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Triangle Constitution

Last updated June 2018.

We, the members of The Triangle, in order to further pursue the right and true cause of accurate and fair information dissemination, for ourselves and our posterity, and to protect by their exercise our First Amendment rights, do hereby ordain and establish this Constitution of The Triangle of Drexel University.

Amendments to this Constitution are only to be made by the guidelines set forth in Section 12,

“Amendments.” The Editor-in-Chief, in conjunction with the Editorial Board, shall maintain an attached document known as the Bylaws to further delineate the guidelines, procedures and rules of The Triangle. This Constitution and the Bylaws shall serve as the guidebook to which all staffers must adhere. The Constitution and the Bylaws will be readily available to all staffers.

 

This organization is affiliated with Drexel University as a recognized student organization and as such, agrees to abide by the rules, policies, and procedures of Drexel University.

1 Name

  1. The name of the official student newspaper of Drexel University shall be The Triangle, hereby referred to as the newspaper.

2 Purpose

  1. The purpose of the newspaper shall be to inform the students, faculty, administration and alumni with events pertaining to the welfare of students at Drexel in a manner in keeping with the highest journalistic ethics. The newspaper shall also serve as a learning tool and social community for the well-being of its staff.

3 Definitions of Responsibility

3.1 Officers and Section Editors

The titles and responsibilities of the Officers of the newspaper are as follows. Officers are the backbone of the newspaper. It is their responsibility to work effectively so the newspaper represents a combined, team-oriented effort. All Officers…

(a) are expected to develop the talent of younger staff members and represent the newspaper in a professional manner at all times;

(b) must write and maintain a standard operating procedure document which outlines their duties and explains how to fulfill them.

3.1.1. Editor-in-Chief (President)

(a) to assume ultimate responsibility for all material printed in the newspaper;

(b) to protect the interest and integrity of the newspaper and its staff;

(c) to serve as the official representative of the newspaper outside the organization;

(d) to see that an adequate staff is maintained;

(e) to be responsible to and consult with the Editorial Board to determine the policy of the newspaper;

(f) to consult with the Business Manager in business and financial matters and to prepare the budget;

(g) to be responsible for the newspaper’s editorial, in consultation with the Editorial Board;

(h) to be responsible for the availability of adequate supplies.

(i) The Editor-in-Chief must be a full-time undergraduate student.

3.1.2. Managing Editor (Vice President)

(a) to actively search for ways to improve the organization and assign responsibilities accordingly;

(b) to manage the production of the newspaper and coordinate staff with the assistance of the staff manager;

(c) to act as liaison among the editors and staff members of the newspaper;

(d) to assign collateral duties to staff members as necessary;

(e) to assume responsibility for organizing extra-publication activities;

(f) to assume responsibility for office management;

(g) to be the preferred chairperson of the Editor-in-Chief elections;

(h) to be prepared to assume the responsibilities of Editor-in-Chief should the need arise;

(i) shall have full Editorial Board membership as long as he or she meets the conditions for membership.

 

3.1.3. Business Manager (Treasurer)

(a) to ensure maintenance of the financial stability of The Triangle;

(b) to handle all financial matters and correspondence concerning the newspaper;

(c) to keep the Editorial Board informed of the financial status of the newspaper;

(d) to prepare an annual budget in consultation with the Editor-in-Chief;

(e) to supervise the business staff members and determine their responsibilities;

(f) to maintain contact with the newspaper’s financial University adviser.

(g) The Business Manager will have membership on the Editorial Board but will not have a voting position.

(h) The Business Manager must be a full-time undergraduate student of Drexel University.

 

3.1.4. Staff Manager (Event Coordinator)

  1. to represent the entire staff’s interests to the Editorial Board and the Editor-in-Chief;
  2. to plan all staff events for The Triangle including but not limited to:
  • Staff dinners
  • Staff outings
  • Social engagement events
  1. to maintain communication with Drexel administrators in matters related to but not limited to:
  • Purchasing
  • Event Forms
  • Student organizations
  1. to manage relationships with food vendors;
  2. to work in collaboration with the Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief on managerial matters;
  3. to actively recruit new members for The Triangle and ensure new staff are welcomed and introduced to other staff members;
  4. to monitor the social and professional dynamics of staff and mediate disputes where appropriate;
  5. to enforce the Bylaws with staff as appropriate and in conjunction with the Managing Editor and Editor-in-Chief.
  6. shall have full Editorial Board membership as long as he or she meets the conditions for membership.

