NUTV unplugged

“I saw how the media was shooting it, trying to avoid the male item.”

That’s when the University of Calgary New University Television Producer and Programs Director Tom Andriuk decided to air a two-minute piece on Puppetry of the Penis without any in-house censorship.

"One of the things in our bylaws is to try to challenge the status quo," said Andriuk. "I really take this to heart and encourage students to really push the envelope."

Unfortunately that’s not always possible as the student-operated television station does not broadcast their own programs. Shaw Cable has the final say on anything that plays on channel 78 and two guys manipulating their penises just didn’t make the grade.

"Control of distribution is the key to control of information," said Andriuk. "NUTV doesn’t control its distribution. If Shaw doesn’t hit play on the VCR…"

Shaw Cable was unavailable for comment at the time of publication.

The 30-minute NUTV program containing the Puppetry of the Penis piece aired on Sunday night. When Shaw Cable realized what had happened, they called NUTV and said the program would not play again until changes had been made.

According to Andriuk, a Shaw representative phoned and said "Ah Tom, what are you doing? We can’t air the program because it’s got full frontal nudity."

"I put some cute little graphics over the penises and it aired on Thursday," said Andriuk. "I had a feeling they were going to say that. It wasn’t a surprise to me, but you always have to keep questioning, pushing the medium you work on."

This is not the first time NUTV has been pulled from the air. There were a few stories dealing with nudity or sexuality sent back for revisions over the years. However, for the first time students have the option of viewing the unedited version of Puppetry of the Penis on the flagship program Full Frontal NUTV on NUTV’s new Web site at www.nutv.ca.

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