Thursday, May 03, 2007

Gown Hardcopy Issue comes out of hibernation...

Its here - Pick up a FREE copy, have a read, let us know what you think!

To think some actually doubted us...

(Available at various locations around the Union, the libraries, Elms, etc)

24 Comments:

Blogger Gown Team said...

Before anyone else gets the chance to point it out, we are aware of two minor errors in the lead story. Apologies, we were working to a tight deadline and missed these - our proof-reading skills will develop over time I'm sure!

5/03/2007 6:11 pm  
Blogger David said...

An enjoyable read good to see the newspaper out again.

5/03/2007 6:51 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where can you pick up a copy?

5/03/2007 7:44 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would not wipe my bum on it. The text is awful, stories are poor and goodnes knows where they have began to get some of their information from

5/04/2007 10:21 am  
Blogger Gown Team said...

Thankyou for your constructive criticism anonymous no 2 - why don't you join us next year and show us how to produce an issue worthy of toilet paper status?

5/04/2007 10:33 am  
Anonymous Ciarnán Helferty said...

lol... the gown has developed a sense of humour...great stuff

5/04/2007 10:36 am  
Blogger Andrew Charles said...

Gd stuff...well done guys!

5/04/2007 12:34 pm  
Anonymous kie said...

Speaking of a sense of humour Ciarnan, why don't you get one too - and a life while you're at it. Trace this IP address if you can, i thought u boys in Amnesty were against that sort of thing!!!!!!

5/04/2007 2:38 pm  
Blogger Bolster said...

For A First year student, i've never heard of the Gown, but I'm glad I've bin letter bombed. Thank goodness for alternative media sources....


Could be a bit thicker tho :P

5/04/2007 2:57 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congradulations guys - good stuff. Nice to see you've kept the papers sarky, irreverant stance of previous years. Particularly liked the Arnie quote, Hood and Neo articles. And yes, I'm sure you're proof-reading skills will develop over time! Now you're up and running again, what's happening next year?

5/04/2007 5:49 pm  
Blogger Gown Team said...

Thanks for the feedback - this issue was really of matter of re-introducing (and in some cases introducing) people to the paper. Next year we plan to get more people involved and will aim towards a thicker issue. Time constraints kept us to 8 pages but we hope to expand from September - anyone interested drop us an e-mail!

5/04/2007 7:32 pm  
Anonymous Charlie said...

If it's help you're looking for then I'm sure Ciarnan would be more than interested since he wants to help everyone and everything!!

5/04/2007 7:40 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I notice that a former Gown editor - Andrew David Charles - is standing for election in the union.

On his election posters it suggests we look at his blogsite. From his blog it appears that he runs 2 other blogs (in addition to his election blog). From one of these I found a link to the 'Ulster Society' of which Mr. Charles is Vice-President.

The link is here: http://quis.qub.ac.uk/ulster/

Now, the Gown - in my opinion - is a valuable paper. It performs tasks others don't. Indeed, I've posted that on this very blog previously. However, I find it worrying that Mr. Charles is vice-president of what looks to be a rather - to put it politely - 'contentious' organisation, whilst just one year previously he was editor of a 'neutral' cross-communal paper.

And here's the killer.

Turns out that all Mr. Charles running mates for the upcoming election also come from the 'Ulster Society', whilst I notice - from this very board -that some of those on the 'Ulster Society's' homepage have also been rather vocal in attacking the 'Gown' recently.

This begs the question; was Mr. Charles simply associated with the 'Gown' in order to protect other members of the 'Ulster Society' from being investigated by the said paper in previous years? Now that his association has finished, have his colleges turned on the paper? Even more worrying however, does the Gown support Mr. Charles's election campaign?

Perhaps, Gown, you'd like to explain your links with 'a campaign for a better union'?

5/05/2007 12:11 pm  
Blogger Gown Team said...

Andrew Charles was Co-Editor of the paper last year. Since then two new editors have taken over. The Gown remains as you term it a 'neutral cross-communal paper'. We do not support any of the candidates in the elections - we have no links with a campaign for a better union nor have we implied it at any stage on this blog or in the new issue. I hope this satisfies your queries.

5/05/2007 3:03 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of affiliation of memberships how come Dermott Keenans election posters are allowed to have Shinn Fein on them all be it spelt differently, it implies the same thing, how is it allowed when he is so blatently labelling himself to a political party! and someone is worried about Andrew Charles associations!

