Keeping promises

In a letter from the editor earlier this semester, I announced the Torch had recommitted itself to presenting the news the right way.

I apologized for the inadequate coverage we have given to various organizations, offices and issues at Ferris in the past. To better serve our readers, we’ve been continuously assessing the news value of our content.

As part of providing readers with relevant news, the Torch has made a point of following up on stories.

Last week, the Torch submitted its first Freedom of Information Act request in the paper’s recent history.

Since April, Torch reporters have been asking for results of the 2013 student government presidential election. Despite multiple attempts, student government hasn’t been forthcoming with the information, thus forcing us to FOIA for the results.

In the past, the Torch might have simply given up and moved on. The runaround may have deterred us and a story might never have been published. Those shortcomings are something we acknowledge.

But because this year’s Torch staff has recommitted itself to doing the news the right way, we had to ask ourselves what the best interest of our readers was before making our next move. The choice was clear. We had to continue pursing the story.

As citizens of a democratic society, our promised access to free information has created a system of checks and balances in which journalists share power with other social entities, particularly governing bodies.

Using our power, journalists must empower ordinary citizens to take an active role in the political process. In the case of a collegiate newspaper, this means student government.

It’s our responsibility to ensure our readers have access to the information they need. We strive to live up to our responsibility and stick to our promise of doing the news the right way.