Editors-in-Chief Luke Chafer and Kimberley Mannion ponder the paper’s future as we mark our birthday.
The Glasgow Guardian has an illustrious history. October 10th marked 90 years to the day of the first iteration of the University paper in the form of the Gilmore Globe. Since then we have unfurled major investigations into the University, won numerous national awards and been a hotbed for future national newspaper editors such as Catherine Salmond or Andrew Neil to cut their teeth. Yet at this moment in time, we are unsure if we will make another 90.
Like businesses across the country the uncertainty surrounding the cost of living crisis is taking its toll. Print prices are rising to a price we estimate will mean a doubling in the space of a year. The issue is we aren’t a business. Our income comes exclusively from advertising, which for a paper you’d expect, but for a student paper perhaps not. The impact of the paper can’t be assessed by the profit loss equations of a business either; it is so much more.
The editors of the very first edition of the paper put it rather eloquently in their editorial “Power of the Press”. The piece was framed by the assertion that they “heartedly agree with the pointed diagnosis that the average individual is very easily impressed with the printed word”. The editors set out the guiding mission for what was then the Globe: “every year approximately 1,000 freshers [that may have changed slightly] wend their way to the University for the first time as students. The majority of them are young adults eager to prepare themselves for the economic struggle that awaits them in life. We believe there is a latent desire on the part of the student body to develop a true communal feeling. And that is the primary purpose of the Globe. They finish by saying “nothing can be accomplished, however, without the wholehearted support of the student body. The Globe believes in you and we are sure you won’t let us down”.
That guiding sentiment still rings true. Though since then the aims of The Glasgow Guardian have undoubtedly developed, we are unapologetically on the side of students. In recent years we have uncovered the University’s involvement in the arms trade, been at the forefront of the investigations into gender-based violence, and uncovered malpractice at the University GP.
The current situation marks a critical juncture for the paper. With the change in the economic climate and a continued lack of funding there is a grave danger that our history of printing papers could come to an end in its 90th year. The Glasgow Guardian has only stopped regular prints twice in its history during World War 2 and Covid-19, we can’t let our current financial obstacles become the third.
The University community is at the heart every editorial decision we make, without your support the paper is a frivolous endeavor. Our first issue this year was a resounding success with over 2000 copies picked up on campus and the team thanks you for the support. The Glasgow Guardian believes in you and we are sure you won’t let us down.