A closet-cleaning brought about the re-discovery of a Cap’n Fred’s World Cruise episode from mid-to-late 2004. His lead-off track was The Foremen’s “Privateers of the Public Airwaves” (MP3, 2:45, 2.6 MB), which turned out to be several months’ prescient. Although it was originally written following the Gingrich revolution, it strikes a chord still today. I’m kind of surprised it wasn’t resurrected and given more play during the latest round of freak-outs over pubcast appropriations.
According to the latest AMPB Report, Berkeley Liberation Radio returned to the East Bay airwaves at 6pm Sunday. The station has also vowed to start web streaming as well, but that seems like a stretch since its web site is perpetually under construction.
More press is available about Thursday’s raid on Free Radio San Diego, including another interview with Bob Ugly on Enemy Combatant Radio and some corporate media mentions. While FRSD is not pining for a fight in court (as it does not generally respect the FCC’s quasi-police function), it did send preemptive correspondence to the agency shortly after taking to the air, invoking the “perpetual war loophole” in FCC rules as justification to broadcast. So far the agency’s ignored that.
A morning raid brings a gaggle of Feds to Free Radio San Diego, who busted in the doors to take the most choice bits of the station away, including transmitter and antenna. Epithets were hurled and pictures taken by onlookers as agents dismantled stuff. A bounty is out for one of the FCC’s swanky cop-like polo shirts. The raid comes more than a month after the station got a standard-issue 10-day warning notice posted on its door – the third warning over nearly three years of operation.
Nobody was in the studio at the time, and FRSD’s warrant mentions no people, which means the FCC is still trying to figure out who’s behind the action. DJ Spike, in an interview on RadioActive San Diego, notes the station has a strong security culture, which is really helping set the wheels in motion for its return. Continue reading “Free Radio San Diego Raided, Won't Stay Down For Long”
Two men were arrested on the last day of June for running unlicensed stations in Broward County, Florida. They’re being charged with felonies under a new state law and face up to five years in prison. A pirate-busting sheriff’s detective seems pleased with his handiwork, but it’s been nearly a year since the law went on the books and this is the first action to speak of. Signal Finder, those pirate-hunters for hire – are not making out like they’d hoped.
A pending petition from the American Radio Relay League to the FCC, which asks the agency to declare the Florida law null and void (by federal preemption) may not be ruled on for several more months. Perhaps the state will rush its prosecution in hopes of beating the FCC to a resolution. The south Florida scene has certainly transcended microbroadcasting, sounding like a little slice of London – if not so much on the air then in the modus operandi.
I’ve added several dozen entries to the Database, bringing the total number of enforcement actions catalogued above 500. This includes a slew of activity in 2005 and the backfilling of information from 2001 forward. New York overtakes California as the second-hottest spot in the nation (yet Florida still outpaces all with ease); November flashes past July as the busiest month for pirate-busting.
While it appears that FCC enforcement activity against microbroadcasters has ramped up in the post-LPFM rulemaking years, it’s important to remember that a single station is often responsible for several data points, as field agents often make repeated visits and attempts to inspect a station before escalating matters. Continue reading “Enforcement Action Database Update”