Online media platform casts Bronx in new light

Members of theBLOX TV team (l-r) Richard ‘HQ’ Washington, Gillian Todd, Marco Shalma, Christen Quinones, Brigid Owino, Isaac Rouse, Tyler ‘PSwitch’ Dow.
Photo courtesy of theBLOX TV

An online media platform is determined to give the borough a new voice.

Describing themselves as “a community of local media professionals amplifying Bronx-centric, entertaining content that celebrates culture and diversity”, theBLOX TV is a collaborative effort involving Bronxites who are all dedicated to delivering locally-produced, original content to their audience – the Bronx!

The project ‘theBLOX TV’ was originally started last fall by Marco Shalma and Gillian Todd after they both saw that the portrayal of the Bronx was very negative in the media.

As a result, they wanted to use their knowledge in contact and marketing to highlight the culture, diversity and everything positive that the borough has to offer.

The online media platform has produced over 100 videos in six weeks.

Video topics range from art, entrepreneurship, politics, education, lifestyle, sports and current events.

Also featured are theBLOX TV’s own Bloxpedia series as well as their live shows, which are aired daily on weekdays.

Gary Axelbank of BronxNet as well as Rosa Garcia, owner of the Mott Haven Bar and Grill are just a few of the big names featured in theBLOX TV’s latest live shows.

Marco and Gillian were also the co-founders of Round Seven, a local, independent film, TV and production company which launched last February.

“Our goal is to create a unique diverse voice for the people in the Bronx – while making a positive impact,” said Gillian, who is originally from Montana but has lived in the Bronx for the past five years.

“There is a particular vibe here (in the Bronx) that is unmatched anywhere else,” said Marco, who was originally born in South Africa and lived in Israel before moving to the United States, and eventually, the Bronx. He has been a resident for 10 years. “We want to represent the voice of the borough – and with this platform we will be able to do so while also reaching other Bronxites who will understand the stories told from a Bronx perspective.”

theBLOX TV recently launched a 30-day Kickstarter Campaign with the aim of raising $20,000 in attempts to complete an aggressive marketing plan aimed at increased viewership, which will be essential if the platform hopes to continue.

So far, the platform has raised $3,000 with only nine days to go.

theBLOX TV is currently located in Mott Haven, right near the 3rd Avenue Bridge – a neighborhood that has become vibrant with arts and culture.

theBLOX TV has many Bronx connections. Christen Quinones, the platform’s 22-year old art director, attended High School of American Studies at Lehman College.

Other team members have attended St. Raymond Academy for Girls, Lehman College and Mercy College. theBLOX TV is also currently interning a student from New York Institute for the Blind.

All of the platform’s team members were either born and raised in, and/or currently live in the Bronx – ranging from Co-op City to High Bridge to Pelham Bay and West Farms.

For more information, follow theBLOX TV on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @thebloxtv.

To view their videos online, search: theBLOX TV on Youtube or visit

More from Around NYC