College media loses its liberties

Up north, college journalists access to information is going south.

McGill University filed a motion Dec. 7 that would allow it to deny access to information requested by The McGill Daily, Concordias The Link and website McGilliLeaked.

The motion seeks to deny current information requested by the 14 respondents named in the document, many of them students, as well as any future record requests that these individuals may issue.

Like Vermont, Canada has an Access to Information Act that requires any government-run and publically funded institution like McGill to release certain documents to the public when officially requested, explained.

For their part, administrators at McGill allege the respondents have been making repetitious and abusive requests for information in the aftermath of campus protests that took place between 2011-2012 in response to a tuition hike, The McGill Daily reported Jan. 19.

We at The Cynic would like to offer our support to our fellow journalists across the border.

Fortunately, UVM administrators generally comply with our records requests; but then again, the requests themselves typically are few and far between.

In the case of McGill, it seems as if the university has pitted itself against its students.

As a service, it is The McGill Dailys job to inform the community and hold community members accountable if warranted.

Thats not abusive, thats journalism.

The records request process may sometimes be inconvenient.

It can be messy, and once in awhile it will definitely upset someone.

But to hinder that process is to undermine the egalitarian values that educational institutions are built upon in the first place.

It is our hope that McGills pursued litigation will prove unsuccessful and that the blacklisted fourteen will maintain the right to do their job.