If you’re reading EphBlog over Christmas break, then you really must love our material. Great! We love it to. Here is the letter to the editor that I wrote for the Record in the fall.

The Record reported on Oct. 26 that “The results of the [alcohol] survey will be posted on the College Web site later this week. Access will be restricted to computers on the Williams network.” Although the College tried to restrict access, it has failed to do so as the contents are available on a blog.

Two questions: First, why does the College try to restrict access to documents that are of such broad interest to the community of past, current and prospective Ephs? (Another example is the College’s refusal to post its “Report on Varsity Athletics.”) The central value of a scholarly community is intellectual honesty and openness. Moreover, attempts to restrict access to any document which is simultaneously provided to many students and/or alumni are doomed to failure, as this example indicates. Better to make a virtue of the inevitability of public disclosure

Second, why does the Record act as lapdog to the administration in its attempts to hide the truth? The College sloppily made the report available to all in the first few hours of its release. Given this mistake, why doesn’t the Record provide an online copy to its many interested readers? If the New York Times came across a Pentagon report in a similar circumstance, you can be sure that the Times would make the document available to its readers. Back in the day, the Record took its journalist responsibilities much more seriously.

The Record edited out the link to the blog that I originally provided. I am not sure why.

No answers yet from either the Administration or the Record. None are expected.

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