EXEPOSÉ EDITORIAL 18/05/15 – ‘PEOPLE VERSUS PAPER’

In the midst of exam season, you’re probably sick of the sight of books. Apparently the library are too. Shelves are being scrapped in favour of increased study space as the University continues to burst at the seams.

Finding a place to procrastinate is an important issue to us students and one we’re often griping about. We need chairs to chat, after all. However, academics are outraged about the removal of texts from the library. And when we say outraged, we mean there have been a few strongly worded emails. Lecturers versus librarians – now there’s a fi ght worth watching. Mayweather and Pacquiao eat your heart out.

It is a legitimate question though: in our technological age, are physical texts really all that necessary? What is more important, having space for students to study, or having the physical resources for students to study with?

The library have done their best to off er alternatives to the Forum – signs are everywhere to redirect us. The powers that be even installed some trippy study pods in the newly refurbished Loft to lure us in. But the Forum Library still remains the place to be. How else are we going to power through those essays and equations without a Marketplace meet or casual Costa to break up the day? What’s more, that book we might need at the last minute is just around the corner – but for how much longer?

Of course, efficiency is key and there will be a large number of printed texts gathering dust where online resources have taken over. But for many disciplines, availability of physical books is crucial. Ultimately, these plans are another consequence of the University’s relentless expansion. Too many students, not enough space. Culling books is a sacrificial, short-term solution to a pervasive problem. For an examination of the pros and cons, see Comment on page 7.

Our other front page story sees PETA getting pretty peeved about the University’s intentions to increase animal research on campus. Exeposé ran a front page raising awareness of the issue back in October. This, together with Animal Welfare Soc’s nationally recognised campaign, has helped to up University transparency on experiments taking place.

Despite all our efforts however, guinea pigs (amongst others) are still being prodded and poked in the name of science. Is a more ethical alternative available?

In other news, you may or may not have noticed some building work taking place on Prince of Wales Road. Yet more overpriced accommodation is on the way – move over Holland Hall.

***

You’re probably sick to death of election coverage, but we just couldn’t help ourselves – soz. Labour MP Ben Bradshaw retained his seat in Exeter but that did little to stop the country drowning in blue. Look right for Harrison Jones’ thoughts on the implications of a Tory government for students. With young people heavily present in the #ToriesOutNow protests in London, the legitimacy of democracy is being immensely questioned.

In Features, Thomas Collins discusses the fi rst-pass-the-post system and calls for drastic electoral reform (page 8). It’s not just the system under scrutiny, Lifestyle analyse the best and worst election outfi ts over on page 12 whilst Music have compiled an election themed playlist (page 14).

We’re back with a yak this issue. Exeter’s Yik-Yak game is now infamously strong, as is our content. Check out the science behind the latest social media craze on page 22, as well as the top yaks of the week over in Lifestyle (page 12).

That’s all from us for now, but keep an eye out for our brand new ‘Press Preview’ which should be hitting your screens (and inboxes) sometime early next week. Best of luck with the remainder of the term, we hope your exams have not been quite as awful as your yaks suggest.

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