Short Takes: MSHSL/Target Center keep things absurd

Posted: June 3, 2021


On April 10, the Minnehaha boys’ basketball team won their fourth-consecutive state championship at Target Center, but neither the Talon newspaper nor the Antler yearbook took photos of the historic event. Why not? Because we’re lazy?

No, because we were denied access by the Minnesota State High School League and Target Center. MSHSL had to reduce their media passes to nine per game – and chose not to give any to schools. Student-media members were told to buy tickets and take photos from the seats.

But Target Center would not allow ticket holders to use cameras with detachable lenses, which would be the only way to get photos we could use and own copyright to. Many requests for a change of either policy were refused by both MSHSL and Target Center.


I was not surprised to hear that the MSHSL had once again made an absurd rule. I was, however, surprised when I learned who the subjects were: student journalists. MSHSL operates and maintains its monopoly on high school sports through the athletes that participate in its programs. So, it’s easy to see why they would try to maintain control over those athletes through various rules and eligibility factors.

What’s not easy to see is how they would benefit from banning student journalists from taking photos at the boys’ basketball State Tournament. It clearly wasn’t due to COVID guidelines, because every usual professional photographer was there.

Thanks to the organization’s stubbornness, students were robbed of the opportunity to take photos of their own classmates finishing out an undefeated season, as others with no relation to the school were able to (not that it’s their fault, though). Furthermore, student publications now must pay for any photos from State that they want to use.

Hopefully, it was a one-time error of judgment.

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