College Humor Better Off Staying Home

Everyone’s favorite waste of time, CollegeHumor.com, has now made the jump to cable television.

A site more known for it’s collection of internet memes and video captured calamities, College Humor is now branching out with a show on MTV. The show itself is in the style of the Web site’s prominently featured Hardly Working series.

The characters are all exaggerated versions of their real life counterparts. What will make show successful is its experience and its timing. The actors on the show have been doing roughly the same thing for the Web site for a couple of years now. They might not be as polished as some other comedy troupes, but they’ve had time to grow into their style.

The fact that the College Humor staff has been producing content almost every day for that last three or four years gives them an edge just for the sheer quantity of work. Other troupes like Britanick and Those Aren’t Muskets, while having more satisfying, higher quality material, only put out videos every month at most. I can’t imagine any better practice for a television show than that kind of repetition.

Rooted in the Internet, the writers have realized that quick works. The timing in each sketch is key because one of the things that seems to plague sketch comedy is its inability to know when to quit. SNL sketches seem to always be two minutes longer than they need to be and MADtv should have never started in the first place.

College Humor is like the fast food of comedy because of this: it doesn’t require too much thinking, too much time or too much commitment. Everything is presented in less than five minutes, not leaving enough time for the scene to fall apart. The viewer never needs to commit to a character on any level other than, “He’s nerdy, I like him”. The show is literally just like the Web site.

Now before watching, it seems obvious that the Web site has something going for it that the show may not. Like I said before, people like College Humor because of its collection of stupid videos ready to be beamed to your laptop at a moment’s notice. A TV show, on the other hand, is every Sunday at 9:30.

With this, it’s no longer College Humor working around your schedule, but your schedule working around College Humor. If you are dead set on not watching MTV though, on the chance that you may witness the collapse of civilization, you can still watch the episodes in their entirety online.

I have to commend the producers of the show for this because they realized their audience is a bunch of lazy bastards who spend more time on their computer than their television.

Then again, if you’re a Web site that makes a TV show that will most likely be viewed more online, where you already have a ton of content in the same style, then why bother making a TV show instead of a Web series?

The College Humor Show is a waste of time – not that that’s a bad thing. It is what’s made them popular.

 

-Charles Desrochers, Staff Writer

‘Friday the 13th’ Reboot Results in Uninspired Bore

Remake, reboot, reimagining, whatever you want to call it, they’ve all gotten tired. Nearly 30 years after the original Friday the 13th studio execs at New Line Cinema have decided to rework the campy slasher classic and its first three sequels the same way they put their greasy hands all over the original The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.

The new film, which is the first on screen appearance of Jason Voorhees since 2003’s Freddy vs. Jason, reboots the series in a way so viewers are first met with scenes from 1980, the year the original film was made. Flash forward to present day where a group of young adults are camping in the woods. Flash forward again and you have the brother of one of the now missing girls searching for his sister, Whitney. Enter Voorhees, and you have your plot.

Friday the 13th has almost all the fixings of your typical slasher film. Blood, gore, laughs, sex, nudity, drag the kids into the woods and kill them plot device and so on and so forth. The problem with this film is that it doesn’t do anything new for the tried and true genre of slasher films.

These films have been around in different forms for years now. To separate your film from the other mass amount of formulaic and generic films that clog up the horror genre you have to be different.

Take, for example, Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon. This 2006 slasher gave a different perspective of your not-so-average serial killer. The film was a mockumentary of sorts that had the viewer on the side of the killer rather than the side of the victims. It showed how Vernon, the killer, picked his victims and planned everything out. This is the kind of freshness that is not found in any of these remakes or reboots, including this one.

It’s no secret that I have absolute distaste for Hollywood’s constant usage of past ideas and brilliance to make a quick buck. That’s a whole different story for a whole different time. That said, this money-maker wasn’t all bland. If the film separated itself from the dreaded remake stigma there’d be more chance of having a fresh feel.

Director Marcus Nispel is one of these reasons. He’s already shown that he has potential for directing genre films as he helped the remake of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre succeed. The film is well composed and shot. Derek Mears stands out as Voorhees. He’s bulky yet athletic, creating a fearsome opponent for the victims. One look at Mears and he appears to be the modern day Michael Berryman.

