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story | The Managing Team
photo | Yale-NUS Media Group
On Sunday, Apr. 1, six student publications — The Octant, Tònes, Diverge, The Cosmoscience, Yale-NUS Literary Collective, and The Mocktant — have merged to form a new umbrella media organization, the Yale-NUS Media Group (YMG). The merger was announced at a press conference held by the heads of all six publications. Explaining the rationale behind the merger, they said that YMG was implemented to avoid wasteful competition for resources and market share, and to develop “common ideals” among the publications.
According to the YMG Board of Directors, which consists of six presidents (each representing one of the student publications), YMG will integrate content from all six publications, with a new web portal (www.yalenusmedia.group) to serve as a central platform for collaborative articles. They confirmed that several collaborative articles were already in production, with releases planned “over the next few days.” However, each organization within YMG will continue production of their respective publications to retain their respective brand identities and readership.
With the merger, YMG is now the largest media-related student organization in the college, boasting around 80 members in total. As a whole, the groups boosts a readership of 30,000 a month.
The Octant‘s Editor-in-Chief, Anthony Gwan ’20, said that he was “excited” about the merger. “More media consolidation is always good,” he said. “It is not very helpful to the community when there are too many diverse opinions expressed from different sources.” Gwan said that he and the other organization presidents were inspired the Singapore’s government’s commitment to a well-regulated press. Gwan also said that he was happy that The Octant’s mission of “free speech and critical discourse” was being adopted in YMG, as evidenced in its corporate motto: “the correct content, centralized.”
The Mocktant Editor, Ryan Chen ’20, agreed with Gwan ’20, noting that the six publications realized that competition over readership detracted from their goal of producing quality content. Chen drew an analogy from Thomas Hobbes’s State of Nature, a concept that Yale-NUS students studied in Philosophy and Political Thought 2. “We realised that outside of the walls of each organization, we were all in the state of nature. The only reasonable thing to do would be to merge, and form a commonwealth.” However, they admitted that it was “not possible” to follow Hobbes’ idea of a single dominant ruler, as the presidents could not agree on who should take up the role.
YMG reiterated that prices of the six publications would not change with the merger, effectively meaning that all of them would remain free. However, a “recommended donation,” standardized at SGD $20 per copy for each publication, would be implemented beginning May 1.
YMG board member and Tònes Editor Boonsae Min ’20 said, “Today’s merger marks the beginning of a new era. By raising more revenue, we can create more value for our growing ecosystem of students, faculty, and staff members.” She declined to specify what this value would be. YMG will also set up paywalls on all their websites beginning May 1.
About The Octant
The Octant is a Yale-NUS student-run publication that is released every Friday of the academic year. It believes in transparency and accountability, and it champions these values through honest and insightful reporting. The Octant strives to be an autonomous student-run publication at Yale-NUS College dedicated to free speech and critical discourse.
Tònes is a multilingual magazine at Yale-NUS College. It strives to fuel the multicultural dialogue and give all members of the community a space to tell personal stories.
Diverge is an online periodical that puts writings about diverse experiences into dialogue, reaching conclusions and raising provoking questions for campus readers.
About The Cosmoscience
The Cosmoscience is a student publication run by a group of science enthusiasts at Yale-NUS College, a liberal arts college in Singapore. It aims to provide novel perspectives of the world which integrate scientific knowledge with the arts and social sciences.
About Yale-NUS Literary Collective
The Literary Collective is a collective of students passionate about writing, be it prose or poetry.
About The Mocktant
The Mocktant is Yale-NUS College’s largest and leading satirical news publication. As the single most influential and powerful satirical news organisation in Yale-NUS College, The Mocktant has become an authority on satirical journalism standards, creating a level of excellence never before surpassed in the long history of this college.
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Yale-NUS Literary Collective