U-View site steps toward ‘strong presence’

Written By Nicole Chynoweth

Point Park University student-run television station U-View launched its new website on Feb. 2 giving its members another outlet for broadcasting work, and benefitting its viewers by making the consumption of news content more individualized. The website launch was celebrated with a party held outside the Point Café that afternoon. “The goal of the U-View website is to get more personal, and for everyone who is involved in U-View to truly connect personally with everyone here on campus,” said sophomore broadcasting major Claire Gysegem, who is U-View’s web developer. At the launch party, students could peruse the website on net-books, talk to U-View’s members and enjoy free cookies and a free U-View T-shirt. The launch was appropriately held on the organization’s birthday, which was established in 2007. Anthony Moretti, acting assistant dean of the School of Communication and associate broadcasting professor, sees the website as a beneficial medium for the university overall. “To add to the next layer of U-View’s growth on this day makes sense,” Moretti said of the launch’s date. “We had a real roll-out for [the creation of U-View] then, and this is the next step.” U-View will be utilizing the website as a medium for users to view all of its content in one place. The station’s program schedule, events, U-View member blogs, Facebook, Twitter and information on getting involved with the station are all accessible on the website. “When you look at everything now, the Internet is where it’s at,” Gysegem said. “That’s where people go for information and media. I think [the website is] very important, especially with the direction that Point Park is taking to establish a strong web presence. We want to make ourselves known to the students here on campus.” Gysegem, who has worked with U-View since the first day of her freshman year, went to Heather Starr Fiedler, an associate professor of multimedia, last semester to register U-View on WordPress, a free website for publishing content. After that, Gysegem and U-View worked for five months to create a polished website for U-View. “It took a very long time to get it off the ground,” said junior broadcasting major Michele Haney, co-executive director of U-View. “It took a lot of phone calls, e-mails and persistence, and now that it is up, it looks great. There is only room for improvement all the time, but it’s definitely a start and that’s what we were hoping for as a main goal of this year. It’s happening.” The website is updated and managed by Gysegem, but all members of U-View are allowed to contribute with registered usernames for the WordPress account. Because of the website, U-View, a closed-circuit station that is only broadcasted on campus on channel 953, can now be reached anywhere a student is using the Internet, which will help reach out to students who live off-campus. “This gives students another organized way to look at U-View, to know what’s going on at U-View, and they will be able to listen to what our crews, boards and producers have to say about the shows,” Haney said. “It definitely makes U-View more personal. It gives a personality to U-View that I don’t think was ever really there before.” Jesse Colaizzi, an adjunct faculty member and former student adviser of U-View, also views the website as a way to attract a bigger audience. “You can get [U-View] on the go,” Colaizzi said. “Now it can be anywhere you are. You can view it anywhere in the world.” “For an internal audience, it gives them an opportunity to catch up on programs they missed and to learn a little more about the folks who are involved in U-View,” Moretti said. “Externally, it’s a marketing tool for us. It’s an opportunity for us as faculty, students and members of the university as a whole to highlight particularly the broadcast program, but to a greater extent the School of Communication.” For more information about U-View, visit http://pointparktelevision.com/ or email [email protected] (ad space?-rach). Senior broadcasting major Emily Berk, who is U-View’s executive director, urges students to consider getting involved. “I think a lot of students feel like just because they are not in the broadcast major, they cannot be involved, but that is not the case at all. They can,” Berk said. “They just have to be motivated to do it.”