Letters to the editor:
California Lutheran University
60 W. Olsen Rd. #3800
Thousand Oaks, California 91360
Please limit responses to 250-300 words.
Letters to the editor must include your name, year/position and major/department.
Newsroom: (805) 493-3465
Advertising: (805) 493-3865
Your Rights as an Interviewee
First, congratulations! A reporter has requested an interview with you! This means that your event, organization, etc. is getting covered, or it means that you have information that is critical to the public’s understanding or well being.
Below are some general tips for understanding how the interview process works.
During or before an interview, you have the right to:
- Request basic information about the reporter and the story. You have the right to know the reporter’s name and the media outlet for which they are writing. It is also a good idea to know deadline they are working under as well as the general gist of the news story they are writing. Most credible journalists will have no problem sharing this information.
- Determine whether you are being recorded. It is state law in California that both parties (source and reporter) consent to being recorded. Being recorded is for your protection. It helps the reporter quote you accurately and helps guarantee the correct information is published.
- Provide information at a later time. If you are not 100 percent sure of an answer, tell the reporter you would like to double-check your information and get back to them. They will appreciate the accuracy. You should do your best to reply in a timely manner because journalists today work under very tight deadlines.
Interviewees do not typically have the right to:
- Demand questions in advance. Journalists may share questions or the general point of the interview with you, but you cannot demand to know all of the content of the interview in advance.
- Review the story before it runs. This is known as “prior review” and it is a form of censorship. Occasionally a journalist will ask you to review quotes for accuracy, but consider this the exception to the rule.
- Request that a story be removed after publication. The Echo will not remove previously published information from its website unless there is a serious accuracy issue. Requests to “take down” content will not be honored merely because content/quotes that the source originally shared are later deemed embarrassing or cause discomfort.
Other things to know:
- You should assume that you are “on the record” as soon as the reporter has identified himself or herself as a journalist. By default, you are “on the record” and anything you can say can be attributed to you. If you want to provide information anonymously, this should be discussed in advance.
- Email interviews are also generally understood to be “on the record” unless you request that information not be used.
- California state law guarantees students at private universities the same freedom of speech as they would experience at a public school.
- People do not have a Constitutional right to privacy, and they have no “reasonable expectation of privacy” in public or at events that are open to the public. In general, a reporter/photojournalist does not need permission to record or take photos in that setting but may ask as a courtesy.
Making a Splash in Student Media
How to get your event/organization in The Echo
First, did you know that campus clubs and organizations can request free advertising in The Echo? You can!
Free ads are run when space permits, or you can guarantee your advertisement will run by purchasing an ad at a campus discount rate.
Find more info at: https://www.cluecho.com/advertising/.
Be sure to get your event listed in the HUB, this is where we pull our events from—our calendar runs in the features section every week.
The student editorial staff decides all coverage. You have no guarantee your event will be covered. Some things they consider are timing, level of student interest, the potential for photos, etc. So an event with 100 students that is very active is more likely to be covered than a club meeting with eight people where the students sit and talk.
Articles are typically PREVIEWS that run before an event happens to let the campus community members know what opportunities are available to them, or COVERAGE, meaning a reporter and/or photojournalist attends the event, interviews people who participate, and writes the article after it happens.
Things to Know
The Echo works very far in advance. Typically, student journalists are given their assignments on a Friday, they have a week to work on the article, and then the paper comes out the following Tuesday. So, make sure to give the editors plenty of notice about your event. See our publication schedule to plan ahead (you can find it on the advertising tab of our website).
The best way to contact an editor is via email. All editors’ email addresses are on The Echo website, or you can email email@example.com.
Help yourself by sharing our articles, etc. on your social media!
As a student newspaper, we are not marketing. We are not meant to be promotional. We cover the good, the bad and the ugly. So, if an ugly food fight breaks out at the etiquette dinner that you suggested we cover, that’s the story! (Besides, think of the photos!)