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Welcome to MCTV

Welcome to Middlebury Community Television. To find a video, either scroll back in time at the bottom of the page, or enter a search term (like ID#4 or pipeline) or an individual's name in the search box below.

Access Plan

Middlebury Community Television
Access Plan 2014-2017

    As media and technological landscapes continue to change rapidly, MCTV’s role will change as well. In Appendix A, our mission statement, A Vision for the Future, outlines how we must continue to evolve into a community media and resource center. With this role in mind, the access plan will help guide the organization in 2014-2017.
    Specific plans for educational programs, equipment purchases, outreach, and other activities will be created to achieve the overall goals articulated below. Some representative examples of these initiatives are included in italic.
    MCTV will move toward a future role as an aggregator of local content and an educator in new media and technological developments, while maintaining the organization's emphasis on working with youth and facilitating the production of local programming for cablecast.

Perceived Community Needs
   • Expanded training for use of MCTV equipment and resources. Working with Ilsley Library, MCTV is developing a community production studio in library space.

    • Continued outreach to increase public awareness of MCTV and its programming. Recent efforts include an educational brochure and a live-action float in Middlebury’s Memorial Day Parade. An informational kiosk outside the new town hall is being considered.

    • Wider variety and improved technical quality of MCTV programming, while simultaneously valuing the contributions of all volunteer producers. MCTV will continue to monitor and acquire new technology that can increase program quality and diversity and simplify production.

    • Technological applications that will enable communities without cable access to view MCTV programming. MCTV is expanding web access to current and archived programs.

    • Increased media and technological literacy in the community including in under-served populations. MCTV has produced public service announcement kits that enable non-profits to easily produce their own videos. MCTV will continue to provide recording advice to community groups, such as the select board, churches, and schools.

    • Improvement of channel-focused website. What does this mean?

Measurement of Community Needs
   • Continuing the process by which the community can give input on MCTV's direction and goals. This will involve the use of a website and may involve public forums and open houses to encourage personal interaction and an on-going dialogue. MCTV will continue to formally solicit community comments at the annual meeting in March. Staff and board members with their deep roots in the community are constantly receiving on-the-street comments.

    • Communicating with local governance boards such as the select board and the school board to assess to what extent community needs are being met and how MCTV can improve its services. Board representation includes members of the school board and select board. The board periodically meets informally or formally with leadership of community non-profits.

    • Reaching out to teachers and other community educators to assess how MCTV can help meet the needs of the education community. Staff will continue its ongoing discussions with the Hannaford Career Center on how MCTV can provide practical experience for Hannaford students. MCTV has discussed with the Addison Central Supervisory Union staff their interest in teacher development training and will attend high school department meetings to gauge the needs and interest of teachers.

    • Brainstorming within the organization and with community partners to find new partnerships and points of interaction with the community. Staff and board members are deeply involved in community organizations and are constantly seeking, both directly and indirectly, ideas to improve our coverage of community activities. MCTV will be exploring overlapping interests with the Vermont Folklife Center.

    • Assessing the needs of Addison County at large to determine how MCTV can best play a role in the civic life of all county communities. MCTV staff and board are in constant contact with county-wide organizations such as the Addison County Economic Development Corporation. 

Meeting Community Needs
   • Maintaining and increasing collaborations with area schools, including K-12 institutions and colleges. MCTV, in conjunction with the Ilsley Public Library, has worked with teachers at Mary Hogan School and Middlebury Union High School providing direct instruction for students creating video projects for in-class as well as on-air use. Furthermore, the training of teachers and a librarian at Mary Hogan has provided them the knowledge to independently teach students to create video content. MCTV also assisted the Mary Hogan School with creating a YouTube channel. Several high school classes have used MCTV-owned computers in the Ilsley Public Library for video editing class projects. 

    • Maintaining and encouraging student participation in the functioning of the station. As students from prior video camps and programs get older, they are invited to work as peer mentors in programs, as well as technical producers in the studio.

    • Working with Comcast to ensure MCTV is meeting its obligations to the community with respect to its PEG access functions. The percentage of MCTV’s local programming is one of the highest in the state.

