The work of an editor.

I have found myself Googling the role of an editor more frequently than I used to.So much so Google has it saved in its history.

I have read the definition so many times it is ingrained in my memory. It places itself so calmly and so abruptly on my screen that I can’t ignore it. And I become both disappointed and ashamed.


‘A person who is in charge of and determines the final content of a newspaper, magazine, or multi-author book’.

A person who has the ability to change writing without asking. They are able to change your notions and your ideas without a thought to the consequences.

But recently my own editor has gone a step to far. They have undermined my writing and the seriousness of my pieces. They have reduced my writing to a mere joke.

Edits on minuscule topics I could handle. Those articles that don’t really mean anything that are just fads to get views; I can handle them changing those. But when they change a piece to undermine and disrespect the community I have written about, that is when I become ashamed to have chosen to write for such a place.

But then I suppose that the trials of a student tabloid.

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7 thoughts on “The work of an editor.

  1. You’ve made the right call if this is you quitting the tab. You should call her out publicly and explicitly. She’s gotten away with multiple pieces of plagiarism, most notably the express article she published word for word on the fifth. Let people know why gu’s tab is hellish and stop more young journalists getting involved in what will inevitably be a black spot on their CV. The Glasgow guardian, as much as their quality is declining, would eat a piece like that up.

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    1. Although my feelings towards it on this occasion were strong “I must albeit disagree” on quitting. Funnily enough the subject of this article wasn’t on Jenna’s head (it was on a higher authority), and she was the person to rectify my original post to its “almost former glory”.

      In regards to Glasgow Guardian I feel they are much worse. Having been asked to write a piece for them, their editor got back to me with changes to content the night before the deadline and then decided to cut the article a week later due to “a difference in style” which they could have pointed out if they had read the article properly the first time…Anyway different problem, but my point being both publications have their downfalls, I suppose some more than others.

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      1. I agree that Glasgow Guardian can be bad but frankly, if you’re writing for a paper your style needs to be consistent with whatever else is being published. Editors are busy and what they say goes, that’s just how this industry works/how it should work. The GG at least reads like an actual publication. The Tab has no journalistic standards. It constantly publishes glorified pr releases for businesses in exchange for free meals and party invites or, in the case of their recent article on the anti-choice group, just because it’s on the newswire. The tab regularly allows plagiarism to go unpunished, has no consistently followed style guide and actively encourages writers to just take quotes from other publications instead of actually doing work, even for local stories. The Tab paints itself as a student tabloid yet seems to have no idea who it’s target audience is, regularly publishing stories that are already widely reported, often taken close to word for word from other publications, despite the fact that no one is reading the tab for hard news that doesn’t involve the university. If you want to be a journalist, if you want to become a better writer, if you want to improve your skills instead allowing them to stagnate you need to quit the tab and find an alternative. The Tab will actively discourage you from experiencing real journalism, the word is censored in their comments section for christ sake. Not only will they not allow your skills to improve, by encouraging you to write awful articles they will mark your cv. Employers, outside of the worst tabloids, are not interested in Tab writers. You’re better off than anyone who was involved last year, mind. At least you’re not associated with apologising for GUCFS’s massive overspending.

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        1. You make a fair argument and I understand where you’re coming from in terms of The Tab. They do cover news stories already written about, but so do other newspapers. Before I write any of the ‘actual news stories’, I always research it and multiple times I’ve seen the same quotes and information from ‘big-named’ publications. It seems that in some respect they all plagiarise. I personally try to stay clear but I know others tend to quote.
          The Tab being a student audience I suppose they find that students will more likely read student tabloids rather than ‘The Evening News’ etc. Although I prefer to find hard news in actual newspaper I suppose in some cases their ideas is true.
          In regards to GG, I understand your point on style, I get that editors have a life but at the same time i still think it’s a poorly run establishment. I suppose that’s the problem with nearly all student-led publications. I tried GG but I couldn’t gain any interest in the articles ideas they were giving so it didn’t work out. I found The Tab and while I probably won’t write on it forever, I suppose at this current moment it’s giving me some experience in to what works and what doesn’t.

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  2. I’m so sorry your editor has done this to your writing. The newspaper I write for shares content with a larger, regional paper that has “trimmed” my stories and created inaccuracies in good reporting. I have gotten calls and emails about offensive phrasing in “my” articles that I never would have written. So I feel your frustration. Luckily I have a local editor on my side… hope you too have an ally who can help defend your craft until you find the next stepping stone in your career!

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    1. Thank-you, I hope I can too! I suppose it is experience until something comes along. Although it is very frustrating as my work gets penalised for it, especially as the flow doesn’t work anymore or for any mistakes in grammar/spelling which are not my fault. Once it gets published I have no say and have to roll with it.

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