Trojan Visionaries
ALLRIGHT, "60 MINUTES" it’s not. On some nights, the glitches come in bunches. A talk show logo that’s supposed to pop up discreetly in the corner of the screen develops a sudden case of elephantiasis, swelling alarmingly on the control room’s main monitor until it blocks out a shot of the show’s guest. A taped news segment runs about two seconds too long, unintentionally revealing a blurry shot of a city street. An anchor tries haltingly to get her lips around a four-syllable word.
But, say faculty advisers, after only six months of operations Trojan Vision, a student-run television station operated under the auspices of USC’s Annenberg Center, compares – stumbles, glitches and all -- to small-market (audiences of about 100,000) television programming around the country.
There are about 120 students involved in the operation. All but a small staff of 17 part-timers are volunteers. Some are would-be professionals in the television industry, cinema-television or journalism majors who are learning a trade. Others -- engineers, or music and business majors -- just wanted to partake of the excitement of live television.
Last year, Trojan Vision churned out 1,197 hours of television, including 399 hours of live programming. Executive director Don Till-man gave his students a “heads up” at the beginning of the semester. “It’s an insatiable animal,” he said of the medium. “It eats programming. You’re about to unleash an animal. If you don’t feed it, it’ll eat you alive.”

-- Ed Newton

Stalk No More

Constitutional scholar Erwin Chemerinsky was featured in a Feb. 18 New York Times article about legislation intended to curb the abuses of paparazzi who stalk celebrities. “There’s no constitutional right to reckless endangerment, and there’s no right to trespass,” said Chemerinsky, who helped write the bipartisan legislation. “This doesn’t do anything to offend the First Amendment.”

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Illustration by Matt Wuerker / Photo illustration by Rick Simner

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