Trojan Times Changed With the Times

The Trojan Times has been an entity on campus for a number of years, it was started in 1891. This happened ten years after the inception of Dakota State University (Dakota Normal School at the time). There have been a variety of name changes throughout the years. It started as the Oyaka, and transitioned to the Eastern in 1919. It later changed to Dakota Access and finally the name we know today, Trojan Times, was chosen.

The Trojan Times has gone through a number of changes and adaptations throughout the times. The faculty advisor from the early 2000s until the introduction of the online edition, John Laflin, said that the paper went through a number of changes over his time with the university.

There was a change in the creation of the print paper. “One change was the way the paper was put together. In those first few years, we printed a master copy that was hand carried to Leader Printing. Photos were left as blank spaces, carried separately, and had the repro scale specified. The change to using more sophisticated page layout software with PDF and electronic transmission to Leader Printing was a huge time saver,” said Laflin. The print edition of the newspaper existed until 2010.This is similar in a sense to the software used to compose the print edition showcased over the last two semester. Now though they are composed using Adobe InDesign.

There were some problems that existed in the composition of some of the stories. The main one being the topics that were chosen to be published. The most common topic within the weekly publications during Laflin’s time with the paper was sports. “One problem with the paper coming out once a week was that a lot of the ‘news’ (and especially the sports) was stale,” Laflin.

When asked about the importance of student-run papers Laflin said, “those kinds of papers provide an important outlet for student writers. It may even inspire some of them to pursue journalism. But student run papers need to be an independent voice, and not an ‘official’ voice of the institution.”