After 29 years under the Students’ Society, the McGill Tribune will become an independent newspaper next year.
A referendum question that asked students if they would support a $3 non-opt-outable fee for an independent Tribune passed with 49.9 per cent voting yes, 29.7 per cent voting no, and 20.3 per cent spoiling their ballots.
Tribune Editor-in-Chief Thomas Quail was thrilled with the results.
“It’s the dawning of a new age for the Tribune as an independent newspaper,” he said. “It’s been a lot of work, but it was definitely worth it.”
The referendum marked the end of a two-year process that began in March 2008, when SSMU Council mandated that the Tribune become independent. Matt Chesser, Tribune opinion editor and former editor-in-chief, said the result was indicative of the paper’s progress.
“It’s been a long two years-and a very stressful two years-but I think this is a reflection of how far the Tribune has come, and a reflection of the quality of the content we put out every week,” said Chesser. “I’m just ecstatic people think the Tribune is worth $3 per semester.”
Over the past week, the Tribune had been working with a skeletal staff-with approximately half of the editorial board resigning in order to campaign as part of the “yes” committee. After a week of campaigning, the editorial board was optimistic about the future of the paper.
“I’m ecstatic with the results. Going into campaigning we were all a bit nervous, but deep down we had the confidence that this was going to go well,” said Managing Editor James Gilman. “We’re looking forward to starting the Tribune’s new life as an independent organization.”