    • Supporting and promoting programs of local interest produced by individuals, schools, and non-profit charitable and social service organizations. MCTV continues to work with the United Way in helping member organizations produce informational videos.

    • Covering meetings of public interest, including meetings of the select board, the school board, and other governance committees, and improving the means by which the community may access coverage with respect to feedback from town officials and citizens. MCTV will continue to respond to community requests, such as covering Public Service Board hearings on a new gas pipeline to International Paper in New York.

    • Continuing MCTV’s partnerships with local cultural institutions. MCTV will continue to meet regularly with fellow area non-profits, such as the Vermont Folklife Center, to look for synergies.

    • Working with youth. In conjunction with the Ilsley Public Library, MCTV offered five, week-long video camps in the past year, as well as a weekly drop-in program that was nationally recognized by the Public Library Association as one of a handful of innovative library programs. In addition, joint Ilsley/MCTV outreach to the Mary Hogan School developed a weekly in-school collaboration with the Mary Hogan librarian, collaboration with the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) teacher which produced several on-air and web programs. The collaboration also produced a 6th grade original play that featured locally-set video components in a play at the Town Hall Theater.

    • Planning future capital expenses including improvements to the station’s facilities. MCTV will continue to search for low-cost technology to improve signal quality and to provide on-line streaming coverage.

    • Collaborations that may include, but will not be limited to, working with Ilsley Public Library, regional planning boards, and other institutions and organizations to develop technological applications to increase access to MCTV programming. MCTV will continue to monitor new technologies that simplify and enhance program development and distribution.

    • Exploring fundraising options to support MCTV's efforts to meet community needs. MCTV will continue to explore sharing staff time with community organizations, such as splitting the cost of the technology and school programs coordinator with Ilsley Library.

    • Assessing the needs of Addison County at large to determine how MCTV can best play a role in the civic life of all county communities. Given the County’s small size and community interconnections, MCTV’s local programming is frequently of interest to surrounding areas. Taping hearings of the Public Service Board on a gas pipeline traveling through the country attracted broad interest.
• • •

Appendix A
Middlebury Community Television
A Vision for the Future

   In 1985 when Middlebury Community Television was formed, its founders had a straightforward objective: Create an informed and engaged citizenry. In essence, hold a mirror up to the community.
    More formally, we are a nonprofit, interactive, community-based alternative to broadcast commercial and public TV. We announce and cover local meetings and events, offer residents free equipment and training to produce their own programs, and make available at no cost our two cable channels to share these programs with the community.
    In 2013, MCTV’s mission remains unchanged. But the media landscape has changed dramatically over the past 30 years and MCTV must constantly adapt to these new conditions.
    In 1985, there were no inexpensive, high-definition, fit-in-the-hand iPhone cameras or user-friendly iMovie editing programs that enable anyone to be a video producer and storyteller. There was no Internet, YouTube, Facebook, or cloud to easily and quickly distribute photographs, text, and video around the block or around the world. 
    Not only has production and distribution changed but so may our funding. Since its inception community television has been almost entirely supported by a fee charged to cable companies, such as Comcast, for their use of public airwaves. This guaranteed funding has served MCTV well, but today cable viewers are increasingly dropping their subscriptions and receiving programs directly over the lower-cost Internet. At present, there are no provisions for community television to receive funding from Internet transmission of programs.
    How should MCTV respond to this new world?
    1. MCTV has always been an innovator with a deep commitment to local programming. Over half our programs—school and select board coverage, public forums and hearings, lectures, town meetings, parades, graduations, church services, interview shows and documentaries—are locally produced.
    This focus is essential to our mission and survival.
    2. In the past several years, our ties with Ilsley Library have grown even closer. Today, we jointly fund a technology coordinator, who works with the children¹s librarian and schools in offering video training. Working with the library, we are creating a community production studio on the second floor. This collaboration is unique among community television stations.
    3. We must continue to encourage and support programs that reflect the diversity and interests of our community. In an era, when anyone can produce a video we have a vital role in distributing material of community interest.
    4. As Comcast’s contribution diminishes we must explore new funding—membership, fund raising, corporate sponsors, Internet transmission fees, greater town budget support.
    5. Digital literacy is essential to a community's wellbeing. We must expand our programs with schools, the library, town government, and the community to reach that goal.
    6. A 21st century communications infrastructure is also essential to a community’s vitality. As community facilities change and expand we must ensure that meeting spaces meet the transmission needs of the Internet age. 
    In essence to best serve the community, we must continue to evolve into a community media and resource center.
• • •

