FAQ

 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)*

*The following list of questions is the result of a culmination of repetitive or common inquiries asked to members of our organization. For the sake of transparency, we have answered them here, at-length, to allow our readers to know how we handle business, not as “terms” or “conditions,” but to ensure that everyone can interact effectively with the community.



TIPS / LEADS


DO YOU ACCEPT TIPS OR LEADS FROM THE COMMUNITY?


  • Absolutely. In fact, we encourage it. Receiving any kind of intel from the community helps us gauge what issues are important to them and motivates us further to cover such issues. All tips and leads will be considered and followed up on when possible. We would also like to emphasize, though, that the community does not completely dictate coverage. All published work on our platform must reflect and amplify the truth and nothing less. 


HOW CAN I SUBMIT?


  • We accept tips via email. Screenshots or any sort of proof about any claims made will make our job easier and allow us to make more progress. Rumors or hearsay is hard to follow and we want to make sure we dedicate our time to backed claims if and when possible but also understand the value of all kinds of information in any form. 


CAN I SUBMIT ANONYMOUSLY?


  • Yes, though you run the risk of us not being able to gain as much traction as we would with a source that we can actively communicate with for more information or clarification. We prefer that sources reach out, named, and disclose that they would like to remain anonymous so we can evaluate from there. 


HIRING 


ARE YOU CURRENTLY HIRING?


  • The editorial board accepts “applications” for new staff writers and content creators on a regular basis. “Applications” is in quotations to emphasize two things. The first is that we, in no way, want to act as gatekeepers or all-knowing judges of talent or skill. We do not want to assert ourselves as more knowledgeable than anyone or promote the idea that you have to “impress” us. The second is that we do not review applications based on pre-existing portfolio work or skill, but rather the potential to benefit and succeed as a part of the AGENCY team. 


HOW CAN I APPLY?


  • Any LMU undergraduate student can apply using this form. There is a section asking for portfolio work that can be submitted there or you can send them as attachments via email. You may also submit a resume if you feel called to, but that isn’t required nor will it affect your application.


  • We would also like to add that you may reach out to us via DM or email if you have any questions about the language used in the application or find any language inaccessible. We are happy to remove all possible barriers that could come between you and an application that best represents you.


DO I NEED EXPERIENCE?


  • No. As students who are always learning and as people who wholeheartedly understand that experience, in most cases, is a privilege that not many have, we encourage any contributor at any experience level to apply. 


  • We will be transparent about the fact that creators with experience will be given priority, given that we are very understaffed and consistently occupied with coverage and in need of immediate help. But we will always make the effort to try to meet people where they’re at. Priority is also unashamedly given to students of marginalized backgrounds (especially BIPOC) as a news organization dedicated to uplifting voices often unheard.


CAN I WRITE FOR AGENCY EVEN IF I WRITE FOR THE LOYOLAN OR ANY OTHER STUDENT PUBLICATION?


  • Contributors of any kind from other outlets or publications are welcome to apply and are considered on a case by case basis on possible conflicts of interest. While we do not bar people from other publications from writing or applying to write for us, we do take it into consideration as a reason not to hire regarding source privacy and confidentiality. Information on stories we’re covering and sources we are using are things we remain committed to protecting for their safety, not necessarily just “protecting our scoops.”


SUBMITTING WORK


WHAT IF I CAN’T COMMIT TO A FULL-TIME STAFF POSITION BUT WANT TO CONTRIBUTE WORK ON OCCASION?


  • The AGENCY is happy to review any work that a person wants to be considered for publishing at any time as freelancers or otherwise. However, we cannot guarantee publishing at any point before review. 


  • If you have a piece that you want to write but haven’t yet, we ask that you submit writing samples and a short pitch (1-2 sentences) explaining the scope of the piece using this form. Pitches are reviewed every Friday at 1 P.M. PST — something to keep in mind if your pitch is time-sensitive or urgent. Any pitches submitted after this time will be reviewed the following Friday.


  • Though approval for pitches does not guarantee publishing, we will do our best to help workshop the idea into its best draft for when it is eventually reviewed.


WHAT KIND OF WORK DO YOU ACCEPT OR LOOK FOR?


