Editorial: Student broadcasts need dedicated NUTV server

As the details of the dorm cable plan were hammered out last year, it was suggested that Northwestern News Network would be able to broadcast its program on a channel dedicated to NU programming.

But NUTV, the computerized cable delivery system in use campuswide, does not show NNN, and no channel in the system is reserved for NU programming. Administrators have pointed out that another server will need to be purchased, at a great expense, for such a channel to exist.

Regardless of the cost, NU should make the purchase of a server to house an NU-centric channel an immediate priority. Normal cable providers are required by the Federal Communications Commission to provide a channel reserved for the community, and the format of cable at NU should not exempt the university from providing the same service.

The potential for such a channel is great, not simply for giving a larger audience to NNN, but for all student-produced programming and for live or rebroadcasts of campus guest lectures and NU football games. The channel’s mere existence would encourage student broadcasters to create content.

Until an NU channel can be created, the administrators of NUTV should select a channel to interrupt for 30 minutes Mondays and Wednesdays for the broadcast of NNN. We doubt many students will complain if they miss half an hour of the Discovery Channel.