Support independent, student-run journalism.

Your support helps give staff members from all backgrounds the opportunity to conduct meaningful reporting on important issues at Stanford. All contributions are tax-deductible.

Letter from the Editor: Story on list of courses

While you're here...

We're a student-run organization committed to providing hands-on experience in journalism, digital media and business for the next generation of reporters.
Your support makes a difference in helping give staff members from all backgrounds the opportunity to develop important professional skills and conduct meaningful reporting. All contributions are tax-deductible.

67 thoughts on “Letter from the Editor: Story on list of courses

  1. Is it right to destroy the reputation of a group as a whole without knowing the whole truth, or even worse, they know the truth but bend it a little to sensationalize their own work? I wonder if these people realize how much power they have over people’s lives when they write for newspapers. Afterall, many people believe what they read in papers. In order to get a degree in Journalism, the first thing they should have learned was to use that power wisely!!! Shame on them!!!

  2. Sad pathetic joke for a newspaper, sad pathetic joke for editor-in-chief, sad pathetic joke of “investigate journalism” class. The writers, the Daily, Zach, California Watch, etc.. should never be trusted with anything at this point. Boycott them and everything they do in the future, don’t let them interview you, make sure every article they ever write is scrutinized to the bare bones, it is likely complete garbage.

  3. It’s a joke that the Daily does not feel compelled to retract the article after the ridiculously inaccurate and illegally obtained quotes upon which it’s argument was framed.

  4. I thought the point of any and all investigations was to get all sides of the story and report on them equally…’editor’. It’s a good that you stressed your independence from Stanford, because I highly doubt the school would want anything to do with an organization that lacks as much integrity, class, and professionalism as The Daily does.

  5. This whole “list” drama has diminished the little credibility the daily had amongst Stanford students. Sure, we didn’t expect it to be extremely professional – these are students who are as busy as anyone else. But really, how flaky can you be? You publish an article in the front page of your newspaper 1) without checking your facts (the evidence document says “Interesting courses” and as they are separated by time, any reasonable person would infer that it’s also meant as a scheduling tool) 2) without getting different viewpoints 3) without maintaining the integrity of your sources (as several sources have come out and said) & 4) without considering the potential consequences.

    And I am even more outraged by this editorial. You say that the intent of the article was to show that that extra help was given to a group of stanford students. That the advice, or “list”, is a resource available to people visiting the ARC. I do not see how that list is any preferential treatment as the article implies (even if it did list only “easy courses”, which is does not). firstly, something similar is done by almost every department. Freshman year, every department gives you a list of interesting courses that you might want to take. If someone goes to their advisor and talks about what they want to do, s/he will likely give a list of classes (easy, hard, interesting, challenging, or 1-unit fun). This is called making students’ lives less stressful. And if that student happens to be an athlete, or an engineering physics major, or both, so what? More to the point, almost everyone has special advising – we have pre-major advisors, honors thesis advisors, pre-med advisors, major advisors, pre-law advisors, dorm or residential advisors, peer advisors, advisors for first generation students, phD advisors, advisors for social service, career advisors, and advisors that help you take the right writing classes, or math classes. we even have people giving us advice for entrepreneurship or financial literacy! Stanford has advising in place for almost every student, and perhaps most of these advisors help only a segment of the student population. They also might have a list of “Interesting courses”, “Required courses” or “Recommended courses”. Perhaps the daily wants to go through every special advising group and analyze the advising and the “special resources”? The Math department has a file in their front lobby containing job openings and research positions – this must be preferential treatment because mostly only Math majors visit that building. The Human Biology department probably has a pre-med advisor. That must be preferential treatment because the office is in a dark corner and doesn’t get enough sunlight. The engineering frat may decide to tutor engineering students in MATH 51, hence increasing the GPA of engineering students. They also might have a common “list of courses”. Now I expect the editor of the daily to go through all the lists and advisors to figure out which lists might be perceived by a particular segment of students to be “easy”, and why that partial list keeps circulating. Please don’t let me down.

    I almost never comment, but what drove me to rant here was how the editor now wants to distance himself. The article was printed in the space he is responsible for. It isn’t an opinion piece or an op-ed, and the daily, as he said, is an independent publication. Yes, that piece wasn’t your finest hour, and your personal social life may have been greatly damaged. But, dodging this one is not going to help.

