Capturing Wallingford from “Where you are!’ and compiling a video for sharing on Local@5 is an initiative to bring people together and archive our community as the people see it.
Local@5 is how we share current community-contributed content.
We hope to see your view of Wallingford on TV.
#wpaatv must comply with copyright law and have permission to use something you create. We can not just take the content you publish to Facebook. Sending to the email email@example.com solves this for us and you.
The people of Wallingford have many things in common like seeing the early sprouts of spring, the experience of winter, or beautiful sunsets in many locations in town. You also may have very unique stories to share. All are welcome.
This is called crowd casting. We hope many become familiar with it so that when we have events like Celebrate Wallingford hosted by Wallingford Center Inc. we will be able to capture it as the people of Wallingford experience it.
Until then help us #CelebrateWallingfordEveryday #wpaatv #yourtownoyourstationyourvoice #MorethanTV @followers 11 people contributed to the 1st crowd cast of 2024. Enjoy the video.
The WPAA-TV Board Member service commitment is 3 years. Attendance at six governance meetings & serve on one committee. The minimum financial contribution is made during the annual #theGreatGive.
Primary Role: Governance (setting strategic direction with operational oversight) and outreach. Outreach includes sharing or commenting on Freeman or wpaa-tv social media posts within your comfort zone.
Your committee service will align with your talents. The standing committees are Technology, Building, and Outreach. The officers are the Governance committee.
Getting to know us
Here is a link to an impromptu tour of the station done in 2017. Hopefully, you will notice some changes when you stop by. In 2018, we began publishing annual video reports which can be found here.
For full transparency, our primary documents including bylaws and policy are on the website. Our people are listed here.
Getting to know you
1st meeting introduction ritual: “What brings you here?” Please share: 1. How did you come to know us? 2. Something about yourself that may be of value to those working on behalf of WPAA-TV.
What we look for in prospective board members: Community connections, critical skills, and passion for media literacy. Essential skills include Accounting, Tech (server to video production), and facilities management. We feel it is important to have an artist, neighborhood residents or businesses, and people with families with middle school and higher children as their children are our future. Representation of underserved communities is also important to our mission.
If you are unsure about a Board commitment, an advisory role may be a gentle introduction to service. Nonboard members can serve on a committee.
I receive your invitation to gather with local arts advocates in Wallingford with mixed feelings. I am frankly exhausted by the Wallingford doublespeak about arts.
As you are aware, there is the Economic Development Council’s WACA initiative’.
From our lean college intern resources, we supported WACA outreach in 2020. One intern designed a logo. The gif version of the logo shows a changing color palate to reflect inclusion & diversity within this traditional art image. There were videos produced as well: a long public meeting and a pull-out from the meeting. Recording the meeting was not planned and preceded the work of interns who provided some post-production.
When the logo was sent to the EDC WACA team, the only reply was from the library representative. She said, ‘I love it’. It was later sent to the Social Media Manager for Wallingford Magazine. Again, a positive affirmation. However, Wallingford Mag ran the WACA story without it.
None of the WACA leadership even acknowledged receipt of the logo which left me feeling like I failed the intern who is a Wallingford resident. The intent was for the interns to have portfolio items. All three interns felt I let them down with the assignment to provide WACA support. This left a bad taste, in me, for working with the community people involved. They did complain about the long video which was produced gavel-to-gavel style because it was a public meeting by a quasi-government agency. The pull-out was never used. Our interns were never acknowledged or thanked. We all learned that memorandums of understanding are a critical 1st step to extending services.
WPAA-TV has been the unrecognized arts location in Wallingford since 2015. With public art (mural) by ARCY, a #socialactionart gallery, as a host for theater and award-winning films & animated children’s stories. Our award-winning seriesMakingIt Artisan$tories also hits a wall locally.
We have been a safe creative place for those who find us since our doors opened in 2010 as intended – to all – after decades of being less than even a traditional public access station. Ironically, I needed to remind the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven, and even you, that we are #MoreThanTV. That performance art is the richest kind. That #socialacionart amplifies advocacy.
You may recall that I even reminded you, during your mayoral campaign, that we were an arts space. And then, from behind the camera at the WACA gathering of artists, I expressed the same absence of awareness from everyone’s sight. Of note, not one artist in that room, who was previously unfamiliar with WPAA-TV, most of them, made their way to the station.
