Established 1874.

The Oberlin Review

Sensationalist Media Compromises Credibility for Click Bait

Editorial Board

September 22, 2017

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

In the past, the College has been a target for outside news sources that cherry-pick the Review’s pieces on topics ranging from the cultural appropriation of food in the dining halls to the contentious dismissal of former professor Joy Karega. Their goal is to malign the credibility of colleges like ours. Last week, The Washington Times marked another chapter in the on- going manipulation of our reporting by twisting our story on Chair of the Board of Trustees Chris Canavan’s email revealing the deficit and consequent declaration of financial cuts (“Enrollment Drop Creates Financial Shortfall,” Sept. 8, 2017) to argue that the College’s underenrollment results from a reputation fostered by its studen...

College Newspapers Best Illustrate Campus Life

Editorial Board

May 19, 2017

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Oberlin students are often presented as coddled, spoiled and so obsessed with political correctness that we have lost touch with reality, choosing to embrace a liberal utopia instead of facing the “real world.” If four years working at The Oberlin Review have taught us anything, it is that this portrayal could not be further from the truth. Stories like alleged cultural appropriation in dining halls have been lifted by national media outlets in a way that grossly misrepresents reality on campus. Major news organizations would have most believe that protests wildly erupted in food fights, with students quivering in dorm rooms for shelter. In reality, students were proactive. They identified a problem, initiated d...

Journalists Must Remain Adversarial

Editorial Board

February 3, 2017

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

“You’re not supposed to be sycophants,” Barack Obama told journalists in his final press conference as president. “You’re supposed to be skeptics; you’re supposed to ask me tough questions.” President Obama’s message could not be more timely for those covering President Trump’s administration, as now more than ever, journalists must remain vigilant in reporting on the facts — and no, not the alternative ones. With the day-to-day antics of the Trump administration — from perpetuating myths about the inauguration turnout to Kellyanne Conway’s ludicrous sound bites — it is pivotal that journalists commit themselves not only to producing holistic news stories, but to highlighting the stories that r...

Off the Cuff: Michele Norris, Author and Former NPR Host

Off the Cuff: Michele Norris, Author and Former NPR Host

September 16, 2016

Michele Norris is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning journalist who spent nine years as the host of All Things Considered, NPR’s longest-running program. After graduating from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Norris began working as a print journalist at the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times and The Washington Post. Norris then accepted a job at ABC News, where she worked for 10 years. Norris was NPR’s first African-American female host, and was awarded Journalist of the Year by...

Holistic Approach to Journalism Necessary for Campus Newspaper

Editorial Board

September 2, 2016

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Oberlin students likely spent the summer plagued by the question, “Is Oberlin really like that?” in reference to The New Yorker journalist Nathan Heller’s investigation of student activism on campus (“The Big Uneasy,” May 30, 2016). Though Heller faced backlash for supposedly favoring outspoken activists, the Review Editorial Board applauds the way he curated voices from all walks of life at Oberlin and allowed these accounts to drive the piece. Heller’s piece reflects what we hope to accomplish at the Review this year: to strive for a holistic narrative that gives agency to those involved in the story. Instead of reaching for an unachievable goal of pure objectivity, we want to let the voices of stude...

Off the Cuff: Joshua Pribanic, Journalist and Filmmaker

Off the Cuff: Joshua Pribanic, Journalist and Filmmaker

April 22, 2016

Joshua B. Pribanic is a photographer, investigative journalist, artist and filmmaker. He co-founded the Public Herald, an investigative journalism nonprofit, and co-directed the documentary Triple Divide. The film, which was screened last Wednesday as part of the Ecolympics series, covers the water contamination and health effects rural Pennsylvanians face as a result of fracking. Pribanic is currently the editor-in-chief of the Public Herald in Pittsburgh, PA. His work in investigative journali...

