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It’s time to SPEAK UP

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. But the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do” Apple Inc.

I’ve always believed that capturing people’s attention requires something out of the ordinary. Something that catches them off guard and provokes them, challenges them. Something so outrageous yet so compelling that it forces people to stop and think. And talk. And act. And change.

There is a reason that The Harbus does not report to HBS’s administration. It reports straight to Harvard University. Simply because its mission is to look over the governing bodies of the school, expose their successes, analyze their failures, critique their flaws and inconsistencies,and offer solutions. It is the mission of any form of free press to advance our system towards the better. To constantly embrace and embody transparency.

Therefore, this is my promise to you: starting this issue, The Harbus will not just give you “news”. We will give you perspective. We will argue forcefully and with conviction towards any topic we cover. We will take positions, stand by them, and support them with evidence. We aren’t looking for a fight, but we do want to raise the level of debate over here. We’ll be more involved, more present. We’ll talk about the issues. ALL of the issues. Even the taboos. Actually, especially the taboos. I was deeply amused when a friend of mine told me that this vision is a bit “aggressive”. My response was: “I know dude. That’s the point”. I’ve personally never seen anybody get anywhere by being pointedly diplomatic most of the time – even diplomats.
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Besides, we’re students at the best Business School in the world. Whether we like it or not we’ll be under a constant spotlight. We might as well bring everything out into the open, because someone else eventually will anyway (The New York Times ring any bells?). After reading that NY Times article, my biggest question -beyond fundamentally disagreeing with the article- was “How the hell was this not exhausted on campus before? Why are we JUST talking about this now?!”

So as long as you’re holding this paper, know that whatever article you’re reading is not some made-up larger-than-life depiction of a topic we struggle with. These are actual opinions by actual people who study here. Again, actual students think this. We’re just following up on deadlines, checking the facts, and making sure that the views we present are not wild outliers or anomalies. You may find cynical, inflammatory and polarizing views here. Remove yourself from wondering whether it is appropriate for a student newspaper to post some of the articles here and imagine that behind every article is a person, talking to you, making a good point, no matter how annoying they sound.

In turn, we are open to all sorts of criticisms from you, and we invite you to engage with us at any time, on anything. Let us know if you think our analysis is wrong. If you feel something hasn’t been covered comprehensively, that we’ve missed a vital point, I invite you to reach out and say so. Make us better, because heaven knows we’re not perfect. In the end, whether you send us flowers or throw rocks at us, we’ll know that at least on some level, we engaged you. Because it’s our responsibility. And our pleasure. And your right.

I have already done some light research on whether HBS students prefer The Harbus to be in hard copy or online or are indifferent, and a majority advocate online. I promise you we’re working on it. I’m putting a new team together, and we’re making a lot of operational changes, so bear with me. Speaking of changes, I’ve decided to bring The Harbus down from monthly to bi-weekly. It’s a hell of a lot more work, but there’s a lot to cover: you guys are active as hell. So, starting the Fall, expect a Harbus edition on your desk before 9:10am every other Monday.

And with that, I’ll leave you with the rest of this issue. Enjoy!

April 7, 2014
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