The main problem was the people Mears was stalking. How many uninteresting, stupid and bland characters can you fit into one film? Ask screenwriters Damian Shannon and Mark Swift, because they know the answer. There’s your token black guy, your funny Asian, a few dumb blondes and oh, yeah, your absolute key college frat boys.

Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s absolutely satisfying to watch these annoying characters get killed off one by one. I’m not asking for character development that’s off the charts either. I’m just looking for a few memorable, fresh and unique characters. This partners up with the film not being able to separate itself from the rest of the bunch to make for a charmless, formulaic, sometimes boring and all too serious horror film of the slasher variety.

I’m trying hard to be kind to this film. I noticed the effort. The writers paid some nice tributes to the original series of films that are to be appreciated. This film is certainly better than other films in the series and other recent remakes in general.

The question for me is, was it necessary? Probably not. Why can’t these obviously somewhat talented screenwriters and director team up to create something new, something fresh? Where’s the spirit? Where’s the energy? Create your own slasher icon. Wouldn’t that be more fun? I guess it wouldn’t be fun for the men in suits sitting high in their offices as they’d fear that the film wouldn’t bank for sure at the box office.

The new Friday the 13th is the uninspired film we’ve all seen before. These films have lost their charm and as long as the media conglomerates run things it will never change.

Long gone are the days of Mario Bava’s twisting macabre tales set to slasher formula. Ah well, at least I got to see the wife of US Olympic hockey player Mike Modano get hit by a boat.

 

-Michael Walsh, Asst. Entertainment

Blue Devils Overwhelmed by Pioneers in 101-67 Loss

In the hours leading up to the Central Connecticut men’s basketball game against Sacred Heart on Thursday, word began to circulate that Ken Horton would not be in the lineup due to a concussion.

Things only got worse from there. Sacred Heart made fifteen three pointers as they decimated CCSU on their home floor, 101-67.

It was the worst home loss in years for a Central team that is floundering down the stretch.

“Tonight, it was just an overall poor performance on our part,” said Central head coach Howie Dickenman. “We need to find some intensity. If we keep this up, we’re playing ourselves out of the playoffs for the first time in 11 years.”

Pioneers’ guard Corey Hassan torched the Blue Devils for a gamehigh 21 points on eight of thirteen shooting. Five other players scored in double digits for Sacred Heart, who improved to 10-6 in the Northeast Conference. The Blue Devils fell behind early and were never able to recover.

Each of the first five CCSU offensive possessions resulted in a turnover. Sacred Heart capitalized on those turnovers, jumping out to a 9-0 lead in the first 3:10 of play.

“They had nine points before we even took a shot,” said Dickenman. “We were never able to recover. We were never even close to recovering, to be honest with you.”

Central’s struggles with turnovers were compounded by the accurate shooting of the Pioneers. Sacred Heart shot over 62 percent from the field in the game, was 60 percent from beyond the arc, and senior forward Joey Henley made all six of the team’s free throws.

Amidst all the negatives, Central did get some much-needed life from freshman guard Kyle Desmarais. The Montreal, Quebec native came into Thursday night averaging just over five minutes of playing time per game. He made an impact immediately, scoring seven points to lead all CCSU scorers in the first half. By the end of the evening, he had played 29 minutes, scored a career-high 11 points, all while tacking on four rebounds, three assists and three steals.

“Kyle gave us a spark coming off the bench,” Dickenman said. “He just kind of reacted and was very energetic.”

Shemik Thompson, who had a team-high 13 points on the night, also was complimentary of Desmarais’ play.

“I know he got me going,” said Thompson. “He definitely stepped up. He plays hard.”

Thompson was once again the most consistent Blue Devil on the floor, grabbing a pair of rebounds and dishing out two assists in a losing effort. His effort did not match his stat line, in large part due to his teammates’ struggles to finish.

Central shot just 33 percent from the field in the first 20 minutes, almost half of what Sacred Heart was shooting. Once again, just like the previous week’s upset at the hands of FDU, missed lay-ups proved costly for the Blue Devils.

