Jessica Klymchuk, Contributor Ω
The poster boards around campus are chaotic and crowded, seemingly defeating their purpose – yet the university has no plans to improve the situation.
The boards are meant to allow the TRU community to advertise a variety of products, services and events but the layers upon layers of advertisements unsystematically tacked on to them prevent effective communication. Old Main in particular houses some of the worst.
The university has a policy meant to regulate the use of the boards. Included are rules that states the organization placing the poster must be clearly identified, posters cannot be placed on walls and windows, only one of each poster shall be allowed on each board and for-profit businesses can’t use them.
All of these rules have been violated. The most common violation is for-profit business posting, wrote Sarah Graham, assistant dean of students, in an email. Nightclub Cactus Jacks has a large colour ad for an upcoming event on several boards.
The boards are monitored on a weekly basis and all postings are removed at the middle and end of each semester, wrote Graham.
“They do a poster board clean up twice or three times a year,” said Dustin McIntyre, TRUSU president. “After that they turn into the TRU Kijiji.”
The removal dates are Feb. 15, April 30, Oct. 30 and Dec. 30. The dates are advertised on a notice covered under a slew of papers, despite “please do not cover” written across the top.
Although there was a scheduled clean up on Dec. 30, a poster for the Winter Wonderland party on Dec. 6 remains up.
There is no action being taken to improve the system or improve regulation, Graham wrote.
The current system has made promotion for campus groups difficult because the boards become so overwhelming to read. Even the students union is facing problems when it tries to promote its services.
“We are trying to get the institution to limit poster board usage because that would allow us to help promotion,” said Jeromy Spence, TRUSU vice president finance, at the annual general meeting on Jan. 24.
Last year TRUSU expressed interest in working with Student Services to improve the functionality of the poster boards but had not initiated anything.
“What we said is we would be willing to work with the university on it,” McIntyre said. “However, the university is not interested in doing anything with the poster boards and we are not interested in taking on the role of policing the poster boards.”
TRUSU has its own set of poster boards, one in each building, but finds it effective to also post on the general boards for more exposure.
“I am not aware of TRUSU bringing forward any questions in the past year regarding this policy,” wrote Graham. McIntyre said TRUSU is not currently doing anything to work with the institution on improving the poster boards.
Postings do not require a date stamp. Graham told The Omega last year the stamping system does not deter people from posting and the current system was providing members of the TRU community with effective access to poster board space.
“I think it would benefit students if there was a more regulated, better poster board system; however, I don’t have a solution,” McIntyre said.