Deez Nutz Busts the Station that Snitched

There is a clever sleuth in cahoots with Deez Nutz 93.7, the unlicensed microradio station shut down by the FCC about a week and a half ago. This MP3 of a phone call to “KUBE 93” evening DJ Eric Powers (:53, 368K) seems to connect the commercial station to the enforcement action.
Here is a partial transcript of the call – note there is no mention of interference being a problem with Deez Nutz, even though the station broadcast only two channels away from KUBE: Continue reading “Deez Nutz Busts the Station that Snitched”

WebHopper, Meet iBlast

WebHopper, Clear Channel’s foray into datacasting via digital television, is apparently not the only system under development by media companies pursuing the digital convergence gold rush.
iBlast, a DTV datacasting system cooperatively developed and funded by a consortium of several big media firms (including the Tribune Company, Gannett Company, Cox Broadcasting, The Washington Post Company, The McGraw-Hill Companies, The New York Times, Emmis Communications, Bonneville International, and Journal Broadcast Group, among many others), has been in the testing stage for the last 18 months in more than a half-dozen markets around the country. iBlast’s management boasts of extensive experience with other media conglomerates like News Corp., Viacom, Disney, and Sony being among the most notable. Continue reading “WebHopper, Meet iBlast”

Evil Empire to Roll Out ISP?; Stock Market Sponsors Rumsfeld Show

We’ve been keeping tabs on a little-publicized project that Clear Channel has been testing in Cincinnati: offering internet access via digital television. The project, first dubbed the “Delta V Internet Accelerator,” offered 256kbps download speeds to residential subscribers in the Cincinnati area by sending data to subscribers’ computers via a sideband on WKRC‘s new DTV signal.
Clear Channel owns or controls nearly 40 television stations around the country, and it appears that the company is preparing to launch its ISP service nationwide. Delta V has been re-branded as WebHopper, its website has been redesigned, and a “Business”-level 768kbps service class has been added. Continue reading “Evil Empire to Roll Out ISP?; Stock Market Sponsors Rumsfeld Show”

Once on the Short List for FCC Commissioner, Now Clear Channel Lobbyist

Andrew Levin, currently the top adviser to the ranking Democrat congresscritter on the House Energy and Commerce Committee (the body with the most power over media regulation), is leaving government service to work for Clear Channel Communications.
Levin was once considered a front-runner for a seat on the Federal Communications Commission as one of its two Democrats. Instead, he’ll be opening up a Clear Channel lobbying office in Washington, where he’ll serve as “Senior Vice President for Government Relations.” Continue reading “Once on the Short List for FCC Commissioner, Now Clear Channel Lobbyist”

LPFM Test Details, Radio Listening Hits 27-Year Low

More info is now available about the testing of third-adjacent channels (.6 MHz from other stations) for the new LPFM service. Comsearch, an engineering consulting firm based in Virginia (who lists its fields of expertise as “Microwave,” “Satellite,” “PCS,” and “Broadband”), has received the deal and was awarded six experimental LPFM licenses on August 30.
Comsearch’s 100-watt stations will operate in Winters,CA; Owatonna,MN; Brunswick,ME; Benicia,CA; Avon,CT; and East Bethel,MN. The full-power stations on the third-adjacent channels in those areas range in size from 23,000 to 100,000 watts. Continue reading “LPFM Test Details, Radio Listening Hits 27-Year Low”

Mbanna Material Resurrected, Good Riddance Randy Michaels?, IBOC Surprise

A busy week. The Human Rights Information Network is back in action – all of Mbanna’s previous material is back online, and there’s 13 new episodes of the Human Rights Patrol, a new album of music from Ebony Kantako, and the start of a new archive of raw audio from the Human Rights Radio tape library. Mbanna now has more than a gigabyte of audio online, with plenty more sure to come.
There’s also new entries to the Enforcement Action Database – primarily a slew of NALs to operators in Florida, and one to the owner of a licensed station in Kansas who operated a pirate station on the same frequency out of a local nightclub. How smart is that?
We’ll be putting up the rest of our audio library and more features over the course of the next week. Soon, we’ll be back in business for real. Continue reading “Mbanna Material Resurrected, Good Riddance Randy Michaels?, IBOC Surprise”

The LPFM Backlash

As of August 2001, slightly more than 100 new low power FM (LPFM) construction permits have been issued by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). At least two stations are reportedly on the air for “program testing” purposes, awaiting receipt of their actual licenses to go to full-time on air status.
It’s been more than a year and a half since the FCC announced the creation of the LPFM service and many would say that coming so far so soon is excellent performance for a federal bureaucracy.
But some of the applicants that had hoped for an LPFM license have given up on the process. They cite third-party harassment and a diminished willingness by the FCC to work with them. Since Republican Chairman Michael Powell took control of the agency earlier this year, there’s been a definite chill on the pace of LPFM’s rollout. Continue reading “The LPFM Backlash”