 

The duties of the supporting managers, section editors and officers are delineated in the Bylaws. Positions may be added, removed or modified by a majority decision of the Editorial Board.

3.1.5. Other Officers

  1. If the need for other, non-regular officers is required, the staff member proposing/appointed to the new title must provide the Editorial Board with an outline of the positions, duties and expectations.
  2. The Editorial Board must approve of all new officer positions. This does not include assistant section editors or assistant managers; those positions may be appointed by respective editors or managers.

3.2 Editorial Board

3.2.1 Purpose and Meetings

  1. The Editorial Board will serve to make all long-term decisions of The Triangle.
  2. The Editor-in-Chief shall act as chairperson of the Editorial Board.
  3. The Editorial Board shall consist of the Editor-in-Chief and at least four other staff members.
  4. The Editorial Board shall meet each week to determine editorial and newspaper policy and discuss other important issues.
  • (a) Each member of the seated membership of the Editorial Board, except the Business Manager, must have a vote, when necessary, to resolve a dispute.
  • (b) When necessary, and emergency meeting may be called to resolve and urgent issue.
  1. The Editorial Board is responsible for the Editorial published in the Opinion section of each newspaper.

3.2.2 Membership

  1. To hold a seat on the Editorial Board, the following conditions shall be met and have a two-thirds majority approval from the seated members:
  • (a) an announcement to the general newspaper staff that the Editorial Board is considering adding members;
  • (b) written application to the Editorial Board with the intent to join;
  • (c) non-freshman class status;
  • (d) is an undergraduate student of Drexel University;
  • (e) a minimum of three terms of experience with the organization;
  • (f) and agree to attending a weekly editorial board meeting.
  1. When deemed necessary for the good of the organization, the Editorial Board

may modify the requirements for membership.

  1. Each Editorial Board member is required to adopt a “special task” or “duty” which should benefit the paper in some way. An Editorial Board member’s failure to meet the responsibilities of their special task will result in probation from the Editorial Board.

3.2.3 Communication

  1. Any staff member wishing to address any concern with the Editorial Board must follow the chain of command through their respective officer, section editor or supporting manager.
  2. The Editorial Board must keep minutes during meetings. All final decisions must be made known to the general newspaper staff.
  3. Meeting minutes should be sent to The Triangle faculty advisor at the end of each meeting.
  4. All decisions, whether internal to the Editorial Board or not, shall be kept on

record for posterity.

3.2.4 Retaining Membership

  1. If any Editorial Board member fails to attend more than three meetings in an academic quarter, they will be placed on probation.
  2. If any Editorial Board member commits an action that has been deemed unbecoming by the other Editorial Board members, they may be placed on probation.
  • (a)  Probation will be determined by a two-thirds vote of the Editorial Board
  • (b) While on probation, an Editorial Board member’s privileges will be revoked.
  • (c) While on probation, the Editorial Board member must attend every meeting from their time of probation to the end of the term and fulfill all duties associated with EdBoard (as set forth in the bylaws)
  1. Editorial Board members not on probation must vote to end the probationary period for a member.

3.3 Editor-in-Chief Eligibility and Authority

  1. Candidates for the post of Editor-in-Chief must be active staff members of The Triangle and full-time undergraduate students of Drexel University.
  2. The term of the office of the Editor-in-Chief shall have two academic terms, to begin on the day following the last publication in summer and winter term.
  3. All officers and editors serve under the direction of the Editor-in-Chief.
  4. In the event that an Editor-in-Chief leaves his/her position before the expiration of term, the Editorial Board must hold an election for the position within one week’s time.
  5. If the Editor-in-Chief leaves after an election was held, the Editor in Chief-elect will assume the position of Editor-in-Chief as soon as possible.
  1. Pending review of the Editorial Board, the Editor-in-Chief may place on probation a staff member who fails to perform his/her designated duties or who hinders the day-to-day operation or production of the newspaper.
  2. The Editor-in-Chief will make all policy decisions unless contested by a member of the Editorial Board, who may request an Editorial Board vote.
  3. The Editor-in-Chief may veto the Editorial Board’s decision, but it can be overridden by a two-thirds vote of the seated Editorial Board. Such a vote will be final.

4 Voting

The post of Editor-in-Chief is the only post open to a general member vote.