“Even though we started bad,” said Thompson, “if we made those lay-ups that we missed, then we would have been right in the game.”

Central never led at any point in the game, while Sacred Heart found themselves up by 19 after just the first half. The Blue Devils trailed by 15 in the first half, found a way to whittle the deficit down to 4, but coul

d muster no further comeback.

It was a far cry from the game at the William H. Pitt Center in January in which Central lost 77-69. The Blue Devils were able to bounce back from such a crushing defeat on Saturday, as they took down St. Francis (NY), 78-73. An undermanned CCSU team missing Ken Horton, Tamir Johnson, and Chris Baskerville was able to overcome the short bench to get a key win and clinch a NEC Tournament berth.

“There was a little bit more pressure, with eight players and needing a win, there was a bit more, but not a lot,” Thompson said. “With three people out, we had to step up.”

Freshman Robby Ptacek and senior Marcus Palmer each contributed a team-high 17 points in the victory, while sophomore David Simmons posted a double-double with 16 points and ten rebounds. Simmons played a key role down the stretch as Central tried to preserve the lead. With a two-point lead, Shemik Thompson was fouled with just 11 seconds left. He missed both free throws, but Simmons was able to grab the offensive rebound, and was fouled.

Despite shooting just under 52 percent from the line on the season, he knocked down both free throws to ice the victory for CCSU.

“This was a statement game for ourselves,” said Simmons. “We are normally a great team at home.”

Central hosts Monmouth on Senior Night this Thursday at 7 p.m., before closing out the regular season at in-state rival Quinnipiac on Saturday in a key NEC match up. With the split this past week, CCSU is now 13-14 overall and 8-8 in the conference.

 

-Kyle Dorau, Sports Editor: ccsurecorder.sports@gmail.com

Blue Devils Turn Back Pioneers

In what may have been the final home game ever for the CCSU Ice Hockey Club, the Blue Devils were victorious on Senior Night, downing the Sacred Heart Pioneers 9-4 at Newington Arena on Friday.

Junior co-captain Joe Dabkowski’s hat trick powered the Blue Devil offense as they head into ACHA Regional competition on a five-game win streak. Fifteen different Blue Devils registered points in the victory, which once again showcased a potent Central offense.

“I was very impressed with how the guys looked,” said Head Coach Jim Mallia. “All four lines were coming together at the right time, kind of just like what we did last year,” a reference to finishing the 2007-08 regular season on an eight-game win streak.

The Blue Devils held an emotional edge with the uncertainty of the program’s future combined with saying goodbye to six senior student athletes. The offensive explosion began just 26 seconds into the game as Dabkowski opened the scoring, appropriately with goal number 26 on the season.

Less than two minutes later, sophomore Eric Blewett banged home his fourth of the season to give CCSU a 2-0 lead. Central’s third goal was the play of the game. The Blue Devils took advantage of a three-on-one as Matt Williams scored his fifth of the year thanks to some nifty passing from linemates Jeff Pease and Dane Anderson.

The tic-tac-toe marker certainly impressed coach Mallia.

“To see that from those three guys that were put together a couple of weeks ago,” Mallia said. “When they’re doing things like that, there’s no way I’m going to change that.”

Coach Mallia continued to praise the highlight-reel goal calling it, “one of the prettier goals I’ve seen in ten years.” A concern heading into the game was the quality of Sacred Heart as an opponent.

With the Pioneers sporting a record of 1-2 against Super East teams and their only win against a sub-par New York University team, it was another meaningless game for CCSU.

“In April, you schedule the teams and you don’t know how the teams are going to be,” said Mallia. “That’s just how the season ended.”

Dabkowski, a three-year veteran of the team, knows how important the past couple weeks have been for Central despite the lack of quality opponents.

“You’ve got to make sure you do all the little things that you always do. You go back to the basics against lesser opponents,” he said. “You’ve got to make sure you don’t get into any bad habits. It’s really just to build confidence, put the puck away, play well defensively and make sure you have everything in gear heading into the postseason.”