MCTV Access Plan 2010-2012

revised September 2011

2010

Perceived Community Needs

Expanded training for use of MCTV equipment and resources
More outreach to increase public awareness of MCTV
Wider variety of MCTV programming
Improved production values of MCTV programming
Expanded access to MCTV programming, including demonstrating through our online distribution that potential Comcast subscribers could benefit from cablecast access to the entirety of MCTV programming.

Measurement of Community Needs

Communicating with local governance boards such as the select board and the school board to assess to what extent community needs are being met and how MCTV can improve its services.
Convening public forums in which community members are invited to help draw up a "wish list" for PEG usage. One such forum was held in March 2009 and we plan more for the future.
Reaching out to teachers and other community educators to assess how MCTV can help meet the needs of the education community.
Brainstorming within the organization to find new partnerships and points of interaction with the community.
Assessing the needs of Addison County at large to determine how MCTV can best play a role in civic life of all communities.

Meeting Community Needs

Working closely with Comcast to ensure MCTV is meeting its obligations to the community with respect to its public, educational and governmental access functions.
Supporting and promoting programs of local interest produced by individuals, schools, and non-profit charitable and social service organizations.
Covering meetings of public interest, including meetings of the selectboard, the schoolboard, and other governance committees. In the fall of 2009, MCTV covered several public meetings pertaining to the closing of the Champlain Bridge, winning the gratitude of both state officials and those affected by the closing.
Cablecasting community events such as the annual Festival on the Green that appeal to a wide viewership and partnering with organizations such as the local library to bring a variety of cultural events into the homes of the MCTV audience.
Maintaining a staff position dedicated in part to working with local schools and recreation departments to introduce children to video production, thereby ensuring a future audience for MCTV programming.
Planning future capital investments, including labor allocation, to keep current with the state-of-the-art in the industry.

2011

Anticipated Community Needs

Expanded training for use of MCTV equipment and resources.
More outreach to increase public awareness of MCTV and its programming
Wider variety and improved technical quality of MCTV programming
Technological applications that will enable communities without cable access to view MCTV programming
Improvement of interactive website to enhance MCTV-user experience

Measurement of Community Needs

Formalizing the process by which the community can give input on MCTV's direction and goals. This might involve the use of a website as well as public forums and open houses to encourage personal interaction and an on-going dialogue.
Communicating with local governance boards such as the select board and the school board to assess to what extent community needs are being met and how MCTV can improve its services
Reaching out to teachers and other community educators to assess how MCTV can help meet the needs of the education community.
Brainstorming within the organization to find new partnerships and points of interaction with the community.
Assessing the needs of Addison County at large to determine how MCTV can best play a role in the civic life of all county communities

Meeting Community Needs

Working with Comcast to ensure MCTV is meeting its obligations to the community with respect to its PEG access functions
Supporting and promoting programs of local interest produced by individuals, schools, and non-profit charitable and social service organizations.
Covering meetings of public interest, including meetings of the selectboard, the schoolboard, and other governance committees
Working with educators to find ways to bring more student-produced programming to the station
Expanding partnerships with local cultural institutions such as the Ilsley Library, the Vermont Folklife Center and the Sheldon Museum to increase the variety of program offerings
Instituting a bi-annual revision of MCTV policies to ensure that those policies are current and relevant
Planning for future purchases of state-of-the-art equipment, incorporating any technological advances

2012

Anticipated Community Needs

Expanded training for use of MCTV equipment and resources.
More outreach to increase public awareness of MCTV and its programming
Wider variety and improved technical quality of MCTV programming
Technological applications that will enable communities without cable access to view MCTV programming
Improvement of interactive website

