My Dearest Woroni,
You may not know it, but you and I have been involved for quite some time now. Nearly four and a half years to be exact. I remember when I first came across you in 2009, in my first year, I picked you up at college, and was pretty perplexed as to why you were calling yourself a “newspaper”. When it came to university student newspapers I was expecting something to be more like the Yale Daily, but Woroni at that time looking nothing like something that Rory Gilmore and Paris Gellar would work on. I remember though, so long ago, reading in that confusing little paper a regular series of haiku film reviews, and I fell in love, and it’s been a tumultuous affair ever since.
In 2010 you started to look more like a newspaper, but with the new look came some black censor lines, and then, nothing. There weren’t many editions for me to read, but I will never forget the first ANUSA OGM of that year, in which the editors were gleefully handing out photocopies of the banned edition and participating in the great censure motion of President Overlord T-Fletch. That OGM was the most attended general meeting of ANUSA that I had ever been to.
2011 was a conflicted year for me and you. The four new editors were all disturbingly good looking and well dressed in similar ways and what was even more disturbing was the previously mentioned overlord’s active campaigning for the beautiful ‘In the Loop’ ticket. Despite the Tully Taint, 2011 saw an independent Woroni (who don’t need no ANUSA), and you moved out of your one room in the ANUSA offices and into a demountable/shack conveniently located next to Gods in Union Court. At that time I had what is known as the confirmed best job on campus (student space staff, holla!), and actually became the very first student each fortnight to get my hands on the latest edition. At times I would be reading not just for the content, but also for the fun of red-penning the edition in what I assumed was a planned ‘Fix Our Grammar’ game put on by the editors.* Things were looking up for you my beloved Woroni. The new framework for the editorial board was fantastic and it looked like ANUSM was getting pretty legit. I just hated it when you did things like publishing peoples letters that they had asked you not to publish.
In 2012 I decided to take our relationship to the next and very public level. I signed up to be involved in the exciting new Woroni radio (which was called WHAM back in those days) and created what is now obviously the most popular Woroni radio show ‘Hey Grrrl Hey’. I wrote letters to the editors, and I interacted with your regular contributor’s and editors more than I ever had before. Finally, in our fourth year together, I felt like I was maybe part of the paper, in my own small way. I still hated it when you did things like put out a creative edition that had a “creative” perspective of domestic violence, without any editors notes, trigger warnings or information on DVCS. But I guess you wouldn’t be my Woroni without some problematic content.
First semester 2013 will be my last here at ANU (if I pass), and I am glad I dedicated some of my last precious moments to Woroni. I became Broadcasting Manager #1 (suck it BM #2), and spent my Thursdays and now Wednesday nights hooked on watching those broadcast numbers. I attended Woroni’s AUSMC and felt pretty proud to be there. I thought becoming independent would be the biggest thing I would see happen to you over my ridiculously long Arts degree, but the last year and a half has proven me wrong. The website is updated, your facebook numbers are bigger than ever, you’ve established a diverse range of contributors and mediums of content for students to engage with. You still think it’s okay to use the phrase ‘LSS Sluts’ in your unofficial first year guide and you still don’t really know how to appropriately trigger warning content, but you do try.
I will still read you in the terrifying and exciting period of my life that will be post-ANU, but one day I know, I will pick you up, and I won’t recognise the names of the student pollies you’re reporting on, and I know things will be that little bit different between you and I, the distance will have set. Whilst my university experience will primarily be marked by my involvement with the Women’s Collective, I’ve gotta say, you’ve been a pretty great shorty on the side.
Lots of love,
We acknowledge the Ngunnawal and Ngambri people, who are the Traditional Custodians of the land on which Woroni, Woroni Radio and Woroni TV are created, edited, published, printed and distributed. We pay our respects to Elders past and present and emerging. We acknowledge that the name Woroni was taken from the Wadi Wadi Nation without permission, and we are striving to do better for future reconciliation.