The Tech - Online EditionMIT's oldest and largest
newspaper & the first
newspaper published
on the web
Boston Weather: 64.0°F | Rain Fog/Mist and Breezy

Group drafts new policy on postering

By Annabelle Boyd

MIT student postering will soon be restricted to designated bulletin boards and official announcement spaces, according to Postering Policy Client Group Chair Mark J. D'Agostino '90.

The new policy, which was devised by the PPCG and is currently in its final draft, consists of five implementable measures.

First, an official policy will be written which clearly states what is appropriate and what is not allowed:

O+ No posters, flyers or other announcements shall be placed on any wall, door, window, pillar, floor, chalk board, ceiling, outside building space or other space at MIT other than a designated bulletin board or official announcement space.

O+ Any individual or group found in violation of the policy shall in the first infraction be given a warning. Any subsequent violation within the same academic year, shall subject the individual or group to disciplinary sanction.

O+ Sanctions include, but are not limited to, required work hours assisting Physical Plant in the maintenance of bulletin boards and walls, up to and including loss of recognition by the Association of Student Activities.

Second, additional designated poster space will be created along the Infinite Corridor and at strategic intersections and lobbies.

Third, a new management structure will be initiated in order to maintain student adherence to the policy.

Fourth, meaningful sanctions will be developed in response to violations of the policy.

Fifth, a substantial community education campaign will be planned in conjunction with the implementation of the new policy.

Formed in response to Physical Plant estimates of wall damage, which place the costs of repairs and repaintings at over $30,000 annually, the PPCG consists of students, members from Physical Plant and MIT officials.

According to D'Agostino, the PPCG tried to weigh the demands of both the administration and the students in creating the new policy.

A topic on the agenda at the last few ASA meetings, the policy has received "a lot of student input," D'Agostino added.

Recognizing that postering in the Infinite Corridor "is a necessary and effective means for rapid and timely communication on the campus," the policy requests $25,000 worth of bulletin boards to compensate for the lost wall space.

Final approval of the policy will have to come from Senior Vice President William R. Dickson '56, D'Agostino said, adding that Dickson seems open to the policy.

The group also concluded that "visual pollution has reduced the visibility and viability of posters thereby requiring ever increasing numbers and locations of posters."

Largely the result of "a culture of postering competition among groups," this visual pollution "has begun to add to the increasingly difficult task of communicating events and activities," rendering the expense in time and materials of some student postering "a task of diminishing returns," according to the poster policy group.

The PPCG hopes that the new bulletin boards, which will be separated by type and location, as well as a reorganization of the Institute's display cases, will alleviate some of this pollution problem. The new management structure seeks to help keep the boards in good repair, and to make sure they do not become cluttered with old notices.

It is likely that this policy will go into effect next fall, D'Agostino said.