Nathan Bernier on Removing Obstacles, Tapping into Community in the KUT Public Media Studios
Like reporters across all media who have adapted to the 24-hour news cycle, KUT News Reporter Nathan Bernier faces deadlines throughout each day for the web and broadcast. On top of deadlines, however, Nathan faces an additional set of challenges.
“There are several KUT departments that produce content for broadcast and for KUT.org every day, including the music department, Texas Music Matters, underwriting, the web team and StoryBoard,” he said. “Our current building has us scattered throughout the building, so when I want to have a face-to-face conversation with someone I need to make my way through a labyrinth, including the basement, to get to someone. That can seriously hinder communication when you’re working on minute-to-minute deadlines.”
The KUT Public Media Studios were built with daily workflow in mind. The producers’ commons — an open workspace not separated by walls — will encourage interaction and communication among content departments.
When the various content teams do intersect it’s often at one of the two studios where news, Texas Music Matters and the underwriting team record content. On a typical day there is not enough studio time to meet the need and deadlines are often pushed back. The new space will have seven studios, which will enable content producers to book studio time when they need it and turn around material more quickly.
Most importantly, the new building is designed to demonstrate KUT’s work from the inside out and to bring the community in.
“The new building will have gathering spaces wired and ready for broadcast so we’ll be able to host public forums and gather feedback in order to open the newsroom and better reflect the community we report on,” he says.