Frankly, I have not seen much in the way of acting ‘collectively’ among artists even preceding my involvement with WPAA-TV.
And I am struggling with how to say this nicely. Even your invitation to chat fails to acknowledge 10 years of investment in the creation of an art space in Wallingford at WPAA-TV. Yes, I would love to be part of a thriving creative community. Yes, I would like to envision something bigger. Yes, I will make time, and even space, for conversation. But I will say up front I will not commit to anything that does not fully recognize the past 10 years. Reinventing the wheel is never a good choice. I have a full plate with our arts-full strategic plan. It looks beyond Wallingford for impact because that may be the only way to make an impact.
In 2023, we engaged @Gallery53 artist in Meriden to create a mission mosaic for our outreach. It is in our foyer. The video story is here. On Martin Luther King Day, (Jan 2024) WPAA-TV leadership authorized the naming of the gallery in honor of the fine artist Nelson ‘Carty’ Ford. Nelson Ford would have been 90 on Jan 18th, 2024. Nelson and his wife Ruthie served with Founder (2006) Wilbert ‘Robbie’ Robinson in the minority rights organization Wallingford Coalition for Unity an organization that openly supported the work of WPAA-TV as it sought to find an in-town location.
Information and civic literacy are the community education focuses of community media. Community education is provided in collaborative support of special video programs, engaging in community forums with questions for clarification, transparency, or fact-finding, and social engagement tagged #civicliteracy #informationliteracy.
This tag was on all candidate videos produced in 2023.
Collaboration with Users: Citizen Mike News & Commentary Since 2010
Municipal elections, held every odd year in Connecticut, have the potential for the greatest impact on everyone’s life. Yet as you will hear in this Citizen Mike interview with the Secretary of the State, Stephanie Thomas, turnout is much lower than in Presidential Election years. Our community of Wallingford is specifically identified.
You, the participants, and Celebrate Wallingford attendees hold one of the keys to a crowdsourced movie in your hands: Your cell phone. And you are probably going to post pictures on social media, right? But what if you could be part of something more celebratory as a community media maker? Would you do it?
What is Crowdsourcing, and how does it apply to making a Celebrate Wallingford movie?
Crowdsourcing is the process of obtaining data from a large number of sources in order to generate a representative outcome. It is often a public project managed by a trusted organization.
More specifically, Crowdsourcing a ‘Celebrate Wallingford’ Movie is the submission of images and videos taken by the participants and attendees of Celebrate Wallingford to a folder in the cloud to be edited by the youth team at WPAA-TV. Most submitted content will be from a cell phone, but users of drones and photographers are most welcome to join in. WPAA-TV’s youth team TeenTigerTV will be the movie editors but you must be the camera crew. Together the community can create a shared memory of Celebrate Wallingford 2023.
We encourage everyone to participate. Submission of an image is concurrently giving permission for its use. The movie will be as good as we collectively make it. You can start by documenting how you get ready, setting up your booths, and preparing your giveaways. We anticipate many pictures of hugs, shaking hands, smiling with friends (maybe even Freeman), and eating comfort food for good causes. All of this is to be celebrated. One person at a time. But a crowdsourced film is celebrating Wallingford collectively as a community.
Community media is different than social media. Social media is you expressing your view from your portal to everyone. Community Media is being part of something bigger than you. It is the coming together of neighbors. Community media has the ability to bring everybody’s ideas and activities together. You may eventually see the movie when it is edited on social media and it will definitely be cablecast on WPAA-TV. It will be made available to the public for immediate enjoyment and archived as a community memory.
Please consider submitting the images and videos you capture during Celebrate Wallingford. We prefer horizontal but any way you take them is fine.
You hold one of the keys to community media in your hands.
What WPAA-TV is doing during Celebrate Wallingford
The #TeenTigerTV young people may be escorting Freeman Penny Quinn, 1st Free Speech Ambassador for photo opportunities for the young, and young at heart
And maybe best of all: Making the 1st ever, maybe to be annual, Crowdsourcing the Celebrate Wallingford Movie.
While we encourage you to visit and use the resources of WPAA-TV and Community Media Center at its location at 28 S. Orchard St., there are other ways for you to be the “commUnity” in media. This project and Local@5 are among the ways.
