Missouri School of Journalism proud of photographer Tim Tai. Melissa Click, not so much


Her courtesy appointment in the School of Journalism allows her to participate on doctoral committees in the J School. She apparently has never taught in the J School, and isn’t paid by the J School.



Nope, it’s exactly the courtesy appointment I hold at my university’s Department of Philosophy. I get to teach classes and participate in some departmental activities, but I report to my main department for tenure and promotion issues. And… I’m very grateful for it and would never do anything to jeopardize my relationship with philosophy… unlike some people who think they can show up on camera and not have their untenured contract yanked.


Clearly she doesn’t give a crap about her career. This kind of unwarranted attention doesn’t get you tenured and promoted.


No-one would be put in a position to try this kind of thing with P. Diddy or Rumsfeld because both of them know better than to hold their private meetings in the middle of a public outdoor space during a major news event.

It’s a college campus in a college town. If they wanted a serious, no-press-allowed meeting they could find an empty classroom, a library study room, or the back room of a bar. Plenty of sympathetic allies to provide that safe space for an hour or two.

But people like Click are more concerned with being seen in public leading the movement and guiding the young people. From her Tweet she seemed happy to have the national media involved as long as it was sending that message, but a private meeting during protest hours might lead to her missing out.


The point is the assumption of 100% access and this story getting pushed in order to split support for the students.

P.S. Look at the other story floating around beneath this one, where some are writing about the long history of racism at the university. But this here crowd management incident is surely more germane to the issues the students are concerned with.


If that’s the intent of the story it’s not working. I see no evidence of any serious splitting – most people are laughing at Click even though they still support the movement. In any case the protesters got their initial demands, albeit with the help of the high profile football players.

In the end I hope it becomes a lesson to the students about choosing their mentors and leaders and spokespeople more carefully in future demos.


While I understand the principles and ironies regarding free speech and free space that this story illustrates, the role of the “objective” detached journalist (the photographer) is fraught with conflicts of interest between the journalist’s job of propagating ruling ideas (while sincerely believing his job is to report the truth) and the story’s subjects’ interest in having their truths told. More on this, in particular regard to photojournalism


Courtesy Appointment — An appointment where there is no compensation provided by the university. Used as a mechanism to provide access to certain university benefits (i.e., ID card, library, computer) and to track associations with the university. This information appears on the Job Data PeopleSoft pages as an Action/Reason.


of course, that’s human resource’s definition-- the Journalism school might extend specific privileges to these volunteers. Sometimes, a courtesy appointment comes with the right to offer a course under the school’s auspices.


Down with journalism. Up with propaganda.


Hats off to Mr. Tai who knows what reporting is all about. Shame on the “civil rights” protesters who don’t understand the First Amendment. And as for the weirdo prof in the glasses? The MU Journalism School should ditch that gal ASAP. Go gettem’ Tim. And hopefully some other reporters are right behind you today.


Here’s a follow up from a few minutes ago with her apology and other stuff.



I have never really cared for prop comics.


I suppose, but a good ally would have told them that was a bad idea.

I don’t think that’s allowed any more.


I really would even give Click the benefit of the doubt here. I know a number of academic professor types that are brilliant yet this was a situation where she was intimately involved in a movement, in a chaotic environment where passions were running very high.

I get it and quite honestly a number of posters here potentially would lose their shit in the heat of the moment as well.

However, what makes me sad is that I doubt she is going to own up to that behavior. I would anticipate within 48 hours a professionally crafted PR message from her will be posted stating how she was only protecting the sensibilities of those protesting and creating a safe place for them to address their issues, etc completely ignoring the core issue of ‘the press’ right to report from a public space’.

imho, Its totally ok to be a circumstantial asshole however at least own that, admit it, and learn from your actions. Its completely OK to be wrong in this world. Just learn from it and move on.


Me too. We’re all busy condemning her, and that’s fun. But there’s a few puzzle pieces that don’t fit. Did she have a complete reverse of values? Or are we maybe misunderstanding one (or both) of her stances?

Aww, hell with it. This is the internet. Go back to reviling the hated one.

(P.S. The First Amendment does not apply.)


Well, at least she’s owned it and it wasn’t a not-pology.


For anyone who can’t or won’t click through to Buzzfeed, Click resigned her courtesy appointment to the J-school before a vote could be held, and issued a pretty decent apology.


And has received rape and death threats, and has probably lost her career, so everyone should be happy now. Meanwhile, on the MU campus, people are anonymously threatening to shoot every black person they see.


Yeah, and while you guys defend photojournalist’s rights, this is happening now at MU.