  1. All staff members as defined by the Bylaws Section 1 (Membership) shall have the right to vote for the Editor-in-Chief.
  2. Each staff member shall have one vote.
  3. A period of election will be held during the production of the third-to-last issue of the term to allow an orientation period for the new Editor-in-Chief.
  4. The current Editor-in-Chief shall appoint a staff member as the elections chairperson, subject to the approval of the Editorial Board, who will dedicate an area for the posting of election information.
  • The election chair will choose the voting method (i.e. website, forums).
  1. The elections chairperson will post an election schedule containing the names of all eligible voters as defined by Section 3.3 (Editor-in-Chief Eligibility and Authority).
  2. Candidates must post in the election area a written notice indicating their intent to run for Editor-in-Chief one week prior to the end of the voting period.
  3. Votes for write-in candidates, that is candidates who do not post a written notice of their intent to run for Editor-in-Chief, are not allowed and will be considered void.
  4. Any further details about the election should be decided by the elections chairperson, but may be overridden by a simple majority vote of the Editorial Board.
  5. The new Editor-in-Chief will be the candidate who receives a majority of the valid ballots.

5 Staff Meetings

  1. The staff shall meet each production week at a scheduled general meeting, which will be called to order by the Editor-in-Chief.
  1. The Editor-in-Chief or a staff member appointed by the Editor-in-Chief will disseminate information and address concerns of the staff.
  2. Staff members are expected to attend meetings and will be held responsible for information disseminated at these meetings.

6 Vote of no confidence for the Editor-in-Chief

  1. In the event that the Editor-in-Chief’s ability to complete his/her job becomes in question, the seated Editorial Board, by a two-thirds vote, may choose to have another election.
  2. Any qualified candidates may run, including any person who lost in a previous election and the current Editor-in-Chief.
  3. If the current Editor-in-Chief retains his/her position, the matter will be deemed closed.
  4. The Editorial Board may have only one re-election proceeding per term or per Editor-in-Chief.

 

7 Adherence

  1. The Editorial Board will make policy, as needed, to ensure adherence to, clarify and interpret this Constitution. This includes, but is not limited to, standard operating procedures and verbal and written policies.

8 Finances

  1. The finances of the newspaper will be under the direction of the Editor-in-Chief along with the Business Manager and the Editorial Board.
  2. Staff members of the newspaper do not have to pay any dues to the newspaper. All of the income of the newspaper will be generated by advertisements, classifieds and other sources.
  3. All major purchases will be approved by the Editorial Board with input from the Business Manager.
  1. The Editor-in-Chief or Managing Editor shall approve all purchase orders.
  2. It is the job of the Editor-in-Chief and the Business Manager to monitor the use of the DragonCard.
  1. The Triangle shall not accept monetary funding from Drexel University.

 

9 Advisor

The newspaper may have up to two advisors.

  1. One will be a full-time faculty member who advises the organization, but who will not have any editorial control or prior review.
  1. The organization advisor must be a full-time member of the faculty, administration, or professional staff of Drexel University.
  1. In times when it is necessary, the other adviser can be a full-time staff member who will advise in financial manners that relate to the newspaper. Both advisers will work with the Editor-in-Chief, and the financial adviser will also work with the Business Manager.

 

10 Ratification

  1. This document must be approved by the Editorial Board.
  2. Then, it will be presented to the general staff for comments and concerns.
  3. After a period of one week after it has been presented to the general staff, a vote will be taken at a general staff meeting. A simple majority of the attendees of the meeting will be necessary to ratify this Constitution.

 

11 Dissolution

  1. The Editorial Board may vote to dissolve The Triangle at any time by a unanimous vote.
  2. In the event of the dissolution of the newspaper, the Editorial Board shall decide the allocation of property, including intellectual property.

 

12 Amendments

  1. Amendments to this Constitution may be suggested in writing to the Editorial Board by any staff member.
  2. An amendment shall take effect if approved by a two-thirds vote of the seated Editorial Board, unless superseded by a simple majority vote of the staff members present at a regular staff meeting called specifically to amend the Constitution.