  • Content or beats that we look for: Broadly summarized, we look for content commenting on or reporting on issues of social justice (which we believe is quite honestly, always relevant) that directly involve/affect/engage the LMU community or use LMU events as an "in" to exploring a larger issue. We understand that this can be widely interpreted so some things we can definitely say that we are interested in are:

    • Public policy and its effect on marginalized students

    • The experiences of marginalized students at LMU

    • Conversations surrounding privilege and higher education

    • Artistic or creative content with undertones of a social justice issue


  • A key point or guiding principle for what we don't accept: if it sounds like an article that would be on Buzzfeed — we don't want it. Listicles are rarely published. What we're looking for are deeper dives into issues of social justice from an LMU perspective.

  • Mediums we accept: reported pieces, op-eds, photography, essays, videos, and poetry (very selectively). We also willingly accept old classwork that remains relevant as a publication that wants to encourage the sharing of one’s work beyond the classroom. 


  • The editorial board would also like to emphasize that we do not have the bandwidth to “assign” stories to folks for ethical and professional reasons. We also know that it isn’t up to us to decide what is newsworthy when we are community-based and led and make it a point to listen to what is important to them as a whole. We prefer that contributors of any kind pitch their own ideas that they are passionate about, should they want to be published, for optimal use of time for both parties. 


HOW CAN I SUBMIT?


  1. Send us an email detailing your submission and any important information pertaining to it with it attached as a Google document. No Word documents or PDF’s will be accepted. 

  2. Title your document with a slug (general subject of the piece) and your name (i.e. RAVEN— AAUP FUNDRAISER).

  3. At the bottom of the document, write a possible social media caption for your piece to promote it on social media after publishing. (i.e. picking a quote you feel is impactful and a one-sentence summary of the piece that encourages people to read it)

  4. Update the sharing settings so anyone with the link can edit. 

  5. Your piece will then move through three rounds of copyediting (content, grammar/spelling, final check) before publishing.


EDITING


  • Our policy is that 2-3 editors review every piece for the following: clarity, fact-checking, spelling/grammar, and AP style. Fact-checking and AP style are non-negotiable aspects of the editing process but clarity and grammar are subject to more of a discussion-based approach.


  • We acknowledge the psychological phenomenon that editing, when it comes to clarity and grammar in a subjective context, is typically a result in us impressing our styles on another writer. This will not stop us from offering honest feedback out of respect for your work but we want to make it clear that we do not adopt a “what we say goes” approach. We will stand our ground on most edits because we want any work published on our platform in its best shape but will not do so at the expense of suppressing one’s voice. 

    • If you disagree with an edit, you are welcome to note/challenge it and we can revisit it in the form of a conversation. We do ask that you do not delete the edit until it is resolved so we don’t suggest the same edit with each round of review. 

    • We will also leave our contact information on the document so we can be reached easily with questions or need for clarification on any edits. Contributors can also request a one-on-one zoom call for more direct communication.

    • If you feel that you have been mistreated or insulted or devalued at any time in the editing process, don’t feel afraid to make it known. We firmly believe that the editing process should be collaborative and not harmful in any way.


  • We will never edit your piece without noting it. Feedback is done via the “comment” or “suggestion” feature on Google Docs. 


PUBLISHING


  • When the piece is ready for publishing you will be notified and potentially asked for a visual to accompany it, though providing one is not required. 


  • You will also be tagged on social media when your piece is promoted there (unless you request not to be) and properly tagged by last name on the website so you can easily click it to access any other articles you’ve written on one page for portfolio purposes.


PRESS


I’D LIKE TO INTERVIEW THE AGENCY FOR A PIECE.


  • The editorial board does not conduct individual interviews. No voice in our leadership team is valued over another and to reflect this, we will only participate in press inquiries or interviews of any kind as a group— all four of us or none of us. Exceptions can be made but will be made very selectively. 


  • Before you reach out, review this page in its entirety before approaching us for comment or quote. Out of respect for both of our time, do this if not any additional research. As a board of people of color, it is worth considering that you do this to also be conscious of the time and labor that would be asked of us in these interviews and have that reflected in your questions. 


MISC.


IS THE AGENCY A LIBERAL PUBLICATION?


  • In the sense that we believe that everyone is deserving of human rights— yes. If this is something you’re intolerant of, we perhaps recommend utilizing your right to choose where you get your news and consume content from a different source. Nothing’s stopping you. 


DO YOU ACCEPT PIECES WITH “CONSERVATIVE” POINTS OF VIEW?


  • If said conservative points of view do not harm or invalidate the true, lived experiences of individuals in the community or promote hateful or discriminating ideals— yes.


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