No Offence, the controversial magazine which was banned at Oxford University’s Freshers’ Fair last year, will be relaunching online and is taking submissions until mid-November, it was announced today.
In a post on the Facebook group Open Oxford and in a separate event page, Jacob Williams announced that this new edition was to be a global magazine, drawing submissions from all over the world, not just Oxford. The post also acknowledged that the previous magazine was criticised by many, and claims that the new issue will not seek to offend anyone for its own sake.
The premise of the magazine, as described in the public post, is that, “The only way to win the argument [over the extent of freedom of speech] is to exercise the right to free expression, and shift the debate to the actual issues that some people want to stop us discussing.”
The first edition of the magazine, which was initially planned to be distributed at last year’s Freshers’ Fair, was banned by OUSU. According to an OUSU statement, the 2015 magazine contained “a graphic description of an abortion, the use of an ableist slur, a celebration of colonialism, and a transphobic article”.
Jacob Williams commented to Cherwell, “With the debate about free speech in academia having reached parliament recently, No Offence is more topical then ever. No one should be offended by a well-reasoned argument or a sincere conviction. If you’ve ever felt stifled and unable to speak your mind, we urge you to come and write for us. Find our Facebook page and get in touch!”