Advanced reporting and news design students working at the Columbia Missourian are required to purchase an online membership to the Missourian as part of the curriculum, according to a tipster who asked to remain anonymous.
On top of paying tuition (and journalism course fees) and giving the Missourian free labor, these journalism students also have to pay for access to the stories they slave over. Does anyone else feel like they are being nickel and dimed here? Oh, and let’s not forget that lovely MacBook “requirement.” The list goes on and on of expensive things you “need” for the J-School.
What’s more interesting is the fact that with the readership program on campus, students have access to the Missourian every weekday it’s printed. But with the new online paywall (you know, the one where you can get news for free for the first 24 hours, but then have to pay once that news has gone stale), it seems that it will be increasingly difficult to access stories from your own newspaper. That is, after they fix the paywall’s bugs.
As a student, you can get unlimited access online for $5.95 a month or pay $24 for the entire semester. With this new paywall, the Missourian also announced apps that can be downloaded for smartphones and iPads. Why can’t this be included in journalism course fees, or any other fee that these students pay for taking these classes? Shouldn’t they at least give their own reporters access to their own website?
The estimated cost for in-state students at the University of Missouri is approximately $22,296 each year, while the out-of-state cost is approximately $35,464 each year. Add some journalism course fees, an expensive laptop and any software or equipment you need for class, and you are looking at anywhere between $25,000 and $40,000 each year for a journalism education.
The least the J-School could do is let the students have free access to the newspaper that showcases their own work.