California: Freak Radio Santa Cruz will lose its current station location at the end of April. The hunt is on for new space. The landlord is apparently clearing out the entire building for some sort of redevelopment project, which is a shame because he’s otherwise been cool about the station (to the point of facing down the FCC twice). Freak Radio’s no stranger to moving – at one stage the station was “homeless” and operated out of a bicycle cart – but it is never a fun experience and this space had been the station’s single longest home.
Berkeley Liberation Radio continues to hum along and recently overhauled its schedule. The station’s adopted a dues format for fundraising and made out okay at their benefit show last month. BLR’s Cap’n Fred lays down the bassline on one of our recent additions to the pirate music MP3 collection (Countdown and the Blastoffs’ “We Want the Airwaves“). Continue reading “Scene Reports: California, Colorado, Oregon”
Monk, the prime founder of Boulder microradio outlet KBFR, is now blogging about the trials and tribulations of advanced microradio station operation. KBFR has been somewhat of a laboratory for tactical broadcasting shortly after its first visit from the FCC more than two years ago. It’s experimented with (and implemented) some clever ways of separating the transmitter from the studio, including the use of webcasting as STL and mobile operation. These tactics have kept the FCC chasing down blind alleys in its quest to bust the operation.
In somewhat older news, a group of microbroadcasters in the northwest are now focusing their efforts on the shortwave band. Radio Free Cascadia (a former Eugene, OR microradio project, also responsible for station Y2WTKO during the Seattle WTO protests of ’99) recently conducted regular broadcasts as Radio Free Cascadia International in support of the WTO protests in Cancun, Mexico earlier this month. It received reception reports from all over North and South America and Asia.
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”
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”
It’s been years since the shortwave pirate scene has been this active.
Normally, the best times to catch pirate broadcasts on shortwave frequencies has been weekend nights. While the spring and summer months tend to see a slowdown in activity due to increased solar and thunderstorm-induced interference, this trend has all but disappeared.
Pirates are popping up at all hours during the week, with some broadcasting marathon shows on multiple frequencies.
In the United States, the FCC has spent the last few years devoting most of its enforcement resources to tracking down and busting FM microradio stations; this has left little effort directed toward monitoring the shortwave band. Continue reading “Shortwave Spike”
Rumors of the demise of United Patriot Radio have proven to be false; whether or not this is a good thing, only time will tell.
United Patriot Radio is a shortwave pirate broadcasting from somewhere in Pulaski County, Kentucky. Run by a self-described militiaman named Steve Anderson (no relation), UPR originally came to life as Kentucky State Militia Radio (KSMR) in March, 2000, relaying militia-related news and advocating resistance to further encroachment by the Federal government on the lives of America’s citizenry.
Broadcasting on the upper sideband of 3260 kHz with a handful of watts and a homemade antenna, KSMR caused a small stir in the shortwave pirate community: never before had a clandestine station targeting the United States government actually broadcast from within its own borders.
But, as more and more people tuned in KSMR, more and more began not to like what they heard. Continue reading “Itching for a Fight”
It looks like a controversial shortwave militia pirate station is off the air now, possibly for good.
Kentucky State Militia Radio, or KSMR, began broadcasting a couple of months ago from a location in Kentucky. Major Steve Anderson was behind the mic, and he used the station to disseminate contact information for militia groups around the United States. However, the operation of the station was not sanctioned by Anderson’s parent organization, the Kentucky State Militia.
When the Militia’s commander found out about Anderson’s broadcasts – and the pending confrontation it would cause with federal authorities – he ordered Anderson to cease operations.
Anderson complied for a few days, then returned the station to the air under the name “United Patriot Radio.” Anderson claimed the station had no ties to the Kentucky State Militia anymore, and that he’d recruited help from other groups around the country to keep the station running. Continue reading “Infighting Kills Militia Pirate”
On the shortwave front, a militia man in Kentucky that made history in March is back on the air under a different name.
Major Steve Anderson, a member of the Kentucky State Militia, first fired up Kentucky State Militia Radio on March first. KSMR became the first clandestine shortwave broadcaster ever to target the United States from within the country itself – stations of this type traditionally broadcast outside of the country they’re trying to propagandize.
Touting the station as an expression of the First Amendment “protected by the Second Amendment,” KSMR made several broadcasts for about three weeks, passing along militia contact information and warning the FCC to stay away. Continue reading “KSMR Reborn”