Here's an interesting new mandate for all of Missouri School of Journalism's incoming freshman: equip themselves with iPhones and iPod touches. Actually, let's go ahead and clarify what "mandate" means here, as associate dean Brian Brooks has stated that no one will a be punished for not buying / owning one. While noting the audio recording and playback capabilities were motivation for this decision, he explains the reason it's classified as a requirement is because it lets students include it in their financial need estimate -- wholly beneficial when you're figuring out scholarships and loans. It doens't look like there'll be any direct discounts from U of M, however, unlike some other schools with similar initiatives. It's a clever loophole, to be sure, but we'd wager there's more than a few undergraduates who are none too pleased at the Apple favoritism, and to be honest, we love nothing more right now than imagining a large group of S60 and Zune supporters gathering in a field for frisbee, picnic, and lots of protesting.

[Via Macworld]