  6. That’s exactly the point. I am sure most if not all students get a preferential treatment (you call that individual attention) at Stanford. I am also pretty sure if any of the non athletes took few easy courses, nobody would blink an eye. If the concert band members got a list of courses they could take, ESPN could care less. But somehow, many people think athletes have too many perks and have it easy. The truth is very few of them can turn pro when they graduate and they know they have to study hard if they want to find jobs or get into graduate schools upon graduation. But then again, maybe the Daily knows some companies who will offer jobs to these athletes regardless of what they can do. How about doing an investigative report on that Daily?

  7. Are you going to investigate:
    1. Allegations that interviewees were
    a. lied to about the purpose of the article (for a class, nor for publication)
    b. illegally tape-recorded
    c. misquoted
    2. the ‘reported’ facts, such as the classes on the list are full of athletes
    e. Prof Ridgeway’s statement of meeting “displeasure” by the Athletic dept when she failed a student (now, that would be a more interesting story)
    f. whether these really are easy classes (apparently the sociology one isn’t — at least not for athletes)

    Please report back. It’ll be an even bigger story if investigative reporters-to-be learn, or are taught, how to behave illegally and unethically.

  8. This is a serious issue of withholding information from the general Stanford population and there are many more like it. Can you please investigate special privileges given to Asian students at A3C? They have their own library, I hear, and if I were to walk in and ask to borrow a book, they would ask me what I was doing there because I’m not Asian. I have heard similar complaints from men who feel they cannot access the ample resources for women at the Women’s Community Center — especially now that Kappa Sig has lost its housing. And I’m still upset that the SHPRC only provides free resources to people who are sexually promiscuous. Am I supposed to save these 12 condoms for my honeymoon?

  9. This is the problem with journalism: you “reporters” just want to write something that causes drama.

  10. Accept reality:

    College athletics is about marketing and fundraising for the university with collateral benefits to such things as diversity quotas and legacy admits. There is no “student-athlete” anymore.

    Do you have an entire bureaucracy that coddles you and services your needs and makes your life easier? No, because you do not produce like the athletes do. Perhaps you are the sucker, because they are getting the same diploma you are, when you know that’s bullsh!t. Perhaps you are the one who bought in and now are left hoping for the deferred gratification that your hard work will pay off in a corrupt system, after you graduate from a university whose priorities have little to do with you.

    The same system is in place at every “good” school.

  11. And in light of my comment above, there is no need for the Daily to apologize to anyone for publishing that article. All that happened is that you shook some people out of their self-deluding bs and wilfull ignorance, and that, my friend, is not a crime but an obligation and more importantly a joy in itself.

  12. Wakeup call for lotusland — clearly you didn’t go to Stanford if you think that (and write like that). I don’t feel suckered when I see, for example, Professor Bill Durham lecturing in an Anthro classroom. He rowed varsity crew for Stanford. The only time I feel like a sucker is when I see my 3.5 GPA next to my friend’s 4.3. I’m not a varsity athlete. My friend was a two-sport athlete and an Academic All-American and is now in medical school, like a boss.

  13. One of your contemporaries best refuted your ludicrous cherry-picking and perpetuation of self-delusion as follows:

    “I posit that if Stanford didn’t push an unrealistic idea of flawlessness, it is likely that this story doesn’t come to pass.”

  14. It is not that Stanford pushes for an Unrealistic idea of flawlessness but they want their students to try for greatness(nothing wrong with that). The way you write and talk about other people, I can tell you think you are perfect and better than others even though you criticize your university(that is if you are a Stanford student) for pushing the idea of flawlessness. We are all aware people who are really into themselves or not happy with themselves usually do not or refuse to appreciate the work done by others.

  15. Wakeup call for lotusland: What does that even mean? Perhaps you should aspire to flawlessness in English grammar so that people might understand and respect you someday.

  16. Irony– easy courses are available for allStanford students not just athletes. A 1600 SAAT kid could if he or she chose, breeze through to a degree even taking lots of easy classes, “micks” or mickey mouse courses as they once were known

Comments are closed.