Missing newspapers raise concerns from The Daily Texan

Sarah White

An undetermined number of copies of Friday’s Daily Texan appear to have disappeared from news boxes across campus, according to the operations manager for Texas Student Media. Frank Serpas III, Texas Student Media operations manager, said he was concerned when he discovered the missing papers, which are printed and distributed by the Austin American-Statesman. “After noticing some empty boxes while walking to work, I contacted the Statesman to make sure there wasn’t a problem with delivery,” Serpas said. “They confirmed that the delivery drivers had distributed the papers.“

No one frm the Statesman delivery department could be reached for comment on Sunday.

Serpas said he has worked with The Daily Texan for 11 years and has never seen anything like this happen before.

“From 11 a.m. to noon, I checked a few dozen boxes on campus and in West Campus and found all but a handful completely empty,” Serpas said. “I didn’t find a large stash of papers anywhere, [but] I did find small stacks of Friday’s edition in a number of trash cans and recycle bins around campus, including some near the post office. It looks as though the culprits threw away the copies box-by-box instead of doing a massive dump somewhere.”

Serpas said he can only speculate as to why someone would steal the copies of The Daily Texan and hopes the UT Police Department will find the answer soon.

“I rescued a few of the copies and put them into some West Mall boxes, but most of them are still in the bins and are wet or trash-tainted,” Serpas said.

Representatives of UTPD said no one has reported a suspect or given UTPD any information about who may have taken the issues.

Viviana Aldous, editor-in-chief of The Daily Texan, said the issue was brought to her attention by a student on Friday and she immediately contacted Serpas.

“I cannot think of anything controversial that we ran that would lead someone to do this,” Aldous said. “The only thing I can think of is the story about Gary Border’s resignation.”

Friday’s issue contained a report about Borders, former Texas Student Media director. Borders claims to have been forced to resign from his position by the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.

Aldous said she was not sure if the Gary Borders story was linked to the disappearance and she requested that anyone who might have information regarding the missing papers to contact The Daily Texan.

Printed on Monday, February 20, 2012 as: Newspapers missing from UT stands