EDITORIAL: Blood brothers
Sound and vision. Today the University Students' Council will be presented with a proposal for a merger of TV Western and CHRW. The broadcast union, which first received lip service as far back as 1991, is expected to be passed as part of council's budget March 19.
This move is both logical and full of potential. TV Western has been in existence for three years and, in that time, has reached a level of success that could be termed mediocre at best. The new unnamed operation, however, will feature more proven leadership which will hopefully allow TV Western to reach greater heights.
The operation's head, current CHRW station manager Mario Circelli, has promised TV Western's in-house programming will increase from two to at least 15 hours per week next year and will include live concerts, news and entertainment events. With the rise of in-house programming comes the opportunity for TV Western to begin demanding advertising revenue.
The new operation allows for a sharing of resources and equipment and a cutting of costs through economies of scale. The merger puts creative people in charge of creative positions, letting the abilities of CHRW also work in favour of TV Western. Combining the broadcast media will provide collective strength in an era where the Internet threatens mainstream media.
But, there is the chance the directors of this new operation may be spreading themselves too thin. As it is, Circelli faces a large amount of work, running not only CHRW, but the music section of Scene magazine as well. One has to wonder whether the quality of CHRW will suffer at the expense of TV Western. Video may not kill this radio star, but it may hurt it a little.
Also, the merger can only truly benefit TV Western if it focuses on improving the station's accessibility. Better production is a plus, but it doesn't help much if no one sees it. Lounge areas in places like CentreSpot must be created, so that watching TV Western becomes an event.
This merger may be the first step in making television a powerful tool at Western. TV Western may soon reach residences and possibly homes in the London areas within a few years time.
There is a lot of potential here and some experienced people in charge of it. Let us just hope they can make the most of the opportunity.