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Old Gold & Black

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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

Scott Kull: The new Director of Athletics
Abigail Taylor, Contributing Writer • April 16, 2024

Making OG&B as unbiased as possible

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Photo by Anna Lee Hoffman. OG&B staff members discuss and refine topics regularly.

Being head of a large student paper can be overwhelming when dealing with so many strong opinions, but the most important part, I have found, is using those differing voices and opinions to our advantage. 

Instead of being intimidated by opinions, I choose to value them. We must value every opinion, whether we agree with it or not. A lot of times, when thinking of news sources like MSNBC or FOX, there is an inherent bias to associate it with a political party. 

My goal for The Old Gold & Black, however, is to make sure that students get the information that they need on relevant issues on campus without having any inclination as to the political and/or social views of the writer(s). 

To start this mission, we kicked off the 2021-2022 academic year by having our staff training, with a large part of the time spent on bias and diversity training. While staff diversity in terms of race or other visual/social realms is admittedly not the strongest, we have a very diverse staff in terms of opinion and views. 

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Because of this training and diversity, each and every one of our staff members has worked tirelessly to ensure that they seek out relevant sources on whatever issue they are covering. All of this is initiated when we convene for our weekly meeting.

In this meeting, the staff uses their resources and connections to help establish sources for the different writers in the group to talk to. With each person at Wofford being within at least three connections of each other, this allows for an adequately diverse source pool.

We also have a system in place where staff members involved with a particular issue or organization cannot cover it in the paper. We love to hear these pitches and pass them along to other writers who may have less of a connection, but we try to avoid allowing implicit bias to sneak in wherever we can. 

Being conscious of this helps us to maintain what we believe to be a substantial amount of credibility on campus. All the steps our writers go through when writing and all the different editors who view the article before publication helps us to make sure that everything that hits the printer is factual and as unbiased as possible. 

Of course, bias cannot be 100% eliminated, and it would be ignorant to assume that it could be. Instead, it is managed to a degree where the small amount of bias left does not impact the view of the reader. 

When publishing news reports and feature pieces, the goal of the paper is not to persuade students to believe a certain way about a particular issue, but rather to provide enough information for students to articulate their own educated opinion on issues around campus. 

It is worth noting that articles where the author voices their own opinion will be labeled accordingly.

We want to be the source that students go to whenever they want to know more about Wofford from an objective stance. We never want to be the root of any harm or harsh feelings. 

If you have any concerns about any perceived bias in the paper, please feel free to reach out to any member of the editorial team. We would be more than happy to accept any constructive criticism and review anything with you.

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About the Contributor
Brandi Wylie, Editor-In-Chief
Education Major from Spartanburg, SC
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