Our purpose is to serve our viewers, producers, and contributors in the production of content that matters to them and ultimately the public. By providing our tools and stage as a free resource on a 1st, come, 1st serve basis, WPAA-TV celebrates Wallingford every day. Community media encourages local dialogue increases discourse around policy issues, fosters an understanding of local cultures, and shares information to improve our lives. In Wallingford, we have a space to be brave and safe for all of this but Unity begins with U. Let’s share the joy of enjoying everything Wallingford has to offer in the Celebrate Wallingford Movie. Let’s begin a tradition.
Will you accept our inaugural offer for the production of your Wallingford small business story by our #TeenTigerTV crew under the guidance of a professional filmmaker?
Community Funded Youth Program
For a minimum tax-deductible donation of $750 designated to our youth media program the #TeenTigerTV, the #TeenTigerTV team will produce a ‘non-commercial’ story about your connection to Wallingford. Our direct costs for your story will likely be $450. The balance will support staffing Media Mingles Mondays (funding dependent) and community stories produced by the same team. The youth team has access to all the tech resources of WPAA-TV and Community Media Center available to community producers at no charge. Multiple versions of your story or the inclusion of drone footage can be discussed if desired for a larger contribution.
Last year’s award-winning summer youth program was recognized in three national festivals and the public service PSA ‘Call 988 It is Never Too Late‘ is approaching 30,000 views. Have you seen it? Pls, watch and share. You can save a life.
WPAA-TV must raise $15,000 per quarter to cover operational costs for all aspects of the #TeenTigerTV program. This includes extending part-time positions to two qualifying youth from the summer Workforce Alliance program. That program has economic and/or social criteria for participation.
Support & Training Only (WPAA-TV is not a media production house or news agency)
WPAA-TV does not produce TV except through this program. Community Media is made by and for the people of Wallingford with our shared resources and technical assistance. Local short stories are cablecast during Local@5 weekdays beginning at 5 p.m. These business stories by #TeenTigerTV will be featured in Local@5.
You can also submit video footage you capture on your phone as a local story. The criteria for submission can be found here.
Does the CAP have an agreement to provide a level of support higher than that set by the standards in Conn. Agencies Reg. § 16-331a-11?
Public Utilities Control Authority Question 41 Study per SA 22-23, Special Act 22-23 authorizes a community media study. The study proposal first appeared as a ‘strike all amendment’ of Senate Bill 278 on the last day of a robust 2022 Connecticut Legislative Session. The amendment substitutes immediate action, modifying regulations, with a study.
An agreement implies two parties. We have a commitment to provide a level of support to our community that is higher than the standards set by the regulations. And, we took the directive to provide what other Wallingford channels do not provide in the 2002 franchise renewal seriously.
Our ability to do more began in 2013 with having full-time staffing for the 1st time. Capabilities expanded in 2014 when the nonprofit ‘Mission Continues’ paid for a veteran to be on staff with us for 6 months. The veteran continues to be P-T staff. We pay it forward by selecting up to 5 community organizations to receive additional video production support or use of our resources for non-television creation purposes.
Our building displayed the 1st public art mural in town. Another mural was produced with a community program at our location and is installed on the other side of town.
We have hosted a workforce training program for youth that are economically or socially disadvantaged during the summer (except for 2019-20, pandemic related).
the Governance Team adopted a MORE.THAN.TV strategic plan.
We have a gallery that raises money for housing and food-insecure programs and we are a drop-off location for donations
We run movie challenges, underwrite festival fees for our awesome producers, and do not ask local businesses for donations, instead, we shop local.
We have hosted three different theater companies, one nine-episode 180-day film project, and several other local film crews on an as-needed requests basis (mostly for our green screen)
Our hybrid-enabled community room is available upon request. We receive referrals from the library that has a once-a-year use policy. It has been used by condo associations, advocacy group training, and writer’s groups.
We have an area prepped by local teens in 2018 for their use as a social gathering space. They create music videos and podcasts or just hang out
We collaborated with a puppeteer and filmmaker to produce a Puppet Film to address the need for Active Shooter Training for Pre-K to 5th grade.
In addition, we recognize that some content is not time limited. Evergreen content is remastered for the podcast: As Told Here WPAA-TV. This has been useful to the AA community which produces a 30-minute segment once a year. Podcasts have extended our reach by at least 15%.
A project committed to Wallingford and its People. Is there a Wallingford Person Place or Thing that you believe needs their story told? You can do that and maybe win prizes too.
