The first is the venerable A-Infos Radio Project (which I believe is now separate from the woefully outdated Radio4All.org) – a complete overhaul of the project source code. The new layout takes a bit of getting used to and there might be a couple of bugs left to catch, but remember, this is free sh*t. The A-Infos Radio Project is arguably the best open source audio clearinghouse available online, with several uploads added to the system every day. They can always use some help: bandwidth is a killer, and there has to be hundreds of gigabytes of audio archived already. Continue reading “Two Critical Online Resources Get Even More Useful”
Slightly old news, but mention-worthy nonetheless: the FCC last week reversed its decision allowing a commercial station to move its transmitter to a location that would force an Oregon high school to close down its Class D (30 watt) FM outlet. The short announcement did not specify a reason, but it’s not a difficult one to discern (read: negative publicity for an already-maligned agency). KMIH-FM is not out of the clear just yet, though – the FCC always has the authority to change its mind once again if it so chooses. Here’s to hoping it doesn’t get stupid (again).
When the FCC came and intimidated Radio Free Brattleboro off the air in June, the Vermont community responded with zeal. A parade float, petition drive, and countless benefits and station meetings later, the station returned to the airwaves today on 107.9 FM. That frequency is currently vacant, but there is a pending LPFM application for it. RFB has promised to vacate the frequency if and when the license is awarded and the station is ready to broadcast.
A local petition drive has drawn “way more than 2,000 signatures” in support of the station, reports RFB’s Steven Twiss: “The petition’s signatories include several area heavy-hitters including politicians, business owners and artists. One, a wonderful older woman, is on the town council. She bought a ‘Free rfb’ T-shirt and wore it to a few council meetings, which are broadcast on the local cable access channel.” There is also an online petition drive for anyone else interested in symbolically standing with them. Continue reading “RFB Returns; FRSD Gets Grant; RFPI Gets Reprieve”
Look for more sporadic news updates this month as I hunker down and pound out major portions of my master’s thesis. Regular refreshes (like the Schnazz) will continue, and news updates will occur if the story’s is big or unique, both of which could happen considering the FCC’s official implementation of its media ownership rule revisions takes place on September 4.
All of the coordinated grassroots media reform e-mail and call-in campaigns have worked so well to date that a big petition push is now on, and a national conference on media reform is slated for November 7-9 here in Madison. The Amherst Alliance has also ginned up a double-sided flyer for “LPFM Summer,” which is starting to hit full stride. Continue reading “Partial Hiatus Ahoy & Miscellaneous Notes”
On Monday officials with the University for Peace attempted to make good on their threat to evict Radio for Peace International from its studios on the University campus (even though RFPI owns the building). This comes after a previous agreement worked out following the eviction notice sent last month in which both sides were supposed to sit down and discuss their problems on August 11.
RFPI staff had been operating on the timetable of the agreement, so when they showed up for work Monday and the initial attempt to enter the building was rebuffed there was plenty of shock to go around. The station’s web site has been modified accordingly, and a Save RFPI site is now operational as well.
Democracy Now! is on the story and the short interview sheds some interesting light on the roots of the conflict. Even the U.N.’s University for Peace is being forced to follow the flag of corporate globalization, and RFPI may be a casualty in the struggle against that.
Staff at Radio for Peace International are now speaking out about the lockdown and presence of armed guards at the shortwave station. A news release from a group of station manager/directors says RFPI is being evicted from its building on the campus of the University for Peace, a United Nations-chartered institution.
The station has two weeks to vacate the premises; some staff have remained at the station since the initial confrontation on Monday, but it sounds like that might not be by choice.
Quoting from the release: Continue reading “RFPI Being Evicted; How Many Ears Can Hear LPFM?”
Radio For Peace International, an independent shortwave radio station broadcasting from El Rodeo, Costa Rica, has been surrounded by security guards and its doors chained shut. The reason for the siege is unknown, as is the status of RFPI staff.
Radio For Peace International got its start in 1987 with the help of progressives from around the world and has been volunteer-driven and listener-supported ever since. It’s seen some fame for its extensive research and reporting on right-wing hate groups, and especially their prolific use of shortwave broadcasting as a propaganda outlet. Continue reading “Radio For Peace International Under Siege”
With low power FM mostly confined to the hinterlands, activists interested in expanding access to the airwaves are looking at other areas of the electromagnetic spectrum to squat. Kyle Drake has been reading some interesting stuff about the use of wireless networks operating at low powers with large coverage areas in the frequencies above one gigahertz (1 GHz).
In order to spur discussions on the idea of creating a new “citizen’s broadcast band (CBB),” Kyle’s set up a simple web forum. So far, a few are kicking the tires on the concept in a positive light, approaching the proposal from multiple perspectives. Not all think heading into such high-frequency territory is the solution – but it’s the thought that counts. Contribute yours! Continue reading “Could Wi-Fi go Hi-Fi?, Prometheus to Assemble "Dictionary of Noise"”
It has been one hell of a week, I can say that for sure.
At this point seven days ago, the Grassroots Radio Conference held here in Madison, WI was in full swing and the discussion was full of the future.
The Conference was geared toward what few licensed full-power community stations exist around the country, but the event also attracted plenty of people simply interested in radio and the latest happenings in the medium.
There was also a good contingent of unlicensed broadcasters who stepped out of the shadows and introduced themselves. But what I did not expect was the number of people who I met. Continue reading “Organized Resistance”
Pete triDish is one of the driving forces behind West Philadelphia’s Radio Mutiny, and the founder of the Prometheus Radio Project. He’s got a very well-thought out way of thinking about the potential for legal low power radio. Read on:
There has been an ongoing debate in the micropower radio community as to whether or not a legalized micro-radio service should allow for locally owned, commercial stations. Advocates for allowing small-time businesses having stations raise a number of compelling arguments. One is that these small stations would be an excellent business opportunity for minority-owned stations which would serve markets that are currently ignored as a result of the artificially high hurdle to get involved in broadcasting. Indeed, we have already seen this in the example of a station like Hippolito Cuevas’s station in Connecticut – a station that was very quickly accepted by the Latino community, in a town where a fourth of the population is Latino and there is no Spanish language radio. Cuevas makes the argument that there would be no way for him to make his station work without some commercial revenues. He says that the commercials that he would take – for example, from local stores that could never afford the outrageous rates of regular stations – are in fact a form of community service. A growing number of entrepreneurs are becoming interested in this possibility, and the few hints that the FCC has dropped about what sort of proposal it might accept for a legalized micro service have mentioned minority entrepreneurship as a major factor. Continue reading “No More Mickey Mouse Microradio”