Opinion journalism vs. advocacy journalism and your “writes” as an NSU Demon

By Kasi Patten.

Every semester it goes without fail- someone writes an opinion article and then a slew of the opposing view slam The Current Sauce for allowing it to be posted. So, I have chosen to give a little lesson in journalism for you.

Let me begin with why everyone is able to write for the Current Sauce. The Current Sauce is apart of a media network including KNWD 91.7FM the Demon and the Potpourri Yearbook. Together, they are known in short as NSULA Student Media. Every year, a portion of your student activity fees are allotted to these organizations to ensure you receive awesome benefits such as a free yearbook and DemonFest. These funds also go towards making sure The Current Sauce stays in print. By allowing for these funds to be divided amongst Student Media, you ensure that students have outlets for creative, professional and personal growth. Since everyone contributes to the monetary maintenance of this organization, in turn everyone is able to contribute, pick up an issue free of cost, and attend events for no additional cost to you. Pretty cool, eh?

Now, let’s move onto why everyone is allowed to write whatever they feel for the Current Sauce newspaper without fear of censorship. It’s simple: the First Amendment. If you need a refresher in civics, the First Amendment is, “an amendment to the US Constitution that prohibits any law limiting freedom with respect to religion, expression, peaceful assembly, or the right of citizens to petition the government.” Long story short: the freedoms of religion, speech, press, assembly, and petition of the government. Today’s high points are the freedom of speech and the freedom of press.

The freedom of Speech does not mean you can say anything and everything you want. It simply means that you right to say whatever you want to is protected to some degree from the law. However, if you were to yell “FIRE” without there actually being a fire and cause a big commotion, you may still be prosecuted within the fullest extent of the law, especially if someone was injured due to your words.

The freedom of press is the freedom to print without interference from the government or law as long as it does not prove to libelous, obscene, or seditious. Of course, there are laws detailing what falls under freedom of press and what does not.

Now let’s look at the term opinion journalism. Opinion journalism is defined as “journalism that takes no claim of objectivity”. This is not to be mistaken for advocacy journalism which is a sub-genre of journalism which intentionally takes on an non-objective angle for either a social or political purpose. Advocacy journalism is based on facts in either the social or political realm whereas opinion journalism is simply stating one’s opinion- weather it be factually sound or not.

In conclusion, everyone has a right to state their opinion in whatever media they choose. Whether that be Facebook, The Current Sauce or a radio show at KNWD. However, just because the media publishes something does not mean it is the direct view of the publication. Everyone has a right to traditional, opinion or advocacy journalism within The Current Sauce. So please, leave your hate at the door and if something sparks your interest pick up your pens and get to writing. I’d love to read what you have to say.

The Current Sauce

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