The Rambler: Not Paperless, But Proactive

Rambler Staff Editorial

In the midst of the implementation of a paperless initiative, many at Transylvania have begun to question where The Rambler fits into this plan — whether a hard-copy newspaper can ever exist on a paperless campus.

To put it plainly: The Rambler will not be directly affected by this plan. According to President Williams, paper publications such as The Rambler and The Transylvanian are not the targets of the paperless initiative. Rather, the target remains sheets of paper used for printing assignments, advertisements, syllabi and so on. The Rambler is a viable and valuable resource on Transylvania’s campus, and we will maintain this presence in our traditional printed form.

Although for the time being The Rambler will not begin the transition to being paperless, this does not mean we are exempt from adhering to the values of sustainability and impact reduction inherent in the paperless initiative. In fact, The Rambler has already made reducing its environmental impact a priority.

Weekly, The Rambler only prints 600 copies, and this results in our using only one roll of newsprint per academic year. To contrast, many daily newspapers use multiple rolls just for one issue. In comparison, then, The Rambler is already an environmentally low-impact paper.

In addition to its already low paper usage, The Rambler is also printed on 70 to 75 percent recycled paper according to our publisher Mike Scogin at the Georgetown News-Graphic. Our colored inks are soybean-based rather than oil-based, and we recycle our returned papers every week.

Scogin further emphasized our comparatively low impact by calling the newspaper a “renewable resource,” based on the fact that the majority of paper for printing newspapers comes from tree farms. Most of the paper does not result from the demolition of forests but from the cultivation of trees, like crops, which are used for producing newspapers and whose farms are then replanted.

Even though we have already taken steps to become more sustainable, we constantly strive for improvement. In light of the announcement of the paperless initiative, The Rambler has begun considering taking inventory of our leftover papers to see if we could reduce our number of printed copies. Additionally, we have begun to discuss the possibility of moving more and more content online.

An option like creating a professional online newspaper would require more technological and human resources than we at The Rambler currently have, but the important thing is that, in our operations, The Rambler will continue to seek new ways to limit our use of natural resources while remaining a productive force on this campus. For now, though, your paper Ramblers are here to stay.


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