Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

GUTV Executives Envision Extended Coverage Despite Black Out in Live Debut

GUTV’s first live broadcast of the semester couldn’t exactly shatter the Nielsen index Wednesday night, as last-minute technical difficulties ultimately prevented the station from presenting the programming live.

Of three one-hour programs scheduled for taping in Sellinger Lounge, only one of the shows – “Right and Left,” a satirical political debate show – was filmed in its entirety, although it did not go on live due to audio difficulties.

Filming was scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. with an open-mic night open to all students. At 9 p.m., GUTV had planned to air a live taping of the news program “What’s the Deal with Matt Egan?” Neither of the two programs was filmed.

Eric Strauss (COL ’07), GUTV’s general manager and a contributing editor at THE HOYA, said that the technical difficulties stemmed from the station’s wires, which are hooked up through the Leavey Center and feed into GUTV’s headquarters in Bulldog Alley.

“It appears as though the wires encountered some resistance, perhaps from something in the ceilings, because the audio volume was very low,” he said.

Only a handful of viewers turned out to Sellinger to watch the taping, and most of the 20 seats set out for audience members remained vacant throughout the evening.

GUTV leaders, who last semester launched an effort to rebuild the station’s reputation with stronger programming and a greater on-campus presence, took some positive results from Wednesday’s live kickoff despite the difficulties.

“I get excited by the fact that we could think on our feet and still go on to production,” Strauss said.

Although live broadcasting got off to a shaky start for the semester, GUTV executives said that the network has undergone broad improvements in the past year, like continuous broadcasting, which began for the first time at the start of this year.

“This means that at all hours of the day on Channel 20, you will find student-produced programs,” Strauss said.

Chris Cairns (SFS ’07), the host of “Right and Left” and a former opinion editor at THE HOYA, said that the expanded coverage is made possible by new DVD players purchased over the summer.

“Everything is computerized,” Cairns said. “Once one DVD is done playing, the next one begins. They are currently on a one-week loop.”

The network has brought back much of its old programming, Strauss said, and will incorporate more new material as the year progresses. He said that it currently takes about two weeks to edit shows after filming, though the process should take only a few days later in the year.

Strauss added that the station’s film crew has been filming events on campus since the beginning of the semester, including speeches by Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Michael Chertoff, secretary of homeland security.

The network has also expanded its sports coverage this semester, covering all home football games this fall and looking to expand to the men’s lacrosse team in the spring.

“We want to show soccer games and even branch out into women’s basketball,” Strauss said.

Jess Fournier (COL ’07), GUTV’s marketing director, said that the network plans to increase its audience by becoming more present on campus.

“Many freshmen didn’t know about us last year, but this year we plan to stand in Red Square and hand out flyers with our broadcast schedule on them,” Fournier said. “When we get into a routine, we can start flyering individual shows.”

Strauss said that GUTV has plans for more live broadcasts from the Leavey Center on Wednesdays throughout the semester, and live tapings for other regular programs in future weeks.

Cairns said that he would like to see the next generation of GUTV executives expand on the progress made this year, and ultimately for the station to play a bigger role on campus.

“I’d like to see young people really step up and start to assume leadership roles,” he said. “I want to see the next generation make it a larger presence.”

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