Columbia’s Review of Rolling Stone Article Promotes Questioning Survivors Beyond Comfort

Editorial Board

April 10, 2015

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Content Warning: This editorial contains discussion of sexual assault. Six months after the initial publication of Rolling Stone’s exposé “A Rape on Campus,” the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University released a 25-page review detailing the missteps Rolling Stone made in its account of an alleged sexual assault at the University of Virginia. Writer Sabrina Rubin Erdely, her editors and the alleged victim, known as Jackie, all came under fire when evidence surfaced that Jackie’s account was factually inconsistent. Columbia’s review described the story as a “journalistic failure” after The Washington Post published evidence that called the validity of Jackie’s story into question. Accord...

Exploring Nuances: A Column on Columns

CJ Blair, Columnist

March 6, 2015

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

When you sign on to write a weekly column for your college’s newspaper, it’s all but guaranteed that you’ll occasionally struggle to think of topics. When that happens, you can either sit out for a week, or you can write something no one would really expect, like a column about writing columns. That’s what I’ve done here. As I thought about writing this piece, I realized it didn’t have to be an inaccessible look at my writing process. I hadn’t really noticed along the way, but column-writing necessitates inductive reasoning and a search for new perspectives. This is essential to developing an influential voice and sense of self. I’m sure this sounds like a lofty skill to gain from a mere 700 words...

Williams Controversy Highlights Perils of Fame in Objective Journalism

Editorial Board

February 20, 2015

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Media lenses turned inward last week when NBC announced its Feb. 10 decision to suspend Nightly News anchor Brian Williams. Revelations that the Emmy Award–winning news personality had repeatedly misrepresented his experiences reporting on a 2003 Iraq War mission left the news network reeling, trying to assess damage done to the network’s credibility. Williams delivered an on-air apology on Feb. 4 for what he called a “mistake in recalling the events of 12 years ago,” but his words were quickly overshadowed by a media cycle determined to scrutinize stories from throughout the anchor’s Nightly News tenure. On the same day as the suspension, revered newsroom comedian Jon Stewart announced that he would be l...

On the Record: Tim Page, Acclaimed Music Critic and Visiting Scholar

February 13, 2015

Pulitzer Prize–winning music critic and editor Tim Page, the visiting scholar-in-residence for the spring semester, is teaching the Advanced Music Criticism class for both College and Conservatory students this semester. His musical background propelled him into a fruitful journalism career, writing for publications including The New York Times, The New Yorker and The Washington Post. Page sat down with the Review Wednesday afternoon to discuss his move to Oberlin, Bob Dylan and retro New York. ...

Rolling Stone Errors Highlight Poor Journalism, Perpetuate Rape Culture

Editorial Board

December 12, 2014

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Trigger Warning: This editorial contains discussion of sexualized violence.  After weeks of controversy over the veracity of a Rolling Stone article on rape at the University of Virginia, an anonymous source came forward on Tuesday claiming that the deputy managing editor of the magazine, Sean Woods, had offered his letter of resignation to Rolling Stone’s founder and publisher, Jann Wenner. The move follows a series of journalistic errors that has unnecessarily diverted media attention away from the realities of campus sexual assault. The article, “A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA” by Sabrina Rubin Erdely, told the story of a first-year, “Jackie,” who was gang raped b...

Representative Media Coverage Requires Voices of Citizen Journalists

Editorial Board

December 5, 2014

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Hours after a Staten Island grand jury announced Wednesday that a white NYPD officer would not be indicted in the death of Eric Garner, a black father of six who stopped breathing while held in a banned chokehold, The Huffington Post published a headline that stood out in the media frenzy: “A Grand Jury Did Indict One Person Involved In Eric Garner’s Killing — The Man Who Filmed It.” More surprising than the news of another non-indictment of a white police officer accused of killing an unarmed black man is the rarity of this type of media angle. In the cases of John Crawford in Beavercreek, Ohio, Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO, and now Eric Garner in New York City, corporate-backed national media outlets have...

Established 1874.