NAB/NPR on LPFM: Forked Tongues

REC Networks has collected and posted summaries of several “constituency comments” (those filed by groups representing communities of interest), doing the thankless job of weeding through the auto-file form-fill spam.
The National Association of Broadcasters, predictably, opposes any changes to the FCC’s LPFM rules that might expand the service, continuing to peddle fully-debunked claims that 100-watt stations have the potential to cause “harmful interference” to stations 10 to 1,000 times their size in terms of power.
The comments – which took three NAB executives, three staffers (including former high-level FCC staff), and two law clerks to write and sign off on – also rubs the agency’s nose in the fact that it is prohibited by congressional fiat from relaxing channel-spacing rules to create space for LPFM stations in urban areas. Continue reading “NAB/NPR on LPFM: Forked Tongues”

Tactical Media Love Tour?

I’ve received some interest from people who attended the microradio workshop at the Allied Media Conference in June about taking the show on the road, as it were – demonstrating tactical media technology in hands-on style. I envision such events, being outside a conference atmosphere, also drawing heavily on Tetsuo Kogawa’s “radio party” model (without the soldering).
If this sounds like a great way to spend an evening, drop a line and details can be discussed. All that would be required in each location is a flat patch of ground, a power outlet, and some floor space to crash on. For the moment, such travels would have to be confined to the Midwest, given time and circumstance; Detroit is a go, Chicago and Indianapolis are possibles, and anywhere in-between is game. Spreading tactical media love by example isn’t just effective, it’s a hell of a lot of fun.

Truthful Translators: Where Are They Now?

Some interesting developments in the lives of a few of the talented collagists that have taken political rhetoric to new levels:
Norton Scooter made a pilgrimage to Crawford, Texas during the president’s vacation and spent time at the spontaneous peace camp that grew up outside the ranch. It ended in his arrest. As is his penchant, the story is told in audio – a priceless 30 minutes’ worth (29:55, 24 MB). Scooter is one of the most talented long-form storytellers working in the medium of sound today. Continue reading “Truthful Translators: Where Are They Now?”


It’s been about nine months since this site moved to a properly-beefy server. One of the advantages of the move was regaining access to site stats. Having a somewhat consistent record to work with now, there’s interesting info to share.
At present DIYmedia serves up an average of ~80,000 pages per month to more than 20,000 unique users. Hit-wise, on a monthly basis, the number’s well over 300,000. This works out to nearly 700 visitors a day (on zero publicity). Continue reading “Stat-Parsing”

Radio4All Funding Crunch Redux

To those who may pooh-pooh the ability to run an incredibly successful public service on no budget, look no further than the A-Infos Radio Project. For more than seven years Radio4All has provided a repository for an amazing amount of aural information and charged its users nothing for the service. Since the mainstream arrival of the anti-corporate globalization movement the service has found itself under increasing demand, which now amounts to ~30,000 users per month.
Over the years Radio4All’s also weathered an amazing amount of crises, including emergency storage upgrades and bandwidth increases. Bandwidth alone now costs some $500 per month, and now its hosting provider wants those payments tendered quarterly. According to Radio4All co-founder and co-maintainer Shawn Ewald, “right now, our current balance will only cover this month’s bill.” There may be lots of sites out there offering similar services now, but none were developed in such bottom-up fashion and none have attracted the amount and quality of content as Radio4All.

Mikey Powell: Telecoms Investor

Not much surprise in the news of former FCC chieftain Mikey Powell going to work for Providence Equity Partners, which specializes in venture/vulture capitalism involving global media interests. Powell, as a “Senior Advisor,” will no doubt assist in the management of Providence’s ~$9 billion portfolio. His pinstriped suits should fit in very well there. Continue reading “Mikey Powell: Telecoms Investor”

Dueling Legislative Priorities: LPFM vs. Translator

An interesting development on Capitol Hill seems to be stymieing the advancement of legislation to expand the LPFM service. Advocates have been working closely with congresswoman Louise Slaughter (D-NY) to craft a bill in the House of Representatives that would jibe with Senator John McCain’s (R-AZ) Local Community Radio Act. The bill hasn’t been introduced yet because it needs demonstrable support from GOP representatives to be taken seriously, and no Republicans will co-sponsor the bill, although the ongoing grassroots recruitment effort is impressive.
Now comes a new complication: Slaughter has learned about the translator speculation and trafficking scheme that threatens to eat up space for new LPFM stations, and she’s pissed. So pissed, in fact, that she wants to include language in her LPFM bill that would deal with the translator issue pretty severely. The conventional wisdom suggests that the addition of such “polarizing” language – especially on an issue involving religious organizations – won’t help the effort to drum up GOP support for LPFM. Continue reading “Dueling Legislative Priorities: LPFM vs. Translator”

FCC Still Hunting in San Diego; LPFM Comment Period Extended

This week the folks behind 106.9FM, the on-air relay for RadioActive San Diego, got a letter dropped at their door warning them to shut down or face a $10,000 fine. This is not much of a surprise given the recent raid of compatriots. The station plans to be off the air for a spell – during which time volunteers will build a bigger transmitter. Sez the blog, “The station will not only resume broadcasting within two weeks, but with the help of community sponsors, we will go back on the air five times stronger.”
On the legal side of things, the FCC has extended the comment/reply comment period on its current LPFM rulemaking for two weeks, making the new deadlines August 22 for comments and September 6 for reply comments. The extension comes at the request of the Station Resource Group, a consortium of pubcasters who will soon be going on their annual retreat and want to use part of their time together to write collective comments.

Berkeley/Oakland Update

Intelligence from the scene indicates that Berkeley Liberation Radio has not returned to the air full-time. There are BLR hit-and-run-style broadcasts taking place until a permanent home can be found.
However, in the spirit of “crush one and two take its place,” sporadic broadcasts from a West Oakland Radio on 103.3 have been heard, because the Slave Revolt cannot be stopped.