Durham One branded as a “Daily Mail/ Nuts Hybrid"

Read our tongue-in-cheek response to a former Palatinate editor’s cheap shot in the Guardian

controversy durham editors the guardian the one unilad

Yesterday, Durham University was treated to a kick in the teeth by writer Rachel Aroesti, who wrote in The Guardian deploring students' reverence of the ‘laddish’ culture .


Last year’s Indigo Editor of the high-brow broadsheet, Palatinate, used Durham One as a target for her criticism writing that the publication “exists to court controversy, being inventive with taboos, and ultimately being able to call anyone who finds it offensive ‘stupid’ for not appreciating the complex irony involved”.


For those of you who haven’t read it, the piece appeared in the cerebral pull out G2, which has recently featured articles entitled ‘Typing- It’s Complicated’ and also highlights the threat posed by ‘Bald Barbies.’ This particular article appeared yesterday in ‘The Women’s Blog with Jane Martinson.’


In contrast to the high-brow broadsheet, Palatinate, Durham One was described as a ‘Daily Mail/ Nuts Hybrid’ by Aroesti. Perhaps it was this winning formula that prompted the Guardian itself to name the Durham One as ‘Student Publication of the Month’ in May 2011.


If we were to fulfil such a crude branding, The One would necessarily have to be a platform that hosted a rather bizarre maelstrom of far-right views and a smattering of tits. While the lack of the latter may be lamented by some readers, we certainly have no aspiring Richard Littlejohns on our team.


In similar fashion, one might be drawn into comparing university mouthpiece, high brow broadsheet and prolific whipping boy Palatinate to the Soviet newspaper Pravda in its Stalinist glory days.


The One is undoubtedly unable to match the high-brow broadsheet Palatinate in imparting exhaustive analysis on whether Durham really is a sanctuary for Oxbridge rejects or its unparalleled ability in publishing re-hashed press releases from the office of the DSU.


This publication relies on a dynamic interaction with Durham students by encouraging them to upload content and visit the website on their own accord. This is a subtle contrast to the high-brow broadsheet Palatinate forcing itself onto the student body with fortnight flooding of JCRs across the university.


One of the accusations levelled was that The One peddles a brand of misogyny which is ‘laying claim to huge swathes of the university experience.’ There is no disguising that The One’s writers may be susceptible to the odd crass remark at the expense of the fairer sex but this is by no means one-way traffic.


Perhaps Aroesti stumbled upon the hugely popular Durham One column by Miss Alex Mansell as she was sifting through the site’s back-log for a suitably controversial article to deplore (she settled on a ten-month old opinion piece comparing the Libyan conflict to a Bailey Bar Crawl).


Mansell is no stranger to objectifying the opposite sex, writing on how to bail from a morning-after scenario or running into previous bed-partners. Coupled with a recent article from a female contributor on some boys whose sexual performance might render them as ‘minus-two virgins’, one might suggest that even the most confident of male readers will have had moments of self-doubt and insecurity. 


Branding The One in such lazy fashion is bound to elicit a defensive reaction from The One’s editorial board, as they contribute a lot of their time to the upkeep of the website. However, we take it as a compliment that representatives of the high-brow broadsheet Palatinate have resorted to crass swipes in order to undermine their “biggest rival”.


It is perhaps the most significant sign yet that the ailing publication’s status as Durham’s ‘official newspaper’ is no longer synonymous with ‘most popular’.


Read Rachel Aroesti's full article here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/the-womens-blog-with-jane-martinson/2012/feb/06/unilad-culture-joke-seriously-unfunny?INTCMP=SRCH