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ICNYC Student Reflections

Students in the ICNYC program share their experiences and insights from one of the greatest cities in the world.

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Matthew Stenberg

Ithaca College senior Sport Media student Matthew Stenberg is interning with Sirius XM radio this fall through the ICNYC program. He will share some of his experiences of living and working in New York City in this blog. Check back for updates.

This entry was originally published October 4, 2013.

If radio is the theater of the mind, what happens when there's no sound? Well, I found out recently.

During a Monday show at my SiriusXM internship, a host’s microphone cut out in the middle of the interview leaving the audience -- briefly -- listening to the worst sound in radio -- silence.

Nobody plans on things going wrong, they just kind of happen. Back at Ithaca College when we had technical difficulties, it was pretty easy to fix. You either put in a couple of promos or PSAs or at worst play a song because when something goes wrong, something goes wrong. You can’t hide it from people forever.

Here, the solution wasn’t all that different. We cut the interview short and threw to break to figure out the problem. Since I was still in the shadowing phase of my internship and not in control of the sound board, there wasn’t much I could personally do to fix the problem. So, I mostly tried to get out of the way of the co-producers and help where I could, which involved offering to screen calls.

It’s important to not get worked up in these situations, even though it’s easy to do. Nothing ever gets accomplished when people go crazy, so you just have to keep calm, have an open mind, and work through the problem as fast as you can. Trying to do too much only makes things worse.

Almost a month into my internship SiriusXM, I’m slowly getting more and more important duties. Earlier on it was more just observing and seeing what was going on. The last couple weeks I’ve been cutting up audio clips with Adobe Audition.

Essentially, we’ll have guests come in and do 12-minute interviews and then I’ll cut those down to four minutes. It’s actually kind of difficult because when people are in an interview there are a lot of things that they don’t necessarily think about that can make an editor’s life easy or difficult. For example, ending in certain inflections and not rambling makes editing much easier. When a person rambles, it's very difficult to cut up audio because their statements won’t end on a downbeat or they'll just continue to talk and talk and talk. That can make it weird if someone ends a really good point and it’s obvious they said something else afterward.

Overall this has been a great experience so far. Living in the city has been exciting. We had the President here recently and it made everything pretty crazy. I’m also starting to get into a routine where living in New York City feels normal.

My job has been amazing. I think what I enjoy most is that I’ve always had a passion for radio, television, and sports broadcasting. So being able to do it on the scale that I’m doing it on is pretty surreal. The people I’ve met and interacted with are all NFL players and coaches so that’s something that’s been really awesome.

I look forward to keeping everyone posted on my semester in NYC. Check back in a few weeks for another update.


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