Seven different Blue Devils scored in the victory, as six players had multi-point games. Craig Prema and Mike DiClemente each had three assists.

“That’s what we need,” said Dabkowski. “We need everyone putting the puck away and everyone playing defensive hockey.”

Senior Craig Height got the start in net, splitting time with Carmine Vetrano. Height allowed one goal in thirty minutes and earned the victory, his seventh of the season.

Central’s regular season record comes to a close at 17-8-1. Corey Emilia led the Pioneers offensively, grabbing a goal and two helpers. CCSU now looks ahead toward Regional competition, held in Albany, N.Y. this weekend.

The teams ranked third through 10th in the Northeast will take part in a single elimination tournament, and two semifinalists will qualify for the Division II National Championship. Central reached Nationals last year, and looks to return for the second consecutive season.

Standing in the Blue Devils’ way in round one are the Nittany Lions of Penn State University. While they are no longer members of the Super East, Penn State is a familiar foe for CCSU. “They’re primarily the same team as last year that we beat 5-0 and tied 5-5,” Mallia said. “It is ironic. You had to figure one of the Super East teams would face them in the Regional, and it happened to be us.”

 

-Kyle Dorau, Sports Editor: ccsurecorder.sports@gmail.com

Crockett Thrives in Comeback Year for Women’s Basketball

Versatility is a valuable weapon in women’s college basketball.

Weapons as a whole are often far more dangerous when they go undetected.

That’s what makes Leanne Crockett so vital to the Central Connecticut women’s basketball program in the midst of this year’s incredible turnaround. Crockett, a sophomore from Manchester, Conn., has the ability to play anywhere on the court.

With all her talent, she has a soft-spoken andfocused demeanor. That allows her to go relatively unnoticed during game play, until you look at the stat line and see the numbers she produces.

“She just makes a difference,” said head coach Beryl Piper.

Inside the paint, she has proven that she can hang with the best in the Northeast Conference, ranking in the top five in rebounds per game as a sophomore.

“She’s a big, strong kid,” explained Piper. “I’m not sure there’s a player in the conference that is as physically strong as Leanne is.”

That strength allows her to pull down over eight rebounds a game despite being just a shade under six feet tall. Away from the basket, Crockett makes just as much of a difference to the team. She averages ten points per game, and has shot better than 38 percent from beyond the arc this season. She has made more three-pointers this season than anyone else in the Northeast Conference and is in the top ten for rebounding.

“I think the kids want her to take the game-winning shot,” Piper said. “It’s funny, when she shoots, [the team] is always saying ‘knock, knock’ because they just assume it’s going to go in the basket all the time.”

With Central’s rebirth from 4-25 overall just a year ago to being seeded second in the NEC Tournament next week, such success may be unfamiliar to some of her teammates. However, Crockett is no stranger to big games or success in them. In 2003 and 2005, she helped lead the Manchester High School Indians to Class LL State Titles.

Playing alongside Crockett at MHS was teammate-turned-conference rival Khalia Cain, now of Sacred Heart.

“It was weird playing against her,” said Crockett. “I played with her for three years at the high school and she’s a good player. It was funny being on different teams.”

The two played against one another for the first time on January 31 at the William H. Pitt Center. While Cain’s Pioneers got the 76-64 victory, Crockett had the better stats on the day, scoring nine points and grabbing ten rebounds.

High school basketball also allowed Crockett to become more familiar with Piper.

“It worked out because I knew Piper from Manchester,” referring to Piper’s time as head coach of New Britain High’s basketball program.

With Manchester in the same conference as the Golden Hurricanes, the two were acquainted with one another and would soon cross paths in the future.Crockett attended the University of Maryland-Baltimore County her first year out of high school, but returned home after one year to enroll at CCSU.

“I liked the kids on the team, the coaching staff was nice, [but] it just wasn’t a good fit for me,” Crockett explains. “I just didn’t really like it there. I never felt comfortable.”

A return closer to home is apparently just what the doctor ordered for the Connecticut native. She sat out the 2007-08 season due to NCAA transfer rules, but was still able to practice and be around the team. That allowed her to have perspective on what the differences are between last year’s struggles and the accomplishments this season.

