In 1955, sociology major Joe Gold pronounced The Missouri Student — a paper that "signified nothing" — dead. Gold renamed the publication The Maneater and swore the paper would serve as a watchdog for students' interests. He wrote a new editorial policy to reflect the spirit of watchdog journalism that Maneater staff members still live by today.
"If you want to keep us out, better bar the door," the policy stated. "And don't try getting rough or screaming 'libel' when a Maneater reporter crashes your meetings. When The Maneater gets mad, all hell is going to break loose. You've been warned."
Below is the editorial policy Gold set Feb. 18, 1955:
A newspaper has a personality of its own. That personality dictates the editorial policy, and the writers, from the editor on down, must melt their individual differences into the personality of the paper itself.
The Maneater by its very name cannot content itself with merely presenting the news. For a newspaper to attempt to walk the fine line of impartiality or to present both sides without indicating where it stands is to commit suicide both in circulation figures and in the minds of its readers.
The Maneater is a tiger with fangs bared and claws sharpened ready to analyze the facts and then to pounce. A tiger exists because it is, and not for one group or another.
The Maneater recognizes no vested interest, no political party, no group, no matter how powerful. As a publication of the student body of the University of Missouri, the vital consideration must ever be to the entire student body of this university.
The editorials will be aimed toward what is right and against what is wrong. They will be the results of a staff fitting themselves to the personality implied and evident in the vital name of The Maneater.
The Maneater has been MU's independent student newspaper for 58 years and is still going strong. The paper is managed and funded through the dedication of a student staff that is always working to produce the best paper possible and is something we are all very proud of. We'd like to extend a big thank you to everyone that has helped us along the way. As always, we encourage you to contribute to the paper by becoming a part of the staff or sending letter to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stop by the MU Student Center from 2 to 3 p.m. tomorrow to celebrate The Maneater's 58th birthday with the staff. We'll be passing out our Tuesday issue and birthday cake.
Read more about The Maneater's history: