Newspaper Without Paper Delivers

Aug 15th, 2003 | By | Category: 15-1: Indigenizing Our Future, Tribal College News
By Michael Beaumont, Magpie reporter
LBC NEWSPAPER STAFF

MAGPIE MOB. Little Big Horn College students involved in the online newspaper include (seated in front) Michael Beaumont; (standing, from left) Samuel M. Bird In Ground, Joseph LaRance, Jackie Stewart, and Gayle Well Known; (in back) Timothy Crooked Arm. Photo by Carrie Moran McCleary

Students at Little Big Horn College in Crow Agency, MT, have collaborated with Reznet to create and publish The Magpie, an online student newspaper of the Crow tribal college. The Magpie signals a new direction for Reznet, an online newspaper that publishes daily stories and photos of 20 paid Native American college students around the country.

Reznet will help other tribal colleges start online school newspapers, project director Denny McAuliffe said. “Reznet will create, operate, and publish the tribal college newspapers on its website and provide the newspaper staff with a digital camera for photos. Reservation high schools, or those with large enrollments of Native Americans, also are invited to publish their online newspapers on Reznet,” McAuliffe added.

“Schools don’t need printed newspapers to launch on-line versions,” Denny said. “In fact, most of the tribal colleges do not have newspapers. The Magpie is the first school newspaper at Little Big Horn College in about four years.” The Magpie, named by the students, serves the college and the local community, exposes students to the possibilities of a journalism career, and avoids prohibitive printing and distribution costs, a primary reason why most tribal colleges do not have school newspapers.

Tribal colleges’ lack of school newspapers and journalism classes is a reason often cited by McAuliffe for the lack of Native American journalists. According to the annual census of daily newspapers by the American Society of Newspaper Editors, there are only about 300 Native journalists out of more than 56,000 editors, reporters, photographers, and designers. McAuliffe at the University of Montana School of Journalism in Missoula edits Reznet, and the website is housed and maintained at the Robert C. Maynard Institute for Journalism Education in Oakland, CA. The reznet project is funded by a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

The Magpie can be viewed at www.reznetnews.org/projects/magpie. For further information, call Denny McAuliffe at (406) 243-2191 or email dmcauliffe@reznetnews.org.

Article and photo courtesy of Reznet, www.reznetnews.org.

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