“We know how to finish and win games now,” she said. Winning certainly is made easier when Central’s team added a player who went on to win the NEC Rookie of the Week award twice, named among the top rebounders in the NEC, and nearly averages a doubledouble on the season.

Not only is she beneficial to the basketball team, but one school’s loss is the gain of two athletic programs. Crockett will also be competing as a member of the women’s track team in the throwing events. Last season she threw the javelin and discus, and placed third in the Yale Springtime Invitational with a javelin toss in excess of 31 meters.

For now, her sole focus is leading the women’s basketball program to a NEC Championship. When asked about the young team’s potential, her outlook is bright.

“We’re only going to continue to get better,” she said. The same goes for Central’s most versatile weapon.

 

-Kyle Dorau, Sports Editor: ccsurecorder.sports@gmail.com

CCSU Defeats Terriers, Clinches Second Seed in NEC Tournament

CCSU’s women’s basketball team defeated St. Francis (N.Y.) 64- 52 with double-doubles from Justina Udenze and Kerrianne Dugan on Alumni Day at Detrick Gymnasium.

Udenze put up her third straight double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds and Dugan added 15 points and 10 rebounds in the win. Coach Beryl Piper was pleased with the win.

“It is always good to win, especially with Alumni here,” she said.

Dugan spoke positively on the defensive effort of the team, which held St. Francis to 31.8 percent from the field.

“The past couple of games we have been struggling on defense, but today we picked it up,” she said. The Blue Devils were without one of their players as Leanne Crockett is stricken with bronchitis.

Freshman Shontice Simmons only played 16 minutes as she is dealing with a bad cold. “[Simmons] was struggling, but other kids stepped up,” Piper said, “We gotta pick it up without [Crockett].” CCSU had their biggest lead of the game with 11:41 remaining, when Udenze hit a layup to make it a 24 point gap at 49-25. For the Terriers (4-22, 3-13) Kendra Williams led the way with a double-double of her own, scoring 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Karla Babica added 10 points and eight rebounds while Vianca Tejada added 10 points in a losing effort. Freshman Gabrielle Oglesby who added 16 points and seven rebounds for the Blue Devils, said in regards to the overall success of the season, “coming off of last year, [the success] is not the icing on the cake, but [it shows] that we are for real.”

The Blue Devils were unable to carry Saturday’s momentum into Monday night’s game against the Sacred Heart Pioneers as the fell 81- 62 to drop their record to 17-10 overall and 12-4 in the conference. The Blue Devils started out strong against the Pioneers and made several runs during the first half, but the Pioneers held onto the Blue Devils and kept it close.

Central led 23-17 with less than nine minutes left in the first half when the Pioneers began a 22-10 run that put them on top by six points heading into the locker room.

Freshman Shontice Simmons led the early Central charge, scoring 12 of her 18 points in the first half. But the Blue Devils could not slow down the best shooting team in the conference.

The Pioneers entered the game shooting a conference high 45 percent from the field and leading the NEC with 69.4 points per game. The Pioneers outscored the Blue Devils in the paint 18-14 but it was that high field goal percentage that hurt Central the most.

Led by sophomores Alisa Apo and Maggie Cosgrove the Pioneers extended their lead to eight points to start the second half. The Blue Devils managed to pull within four points of the Pioneers with just over 14 minutes left to play but then SHU took over. It would be another 5:14 seconds before the Blue Devils scored again. The Pioneers went on a 15-0 that saw Apo and Cosgrove score a combined 13 points in just over three minutes, including three three-point baskets. Apo led all scorers with 19 points for the game.

“They just keep nailing shots. Every time we made a mistake defensively they took advantage of it. They’re a smart team like that,” said Piper. “I don’t know you just can’t make mistakes against them. We have to do everything right to beat that team.”

Oglesby and junior P.J. Wade added 10 points to the Central effort while Udenze led the team with 11 rebounds and fell one point shy of her fourth straight double-double. CCSU has two games left in the regular season. On Saturday they will travel to Hamden to take on the Quinnipiac Bobcats as 1 p.m. and the will end the regular season at home against the Monmouth Hawks on Monday, March 2 at 7 p.m.

