Pirate Radio USA Producers Speak

Paul the Mediageek interviewed the producers of the still-forthcoming documentary Pirate Radio USA, Jeff Pearson and Mary Jones (aka DJs “Him” and “Her”), for his latest radioshow. That, and a podcast-only supplement, finally reveal details about what to look forward to.
The film runs 82 minutes (whittled from 115). It’s the first feature-length piece for Cannonball Productions: they warmed up on a couple of shorts and long runs on public access television. Continue reading “Pirate Radio USA Producers Speak”

Godcasting Gets Closer Scrutiny

The New York Times has just published a piece on the trend of evangelical broadcasters forcing smaller non-commercial stations off the air in order to squeeze more proselytizing-nodes on the dial. It demonstrates increasing interest in the proliferation of translator stations by religious broadcasters.
On the translator front, the FCC’s temporary freeze on processing the avalanche of applications from 2003 has had no effect on the selling of translator construction permits: REC’s Traffic Report shows deals every month throughout the summer and fall. Continue reading “Godcasting Gets Closer Scrutiny”

LPAM Comments In, Favor Further Exploration

The initial comment period on the petition for rulemaking closed on November 21. Just over two dozen comments were filed, the overwhelming majority of which favor further FCC study of a low-power AM community broadcast service. Not too bad considering the petition got almost zero publicity. Comments from LPFM’s major players are nonexistent, save for an excellent graphic from REC Networks illustrating just how LPAM might bring community radio to places (legal) LPFM will never reach. Continue reading “LPAM Comments In, Favor Further Exploration”

Scene Reports: Illinois, Louisiana

Illinois: It seems that a group of folks headed out after the WRFU barnraising to pay a visit to Springfield, the home of Mbanna Kantako‘s Human Rights Radio. They found Kantako and the station in good spirits, albeit at extremely low power, thanks to a blown amplifier, which is now under repair.
Kantako celebrates his 18th nearly-uninterrupted year on the air in five days – a large portion of which has been archived on tape. Continue reading “Scene Reports: Illinois, Louisiana”

WRFU: We're Really Functional, Usually

When Prometheus comes to town to throw down a barnraising, they’re not so much building a radio station as they are planting seeds for collaborative media production. This is because it’s really impossible to fully build out a radio station in three days, even with 100+ of your closest friends. Which means, after the weekend work-party, you still have a sh*tload of work to do.
The process of initial construction is merely the hefty push that launches the collaboration. WRFU’s transmitter and antenna are fully secure – it’s everything else that’s left to finish.
Hence I am remiss both at posting frequently and documenting the experience. Fortunately, lots of others did that: Continue reading “WRFU: We're Really Functional, Usually”

Radio Algiers Visited By FCC; Send Shouts to WRFU

FCC agents reportedly  paid a visit (32:39, 15 MB, thanks V-Man and Indynewswire) to Radio Algiers in New Orleans on November 2. The station is off the air indefinitely; plans are to try and utilize the facilities of WTUL to help those desiring to speak truth to power acquire a spot on the local radio dial. Please note the irony: the FCC can make the rounds but FEMA is still missing in action. Hopefully the gear will stay in circulation.
More than 120 folks have signed up to help build our little LPFM station in Urbana this weekend. Registration will be accepted on-site, so it’s not too late to get involved. Even if you can’t make it, you can still participate in our inaugural broadcast. Visit this page and follow the instructions to give WRFU greetings, which we’ll broadcast as part of our inaugural smorgasbord show Sunday evening.

A Book and Movie in Seattle

The Globe Cafe in Seattle tomorrow night should be a fun place to be. There, Ron Sakolsky, the first historian of microradio, will be speaking about his new book, Creating Anarchy. Joining him will be the creators of a new documentary about microradio, called Pirate Radio USA. They’ve been quite tight-lipped about the production itself, although it is finally finished and apparently in submission to several festivals, public trailer still forthcoming.

Scene Reports: California, U.K.

California: there’s been lots happening in San Diego. 106.9FM has voluntary signed off after running out of funds to broadcast. According to the station blog it’s hoped the hiatus is only temporary. Meanwhile Free Radio San Diego returned to the air over Halloween weekend, three months after it was raided and cleaned out by the FCC. The signal strength is reportedly much weaker.
San Diego has also recently been the site of some serious FCC enforcement involving other forms of unlicensed operation. Specifically, the use of point-to-point microwave radio communications between corporations in the San Diego area and “sister companies” located over the U.S.-Mexico border in Tijuana. The FCC has issued 11 Notices of Apparent Liability against 10 companies, seeking to collect a total of $86,000. Continue reading “Scene Reports: California, U.K.”

Zack de la Rocha Walks Talk

Contact I highjacked the frequencies,” indeed. On June second FCC agents traced a pirate station broadcasting on the well-known L.A. frequency of 104.7 FM to la casa de la Rocha. District Director Catherine Deaton served up a Notice of Unlicensed Operation at the end of September. The station’s status is currently unknown.
This trivia courtesy of the freshly-updated Enforcement Action Database. 2005 is shaping up to be a busy year.

Powell Pimps Invasive Adverts

Former FCC chairman Mikey Powell joins Reactrix Media Systems as a “senior advisor.” This is in supplement to his main gig, moving large capital in telecom investment-land.
Reactrix is deploying what it calls “reactive media network” technology – motion-sensitive electronic billboard-style advertising – in malls, theatres, chain stores and other spaces of public commerce.
Mikey sez: “This new reactive media that Reactrix has pioneered, like the Internet before it, has the long-term potential to fundamentally change the way consumers receive and exchange information.” Add another feather to his stellar legacy.