It’s been the punchline of late-night comics for over a year now, but fake news is not a joke. The implications of spreading a false story are quite serious. Not only can fake news stories mislead readers, they can impact communities.
In Issue Four of the Navigator, we published an article, “Who and What Is Buried Next Door to VIU.” After the publication of this article, Navigator readers, former team members, and VIU Chair of First Nations studies, Laurier Meijeer Drees, all contacted us with concerns about the information printed. Drees wrote, “the history of the Nanaimo Indian Hospital is a serious one, affecting many people in our Nanaimo community. Although the NIH history is not common knowledge yet, this Navigator story does nothing but confuse and misrepresent the important issues involved, and is sloppy work.” Drees has been involved in scholarly research about the NIH for almost twenty years.
We retracted “Who and What is Buried Next Door to VIU,” because we could not stand by the article. The Navigator team could not allow the piece to circulate with a clear conscience, so we took it down from our website, and removed all physical copies of Issue Four from circulation. We also posted a public retraction on our Facebook page.
There were many great submissions from VIU students in Issue Four. Our contributors: Alex Bérubé-Robert, Dylan Keyzer, Liam Richardson, Raymond Wade, Joe Thoong, Emma Harrison, Alasdair Robertson, Jesse Wilson, Melisa Gruger, Phoenix Courtney, and Conar Rae Harris, all contributed amazing pieces to the Navigator. Their work is available online at thenav.ca, and I encourage everyone to support them in continuing their work.
I wrote an article in Issue Four titled, “What Happens Now.” The article is a long-form feature detailing the recent sexual misconduct controversy at VIU. We have included “What Happens Now” in the news section of this issue. We hope that this article can affect change in the dialogue around sexual misconduct on campus.
The Navigator will continue to publish the contributions of VIU students (including post-bach), alumni, faculty, and staff. All student submissions are paid $20 for their work. We welcome submissions of all artistic works including: visual art, photography, fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, comics, and all types of long form features. While contributors may submit any type of content, we do have some guidelines. We have a general 1250-word limit for written works, all political articles must address Canadian politics, and feature articles must be factually accurate. Please send submissions to email@example.com or any of our section editors. Their emails are included on the masthead.
We wish everyone the best of luck this semester, and we look forward to hearing from you.