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February 24, 2014 | by  | in Homepage News |
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Out of Ink

Shock came last Tuesday when MASSIVE, Massey University’s student magazine, announced it will no longer exist in print form.

After the final print issue is released on 26 February, MASSIVE will move entirely online, under the banner of MASSIVE media.

MASSIVE was first published in 2012, after the introduction of Voluntary Student Membership meant the dissolution of the existing student magazines.

When it was formed, it was done so with a business plan which indicated that “within a few years” MASSIVE would become fully self-sufficient. In its first year, it was funded $100,000 by Massey, with the shortfall (around $200,000) covered by the reserve funds of students’ associations and advertising revenue.

In 2013, University funding of MASSIVE increased to $108,000, with students’ associations continuing to fund the remainder. In 2014, with no increase to this amount, continued production of MASSIVE has become unaffordable as funding from students’ associations has run out.

Morgan Browne, MASSIVE’s Editor, told Salient that the money they were getting from the University did not even cover the cost of printing, and while they had looked into cutting production costs, the savings would not have been sufficient to save the magazine.

MASSIVE funding is decided by Massey’s External Relations, whose role encompasses communications, marketing and Massey’s public relations. Browne told Salient that she feels that the relationship with Massey has become difficult as MASSIVE has published more “risky” stories in the past year, including a story which revealed the President of Massey’s Extramural Students’ Society was paying herself $50,000 a year for 27 hours’ work a week.

Brown has also alleged that Massey staff have asked her to alter content in MASSIVE. James Gardiner, Massey’s Communication Director, said he didn’t know anything about that, and while he can’t rule it out, “I would be aware of it if it had happened.”

MASSIVE’s final issue will contain a 6000-word article investigating student-media funding at Massey. Salient will continue to follow this story as it unfolds.

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