Story of the Year: Standing up to Michael Jackson (the USC vice president)


Zachary FoxThis semester was supposed to be Zachary Fox's revolution. The former editor in chief of the University of Southern California's Daily Trojan had a long list of all the changes he wanted to make at the paper. Above all, he wanted to bring financial independence and transparency to a newspaper whose finances are controlled by the university it's supposed to report on. But then Michael Jackson, the university's vice president of student affairs--not the oddball popstar--blocked Fox from returning to the E-I-C position for a second term, angering college newspaper editors across the country.

"I should almost thank Michael Jackson, really," Fox told Paper Trail yesterday. "These first two weeks of school have been incredible. It's such a change to not have to worry about the paper every second of your day." Fox hasn't quit the Trojan--or journalism--for good, though; he's got a profile of the USC president in the pipeline, and he's taken on a new extracurricular job at the university's Center for the Study of Journalism and Democracy. He also plans to help the Trojan continue to advocate for independence. "The University of Southern California has a university paper," he says. "It needs to have a student newspaper."

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