5/05/2007 3:33 pm  
Blogger Andrew Charles said...

I acknowledge the anonymous posters intent to 'disgrace' my name and indeed the good name of 'the Gown' - a trick that is indeed not new within the realm of the Students' Union in the criticism of this independent publication. Its just a pity they refused to 'hide' behind an anonymous name.

Should the anonymous poster wish to discuss my affiliations please feel free to contact me and I'll be happy to discuss any concerns that he/she may have. (He/she can contact me through my website - you know the address(es))

My candidacy under the 'Campaign for a Better Union' has nothing whats so ever to do with 'the Gown' which is an independent publication of the Union and University.

I think that this is clearly reflected in their election coverage.

If I may bring the anonymous poster back to the topic of the thread. Once again I congratulate Aine and Niall on getting a paper issue out and for their persistance and determination. You stuck in there when the going got tough. Well done!

I also hope that you enjoy what you do as much as I did when I worked for the paper. Hopefully you can look to next year with having a computer and indeed a nice new room!

Best wishes,

Andrew

5/05/2007 10:58 pm  
Anonymous Yoshimi said...

Good to see a hard copy of the gown again.
There's alot of Helferty bashing going on on this blogspot.,,, hell knows this "sandal wearing leftie" (recent quote from Dr Martins wearing Righties in the union) is a bit of a pain in the arse, he does however get things done and has students intrests at heart.

Not that i would ever be so bold as to draw a comparisson between this approach and the pointless bigoted politics that so often floods SC minutes.

i was just wondering if anyone had any ideas on how the student council could FOR ONCE engage the student community next year?

--- what about an end to silly bickering? and possibly taking a serious united approach to student politics so we can at least claw back some power, instead of being nothing more than a talking shop that has as much influence on opinion as (pardon the lack of a better simile here) MY ORSE

5/06/2007 10:23 pm  
Anonymous carol said...

Hey.
It's my 2nd year in queens and for all that I've heard about it I only got my hands on a copy of our infamous paper 'The Gown' on Friday when I saw a few scattered around the Heaney. I know I'll offend people but my god... I was disappointed. It wasnt even an 8 page paper. (A page-long ad on pg 5!)
Starting with a reasonably interesting 'breaking story' on the evils of Caterpillar Inc. Reasonable but only appealing to our political students.
The long, 'dramatic' story on 'Computer chaos' took up the editorial also. News on elections THAT HAPPENED IN MARCH!!! News from the freshers bazaar- an 8 month old event!!
'A History Lesson' (pg 4)- good!
Sport and the Hood- excellent.

I understand the numerous difficulties you guys are facing and I applaud you for the determination that is evidently keeping the Gown running.
However I don't feel the paper is addressing the needs of the Queen's students.
Now I know there isn't a scandal to report every semester but I think you are underestimating how many students are reading this paper!!! [Nod to whoever is running around distributing them! :)]
I also understand that it's hard to get involvement from different kinds of students to promote different views but start small. Try to get a few students from different faculties to report things relevant to a broader student body.
I know it's all easier said than done but by god, I'LL write an article if it can give us a bit of diversity from regurgitated northern ireland political stories!!!
It's an independent paper. Lets make it controversial!!!! Get more opinions!!! Get some music, film and fashion news. Surely there are students in these areas who would want the prestige of writing for the gown?!!!!

I'm not saying it's a bad paper, just that we (the wonderful Queens students that we are) can do so much better!!!!

5/07/2007 3:22 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great to see the Gown back on its feet!! Enjoyed the read!

5/07/2007 4:45 pm  
Blogger Gown Team said...

Carol,

Your comments are very much appreciated. Its good to see a student willing to offer suggestions rather than just criticise.

It may seem like we're making excuses but the computer issues really did threaten to put an end to The Gown so we thought it deserved the space it got in the paper.

The Fresher's Bazaar article was placed next to the piece on the current state of Northern Ireland politics to convey the changes which have taken place in the past 9 months - old news was actually still very relevant.

As for the 'page-long ad', as an independent paper we have to get money from somewhere and due to the time limit we had to go for one large ad rather than numerous small ones.

As I've stated before this issue was really about proving The Gown was still in existence (although we felt happy with the content), and we basically had to get articles together and have the paper printed in 3 weeks. Next year we will most certainly build on the success we've had this year by expanding our team as well as the publication.

