Public Radio Hacks On Florida Pirate

Paul the Mediageek notes National Public Radio’s Morning Edition ran a piece on pirate radio in Florida last week that screams “lame.” The reporter, WGCU news director Amy Tardif, only talked to a representative from Clear Channel (who whines about losing advertisers to a pirate), someone from the Florida Association of Broadcasters, and a cop on the hunt of a station. This makes her come off as a well-played, ignorant cracker. And the news hook is only a year and a half old. Possibly one of the worst pieces on the subject ever run on public broadcasting.
There was but one nugget of useful information. It came not from Tardif but the cop, who noted that it’s common practice now for stations to use a streaming studio-to-transmitter (STL) link. Meaning that when they hit pirates they’re primarily catching gear, not people. This explains why authorities are willing to prosecute those who rent space to pirates as if they were operating the stations themselves. Perhaps it’s too much work to trace IPs or stake out stations…until the FAB funds the cops directly to set up a “task force” or something.
It also means that someone’s developed a pretty replicable and reliable operational protocol that deserves to be documented and shared with others.