Saturday, September 22, 2007

Nux at Captivate - day one

Nux is attending the Captivate Conference this week. Captivate is a time and place to meet and chat to other members of the student Media Conglomerate. This is a much needed time in the business of what we do, half the time as student medians we feel like we are sailing on a lone boat lost at sea…

The conference began very nicely today, with speakers from across the industry sharing their experiences and giving advice on ways in which student media can improve.

Today’s session began we Peter Barlow, Captivate chair, delivering the results of the survey the captivate team conducted with each participating paper. The survey highlighted some interesting and similar trends which all the papers share, such as apathy and funding issues.
Anna-Marie, the ex-editor of Perderby, then spoke about news room management and strategic thinking. Her talk highlighted ways to get ahead in the student media game by taking a few steps. She looked at the business of the media and as student media practitioners we must get to know how audience or clients as she refers to them. She also talked about Branding and the importance of presence on campus. Advertising was also looked at as newspapers battle with what advertising and making serious advertising decisions.
Nic Haralamous, editor of FM Campus, then spoke about the FM Campus and the revolution at hand. FM Campus is distributed to about 20 campuses across South Africa and it’s changing. In Nic’s presentation he included some the changes he is implementing at FM Campus. Their new website is one of the big changes Nic has implemented and he is hoping to create a very interactive portal with student bodies from all campuses with it.

Finally Gregor and Carly, the multimedia editors of The Times, emphasised the importance of multimedia skills within student media and the simplicity of its implementation. They both believe that multimedia is the future of young journalists because they are not scared of technology and are eager to learn. Their work at the times speaks for itself with amount interest that the public has shown just four months into its inception.

Today has been a very fulfilling day and I hope tomorrow’s discussions will take provide good results.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

In April 2003, I walked into the Nux office and joined this paper. In May 2004, I became Writing editor of Nux and in August 2005, I was named Editor-in-Chief. It’s August 2007 and I have come full circle. I can still remember my first article in Nux, I was sixteen years old and I thought it was brilliant. Five years later, I want every copy of that article to be destroyed! I have come a long way from that Monday afternoon in April 2003. I have grown as a writer and as a leader since my stay at Nux. When I look back at my time at Nux, I see great and amazing people. I can say I was here in the time of Rowan O’Neil, the editor who was always around. I was here in the time of Matt le Cordeur, the editor that gave us colour. I was here in the time of Andrew Fairlie, possibly the most amazing computer geek there ever will be. I was here in the time of Donna-Jade Shelver; a brilliant writing editor who showed me constant support, Quraysha Mohamed; who is a never-ending source of strange, Thabani Mkhize; an unstoppable sports editor, Zoe van der Hoven; a materials editor who is always willing to learn; and, dearest Minithenertne who has undergone so many sexual changes in his/her run here at Nux.

I was here at a time of joy and friendship. My time at Nux has not been an easy one; I have dealt with criticism from the student and staff. Through which I believe I have grown to be a better writer, leader and a stronger person. I have also received praise and support from both: members of the student body have shown me great loyalty, which I will forever be grateful for and members of staff have taken concerted interest in my efforts as Editor-in-Chief of Nux. I have constantly said that I do not think I can be a journalist in the world today. I have often felt journalism was compromised. Hence I buried myself in student journalism because it is pure, untainted and liberating. In my time at Nux I have learnt that I am a custodian of conscience and compromised or not I should play my part.

I will always be a Nuxite no matter where I go or what I do, so I hand over this paper that has meant a tremendous amount to me to a formidable team. I have great faith in you guys. Though I am no longer editor of Nux, I am still a writer of Nux. I have come full circle and I would love to just be a writer. So enjoy my last issue as editor, thank you for being an amazing audience and I wish you all the best of luck.

Happy Reading
Keep on Trucking
God Bless.

Kindest regards,
Michelle Atagana
Editor-in-Chief Nux

Monday, March 26, 2007

Nux is out - get it now!

The day begins quite simply like any other, my alarm goes off I look up from the table and its 6am. I have not slept; this has become a regular feature since deciding on a post-graduate study. I have to be at NUX in a few hours, things need to be done, and the paper must get to you on time. So begins my quest of this day that promises to be full of ‘interesting events’.

