Administrative policy regarding student media policy committee
(A) Basic statement.
(1) The student media should be free of censorship and prior restraint of copy.
(2) Editors and managers should subscribe to canons of responsible journalism, as stated in the “Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics,” and be free to develop their own editorial and program policies. In so doing they should be protected from arbitrary suspension and removal. Once appointed, editors and managers may only be removed through a procedure providing appropriate due process.
(3) The student media policy committee (SMPC) ("student" modified "media") has been established as a standing university committee. The committee serves as the institutional publisher or de facto licensee and acts in all matters pertaining to those media which are written or broadcast primarily by students and financed primarily by university-sanctioned student fees, with the exception of “The Daily Kent Stater,” “The Summer Stater,” “The Burr,” TV2 and WKSR. It has no jurisdiction over official university, administrative, or departmental publications or broadcasts no matter how authored.
(B) Membership of student media policy committee.
(1) Three faculty members appointed by the faculty senate.
(2) The director of the school of journalism and mass communication.
(3) The director of the center for student involvement.
(4) Five students: three appointed by undergraduate student government, and two appointed by graduate student senate. The student appointees may not serve concurrently as an undergraduate student senator, nor as a member of the graduate student senate executive board.
(5) Members of the committee may not serve concurrently as policy making staff members or advisors of any media funded by SMPC.
(6) Alternate members. The committee will ask each appointing body to appoint one alternate to the committee. Alternate members will be expected to attend all committee meetings, but will vote only when serving for a regular appointee. In the event of a regular appointee resignation, the alternate will automatically become a regular member, and the appointing body will be asked to appoint another alternate.
(7) In the event that either the director of the school of journalism and mass communication or the director of the center for student involvement is unable to attend the committee meeting, an attempt will be made to send a designee. Said designee will be fully briefed about any discussion topics and will vote in place of the director he or she is representing.
(8) The director of student media will serve as a non-voting member.
(C) Term of office.
(1) Faculty. The term of the office for each faculty member is determined according to the appointment schedule utilized by the faculty senate. Each faculty appointee serves on a schedule that begins on September fifteenth and ends on September fourteenth.
(2) Students. The term of office for each student appointee begins after appointment on September fifteenth and continues through until new appointments are made on the following September fifteenth.
(3) All committee members serve until their term expires or a replacement member is appointed.
(D) Committee procedures.
(1) The director of the center for student involvement will serve as the convener and chairperson until the committee elects a chairperson from among the membership. Such election shall occur during the fall semester and the chairperson shall serve until the election of a new chair whose election will be held during the following fall semester. In the event the elected chairperson is unable to serve a full term, the director of the center for student involvement will assume the chairperson's responsibilities until the next election.
(2) The director of the center for student involvement will provide administrative support to the committee.
(3) All regular members, including the chairperson, shall retain the privilege of voting on all matters. The student media serves in a liaison capacity and has no vote as a non-voting member.
(4) Notice of the meetings will be given to the committee, to media organizations funded by the committee, and to the advisors to those media organizations.
(5) Meetings shall be open to the public.
(6) While not a public body, this committee will conduct its meetings in a manner consistent with the Ohio Open Meetings Law, section 121.22 of the Revised Code. After a majority vote of quorum, by roll call, the committee may hold an executive session for the following purposes:
(a) To consider the appointment, employment, dismissal, discipline, promotion, demotion, or compensation of a university employee or official, or the investigation of charges or complaints against a university employee, official, licensee, or regulated individual unless the university employee, licensee, or regulated individual requests a public hearing;
(b) To consider the purchase of public property for public purposes, or for the sale of property at competitive bidding, if premature disclosure of the information would give an unfair competitive or bargaining advantage to a person whose personal, private interest is adverse to the general public interest;
(c) Conferences with an attorney for the committee that are the subject of pending or imminent court action;
(d) Preparing for, conducting, or reviewing negotiations or bargaining sessions with university employees concerning their compensation or other terms and conditions of their employment;
(e) Matters required to be kept confidential by federal law or rules or state statutes (see for example, rule 3342-5-08.101 of the Administrative Code and this register, concerning the collection, retention and dissemination of information about students);
(f) At the request or direction of the provost to discuss matters deemed confidential.
(7) A resolution, rule, or formal action of any kind is invalid unless adopted in an open meeting of the committee.
(8) Meetings will be held regularly throughout the academic year, and as needed during the summer sessions.
(9) Special meetings may be called by either the chairperson or upon the request of two or more committee members.
(10) A quorum shall consist of six members. In the case of vacancies, this number shall be reduced by the number of vacancies to a minimum of four.
(11) All official transactions shall be recorded and forwarded to committee members, the editors or managers and advisors of media organizations and to the vice president for enrollment management and student affairs.
(12) In the event that a meeting cannot be convened, the convener and chairperson, in consultation with the director of the school of journalism and mass communication, will act on behalf of the committee.
(E) Committee charge.
