CHARTER

INDEPENDENT STUDENT MEDIA OF NEWS, INFORMATION AND IDEAS

BLOOMINGTON CAMPUS, INDIANA UNIVERSITY

Preamble

Since the founding of the Indiana Daily Student (IDS) in 1867 and the Arbutus in 1893, these publications have served the needs and interests of the Bloomington campus community. To protect their independence and freedom, Indiana University trustees approved a charter for the IDS in 1969 and for the Arbutus in 1981.

This revised charter converges existing and future evolutions of the IDS and Arbutus under a single Student Media Board and Director of Student Media and re-affirms the independence and freedom of these student media in serving the Bloomington campus community. This Charter reaffirms that student media operating under its provisions are declared limited public forums where final content decisions and responsibility rest with duly appointed student editors and managers.

Mission

Student media seek to inform and enlighten the Bloomington campus community and to contribute to and enrich an atmosphere of free inquiry, expression and discussion. In exercising the freedom and independence necessary for fulfilling this mission, the editors and their staff are accountable for abiding by the laws that govern expression and for upholding professional standards of ethical practice.

Student media also enable students to practice and professionalize the knowledge, skills and values they learn in the classroom.

Student Media Board

The Board has sole authority for appointing the IDS editor and Arbutus editor. Should new media develop that converge or replace these two publications, the Board will have sole authority for appointing the student leaders of these student media of news, information and ideas. The Board defines and administers policy and procedures for selecting the editors or staff leaders and, if warranted and with appropriate due process, for discharging them.

The Board meets at least twice a year at appropriate times to select the editors, who must be students in good standing at Indiana University-Bloomington.

Membership of the Board includes:

  • Three professional journalists appointed by the Bloomington Chancellor of Indiana University
  • Four students elected by the student staff of the student media, with no more than two seats from any one student media department
  • One student representative of the Indiana University Student Association, appointed by the IUSA president and confirmed by the Student Senate
  • One faculty member outside the School of Journalism elected by the Faculty Council
  • The Director of Student Media
  • The Dean of the School of Journalism

Board members serve a one-year term, which may be renewed. Elections and appointments or reappointments to the Board shall be made in the spring for the following academic year. The Director of Student Media and the Dean of the School of Journalism serve for as long as they hold their offices. Candidates for editorial or leadership positions at the time the Board is selecting chief student editors or leaders are not eligible for Board membership.

Chief Student Editors or Leaders

The chief student editors or leaders appoint their respective editorial staffs. The chief editors or leaders determine editorial content without prior review by the Director of Student Media, the Dean of the School of Journalism, the Student Media Board or any other faculty or administrative members or organizations of Indiana University. In exercising this freedom and independence, the chief staff editors or leaders and their staff are accountable for abiding by the laws that govern expression, including defamation, privacy, decency, commercial speech and intellectual property, and for upholding professional standards of ethical practice. Chief student editors or leaders are encouraged to consult appropriate professional or legal personnel on legal and ethical issues prior to publication or broadcast. However, final editorial responsibility for all content rests with the chief student editors or leaders.

The Director of Student Media

The Dean of the School of Journalism, with the advice and consent of the School's faculty, appoints the Director of Student Media. The Director is responsible to the Dean for the business operations of the student media, including supervision of the editorial budget, negotiation of printing contracts, equipment purchase and maintenance, and advertising policy and practices.

The Director monitors the business operations' adherence to the University's budgetary and accounting procedures and practices. The Director hires professional and support staff to provide financial stability and serve in management, support and advisory roles. The Director provides guidance to the editorial and business staff and encourages professional, legal and ethical performance by staff and students alike.

To strengthen the educational purposes of student media, the Director may be appointed a member of the faculty of the School of Journalism, subject to the approval of the School's faculty and Dean. If faculty membership is appropriate, the Director will normally be appointed as a contract lecturer, subject to the rights, responsibilities and review that govern this faculty rank.

This revised charter was adopted and approved by the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Bloomington Chancellor this 20th of October, 2005.

Ken R.R. Gros Louis, Vice President and Bloomington Chancellor