The Dartmouth's Exclusivity Policy Will Reduce the Quality of its Writing

by Alexander Nazaryan | 11/19/98 6:00am

To the Editor:

One of the foremost reasons I came to Dartmouth was the cornucopia of journalistic opportunities which it offered. There was The Daily Dartmouth, churning out issues since 1799. Then there's the Dartmouth Review, that enticing bastion of conservatism. And, of course, the hilarious the Jack O'Lantern. Needless to say, I became involved in all three.I was ecstatic when my first column was published in The D, a piece entitled "Students Should Stop Complaining" [Oct. 7]. Rejoicing at my early success, I decided to write my next column for The D about my experience with the Dartmouth Review and how I found its campus-wide image to be untrue. I sent the article to the Editorials Editor, hoping that she would swoon over my literary masterpiece. Instead, I got a less-than-thrilling blitz telling me that I could no longer write for The D. As you may know, The D does not allow its writers to be affiliated with any other publication, and since my article clearly tied me to the Dartmouth Review, I was flagrantly violating The D's policy.

I promised the Editorials Editor that I would discontinue my association with the Review. I lied and have continued to work for the Dartmouth Review. I simply used an alias in the Review masthead to cover my tracks. Obviously, that's over. I don't think that I should have to resort to such tactics, and if this means that I am henceforth banned from writing for The D, then so be it.

As Dan Powell pointed out in a letter to The D ["The Dartmouth's Exclusivity Policy Unfairly Excludes Valuable Contributors," Nov. 2], its policy of not letting its writers work for other publications is ludicrous. I know that the Review and The D are at odds, but this should have no bearing on my own status. I work for the Review because of political views I hold. I write for The D because I enjoy having my opinions read by a large portion of the campus. There should be no conflict between the two.

Imagine someone proclaiming that no Jews are allowed on a sports team, because historically, the best players in that sport haven't been Jews. This notion (and I am a Jew myself, so don't get offended) is as ridiculous as The D's policy. A newspaper should simply publish the best work available and not worry about what implications the author's other affiliations will have. I certainly see none.

By continuing to cling to its policy, The D will face a depleted talent pool. It cannot expect that everyone will choose The D over every other publication on campus. I know I won't.