Student media groups attack SUSU for “unacceptable” treatment
The Wessex Scene had to tidy up rubbish that wasn’t theirs
A leaked letter has revealed the anger of student media groups towards SUSU.
The letter, which was on the behalf of SUSU affiliated media groups the Wessex Scene, The Edge, Surge Radio, Union Films and SUSU TV outlines complaints about their treatment by SUSU staff during Freshers week.
It was written by Dan Linstead, the head of Surge Radio as part of his role as Creative Industries Services Representative for all of the student media groups affiliated with SUSU.
The letter seems to suggest divisions that go to the very core of the SUSU Creative Industries establishment. The issues raised by the media groups join a string of controversial decisions made by SUSU. The referendum on whether or not we should have a 24 hour library was faced with a general lack of support from the student community, one that was reinforced by SUSU reportedly spending £1000 of the budget on T-shirts.
The issues raised revolve predominately around the Union Fayre, Bunfight and Freshers Fayre and “mostly relate to how we as the media (including Union Films) are seen and treated, both by staff and other societies”.
One of the biggest concerns expressed in the letter was how the media groups “are treated and spoken to by members of staff” and that “it is completely unacceptable for us, and members of our committees, to be spoken to in the way that we have been”.
They give specific examples of this, including when a “member of Senior Management” was supposedly extremely rude to Surge Radio. They make it clear in the letter that they are all volunteers and “do not deserve to be spoken to in this manner nor will we allow it to continue to happen”.
The Wessex Scene were also cruelly “asked to tidy up the area throughout the day, which was unfair as the mess was not created by them”.
The blind injustice was furthered when they were “asked to move tables, despite SUSU/Facilities having put the tables down themselves”.
They were also upset at the “general lack of communication and organisation”. This is something that has recently become a sore topic for Union Films after a video was leaked showing a SUSU employee destroying their iconic sign. This appears to be due to a direct lack of communication from SUSU who mistook it for rubbish.
The letter goes on to purport that the communication from SUSU was so bad that the groups “were not told we had to set up in the morning” as well as “at the Freshers Fayre where we were in different places to where we were told we were going to be”
It is also controversial that the letter has been written by some of SUSU’s biggest societies and one’s that they heavily support financially.
The opening line makes it clear that it is “to be noted immediately as an official complaint from the student groups that I [Dan Linstead] represent”.
The anger expressed in the letter does not instil confidence in the Students Union that is supposed to represent and lead the entirety of the student body of Southampton University.