They say it’s my B’day. Celebrate with me. Subscribe to @wpaatv on YouTube. Retrospective content will be cablecast on Saturdays from 8 to 11 p.m. this year. A few videos have some of these questions embedded with clues.
Published Record-Journal Weekender Op-Ed June 3, 2023
In June, WPAA-TV turns 30, but the legacy of community media in Wallingford is 48 years deep. All community media in Wallingford originated in 1975 with a state grant to the library for a community bulletin board. The “What is happening at the library?” show, 200 North Main St, had been the longest-running community media program in Connecticut. Discontinued during the pandemic, WGTV has no plans for its return. The library is now podcasting.
Also in June, WPAA-TV is receiving, for the fourth time in five years, the Alliance for Community Media Hometown Festival Award for ‘Overall Excellence’ as a small public access station. This honor suggests that WPAA-V is reaching, or exceeding, all expectations tied to its mission to provide a space for the people of Wallingford to express their ideas, and talents and share stories.
Less celebratory is how Wallingford is an outlier in a legislative study of community media a.k.a. Public, Education, and Government (P.E.G.) in Connecticut (PURA DOCKET NO. 22-06-26). This study is reviewing the potential of ‘statewide’ community media provider consolidation, funding options and limits.’
With a study seeking to ‘consolidate’ access providers, reduce costs and ensure accountability; Wallingford stands out for a few reasons. Among them is the existence of two recording locations for government TV and a third independent public access studio. Ironically, this has led to an exceptional amount of state technology grants to Wallingford. Other eccentricities appear in annual reports. When filed, the education channel report incorrectly identifies the channel it administers. The WPAA-TV Public Access report includes government & education activity.
Idiosyncrasies garner more scrutiny. When a 1999 PURA Docket initially designated WPAA-TV as the sole recipient of subscriber fees ‘remaining’ in Wallingford, it was inclusive of a requisite obligation to cablecast content the other local channel administrators chose not to provide. This commingling, coupled with an annual average of $20,000 of Wallingford subscriber fees authorized to be distributed by cable companies to the franchise towns of Madison, Guilford, No. Branford and No. Haven, begs the question, “Why?”.
In 2008, WPAA-TV volunteers sought to purchase the Parade Ground property adjacent to the Town Hall, now owned by a family. Testimony established that Wallingford had the most expensive Government Access channel in CT. They suggested consolidation. Their purchase and consolidation proposal conservatively would have saved Wallingford taxpayers a million dollars. It also could have optimized the technology grants that did not yet exist. The primary source of resistance to local consolidation has been the mayor. Since the mayor of 40 years is not running in 2023, local elections may open the door to a review of consolidation — assuming Wallingford is not targeted to be merged with other franchise towns.
There are two other complex and significant factors playing into the study’s outcome: the disputed origin and purpose of community media funding and the vast technological change since the inception of Cable TV. Undeniably, more people have access to tools to create media and there are several platforms for distribution. Even the legacy library show has been supplanted with podcasting.
Among fifty questions posed to nonprofit cable access providers, study administrators requested revenue and expense details for the last four years from all providers in the state. The last filing date is June 7th. Study recommendations are to be submitted to the Technology Committee of the General Assembly by December 15th. While it is too soon to predict the outcome, the words ‘consolidation’, ‘eliminate’, and ‘merge’ loom assertively above discussion of what constitutes meaningful community media today.
Connecticut (CT) is among a handful of states committed to enabling community media in every community. Yet, CT has the most complex mechanism for providing & funding P.E.G. in the nation. It is a hodgepodge of corporate, regional, town, and mixed-service models with significant variation in channel capacity allocations. Its evolution is firmly rooted in a Yankee paradigm; a worldview that presumes to foster local democracy, open government, and civic virtue while being practical and self-reliant. Uncomfortably nestled in this hodgepodge is Wallingford. And what is at risk is the loss of WPAA-TV and Community Media Center.
The volunteers of WPAA-TV believe themselves to be stewards of what remains limitless: That community media lets you discover every day what you did not know you needed. In November, local elections may finally let us out of the dog house only to find the study sends us to the shoreline. But we want to be all in for Wallingford in Wallingford. Are you with us?
