Once upon a time, I received a call from a very close friend regarding a meeting for the formation a of new organization.
When I got there, we were a small number of anxious, activist people at the verge of a new initiative, a student newspaper organization as the consolidated voice of the campus, which did not exist until then. This exciting idea triggered our commitment, as a great chance to get involved, observe, contact, express, act and change.
The challenges were multi-fold. In theory, the content was the easiest to compile, as everyone was willing to participate given the channel was available. At first glance, the funding required for the press was the biggest challenge as expected in a student project.
In order to reflect the spirit of a real newspaper, we decided to go for hard-copies. Sponsorships, advertisements were essentially required to gear everything up. The newspaper had to be free to claim the voice of a public university campus. The press, the distribution, the logistics…
Furthermore besides the technical difficulties, we agreed to direct this project to be officially recognized by the university. This required the participation of the official school delegation, which added a layer of complexity above all other difficulties.
Once we progressed, sleepless nights to compile the content, finish an initial layout prepared in MS Word (my signature 🙂 ), we understood that the situation is even harder than we thought it would be. Conflicts within the team making the decision making hard, low quality of the articles (as expected from amateur authors), the moderation of the school delegation created issues of even the non-technical aspects.
It took us one year to publish the first copy in Jan 2005. With time and with reputation the team converged to a productive state, where it started regenerate itself with members joining/leaving (such as myself 🙂 ).
The realization and continuity of such a large scale project is a huge success. Credits definitely has to be given to the initiator of the project, my friend Fatih Avci, who has been significantly involved with the project since the first day.
This project definitely contributed a lot to me. The surviving the initial dip with baby steps, coordination of team-work …
And I am glad that it became a tradition today and I’ve had my share in that.
Looking to the future, I truly believe that this act has to evolve to a form to benefit from the concept of social media. With the emerging era of e-collaboration, this effort can be brought to a completely new and unique level.