North Texas Daily

The RTVF building needs a serious upgrade

The RTVF building needs a serious upgrade

Ario Solorio

The RTVF building needs a serious upgrade
January 23
10:50 2018

Have you ever watched Netflix while doing homework? Or played music while cooking? Or even played a movie with your phone in the GPS holder while driving? I know I’ve done all of these things about a million times before. This is because media is everywhere and always evolving.

During my orientation as a new student at UNT, I learned that the media arts program has its own 24-hour radio station and cable channel. I still remember my first step into the esteemed Radio, TV, Film & Performing Arts Building — otherwise known as RTVF — filled with, unbeknownst to me, empty promises.

It took me until the end of last semester to actually walk inside, as my nerves kept getting the best of me.

Every time I passed by, I thought to myself, “Where do I go first? Who should I speak with? Am I even allowed in here?”

Finally, on the Monday before finals week I was enjoying lunch in the Union with a classmate and had a few hours before my next class. I usually go home and have lunch with my best friend, but that day I decided to stay out and get some much-needed socialization.

As I stood in line waiting to order a Wednesday special in the food court, I got this idea about a book.

Of course I imagined this book becoming a bestseller, then naturally becoming a hit TV show.

This train of thought led to me an idea, about filming my own short TV show. I mean why not, right?

This is when my excitement took me over. I was about to visit the esteemed media arts building I have been so nervous to enter, and boy was I underwhelmed.

North Texas Television was launched in 1989, and has worked over the past three decades to be a leading student-run cable television station, with numerous distinguished awards, including multiple Lone Star Emmy wins.

The licensed radio station 88.1 is on air 24 hours a day, with primarily student volunteers working to promote local news and entertainment, as well as other public interest topics. No one can deny these accomplishments of the media arts program.

However, there is a big problem that lies not within the product of these programs, but in the framework.

TV and radio as a mass media is more prevalent in society today than at any other point in history. Communication today happens instantly as soon as it occurs because we have mediums such as television, cellphones, radio, internet and social media.

The disappointment with the RTVF building, is the lackluster appearance.

As I strolled from classroom to classroom, I got this feeling of nostalgia for the building that existed in 1890 when UNT was initially founded.

Media arts is a program that thrives on being modern and always changing.

The students in these programs put their money, time and faith in this school to prepare them for careers in broadcast or other media fields. But how can they be prepared for an evolving field when the building they spend most of their time in looks like it’s been taken over by asbestos?

As I continued to peak my head through open doors and empty makeup rooms, my built-up excitement began to fade.

This is when I decided to try and find a professor or adviser to speak with. I wasn’t able to speak or make an appointment with anyone from that building at that time. I spoke to a receptionist, and she was no help. I spoke to other students, and they seemed just as confused as me.

I don’t know about anyone else, but in my opinion, a TV and radio program director should not be so hard to get in touch with — these programs are after all, student-based. So where were all the students?

This building is barely memorable, except for how disorganized it appears to be.

I call for the dean of the media arts program to do better.

The classrooms and facilities within should be just as new as the equipment.

I also call for the professors of these classes, and the students who take them, to demand better.

I am not a media arts major, but I am a journalism major, and I know just how important timeliness is.

One of my journalism professors once told me, “Things that happen now will be reported now.”

I wouldn’t want to report or learn reporting techniques in sub-par conditions because it would affect my reporting process. It would cost me valuable reporting time, and I believe it works the same way for media arts majors. There’s a reason Google employees get so much work done. And thus, if we open the discussion to build a better learning space, I believe the students will thrive.

North Texas TV is one of the top student-run cable networks in the US. So, why not strive for No. 1?

Featured Image: Illustration by Ari Solorio

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Brianna Adams

Brianna Adams

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5 Comments

  1. Neil Nevins
    Neil Nevins January 24, 10:25

    This program and that building means a lot to actual MRTS majors who have done great things with the resources provided within it. It’s a little big-headed of you to dismiss it just because it didn’t meet the lofty expectations of you not getting to visualize an idea that popped into your head and led you on an ego trip. As a JOUR major i’d assume you’d know that you’ll never get a positive change by only citing negatives with a whiny “I want it now” approach.

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  2. UNT RTVF CO '17
    UNT RTVF CO '17 January 31, 11:59

    As a recent graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at UNT that worked in the radio station let me inform you of a few things, the faculty that run these programs are also instructors within the department so they aren’t always available to take questions regarding the extra curricular stuff because they are helping their students, to assume that NTTV doesn’t strive for number one is a very foolish assumption as the students and staff of the station always strive to do their best. Also don’t judge a book by it’s cover, while the facade of the building does match the rest of the campus the workspaces and material taught is all very relevant to the modern age, case in point I work for one of the largest media companies in the world and I use knowledge I gained in those spaces on a daily basis. My point being that it doesn’t matter what the facade looks like as long as students are learning in a safe and productive environment.

    Reply to this comment
  3. Bethany
    Bethany February 03, 10:56

    While I understand that this is an opinion article, I find it unprofessional and impolite to walk into what many students consider our home and speak about how lackluster it is. What our building looks like is not important, what matters is what we have accomplished in it. A shop doesn’t need to be glamorous to create well-made content.
    To walk into a college building and expect a modernized Hollywood studio-grade image is simply ridiculous. Most professional production houses aren’t even very fancy. Aside from all this, your insults on our building are insults to the theater department that shares it with us. I would reconsider this form of “journalism” that simply judges someone else’s home rather than making any thoughtful suggestions as to how it could be improved.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Gabby
    Gabby February 05, 10:51

    You’re obviously talking to the wrong students if you couldn’t find out who runs ntTV. There is a whole lobby, workstation, and editing rooms dedicated to its production and management on the second floor. Students that are deeply involved with the major know everyone that is in charge, and are probably busy doing their job. Also the building just got major upgrades including a projector that can display 4K. You are right to say you know nothing about this major.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Kristen
    Kristen February 05, 16:09

    I love that you brought this up. I’m a media arts major and I absolutely hate how this building looks. I agree we need upgrades. If students at the BLB can get outlets at every seat then why can’t we?

    Reply to this comment

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