 

-Peter Collin, Managing Editor: ccsurecorder@gmail.com

Christopher Boulay contributed.

Blue Devils Far from the End

“What do you do when teams shoot the ball like that?”

It was an impressive performance for CCSU women’s basketball coach Beryl Piper to watch when the Sacred Heart Pioneers rolled through New Britain on Monday. The CCSU women’s basketball team has come a long way from last season but they haven’t travelled past the Sacred Heart Pioneers yet.

The Northeast Conference regular season champions came into New Britain and served notice to the Blue Devils, defeating them 81- 62. It’s hard to complain about what the Blue Devils have done this year under second year head coach Beryl Piper. Going from four wins to 17 is a remarkable feat no matter what the outcome of their season. But the Blue Devils recent performance begs the question of whether or not they will ever be able to step up beyond the elite SHU squad.

So far they have been able to overcome all of the other opponents that have stood in their way like Robert Morris and Monmouth. Much like the Blue Devils, the Pioneers are a very young team and will retain most of their major pieces for the next two seasons. This has all the makings of a classic rivalry that will last. The teams are geographically linked and both have a young core of players who have exceeded expectations for this season, albeit CCSU has exceeded theirs by leaps and bounds. Plus SHU has been the one opponent that the Blue Devils, or any other team in the NEC for that matter, haven’t been able to figure outthis season.

Like Peyton Manning, the Blue Devils are up against their Tom Brady and the Patriots and right now things aren’t looking good. It may be awhile before Central gets to write its chapter of the rivalry. The Blue Devils may go further than anyone expected except they probably won’t win the one game no one will expect them to. Central players were upset about their second defeat at the hands of the Pioneers and it is a certainty that this one stung all the more considering it happened in their own gymnasium.

But it just might not be their time yet; at least not yet their time against the Pioneers

“Our kids were upset,” said Piper. “And that’s a good thing. You don’t want them to be like, ‘we’re not supposed to win this game’ they wanted to win this game and they were upset with themselves.”

It is good to hear that the Blue Devils learned that losing is something they should never settle for after it had become such a tradition at Central. The hope would have to be that the Blue Devils take that anger and use it to make sure they never get complacent with the gains they have made this season.

The Blue Devils may get a third try at SHU in the NEC Tournament but the match up will be at the Pioneer’s house and Central will need to do a better job at defending the perimeter, something they have done well, except against the Pioneers.

For all of the tactical lessons the coach Piper will take from their most recent encounter with the top seed, the main lesson for her to take away, is that for once, losing is something that is hard to swallow for women’s basketball at CCSU.

 

-Peter Collin, Managing Editor: ccsurecorder@gmail.com

Column: Dorau the [Sports] Explorer

Press conferences are a delightful combination of eccentric behavior, frustrating clichés and fluctuating emotions that make sports journalism so appealing to guys like me.

Some days it may not seem like it, but there really is something special to speaking with a coach or player right after they’ve engaged in an on-field battle. That’s why I’m frustrated by the actions of a writer who badgered University of Connecticut men’s basketball coach Jim Calhoun this past weekend.

The reporter, apparently trying to make a name for himself, repeatedly questioned Calhoun on his annual salary of 1.6 million dollars. That sum makes him the highest paid employee in the state. Calhoun, instead of having to explain why his team only put up 64 points against a sub-par University of South Florida, found himself having to justify his paycheck in front of the assembled press corps.

I’m not suggesting that 1.6 million isn’t an absurd salary for someone to coach college basketball players, but this overzealous do-gooder needs to learn that there are appropriate times and channels for that line of questioning. There’s a reason I’m the Sports Editor here at The Recorder. I don’t have the mental strength to follow political, economical, and social intricacies. I’m far too aloof to recognize perceived injustices. I wrote just last week about the negativity in the sports world, a place that is supposed to be an escape for our society.