Feel free to get involved next year!

5/08/2007 3:23 pm  
Blogger QR News Team said...

Good to see the gown back, though if was a bit light on the old pages

all the best, i know its been a hard year for you.

keith

5/09/2007 2:52 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am with Carol on this one...

Good to see the Gown published and fair play to the team for taking their own time to enhance the student experience for us all...

But, the content did not exactly have students striving to grab a copy. Some of the news was old (no excuses, no other paper would do it) and some stories irrelevant (padding out is accepted, but not to such a degree). The published paper was a (limited) success for the 'publishing' team at The Gown, but it was certainly not a success for the 'editorial' team.

Where is all that talent within the student body? What is the Gown doing to reach out to these budding journalists? What is it doing to reach out to the marketing and business students (talent it needs as a publication)? Now is the time for it to publicly lay out its strategy for next year…

Like so many other Queens Clubs and Societies, its seems that the people in The Gown are getting roles based on popularity 'within' or excitement for the job; And not necessary those best suited with the talents and skills required!

McK

5/23/2007 12:52 am  
Blogger Gown Team said...

Anonymous,

I would ask you to give us an example of an irrelevant story in the issue. You'll be hard-pushed to name one.

The 'publishing' and 'editorial' teams were the same, on that note you can decide if we were a success or failure...

As for reaching out to talent at Queen's, we have an ad in the paper, have appealed for wannabe journos on this blog, will be present at the Fresher's Bazaar...perhaps you'd be interested in joining, that is if you have the 'talents and skills required'.

Its quite amusing that you assume we have popularity 'within' - if you're referring to the Union, we've never been popular and, with the nature of The Gown and all it stands for that will probably never change.

Publicly lay out our strategy? Why should we do such a thing? Since when has the official Union paper ever laid out it's strategy? Bearing in mind it's accountability to Queen's students being the recipient of substantial Union funding.

By 'excitement' I assume you mean enthusiasm - yes, we have enthusiasm, and lots of it. This is the main reason the issue was produced at all this year...its also the main reason most clubs and societies continue to be successful from one year to the next. Don't underestimate it - but we are also pretty confident we have the aforementioned skills as well, again I extend an invitation to you to join us in September to produce a few issues students strive to grab...

5/23/2007 3:44 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gown Team,

I am sorry if what I had said offended you. I appreciate you have put in a lot of work and got involved more than most other students at his university and for that, we (the general student body) are grateful. However maybe the annoyance, (my feel form your reply) was caused by my comments being a bit too close to home for your liking. And I would like to clear up some that may not have been clear:

Like every other club and society you have to work hard to acquire and keep skilled and talented members. Were is the focus targeting to the Journalism or English classes at Queens? (Ok to do these subjects shouldn’t be a prerequisite for writing at the Gown, but realistically it’s a large resource pool) Is this something you might address?

And also, I know content is extremely important for a newspaper, but even if the stories were fantastic, you need the people who can manage and market the paper, for journalists to be justified in spending their time on writing the stories. Has the Gown team got any actual reading figures? (Not distribution figures). Is this something you might address?

"Publicly lay out our strategy? Why should we do such a thing?"

Because I have asked you, politely to. And I know you don’t have to, but why not? Is it because you don’t have one? I am not asking about what your going to write or interview in the future. I'm asking how many editions your looking to publish next year, where you'll get the funding to support these and ways you are looking at to increase readership and membership? Things like that… Is this something you might address?

"The 'publishing' and 'editorial' teams were the same, on that note you can decide if we were a success or failure..."

Maybe that’s one of the problems with the internal structure at The Gown. If people were not being pulled between content supply and publication, we might have more editions of a better paper. Is this something you might address?

The excitement thing, yes I am quite aware that enthusiasm is what keeps the Clubs and Societies going. But if you can't back it up with substance it will get wasted. And if it is not directed by good team leaders it can also be wasted or lost. This is a current problem in a large percentage of Queens Clubs and Societies, so you are not along in this. Is this something you might address?

As for myself joining 'The Gown' team. I appreciate the offer, but due to other commitments I am unavailable (and possibly unsuitable). However, I do hope The Gown can get itself sorted out next year and is successful in the future…The time of our students is precious to them, and you have to produce a paper that they feel justified in setting aside some of that precious time to reading….

McK

5/24/2007 1:52 am  

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