To the Editor:
Your cover story on Gregory Korb ’08 Wednesday (“Student faces rape charge,” 8/31) was irresponsible, thoughtless, sensationalist and thus unacceptable. While I have no notable affiliation with Mr. Korb, I find that the potential consequences on his reputation, and the specific targeting of the accused, given the uncertainty surrounding the matter to be extremely irresponsible.
While rape is a serious crime and I find Yale’s ongoing policy to brush it under the carpet to be unsavory and unhelpful, this matter is yet to be resolved in either direction and so is not a matter with which your publication should concern itself.
The damage has now been done, but a formal apology for this lax attitude regarding such a serious matter is to be expected.
Mina Alaghband ’08
Aug. 31, 2005
To the Editor:
I’m writing to express my disapproval of your handling of the Greg Korb situation. While I understand and respect the professional responsibility of journalists to report the news in a timely fashion, it is my opinion that as a student publication, you have an additional ethical obligation to the student body you represent. Your article violated your ethical obligation toward a fellow student. Yale is such an insular community that news printed in the YDN can be expected to travel to the entire student body. Whether or not you intend to, you shape the opinion of the greater part of that student body. When you print the name of a student accused of sexual assault, include his picture, place him on the front page, and have a pull quote describing his large bail amount, there is an implication of guilt associated with the accusation that you spread to the entire student body, one which can not be taken back. While I respect the right of every student to report a sexual assault, it must be considered that the publication of such reports which include details about the accused can, in many ways, act as a social presumption of guilt. As it stands, Greg Korb may never be able to return to campus without the stigma of a social verdict against him, regardless of the results of his criminal case. In the future, I would hope that the YDN would be more cautious in their publication of accused students’ names and pictures.
Zac Soto ’06
Sept. 1, 2005