Letter from the Editor-in-Chief and Publisher: New Letter to the Editor Policy

Dear readers of The Tartan,

In the last issue of 2015, we published a series of letters to the editor about the black student experience at Carnegie Mellon. When these letters were published, it was brought to our attention that the letters had been edited in the production process, which is not only against our policy, but highly unethical. Though the editing was an innocent mistake that resulted from a training gap, it is regrettable and unacceptable.

The message of the letters was altered when the letters were edited without the permission of the authors. We at The Tartan are deeply sorry that this happened, and are taking all of the necessary steps to ensure that it will not happen again.

The letters to the editor we publish are intended to be a platform from which student voices from our community can be heard. By editing the letters, The Tartan violated the trust of the student body. In light of this, we, Brian Trimboli and Laura Scherb, Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, respectively, would like to reiterate the revised policy that is effective immediately:

“Letters must be submitted by 5 p.m. on the Wednesday before publication by mail or to Letters from within the university community take precedence. Letters intended for publication must be signed and include the author’s address and telephone number for verification; letters must not exceed 350 words. No edits will be made to any published letters without the author’s permission; in the case of no response from the author, The Tartan reserves the right to postpone the publication of the letter. Authors’ names may be withheld from publication upon request. The Tartan reserves the right to reject any letter.”

On behalf of the entire staff of The Tartan, we would like to apologize again for our actions regarding these letters to the editor. It was never our intention to silence a voice or change a narrative, and we hope that we can regain the trust of the student body in light of these actions.

Laura Scherb, Publisher
Brian Trimboli, Editor-in-Chief