Warel Pilmering | Sat, 29 Feb 2020
On Tuesday, 11 February, the AUSA Student President declared her love for The Gaudie at the Students’ Association’s Annual General Meeting.
Student President Sesilia Bäckwall, who hasn’t touched a copy of The Gaudie in over a year, exclaimed that “[we at AUSA] love The Gaudie! We are proud to support such a long-running tradition of student journalism, and we will definitely boast about it in our Freshers’ booklets.”
However, Education Officer Karija Doleva took over: “Unfortunately, we’ve had to cut funding for Scotland’s longest-running union-affiliated student newspaper. We feel like we don’t get pissed at the Machar quite enough, as a team, so we decided to use the money previously allocated to The Gaudie for that. And, anyway, it is more important to us that five sabbatical officers have a good relationship with each other than that a paper that’s older than us continues to exist. And you can get pissed a lot, for six grand.” Doleva did stress how much AUSA values transparency and listed exactly what the funding cut from The Gaudie would be reallocated to: “1000 for shots of vodka, 2300 for beer… Sesilia really likes Long Island Iced Tea, so we set another 1800 aside for that. 800 for kombucha for Houise. That leaves us a thousand, which we are planning to spend on those shiny slot machines they have at the Bobbin… Needless to say, we’ll probably lose it all.”
At this point, AUSA’s Communities Officer Houise Lenrard interrupted Doleva. “We will, of course, assist The Gaudie in finding new ways of funding. I think we were supposed to help with…” She looks down at the smudged writing on her hand, then holds it closer to her face and squints at the smudged writing. “Right, we’ll help you bring in more adjectives.” Lenrard, who obviously meant advertisers, then looks a bit concerned and adds, “But we are all very busy. So we can’t help that much. You currently have a marketing team consisting of one person and I’m sure the task of bringing in seven grand to fund the paper won’t be too overwhelming for a single individual.”
Bäckwall added to this: “I mean… The Gaudie can always go out of print entirely. It’s not like they have a significant presence on campus anyway, or like the printed paper provides opportunities to people who are interested in learning about graphic design at a university that doesn’t offer any arts degrees. I bet those design people don’t even spend that much time on it.” When one of the Gaudie Head Editors pointed out that the paper’s production team (“those design people”) spend three full days in a row designing the paper, Bäckwall did not seem to know how to respond. After a long pause, she said, “oh, I wasn’t aware of that.”
When the AUSA sabbatical officers were made aware that most student newspapers in the country get funding from their Students’ Association, there was another long silence. Then the Bäckwall responded: “Yeah, but we want to be cool and edgy! And besides that, all of us except the Sports Officer have personal vendettas against your paper and a few people on the team, so we really don’t think you deserve to exist at all.”
Warel Pilmering | Fri, 22 May 2020