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Student Media Board

Membership

The board is comprised of one administrator, one member from the Board of Deans, three faculty, and two alumni/professionals who are appointed by the provost; six students appointed by the Student Government Association president; and five ex-officio members including the editor of the Daily Beacon, advertising manager of the Daily Beacon, editor of Phoenix Literary Art Magazine, and director of student media. Board members serve one-year appointments.

Responsibilities

General Student Media Board responsibilities include:

Policies: Establish for student media editorial and management policies which reflect the intent of the Programs and Services Fee (e.g., coverage of as many and as great a variety of campus events and activities as possible and reasonable distribution of the media).

Program and Budget: Develop annually, in consultation with the director of student media, a media program and budget in accord with University fiscal and administrative policies.

Code of Ethics: Develop and enforce, in consultation with the director, a well-defined Code of Ethics, including a clear statement that prior censorship will not be exercised over student media, prohibition of vulgarity and obscenity, requirement of objectivity in news writing and emphasis on professional journalistic standards.

Selection and Removal of Editors and Managers: Establish procedures for selection, supervision, and removal of student editors. Policies for removal of editors shall be compatible with due process. In selecting editors, the board should seek candidates with experience, integrity and competence who understand and are committed to the Code of Ethics.

Review of Media: Review regularly all issues of student media and, with the director of student media, meet with student staff members for evaluation of media.

Private Interest and Support: Actively seek private interest in and support of the student media program.

Committees: Establish appropriate special and standing committees to carry out functions of the board.

Policy Guide

GENERAL POLICY

The general policy of all student media is to adhere to their stated purposes so that stability may be maintained for the benefit of all staffs, readers, and the general University community, in spite of regular changes in executive and staff positions.

The Personnel Committee of the Media Board has the responsibility for screening candidates and recommending to the Board individuals to serve in the following positions:

For The Daily Beacon: editor-in-chief, managing editor, chief copy editor, and advertising manager

For The Volunteer: editor

For The Phoenix: editor

The Media Board will receive the recommendations of the Personnel Committee, hear any appeals, and make appointments to the aforementioned positions. The Media Board will receive recommendations from the newly appointed personnel for the remaining staff appointments of the respective media.

Editors may suspend any staff member: however, the suspended staff member has the right of appeal to the Media Board.

Student media exist to provide opportunities in journalistic training and experience on the basis of interest, ability, and responsibility.

Staff appointees must be in good academic standing with the university.

All staff members should keep themselves informed of policies as stated in this Code, regularly consult with the director of student media, and seek the director’s opinion in matters of importance to all aspects of the media.

Student media will not discriminate against race, gender, religion, or ethnic origin of individuals.

All students are expected to conform to good taste, taking into account the wide distribution of the media.

Student media adhere to libel, postal, copyright, and other laws and regulations governing the American commercial press.

The Media Board will review annually the budget prepared for all student media by the Director of Student Media.

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, as publisher of the Daily Beacon, may run official announcements of interest to members of the university community. Appropriate procedures for receiving and publishing these announcements as advertisements will be established by the director of student media, and the announcements will be given priority for publication.

Code of Ethics

University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Office of Student Media: Canons of Journalism

The University of Tennessee Office of Student Media has adopted the Code of Ethics of the American Society of Newspaper Editors as its guide to professional journalism. Although the following statements pertain primarily to newspaper journalism, all student media will adhere to the principles stated in this Code of Ethics.

RESPONSIBILITY

The right of a newspaper to attract and hold readers is restricted by nothing but consideration of public welfare. The use a newspaper makes of the share of public attention it gains serves to determine its sense of responsibility, which it shares with every members of its staff. A journalist who uses his or her power for any selfish or otherwise unworthy purposes is faithless to a high trust.

FREEDOM OF THE PRESS

Freedom of the press is to be guarded as a vital right of mankind. It is an unquestionable right to discuss whatever is not explicitly forbidden by law, including the wisdom of any restrictive statute.

INDEPENDENCE

Freedom from all obligations except that of fidelity to the public interest is vital.

Promotion of any private interest contrary to the general welfare, for whatever reason, is not compatible with honest journalism. So-called news communications from private sources should not be published without public notice of their source or else substantiation of their claims to value as news, both in form and substance.

Partisanship, in editorial comment, which knowingly departs from the truth, does violence to the best spirit of American journalism; in the news columns it is subversive of a fundamental principle of the profession.

SINCERITY, TRUTHFULNESS, ACCURACY

Good faith with the reader is the foundation of all journalism worthy of the name.

By every consideration of good faith a newspaper is constrained to be truthful. It is not to be excused for lack of thoroughness or accuracy within its control, or failure to obtain command of these essential qualities.

Headlines should be fully warranted by the contents of the articles which they surmount.

IMPARTIALITY

Sound practice makes clear distinction between news reports and expressions of opinion. News reports should be free from opinion or bias of any kind. This rule does not apply to so-called special articles unmistakably devoted to advocacy or characterized by a signature authorizing the writer’s own conclusions and interpretation.

FAIR PLAY

A newspaper should not publish unofficial charges affecting reputation or moral character without opportunity given to the accused to be heard: right practice demands the giving of such opportunity in all cases of serious accusation outside judicial proceedings.

A newspaper should not invade private rights or feeling without sure warrant of public right as distinguished from public curiosity.

It is the privilege, as it is the duty, of a newspaper to make prompt and complete correction of its own serious mistakes of fact or opinion, whatever their origin.

DECENCY

A newspaper cannot escape conviction of insincerity if, while professing high moral purpose, it supplies incentives to base conduct, such as are to be found in details of crime and vice, publication of which is not demonstrably for the general good. Lacking the authority to enforce its canons the journalism here represented can but express the hope that deliberate pandering to vicious instincts will encounter effective public disapproval or yield to the influence of a preponderant professional condemnation.

Business Policy

The business management of each student media will be conducted on the basis of generally accepted commercial business practices for both print and electronic editions.

Advertisements should be designated by the word “advertisement” on the copy in any instance in which the text or pictures are not clearly recognizable as advertising matter. Political advertisements must be marked by the words “political advertisement paid for by _____________________________.” Public service advertisements must be identified with the source.

Pictures of persons may not be used in advertisements without the written permission of those persons. When claims accompanying the picture of a person in the advertisement are attributed to him/her, his/her written permission to be quoted in the copy must be obtained by the advertiser.

Advertisements known to be false or misleading will not be accepted for publication. Published advertising thought to be false of misleading should be referred to the proper advertising or business regulatory agency.

All campus political parties and factions will receive equal advertising opportunities and rates. Parties must meet copy deadlines, and full cash payment in advance will be required for all political advertisements.

Advertisements which are contrary to University policies or which violate the laws of the State of Tennessee or the United States will not be accepted.

The advertising manager may reject any advertising for good reason.

Refund Policy

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Office of Student Media refund policy incorporates UT Fiscal policy FI-0310 and FI-0505, and specific processes are detailed below.

The Office of Student Media processes refunds for the following reasons:

  • Overpayments
  • Duplicate payments
  • Payments received in error
  • Cancellations
  • Deposits

Amounts of refunds are based on the value of client orders for advertising. Refunds will be limited to these balances.

The Office of Student Media has refund forms that are kept in a separate file in room 11, the business office. The form, in use since 1992, includes name, address, and date of original order/receipt number, IRIS transaction number, reason for refund, amount and department head approval. Refund documentation is retained in the Office of Student Media financial files for six years, according to university policy.

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