 

Bylaws

 

1 Membership

  1. All full-time and part-time students of Drexel University are eligible to apply for membership. This includes undergraduates and graduates.
  2. All students interested in joining The Triangle must complete an application and interview process.
  3. Drexel alumni may also become eligible for participation, with the majority approval of the Editorial Board.
  4. An application and deadline will be released and open to all students on a schedule defined by the Editor-in-Chief in conjunction with the Staff Manager.
  5. Applications will be reviewed by the Editorial Board, and granting interviews to applicants will be at the sole discretion of the Editorial Board.
  6. Applications and interview scores will be reviewed by the Editorial Board, and the Editorial Board will decide on which applicants will be admitted as new members.
  7. All new staff members must complete the training process as defined by the Editor-in-Chief in conjunction with the Staff Manager and section editors.
  8. Membership in this organization shall not discriminate against any individuals regardless of race, national origin, color, religion, sex, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, and/or ability.

 

2 Retaining Membership

  1. Staff membership will be divided into active and inactive members.
  • Active members will be staff members who are in classes or are on/close to campus for co-op.
  • Inactive members will be staff members who are away for summer break, co-op, study abroad, or have a special circumstance which prevents them from actively participating in The Triangle and has been approved by the Editor-in-Chief.
  1. Staff members can retain their membership in The Triangle by completing requirements each term.
  • Only active staff members of The Triangle must complete requirements. While inactive members are still welcome to participate, they are exempt from the term’s requirements.
  • The exact number of requirements needed to stay on staff each term will be determined by the Editor-in-Chief in conjunction with managers and section editors.
  • Manager and editors are not necessarily subject to the requirements set for the term, as they are expected to go above and beyond with non-quantifiable work.
  • Active staff members who fail to complete the requirements for a term may be asked to leave The Triangle. If there are special circumstances, the Editor-in-Chief may work with the staff member to determine make-up requirements.
  1. A requirement is counted as any one of the following:
  • Writing and submitting an article which is published by The Triangle.
  • Attending one event as the photographer and taking at least one photo which is used in a Triangle publication.
  • Copy editing three articles.
  • Illustrating or helping illustrate one comic or graphic.
  • Helping with one distribution cycle.
  • Adding one feature to a Triangle software or IT system
  • Resolving one IT support ticket
  1. The Editor-in-Chief, at their discretion, may choose to recognize any other significant contribution to The Triangle which does not fit into one of the above categories as credit for completing one or more requirements.
  2. Any member of the newspaper staff, including editors (but not the Editor-in-Chief), may be asked to leave the staff by a two-thirds vote of the Editorial Board.
  3. Any member holding an officer title must provide at least three weeks notice before they leave The Triangle, otherwise they will be barred from participating in The Triangle in any form for a period of one year.

 

3 Code of Conduct

  1. Professional behavior is expected from staff members while they are in the Triangle office.
  • Guests, including advertisers, prospective staff members and sources for articles, are to be treated with respect and courtesy.
  • Excessive noise or horseplay in the office is not allowed.
  • Staff members are expected to handle property and equipment owned by The Triangle with care, and must never intentionally damage or steal anything.
  • All staff members are to be respected and will not be subject to harassment or threats.
  1. The primary purpose of The Triangle’s resources is the production of the newspaper.
  • Use of the The Triangle’s resources is restricted to Triangle staff members only.
  • Under no circumstances may The Triangle’s resources be used for business or personal profit.
  • Use of the resources of The Triangle can only be authorized by the Editor-in-Chief or staff members he/she designates.
  1. Discussion of The Triangle to outside entities is restricted as defined below.
  • Staff members are under no obligation to defend or justify material published by The Triangle, or people’s perceived views of The Triangle or its staff members.
  • Information gained at news meetings, Editorial Board meetings, and other meetings between Triangle staff members is considered privileged information and cannot be shared to non-Triangle members without permission from the Editor-in-Chief.
  • The Editor-in-Chief is the only person allowed to speak on behalf of The Triangle on matters related to published material, especially to outside entities. Staff members must never comment on material published in The Triangle and always refer outside entities to the Editor-in-Chief.
  • Staff members are not permitted to respond to media queries, and must immediately notify the Editor-in-Chief if they receive one.
  1. The Triangle will in no way tolerate plagiarism or fabrication.
  • Writers who include exact words from a source must include those words in quotes.
  • Infractions for plagiarism or fabrication may include permanent dismissal from The Triangle and referral to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.
  1. Staff members should never accept gifts from outside organization without permission from the Editor-in-Chief.
  • The Editor-in-Chief, in conjunction with the Editorial Board, will determine when a staff member may accept a gift.
  • Gifts are any free or discounted item received by The Triangle or staff member in conjunction with his or her work for The Triangle. This includes, but is not limited to, food, discounts, travel, promotional material from a company, and complementary tickets to a movie or performance.
  • Staff members must alert the Editor-in-Chief immediately if they receive a gift.
  • In no case will The Triangle accept gifts as a quid pro quo.
  • If gifts may influence The Triangle’s reporting or view on an issue, the gifts must be refused.
  • In no case will The Triangle or any staff members accept bribes that are intended to suppress or alter the content of The Triangle or the opinions of staff members.
  1. Staff members must disclose to The Triangle any potential conflicts of interest such as their employment, work study, community service, other student organization affiliations, and work with other campus media organizations. The Triangle and its editors reserve the right to limit a staff member’s contributions on subjects which cause a conflict of interest.

