Behind the scenes with GT Cable Network

Photo courtesy of GTCN

Watching television is easy. Sit down on the couch, grab the remote and flip to a favorite channel. But behind the scenes, a plethora of work is being done to provide a quality visual and auditory experience.

At Tech, the Georgia Tech Cable Network (GTCN) is responsible for creating and producing this content for the campus community to enjoy.

“Basically, the goal is to produce interesting and informative content for the campus community through the internet and campus cable,” said Kyle Olson, fourth-year ME and member of GTCN student staff.

As a video production assistant with GTCN, Olson is primarily responsible for producing videos for GTCN YouTube page and the campus cable channels.

“I am a video production assistant,” Olson explained. “Specifically, I host a show called ‘GT Spotlight’ where we showcase clubs around campus and usually get involved with club activities.”

In addition to Olson, there are many more people who are involved in the process and who are doing tasks ranging from scheduling to graphic design. Together, this team of dedicated individuals works hard to bring interesting content to air.

“Most of the time, we are in the office editing our videos or occasionally writing funny things on the white board,” Olson shared. “When we’re not in the office, we are out visiting clubs and getting footage for our show.”

Twenty years ago, GTCN began the production of an analog network with only a few channels. They have now expanded to provide a myriad of digital cable channels to all of campus.

Since their founding, GTCN has faced several challenges such as the busy signal space of Atlanta and the need to continually find new material.

Because of this, GTCN has been fluid and is constantly changing to meet the needs of the campus whether that means filming new shows, or updating to new technology.

“GTCN is always adding new student shows,” Olson said. “In the time since I’ve been at GTCN, I’ve also seen many updates to the studio, including a new greenscreen and tricaster.”

GTCN’s willingness to change has enabled it to provide a greater degree of programming and to provide it across more platforms. This allows GTCN to have a greater impact on the campus community by reaching and affecting more of those at Tech.

The desire to meet the needs of viewers has been particularly evident in Olson’s dedication to his work, which requires hours of sifting through video to provide a fluid and entertaining show.

“The way our show is formatted, the editing takes forever because we like to have as little structure as possible,” Olson said. “We try to make the episode feel as natural as possible so we just keep the cameras rolling for two hours or so. The extra work is worth it though, because most of the time we can get some fun and interesting moments in there that show what campus life is like, while not seeming staged or rehearsed.”

Currently, GTCN is working to complete a few behind-the scenes-videos.

“We’re getting some behind the-scenes-videos out soon,” Olson said. “The behind the scenes are usually pretty funny for our show because we try to get extra involved with the clubs we visit. ”

GTCN has been recognized by several awards including: five Gold Auroras, four Silver International Daveys, two Communicators and an AHECTA Student production award.

Even amidst the quality of his own work and that of GTCN, Olson is looking for ways to improve the viewer experience.

“I’d like to see GTCN do more live student shows. I’d also like to see the YouTube channel get a little more of a following,” Olson shared.

Be sure to tune in to channels 2.2 or 2.3 for a refreshing burst of Tech creativity and quality programming.