On my way to NUX I run into a student, who takes up half an hour of my time to tell me what a terrible paper I run and how “a certain columnist” in the paper walks and writes with an air of self-importance that is not deserving “the columnist” and should be fired. I have heard this all before and I feel a certain responsibility to all my writers. I do not mind getting phone calls at 4am in the morning because “the powers that be” are angry with one of them. But when a student attacks the credibility of a writer, I take it personally, after all in every issue I have pleaded on this very page for students to led their voice to the paper and participate more. And with every issue the students disappoint me. So, what do I do? Should I knock at their doors and beat them with sticks until they contribute? Or should I just hold them hostage and pull out their spleens and threaten to sell it? Of course I can’t do any of that, I don’t have that much power, yet. So, one more time dear student, I encourage you to participate more actively in the production our fair paper not just stand on the sidelines and give commentary.

Its cricket time, the cricket world cup has been the buzz these last few weeks and NUX felt the need to follow suit! I personally do not get the game of cricket but I am routing for South Africa. So our feature for this issue is the cricket. We went out there and asked the students how they felt about South Africa’s chances in the world cup. So who’s been watching and do you like what you see?

To the end of the road we come, the first quarter of the academic year is almost over. For ten days you get to be on holiday and then bam! It’s crunch time, the exam will be just around the corner. So use the break wisely, for we all know May is not a pretty month.

So from me, it’s over and out! I will see you when we get back! Happy Easter and take some time to relax.

Keep on trucking!
Happy reading!

Kind Regards
Michelle Atagana

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Nux issue 3 - get it now

It’s crunch time! This is my favourite time at the Nux offices, everything seems impossible and the odds of us making the deadline for print are not very good. I love crunch time; I feel the journalistic adrenalin rushing through my veins… I am powerless, yet I feel I can conquer the world. We have no news stories and we have less than 24hrs to rectify this! Oh we are also missing a few entertainment pieces. An outsider witnessing our crunch time called my staff and I insane, which someone pointed out could have been worse, “she could have called you sane”. So here we go again…

The University of KwaZulu-Natal seems to find its way into the newspapers a lot. I have always believed that the students should be the first to form opinions about the institution. Students at UKZN are never given enough information on what is going on in the campus. The Vice-Chancellor gets sued and the students hear about it on the 7o’clock news. The administrative, the academic staff and the students should be able to communicate with each other in an adult manner. Communication and the Student Representative Council (SRC) Election is something of an obscurity, characterised by a student headed for class who happens to be bumped into by an SRC candidate who asks for their votes on the day. Battles between members of staff should not be kept secret from students until it hits the press and the administration has no choice but to send out a notice.
So the feature for this issue is the UKZN Scandal, students get the opportunity to speak up about their concerns and views on the matter. When you exit this institution is your degree all you came for and all you’re going to leave with? Do you not want to take away with you some sense of pride in knowing that you lent your voice and your thoughts to the institution whose certification will determine the rest of your life? For close to R20000 a year, I think it is not too much to ask.
We are the pioneers of the future, it has been handed to us, what we choose to do with it is entirely up to us.
From me it’s over and out! Don’t forget to grab the next issue, 22nd of March!
Keep on trucking!
Happy Reading!

Kind Regards,
Michelle Atagana

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Nux is out get it now!!!

So how was the first week? How are all you ‘newbies’ settling down? Put your hands up if you are still battling to register? Uhuh! Don’t worry you still have time to register just stop dilly-dallying and get to it! Ask for help if you are confused, don’t pick a course simply because it sounds easy! Most of us learnt this the hard way. The campus has been busy, orientation happened and apparently it created a few problems with it. Power outages disrupted a few postgraduate registrations and some people are already crumbling under the pressure! But never fear, because NUX is here! Crime has taken the country by storm. We have heard what people in power have to say about it, and we’ve heard various media reports on crime so why not hear what you have to say about it? So our feature for this month is crime, your views on crime and how it has affected you. And ways in which we can combat crime in the country. We also look at various measures taken by people to get the president’s attention on the state of crime in the country. Also visit and see what ordinary South Africans have
to say about the country. Our writers have worked very hard to bring you an issue full of
wondrous student things that will enthrall. However, if you feel that there is any bit of information that we have not given you please feel free to write to us and we will try
our best to bring you that information. You have a voice as a student! You should use that voice.
We at NUX would like to encourage you to write to us about any issues you feel needs to be brought to the attention of the students and staff members alike. In this dynamic institution of African scholarship, we must come together as a community if we are to succeed. I hope you enjoy this issue of NUX and that those of you who celebrate Valentine’s Day had a fantastic day!
So from me, it’s over and out till the next issue. 7th of March, be sure to get it!

Keep on trucking!
Happy Reading!

Michelle Atagana
Editor-in- Chief