Coach Calhoun doesn’t have to justify his salary, neither do the second and third highest paid state employees UConn football coach Randy Edsall and women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma. They generate tremendous amounts of revenue, and have more or less built programs. The vast majority of the athletes they coach will not be turning pro in their respective sports. These coaches, just like the coaches here at CCSU, are motivating the athletes to do their best in every aspect of their lives. The impact of such mentors cannot be measured in a paycheck.

When I sit in on a press conference after a tough loss and see Coach Howie Dickenman wring his hands from start to finish, I know there’s no greater motivator for those kids in the locker room than this coach sitting in front of us. When Coach Jeff McInerney asks the reporters after the game if we mind that he sits down, it’s tough not to laugh. He’s only been executing a meticulously detailed game plan, meeting potential recruits, and managing over 50 kids between the ages of 18 and 22 for the last six hours.

Not once during the past year have I wondered what any CCSU coach makes in a season, and frankly, I don’t care to know. I know we’re in a recession, depression or whatever nickname they’ve come up with for it this week. Making a high-profile coach take a pay cut is not going to fix America’s economic troubles any time soon. That’s fixing a gaping wound with a single band-aid.

Calhoun may be a state employee, but he built a program from the ground up that not only makes millions for UConn, but think of the economic stimulus each Huskies game at the XL Center brings to the surrounding businesses in an otherwise dreary Hartford.

The writer, whose illustrious accomplishments include writing for High Times Magazine, has a “manifesto” on his Web site, which more or less endorses vandalism. Mentioning his name or home page would just garner him publicity I don’t feel like handing out. In the ensuing article, the writer floats the notion that a pay cut from Calhoun could help sustain programs at the University, providing scholarships and equipment for other sports.

Here at CCSU, the Ice Hockey Club is in dire straits, being financially abandoned by the SGA. Never in my wildest dreams would I ask a Central coach or faculty member to take a pay cut in order to fund that program or any other on campus. I hope aspiring journalists would have the common sense to do the same instead of playing hero to hippies.

EDITORIAL: The Fairness Doctrine

Talk radio has been significantly dominated by conservative voices in recent years, and with Democrats now in power of Congress and the Oval Office, talks of reinstituting the Fairness Doctrine have been floating around Capitol Hill.

The Fairness Doctrine was a policy implemented by the FCC in 1949 in order to ensure that radio hosts presented both sides of controversial issues of public importance. In 1987, the FCC abolished the doctrine, which has since prompted discussion about instituting Congressional legislation of the same nature.

There has been a lot of controversy surrounding the Fairness Doctrine, and its potential violation of First Amendment rights. Opponents of the doctrine claim that setting restrictions on material that is discussed on radio shows is an infringement on free speech. In a 1969 Supreme Court case, Red Lion Broadcasting Co. v. FCC, the court unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the Fairness Doctrine stating that since there is only a limited radio spectrum, the material of speakers could be regulated in order to maintain and uphold openness.

Many prominent democrats such as John Kerry, Bill Clinton and Nancy Pelosi, have expressed support for the reintroduction of the Fairness Doctrine, but recently Barack Obama stated publicly that he was against reinstating the policy and we support him.

There is a general consensus among top conservatives that the Fairness Doctrine is an attempt by Democrats to regulate their views on the airwaves. Rush Limbaugh, host of the most-listened-to radio show in the country, has been publicly outspoken about his fear and discontent that congress may attempt to put policies in place to regulate content on the radio.

According to the standards of the free market, and the way in which material on the airwaves should, in fact compete for listeners, the Fairness Doctrine is an infringement on the First Amendment. Essentially, the Fairness Doctrine would be the Title IX of the radio in guaranteeing certain amounts of time or space to opposing views, regardless of quality or listenership.

When a radio show gets a large amount of listeners, then they will stay on the air since the demand for that show is high. It just so happens that conservative talk shows generally get more listeners, and therefore are entitled to continue what they are doing in order to bring in ratings. This involves spreading their opinions. If a law were imposed to guarantee airtime to alternative views, this would not serve the viewers who have clearly expressed a preference for conservative talking heads.