 

4 Code of Conduct Adherence

  1. All members of The Triangle are expected to adhere to the Code of Conduct defined here in the Bylaws.
  2. Infractions of the Code of Conduct by any member will be handled with a three-strike system.
  • At the first infraction, a formal written warning will be issued to the offending staff member by the Editor-in-Chief.
  • At the second infraction, the offending staff member will be suspended from all organization activities for a period of ten academic weeks. This includes, but is not limited to, submitting articles, participating in staff dinner, and attending general body meetings.
  • A third infraction will result in permanent dismissal from The Triangle for the member.
  1. Serious infractions may result in permanent dismissal from The Triangle without prior notice or warning at the discretion of the Editor-in-Chief and the Editorial Board. The Triangle’s response to serious infractions may also include referral of the staff member to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.

 

5 Copyrighted Material

  1. All editorial material published by The Triangle, unless otherwise stated, is copyright The Triangle.
  • A notice of The Triangle’s copyright claim must be stated in each publication released.
  • If a question or problem arises about copyright, the Editor-in-Chief should contact the Student Press Law Center.
  1. The Triangle may, through an agreement with individual contributors to The Triangle, allow the author to retain the copyright for the work. This is solely at the discretion of the Editor-in-Chief.
  2. Only the Editor-in-Chief may grant another person or organization permission to reprint anything for which The Triangle has claimed copyright.
  • Each publication of The Triangle must clearly state this.
  • Each reprint must state the material is copyright The Triangle.
  1. The Triangle may, at the discretion of the Editor-in-Chief, claim ownership of all notes, tapes, and other material used by a writer to compile a story. Staff members should be prepared to give this material to The Triangle at the request of the Editor-in-Chief.

 

  1. Other Officers
  2. All other officers defined in this section are subject to the rules laid forth in the Constitution Section 3.1 (Officers and Section Editors).

 

6.1 Section Editors

  1. will exist for each section of the newspaper as decided by the Editorial Board (news, opinion, arts & entertainment, sports, photography);
  2. will be responsible for managing writers, editing articles, and designing layouts for their respective sections.

 

6.2 Chief Copy Editor

  1. oversee copy editing team and ensure schedule is adhered to;
  2. check articles for plagiarism and factual accuracy.

 

6.3 Production Manager

  1. maintain professional relationships and serve as point of contact for printing company and other related entities;
  2. submit purchase orders to printing company for each issue;
  3. create InDesign template files for each issue and ensure all advertisements are included;
  4. maintain template files for InDesign, InCopy, and Weekly Folders;
  5. update staff box and classifieds as needed.

 

6.4 Distribution Manager

  1. oversee the distribution of the newspaper;
  2. ensure the Gator and other distribution equipment are in good working order;
  3. maintain relationships with Drexel Facilities leadership regarding kiosks and distribution equipment.

 

6.5 IT Manager

  1. find and implement new ways to improve IT services in The Triangle;
  2. aid in and approve the purchase of new computer equipment;
  3. maintain contact with hardware and software vendors;
  4. help develop IT policies and procedures;
  5. create other roles to fulfill IT responsibilities as needed.

 

7 Hazing

  1. Membership should be a valuable and beneficial experience for all students. Leadership of this organization shall provide its new and current members with an experience that is positive, informative and consistent with federal, state, and local laws, and the policies and procedures of Drexel University. Activities which detract from the goal of fostering personal and intellectual development have no place in this organization. Hazing will not be tolerated by or of any member. It is the responsibility of the organization, its leadership and members to report hazing of any kind by members to the proper authority.