect the legal process. Publishing a one-sided accusation could incite people to condemn and harass the accused and the accuser before they have been properly investigated and had a fair trial.

            Let’s examine what has happened since this blog post went up. Both the accuser and accused have been named. I went on Facebook and found that both of them are now being harassed and judged before an investigation has even taken place.

            How can this be helpful in any way?

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