Just because liberals’ views are our there and can be given adequate time on the air doesn’t mean it should. What the government would be doing if they reinstalled the Fairness Doctrine is endorsing a side so that liberalism would rival radio’s conservatives. Frankly, liberal media doesn’t need the help and shouldn’t receive extra attention to spite its conservative counterparts.

Another side of the controversy is providing listeners with adequate and fair reporting on important issues. In journalism, Americans have come to value and strive for objectivity, but some have lost sight of its meaning. At times, it had represented a mathematical formula or prercentage determined in order to give fair share to different, opposing sides.

In actuality, a journalist knows when to give each side their space, but is smart enough to know accurate reporting transcends space and time. Whether it is a talking head on a radio show or a print journalist, people who consume this media are owed the truth and should be able to see through the mandated veil of balance.

The radio should not be treated differently than any other facet of the media. As stated in the First Amendment, Congress has no right to abridge freedom of speech, or of the press. Mandating that hosts discuss all sides of controversial issues is demanding that their opinions must be downplayed in the name of fairness. Reinstating the Fairness Doctrine would wrongly allow the government to regulate broadcasted content, and this would be a gross violation of the First Amendment that is essential to maintaining the open discussion that is relevant to the needs of its citizens.

 

-The Recorder’s Editorial Board

University Should Implement a New System to Reach Students

My part-time job at the computer lab provides several things that average students may not be privy to: free printing, for example, or dominion over a vast array of computers, for another.

But one of the things I am most cognizant of and most excited to be witness to is the amalgam of personalities and ideas that come in.

I get to hear what they are talking about, and as a person of (wholly transparent) authority, I am often the first person they go to when they have a CCSU-related question. After one and a half semesters of listening, I am certain of one fact: Central students don’t have a clue as to what is going on with this university.

And more importantly, I really don’t think it’s their fault.

Central has a very curious system set up called “Today@CCSU”. In theory, it is very tech-forward. It is parable, archivable, and can even have a limited export function. In your Central Pipeline account you can register for things you think you might be interested in and have them appear on that page.

You can also just go to today@ccsu, found at http://today. ccsu.edu, and search via interest. The reality of this is that the limitation, while seemingly willing to jive with some interesting tech, fails at several key points. The limited exportability onto a knowable interface means that these cool, interesting speakers and events get thrown on a page that students check twice a year for class registration.

The Today@ CCSU interface is confusing to a newcomer, and is ultimately too awkward to use intuitively. Even worse, actual need-to-know information is very often lost in transmission; I stopped counting how many times people asked about parking bans during snow storms, early dismissals – little details that are supposed to be sent through email. And I don’t doubt they are – but they are sent to places that students do not check, and CCSU’s exhaustive notification system becomes tantamount to yelling in the wind.

It’s time for a revamp. My suggestion is not even really that complicated; it’s a shift in paradigm to accept new technology.

First, you need to reevaluate the Today@CCSU calendar system (keep the calendar, sure, whatever, that’s not important). Increase its operability to be downloaded as a general RSS feed so that you can publish it as a calendar on… the CCSU facebook account!

Yes, we have a group, but you can only do so much with a group. A full-fledged account would allow us so much more in the way of disseminating information. An RSS-ed calendar would be great for taking that weird Today@CCSU interface and putting it somewhere popular and knowable. In fact, the next step is to drop Today@CCSU all together. Actually, I misspoke. Not the whole thing, just the “Today”.

Creating a Twitter account, “@CCSU”, does two important things: one, it allows Central (heh) Pipeline (heh heh) to post all information regarding incoming events. It also allows itself to be ported to the CCSU Facebook account, as well as providing a 100 percent free text-messaging system to all students – you don’t even need a formal Twitter account to follow someone via almost any mobile device.

Suddenly, Central will find itself with a very simple method of information dissemination. Students would be connected the way they want to be connected, not the way CCSU imagines it. The school could become a little bit more solid, and with a little bit less of that “commuter school” reputation. It is absolutely possible, and immediately implement-able, all at the cost of, perhaps, a student intern to manage the system.

I think I might know someone perfect for the job.

 

-Alex Jarvis, Special to The Recorder