Now especially, news editors have to work harder than ever
Every day, the editorial staff at the UKrant wonders: What are we writing about, why are we writing about it, and how are we writing about it? ‘At the UKrant’, an irregular column, we take a look behind the scenes.
It was somewhere in late January when I first read an article on a new, SARS-like virus that was spreading in a Chinese town I’d never heard of. I remember thinking that it sounded nasty, but that I was sure everything would work out.
A month and a half later, all the UG buildings are on lockdown. There are no physical classes, all the buildings are closed, and everyone is working from home. Anyone predicting this situation at the end of January would probably have been called defeatist.
Naturally, the UKrant editors are following the UG guidelines. We’re mainly working from home, are blowing up each other’s phones through WhatsApp, and have our morning editorial meetings through video conferencing. Some of us have been working together for years but have only now seen the art on each other’s walls.
However, if we want to report on everything happening, or as is currently the case, not happening at the UG, we’ll need to leave the safety of our kitchen tables. UKrant reporters will be out and about. We will be reporting any developments at the UG as quickly as possible, both in Dutch and in English.
We’re working on landing page where we’ll collect all the articles related to the virus
We’re writing background stories, reporting the news, and we’re trying to find the answers to the questions many people have. What about the exams? Will students be able to take them at a later time? What about any current scientific research? What should you do or stop doing if you’re in one of the at-risk groups? Will the summer holidays be cut down to make up for lost time? What about the jobs that students depend on for extra cash?
These are just a few of the subjects we’ll be talking about. I can’t guarantee we’ll be able to answer every single question immediately, but at times like these, news editors are working harder than ever to provide our readers with the information they need.
We’ll keep you posted through our website, but also check our accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. We’re also working on a landing page on the site, where we’ll collect all the articles and news pieces related to the virus, so readers have a good overview of what’s happening as it relates to the university.
If you’re tired of reading about corona and wondering if the UKrant has anything else to say: yes, we do. Check out our magazine article ‘Studying with your mirror image’, about twins at the UG. Although I suspect that articles like that will be in the minority for at least the rest of this week.
Rob Siebelink, editor-in-chief UKrant