Letter to the Editor

Jonathan Beck, ’13 (News Editor 2011-2012; Opinion Editor 2012-2013)

When I graduated from Canisius, I made it a point to read the Griffin every Friday. In the year after my own departure from the beloved rag, as I studied in Germany, I appreciated the Griffin’s online presence. I was able to stay informed with the goings on at my alma mater. I realized that, as many hours as I devoted to the paper for three years, it truly was an institution, independent of its many parts. The content quality improved – as did the opinions (my own columns, it turned out, weren’t that important).

My freshmen year (2009), the Griffin launched a website. Although in my employment with the paper we would come to loathe the platform we used, it seemed so professional when it was brand new. We pushed content on Facebook and Twitter, and some days we would be lucky enough to have several hundred unique visitors per article.

As the News Editor and then Opinion Editor, I watched my colleagues, Nick Veronica (who became Editor-in-Chief) and Rich Lunguino (the Sports Editor and chief website designer) spend their summer, and then their fall, designing and improving the paper’s website. They sought our criticism. It was attractive, it was functional, and people liked it. We continued to push for better content, and it showed. The website became a hub of Canisius news, and even broke, on occasion, a couple national stories. Students and professors shared links to the paper in email and on social media. It was exciting.

The trajectory continued upward, and then it disappeared. From the beginning of February 2015 forward, it was as though the Griffin had collapsed. Its online presence – the website and its social media pages – went first without updates, and now the website results in an error message.

This is too bad. I feel disconnected from my alma mater (the administration should take note: the Griffin is one of the College’s best ambassadors to its alumni). I no longer have the opportunity to read the opinions of the bright student body, or share in anger at the latest controversies, or cheer the College, its faculty, and its students’ many successes.

I hope that the staff at the Griffin seeks to bring the paper’s online presence back soon. Not to do so would be to miss an opportunity – to learn and perfect the dominant news medium today, and to engage “beyond the dome.”

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