Anteater TV Student Media

UC Irvine’s on-campus student media has evolved tremendously over the past few years, and perhaps no other group has grown more consistently than Anteater TV. Since opening shop in 2003, Anteater TV has evolved from a small group of aspiring filmmakers with virtually no budget to a fully functioning and increasingly popular Web site.
The Web site, which features a multitude of videos including Associated Students of UCI public service announcements and UCI sports clips, features original interviews from those involved with the campus community. Among those who have appeared in interviews on Anteater TV are ASUCI executive officers and coaches for the school’s soccer, basketball and volleyball teams.
Aside from school-oriented pieces, Anteater TV also features an array of entertainment videos, such as music videos, Battle of the Bands coverage and spoofs. Spoofs range from brief parodies of classic movie moments to the completely absurd. One video shows a student packaged in bubble wrap and wearing XXL clothing while being pushed around in a shopping cart.
However, according to A.J. Sciutto, former commissioner of Anteater TV, the group had much humbler beginnings.
‘It was a dinky little site with temperamental functionality and extremely bad quality. We had one $20 tripod and one $100 video camera. There were no resources, nor was there any interest from ASUCI to improve our situation,’ Sciutto said.
Rather than giving up hope on the project, Sciutto trudged through this shoestring budget. In fact, according to Sciutto, he became involved to such an extent that it influenced him to make the jump from aspiring aerospace engineer to full-fledged film and media studies major.
Still, it is virtually impossible for one man to operate a Web site with the immense amount of content currently presented on Anteater TV. Sciutto collaborated with the interns working for the Web site.
‘We started making films that really opened the eyes of the ASUCI staff to giving us more money. So with a higher budget, we were able to buy some very nice cameras, including an HD camera, nicer tripods, great audio equipment, lighting equipment and even a crane to do aerial shots,’ Sciutto said.
The increase in the amount of technology available to the group has allowed it to improve the overall production quality of itstheatrical work. Their news pieces are easier to edit and look more professional. This new technology has contributed to such Anteater TV news items like a feature about non-fast food 24-hour restaurants and a look at UCI’s shuttle system.
Besides the videos, multimedia is nonexistent on the site. The current layout of the Web site presents the group’s four most recent videos on the homepage with links to related content on the sidebar, including a back catalog of all of the group’s work, UCI Channel 3 and the UCI homepage.
Sciutto described how the Web site was modified from its original look. ‘We completely reworked the Web site, made it easier to use and much more aesthetically pleasing and started to build a name for ourselves, especially in the sports department, where the men’s soccer coach said the video we made for his team was the best he’s seen in the 10 years he’s been a coach,’ Sciutto said.
Without question, the most important development at Anteater TV is the transition from being an exclusively-online product to appearing on television.
According to Sciutto, the preliminary plan is to show Anteater TV to channel 68, UCI’s local television station. As a result, less computer-savvy individuals or those who feel that they already spend too much time online will be able to watch original Anteater TV programming from the comfort of a traditional television set.
For those skeptical of Anteater TV’s content, Sciutto described the outreach of the group and its willingness to work with products created by those outside of the Anteater TV crew. ‘We always take videos from clubs and orgs, to independent filmmakers, to just someone messing around with a video camera, so if you think it’s good enough to where people will like it, send it over our way and we might just put it up,’ Sciutto said.
For additional information on Anteater TV, visit the group’s online home located at:
http://www.Anteater.tv.