This isn’t the death of the Daily; it’s a rebirth.
Starting in the fall, Mustang Daily will begin to print twice a week. But our name is no misnomer. Our hub — mustangdaily.net — won’t just bring you headlines to start the day, it will be updated hour-by-hour and become your go-to portal for Cal Poly news by combining our current print production, our student-run television station Mustang Daily TV and a new multimedia division.
Together, we are Mustang Media.
The staff will still cover every important event, bring you the latest developments in campus news and make the website a one-stop shop for everything from topics such as semester conversion to highlights of Cal Poly athletics.
The relaunch of Mustang Daily this fall coincides with the journalism department’s decision to craft a new curriculum from the ground up. The goal is to prepare students for the new challenges they face in the industry and, with the new Mustang Daily, provide a product that our readers can trust and enjoy.
Each division of Mustang Daily has the same objective: to create an informed public by allowing you, the reader, to consume the news in the way you like, all in the same place.
The changes to the daily news are mainly a product of the Internet. As more content became available for free online, and national businesses began using the megaphones known as Facebook and Twitter for marketing, revenue dried up. Small papers, such as Mustang Daily, suffered from the loss of national advertisers and once profitable entities sunk into the red.
While no one in the newsroom celebrated the cutbacks in our print product, it gives Mustang Daily’s staff a chance to find a new path for journalism — one that is both ethical and profitable. And my job as editor-in-chief is to lead that charge into the future, bridging the gap between each division and narrowing the divide between our readers and our product.
For too long, Mustang Daily has sat on the sidelines when students wanted to discuss issues. For us, news was a one-way street. We delivered it and the students’ reactions were often met with stony silence from the newspaper. We forgot that Mustang Daily is made by students, for students. It should inspire discussion, and we should participate in that dialogue.
Next year, we will.
Now, I won’t pretend the transition won’t be bumpy. Nearly 50 students from departments across campus are being asked to craft Mustang Media from scratch. It is in our hands, and we will make mistakes. Imagine launching a startup, only that every day the world gets to see your progress. There is no alpha launch or a beta test, there is just the news and it will be covered.
But my job is to assure that we learn from each misstep and vow to not repeat it. That’s how we learn and how innovations, which allow journalism to advance in the Internet age, are sparked.
So, if you have skills that can advance our cause and make our website as kickass as possible, our door is — quite literally — always open.
An adventure awaits in the fall, and we hope you’ll join us.