(1) The student media policy committee serves as the institutional publisher or de facto licensee for all student media with the exception of The Daily Kent Stater, The Summer Stater, The Burr, TV2 and WKSR. The committee requires that each media organization establish a standard operating procedure when it requests funds, and thereafter to be reviewed and resubmitted by each funded medium every fall semester. The format of these procedures will be provided to each media organization.
(2) The SMPC establishes criteria and guidelines for the appointment of the staffs of the various media organizations with the exception of The Daily Kent Stater, The Summer Stater, The Burr, TV2 and WKSR.
(3) The SMPC establishes criteria and guidelines for the allocation of student activity fee designated for student media.
(4) The SMPC will not assume responsibility for student media publications or programs which it does not fund.
(5) The SMPC reports to the vice president for enrollment management and student affairs.
(F) Specific responsibilities.
(1) The SMPC delegates its responsibilities for the day-to-day editorial operations of the media to the editors and managers of these media organizations. The advisors serve as liaisons with the committee as necessary and:
(a) The advisor will function as the organization's chief administrative officer.
(b) The duties, responsibilities and functions of the advisor will be those normally associated with the office of the publisher's or licensee's representative or general manager.
(c) The advisor's role as consultant shall extend to all operations of the media organization.
(d) The advisor shall function as a teacher, using the editorial, business and advertising operations to demonstrate responsible and enlightened journalism.
(e) The advisor shall assist the editorial staff in planning and executing each issue, or supervising the programming of the operation, whichever may be applicable.
(f) The advisor will assist the editor or manager in staffing the other positions of the organization.
(g) The advisor will assist the director of student media and the student business manager of the organization in staffing all the advertising operations of the media organization.
(2) The SMPC delegates the responsibility for day-to-day business management of the media organizations funded by the student activity fee to the director of student media who serves as a nonvoting member of the committee. The director of student media, who reports to the director of the school of journalism and mass communication, administers university policy related to the business affairs of student media and advises the media regarding those policies. In addition, he/she: assesses long-term and short-term options for capital expenditures and investments related to quality and efficiency of operations; supervises full-time and part-time student media employees; oversees the generation and collection of income from all sources for advertising and related services provided by the student media; coordinates preparation of annual budgets and makes recommendations to the appropriate committee for each funded medium; coordinates and signs all contracts between outside vendors and student media; approves all expenditures and signs financial transactions relating to the media; and provides counsel and assistance to the student business managers and advertising managers. SMPC must approve any change in director of student media position description.
(3) The SMPC requires that each funded media organization, with the exception of “The Daily Kent Stater,” “The Summer Stater,” “The Burr,” TV-2 and WKSR, seek its own advisors. The advisors of The Daily Kent Stater, The Summer Stater, The Burr, TV2, and WKSR shall be appointed by the director of the school of journalism and mass communication.
(4) The SMPC recommends policies and establishes procedures to insure consistent handling of media-related matters. These include, but are not limited to:
(a) Administrative policy and procedure regarding student media policy committee.
(b) Guidelines for the allocation and use of student media activities fees.
(c) Appeal process regarding annual allocations.
(d) SMPC advertising procedures.
(e) SMPC grievance procedures.
(f) Basic information - standard operating procedure.
(5) The SMPC requires media organizations seeking funding to do so in accordance with established guidelines. The SMPC makes recommendations relative to requested funding for all student media organizations funded by the student activity fee. These funding recommendations are forwarded to the vice president for enrollment management and student affairs for approval. The vice president for enrollment management and student affairs forwards the allocation package to the provost for final approval.
(6) In addition, for the daily Kent Stater, the Summer Stater, The Burr, TV2 and WKSR, a second funding recommendation is forwarded to the provost from the director of the school of journalism and mass communication. Both sets of recommendations are based upon budgets reviewed by the journalism and mass communication media board. The provost and vice president for enrollment management and student affairs will resolve any discrepancies between these two budget recommendations and will make the final budget decision.
(7) The decision of the provost and the vice president for enrollment management and student affairs on all student media budgets will be final.
(8) The SMPC establishes the selection procedures and makes final decisions regarding the appointment of the editor or manager and business/advertising manager for each media organization with the exception of The Daily Kent Stater, The Summer Stater, The Burr, TV2 and WKSR whose editors and business managers are appointed by the journalism and mass communication media board.
(9) The SMPC must approve requests from currently funded media organizations for any change in format or budget. Such requests must be presented in writing to the director of student media. He or she may approve such requests as are within the parameters described within this rule, the guidelines for the allocations and the use of student media activity fees, and his/her position description. The director of student media, will present any request beyond his/her purview to SMPC with a recommendation for SMPC action.
(10) The SMPC operates in accordance with these policies and procedures, and if not clearly specified above, reserves the right to decide non-editorial issues relating to funded media organizations, within the parameters of university policies and procedures.
Effective: August 25, 2014
Prior Effective Dates: 10/23/1989, 7/20/1990, 9/17/1993, 9/5/1995, 5/26/1997, 3/7/2000, 6/1/2007