Censored on campus: Exeposé removed during open day

Exeposé News Issue 666, Page 4 (27 February 2017) and Exeposé News online (2 March 2017)

>>Featured image: Hannah Butler

The Students’ Guild has said it was “disappointed” that the University removed copies of Exeposé from the Forum on a recent open day without informing the paper’s editors. The issue’s sex-themed content was “inappropriate” for children, the University claims. However, the Guild has told Exeposé it advised against removing the papers.

This year’s Exeposé Valentine’s Day special was published on Monday 13 February. The issue, featuring themed content along with a 12-page insert on the week’s Sabbatical Elections, ran with the headline: “Swastika found in Birks” – a story which soon received national attention and sparked an anti-fascism march on campus.

However, the University has said the removal of papers from the Forum during an open day the following Wednesday was “nothing to do with” this story.

“During the offer holders’ open day, held during the half- term holidays, there were many underage children – some of them related to potential students – in the Forum,” a spokesperson told Exeposé.

Organisers were “concerned that the adult themes in the special Valentine’s Day edition of Exeposé – entitled Sexpose in large pink print on the front page with a ‘Sexpose special’ about getting ‘down and dirty’ advertised on the cover – would be inappropriate for their age group,” they continued.

“The paper included a photograph of a topless girl, discussion about dildos, Tinder, lube, personal accounts of sexual encounters and other explicit sexual matters which were felt to be inappropriate for under-age children.”

They therefore decided to “make the newspaper less visible for a very short period of time,” they said.

Just before midday on 15 February, Exeposé members noticed the three bins usually on display in the Forum had been made completely inaccessible.

One was found tucked behind the Student Ambassadors’ welcome desk, while the other two (pictured) were hidden between two noticeboards and underneath the Forum stairs.

“Exeposé was still readily available around campus for both current and potential students,” the University argued.

“The University informed a staff member at the Students’ Guild that the Exeposé newspaper bins were to be moved throughout the offer holder open day,” a spokesperson said. “The Guild advised against this and explained that the newspaper bins in Guild space should not be moved or covered, due to important information within them.”

The newspaper bins in Guild space did remain on show – but the Guild was unable to prevent the University removing Exeposé from the Forum.

“We’re disappointed that the event organisers didn’t contact the student editors to inform them of this decision,” the spokesperson added.

The University is “committed to supporting independent student journalism,” a spokesperson added, “and recognises the hard work which goes into producing Exepose each fortnight, and the important role the newspaper has in keeping students informed about important issues.”

They failed to explain why no communication with editors had taken place prior to moving the papers. However, the University’s Marketing and Communications department later apologised for being “not able” to contact editors “to discuss the best course of action.”

Issue 666, Page 4 (27 February 2017)

>>View original Exeposé News story>>
>>View Issue 666 at issuu.com>>

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