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The Diamondback
The front page of The Diamondback on January 26, 2009
Type Daily newspaper
Format Broadsheet
Owner Maryland Media, Inc.
Founded 1910
Language English
Headquarters College Park, Maryland
Circulation 17,000
Official website

The Diamondback is the independent student newspaper of the University of Maryland, College Park. It was founded in 1910 as The Triangle and renamed in 1921 in honor of a local reptile, the Diamondback terrapin (the terrapin became the official school mascot in 1933). The newspaper is published daily Monday through Friday during academic sessions and once a week during the summer, with a print circulation of 17,000 and annual advertising revenues of more than $1 million. Kevin Robillard is the current editor-in-chief of The Diamondback. [1]

The paper's current independent status was originally intended as punishment — the Board of Regents cut off student funding after The Diamondback's actions in 1971, when it ran two pages blank in protest of campus censorship and placed tombstones on its editorial page in protest of the Vietnam War. [2]

The Diamondback is an affiliate of UWIRE [3], which distributes and promotes its content to their network.



The Diamondback is split into four sections:

  • News - The news section covers both on- and off-campus news, specifically in the region of College Park, Maryland, but also expands coverage to Annapolis, Maryland when the state's legislature is in session.
  • Opinion - The editorial section contains The Diamondback's editorial, op-eds and letters to the editor, and editorial cartoons.
  • Diversions - The entertainment section contains reviews of movies and music, as well as concerts and plays around the College Park region.
  • Sports - The sports section covers University of Maryland athletics, including men's basketball and football. This section often has a combination of news and opinion articles.

Editorial Line

The editorial page of The Diamondback has a general stance of free market Libertarianism. This philosophy is seen in its opposition to rent control, calls for privatization, opposition to tax hikes and inclination for the university to decrease reliance on public funding, and support of a resolution to relax marijuana penalties on campus. [4] [5] [6] [7] [8]


For the 2008-2009 school year, The Diamondback placed second in the national Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Awards ranking of daily student newspapers. It received the first-place award for its region. [9]

For the 2005-2006 school year, The Diamondback received a Mark of Excellence award, placing 3rd nationally for Best All-Around Daily Student Newspaper and placing first in its region in the same category.



Notable journalists who worked at The Diamondback include:

  • Jayson Blair (editor-in-chief in 1996), former journalist for The New York Times. Blair achieved nationwide notoriety as a journalist at the Times for having made serious reporting errors plus plagiarizing and/or making up stories. A letter signed by 30 former Diamondback staffers regarding the situation with Blair also complained about the lack of involvement by the board which owns the paper.[10]
  • Norman Chad (editor-in-chief in 1978), an ESPN columnist and World Series of Poker commentator.
  • David Mills, a former features writer for The Washington Times and The Washington Post. Mills also found success in Hollywood. He was a television writer for NYPD Blue from 1995 to 1997. He also wrote several episodes of Homicide: Life on the Street and ER. In 2003, he created Kingpin, an NBC miniseries. He has won two Emmy Awards.
  • Michael Olesker, former columnist for the Baltimore Sun, commentator for WJZ-TV and writer for the Baltimore Examiner. He resigned from the Sun after accusations of plagiarism.
  • David Simon, author of Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets and The Corner. Based on his books, Simon later created the TV series Homicide: Life on the Street and The Wire, as well as the mini-series, The Corner.



External links



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