Saturday, February 28, 2009

Student Shennanigans

The Oxford student paper the Cherwell is in trouble again. I'm not sure why the local media is so interested in the student press, but I suppose it's always exciting when supposedly intelligent and well-educated middle-class students do something stupid or are in trouble. This time they've been forced to resign after a spoof copy of the paper was released with pornographic and racist images and comments. The website I read it on (as a cutting headline!) tells me that students' face were superimposed onto rather scandalous images and jokes were made about a busking bagpipe player (you know the one!).

This story shocks me in several ways. I'm not in the slightest bit surprised that students made a satirical paper. I'm not surprised that their company felt it best to chastise them, especially when it became public. What I am surprised about is that it's seen as something scandalous. Surely that's what students do; they do silly things, they joke around with their mates, and they're not afraid of being a bit non-PC. The other great surprise is that it came up on my search for Oxford news. Not university news, just general news for a city with lots going on. Surely a student prank should not take priority over more widespread news? Or has it really been such an uneventful week in Oxford?

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