Measurement of Community Needs

Continuing the process by which the community can give input on MCTV's direction and goals. This might involve the use of a website as well as public forums and open houses to encourage personal interaction and an on-going dialogue.
Communicating with local governance boards such as the select board and the school board to assess to what extent community needs are being met and how MCTV can improve its services
Reaching out to teachers and other community educators to assess how MCTV can help meet the needs of the education community.
Brainstorming within the organization to find new partnerships and points of interaction with the community
Assessing the needs of Addison County at large to determine how MCTV can best play a role in the civic life of all county communities

Meeting Community Needs

Increasing the focus on the recruitment of new producers
Looking for new coverage opportunities, including possible collaborations with Middlebury College with respect to guest speakers and special courses
Expanding student participation in the functioning of the station
Working with Comcast to ensure MCTV is meeting its obligations to the community with respect to its PEG access functions
Supporting and promoting programs of local interest produced by individuals, schools, and non-profit charitable and social service organizations
Covering meetings of public interest, including meetings of the selectboard, the schoolboard, and other governance committees
Continuing to expand MCTV's partnerships with local cultural institutions
Expanding the collaboration with youth-centered programs in the community
Planning future capital expenses including improvements to the station's facilities

2013 and 2014

“A 21st century community media center is not about making the content available on the web and mobile phones, using apps and social media. That will be something that everyone does—schools libraries, citizen journalists, and government agencies. A 21st century community media center is about organizing those institutions to take and exercise community control of communications infrastructure.” from Full Spectrum Community Media, Alliance for Community Media

As the media and technological landscapes continue to change rapidly, this statement from the Alliance for Community Media points towards a role for MCTV that will serve the needs of cable subscribers and our community in the next few years. With this in mind, the access plan for 2013 and 2014 outlines the human-centered needs that will serve as overall guides for the organization in the next few years. Specific plans for educational programs, equipment purchases, outreach, and other activities will be created to achieve the overall goals articulated below. MCTV will move towards a future as an aggregator of local content and an educator in new media and technological developments, while maintaining the organization's emphasis on working with youth and facilitating the production of local programming for cablecast.

Anticipated Community Needs

Expanded training for use of MCTV equipment and resources.
Continued outreach to increase public awareness of MCTV and its programming
Wider variety and improved technical quality of MCTV programming, while simultaneously valuing the contributions of all volunteer producers
Technological applications that will enable communities without cable access to view MCTV programming
Increased media and technological literacy in the community including in under-served populations
Improvement of channel-focused website

Measurement of Community Needs

Continuing the process by which the community can give input on MCTV's direction and goals. This will involve the use of a website and may involve public forums and open houses to encourage personal interaction and an on-going dialogue
Communicating with local governance boards such as the select board and the school board to assess to what extent community needs are being met and how MCTV can improve its services
Reaching out to teachers and other community educators to assess how MCTV can help meet the needs of the education community
Brainstorming within the organization and with community partners to find new partnerships and points of interaction with the community
Assessing the needs of Addison County at large to determine how MCTV can best play a role in the civic life of all county communities

Meeting Community Needs

Maintaining and increasing collaborations with area schools, including K-12 institutions and colleges
Maintaining and encouraging student participation in the functioning of the station
Working with Comcast to ensure MCTV is meeting its obligations to the community with respect to its PEG access functions
Supporting and promoting programs of local interest produced by individuals, schools, and non-profit charitable and social service organizations
Covering meetings of public interest, including meetings of the select board, the school board, and other governance committees, and improving the means by which the community may access coverage with respect to feedback from town officials and citizens
Continuing MCTV's partnerships with local cultural institutions
Working with youth
Planning future capital expenses including improvements to the station's facilities
Collaborations that may include, but will not be limited to, working with Ilsley Public Library, regional planning boards, and other institutions and organizations to develop technological applications to increase access to MCTV programming
Exploring fundraising options to support MCTV's efforts to meet community needs

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