FM Translator Speculators Become Millionaires

It’s a sickening benchmark to behold, and yet it represents only a fraction of an overall speculation and trafficking marketplace in-progress for FM spectrum ostensibly for noncommercial use.
Here is where our story left off last: Radio Assist Ministry and Edgewater Broadcasting (which are actually one and the same) filed more than 4,000 FM translator construction permit applications during a 2003 FCC filing window for new FM translator stations. In less than two years RAM/EB booked more than $800,000 in revenue by selling batches of translator construction permits to evangelistic mega-churches in the South and West (although a host of smaller transactions also took place).
These churches, in effect, bought permission to build state-wide or regional networks through speculators who snapped up the permits en masse, just for this very purpose. Continue reading “FM Translator Speculators Become Millionaires”

Slice and Dice the State of the Union

Audio-hacker extraordinaire Scooter offers up a clean copy of the 2006 State of the Union speech as raw collage fodder for anyone who’s interested:
Part 1 (24:49, 11.4 MB)
Part 2 (26:22, 12.1 MB)
Better yet, Scooter’s transcribed and time-stamped the entire text of the speech. This makes dicing Bush easier (and less painful) than ever.
Copy and paste Scooter’s transcript into a text file and save it. Then simply use your word processor’s “find” function to focus on the words and phrases you’re interested in. Voilà: you are taken directly to the portion of the speech where these words exist, and Scooter’s handy stamps tell you where in the audio file to find them.
The last GWB SOTU to be translated in such fashion was his 2003 spiel.


Next weekend is the New York City Grassroots Media Conference. There’s a massive lineup of panels and workshops now, one of which will involve a tactical discussion on microradio. This has piqued the interest of a producer from Dimanche (Sunday) Magazine, which is aired on the CBC’s Première chaîne.
She’s putting together a feature on microradio and is interested in speaking with anyone who might be attending the NYC GMC and has microradio experience. Chantal Francoeur is also no snitch: she’s willing to conduct interviews in any manner which will best preserve the subject’s anonymity, if this is desirable. E-mail her directly if you might be willing to share thoughts on what microradio means to you.

Homelessness Marathon Seeks Rebroadcasters

The ninth annual Homelessness Marathon takes place overnight from Wednesday, February 15th to Thursday, February 16th. This 14-hour broadcast explores the plight of homelessness around the United States in no uncertain terms, and gives some of those who are homeless a chance to directly break the silence which all too often surrounds the condition.
Homelessness Marathon founder/producer Jeremy Alderson describes the broadcast as a “consciousness-raising, not a fund-raising broadcast. There are no on-air solicitations. While we certainly encourage ‘haves’ to give generously to ‘have- nots,’ we believe that solving the problem of homelessness requires not just volunteerism but also fundamental changes in the way our nation’s priorities are structured.” Continue reading “Homelessness Marathon Seeks Rebroadcasters”

NPR Punts on Godcaster Proliferation

This week NPR’s All Things Considered aired a story on the plight of WAVM, a 10-watt FM radio station run by the local high school in Maynard, Massachusetts. The station stands to be forced off the air by Living Proof, Inc., an evangelical broadcast outlet based in California. WAVM is the only local radio station available in Maynard and enjoys wide community support.
NPR’s Andrea Shea got totally hoodwinked about the interloper kicking WAVM off the dial.
Shea set up WAVM’s vulnerable situation by mentioning the demise of the 10-watt Class D FM station license, calling WAVM one of the “predecessors of today’s low power FM stations.” She says the FCC did away with Class D licenses in the 1970s the after the FM band “became crowded.” Continue reading “NPR Punts on Godcaster Proliferation”