WPAA-TV embarked on the remastering of video to audio in 2019. AS TOLD HERE are previously cablecasts on WPAA-TV conversations and stories shared in the public interest. If the television version of the show does not rely heavily on visuals, the topic is ‘evergreen’, or is public archive worthy, both archived and shows in the current production cycle are eligible to be remastered for the podcast by our volunteers. Quinnipiac Journalist intern culls the archives to select the show that may be prime for podcast remastering. His best-of-show reviews follow
Here is what we consider prior to podcasting the popular, Citizen Mike Show. The 1st consideration is will the content expire; will the issues discussed be of archival or ongoing relevance? The show is entirely ‘talking heads’ with minimum reliance on visuals and interpersonal expression. He verbalizes the show closing. If it is breaking news or something that will be resolved soon, it is not a solid candidate UNLESS Rushing it out to the public has value. As a podcast this could become a top performer
Review by QU Intern Garrett Amill
Citizen Mike: a service to the town and a lot of fun
The most important part of government can be smaller than you think. Local politics often have just as much of an impact on life in a town as state politics do or even federal. There can be a dearth of information about local politics, however. Citizen Mike acts to fill a gap in Wallingford, providing a place for debate and discussion of the goings-on in the government of Wallingford and beyond. Citizen Mike hosts government officials and employees. The show also features people with opinions on aspects of the town, like a teacher talking about Wallingford schools. Besides providing a service, the show is compelling to listen to. Much of that comes from the skill of host Mike Brodinsky. Brodinsky has an understated charm to him. He could easily be the center of attention on the show, but instead, he lets the guests shine. Brodinsky asks questions well, getting the information from guests that he knows listeners will want. At the same time, he keeps the guests from rambling too much. Brodinsky also has a good knowledge of what will get too technical for the audience. He asks guests to clarify what they mean whenever they use jargon or reference things the audience won’t know. Citizen Mike is a very timely show. It’s been the first source of information on newly announced decisions in the past. This makes listening to older episodes less ideal since they can be about old news. However, some of the show’s episodes have a longer shelf life. Citizen Mike provides a service to the town of Wallingford while being interesting to watch. It functions as a fascinating local political news show.
Looking at Mental Health through practiced eyes
Mental health issues are still stigmatized. Addiction, PTSD, and more are rarely understood, let alone talked about. Out of the Dark takes a shot at addressing these complicated issues. It succeeds at shedding light on them. The hosts, Jane Buckley and Joan Landino are twins. Despite looking nearly identical, they are far from the same person. They have different takes on issues and sound very different from each other. It is easy to tell which one is speaking, even if you can’t see them. The two are both APRNs, or advanced practice registered nurses. This means they have more training and expertise than other nurses. This expertise lets the two discuss mental health issues from a perspective that includes more scientific knowledge. Of course, being nurses they see more cases of mental illness than the average person would. That on-the-street experience gives them further perspective on the issues. The hosts’ experiences work to provide more information than otherwise. However, their discussion never gets too technical. Everything they say can be understood without a background in medicine. The mental health challenges they chose to discuss are relevant. Dementia care, addiction, and marijuana especially provide good opportunities for interesting takes from the hosts. There are also a few less controversial episodes. The episode on DNA-guided medicine is a particular standout. If you haven’t heard of that concept, definitely check it out to learn something new and fascinating. A frank look at mental health issues is rare, but Out of the Dark recorded in 2016 provides it, bringing light to these often ignored issues.
Midlife Matters: Cozy, yet full of wit
I never thought I’d care about the art of Ukranian egg dying. Hearing it discussed on Midlife Matters, however, my attention was nowhere else. Midlife Matters manages to make topics I’d never heard of interesting. The host, Georgian Lussier, brings a calming presence to each show. From the owl sounds that play at the start of the episode to her voice throughout, there is a contemplative tone. The guests are all women, and all over 40. These women provide unique perspectives. An episode featuring a teacher from an automotive trade school is made better by that teacher being female. The fact that a woman can teach in a male-dominated industry is empowering. None of the episodes are truly run-of-the-mill. Even the ones that seem that way at first turn out to be worth listening to. One episode on a grief support program has an especially interesting guest, who clearly has a life full of stories to tell. Lussier is capable of letting her guests tell their stories while making sure those stories stay interesting. The start of shows can drag a little as Lussier finds her footing with the guests. Once she does, however, the conversation flows. It’s worth listening to get to the fascinating discussion. Midlife Matters provides a contemplative look at what is fascinating in the lives of women in the area. It’s a good show to watch while drinking a cup of tea and taking in a unique world.