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"57 CHANNELS 
(AND NOTHIN' ON)"
 

 
 
 

Could radio possibly get any worse?

YES!

Unfortunately, if the powers of monopoly win (The "Broadcast Trusts") they have plans that will destroy small independent and college and community radio stations.

As if that was not bad enough, they will make you pay for the privelege of having even less programming choice! 

They plan to force you to buy new digital recievers whether you are impressed with a slight increase in sound quality or not! 

Even if you don't notice that increased sound quality over the wind and road noise and thus don't care!

Even if the radio cuts in and out all the time like a digital cell-phone!
 
 

How is all this done, the death of community radio?

By forcing broadcasters to "go digital" ... in a way that will force the end of all analog (regular) FM radio stations in 2006! 

This new evil plot for world domination is called IBOC (like some horrible bird of a fantasy-horror novel).

IBOC stands for In Band On Channel.

It means that the Big Broadcast Trust (mega-corporations like Clear Channel and Jacor) and their henchmen (lobbyists), the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) are planning to "fatten" their existing stations use of the public airwaves by twice as much as they use now.

They will then run their digital signal down the "subcarriers", the parts of the FM dial to the left and right of their regular analog stereo signal, like sidesaddles.

Then they will require that everyone turn off the analog parts and become full-time digital!

Problem 1: This is the space that the new community radio stations that the FCC created with the "Low Power Radio Service" would have otherwise used to bring new artists and news and talk and other musical forms to the big cities. This is the space the LPRS stations would have used to become "fiscally viable" (able to pay to stay on the air) by reaching out to a larger audience (those listening in apartment buildings and offices.) 

Problem 2: The smaller existing college and community radio stations will not be able to afford the conversion. You will never hear from them again!

Problem 3: The Broadcasting Trust's technology (IBOC) does not work well for portable radios, only sounds slightly better (if you don't mind it sounding like a digital PCS cellphone) , buffers constantly like an Internet "real Audio" station and will bring you (wow!) advertisements on the front diplay of your radio. That's their idea of progress!
 

----------------------
 

Why does the Broadcast Trusts claim they need IBOC?

"To be Competitive."

They claim they have lost listenership.

That is right, they have lost 12% listenership in 10 years.

They claim because FM does not sound good enough.

That is wrong.

Why else would people turn off the radio to listen to Internet audio?

Because what the Broadcast Trust will not admit is that CONTENT IS KING.

Even the consultants know this now:
Subj: All is not well ... and COULD GET WORSE!!! (Digital Disaster)
Date: 1/28/2000 8:33:37 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: WRFR
To: pirateradio.guide@about.com

We are sending variations of the below to reporters to try to correct their misreporting and also ALERT THEM TO UPCOMING DISASTER in the hope that if they report on it, the worst will be averted!

There are those who would KILL NOT ONLY THE LPFM STATIONS, 
BUT *ALSO* KILL MANY MANY EXISTING INDEPENDENT, SMALL RELIGIOUS, COMMUNITY AND COLLEGE RADIO STATIONS.

The evil plan, require conversion to Digital or "sunset" the station or the whole analog FM dial.

If these people succeed, ALL YOUR FM RADIOS WILL BE PAPERWIEGHTS!!!

Go to the FCC's ECFS system, put in to search for comments on the Digital Audio Broadcasting In Band On Channel proceeding number 99-325 and look around. Read between the lines.

===============================
 

Dear Reporter,

I think you should see this web page in light of your coverage of the Low Power Radio Service and the National Association of Broadcasters claims of Interference Concerns.

Many labor under the misconception that "everyone" is not sure what will happen vis-a-vis interference until they LPRS stations are up and running.

Not so, we already know *exactly* what will happen ... 

... because we have already been allowing stations to transmit that close AND CLOSER together for YEARS!! 

With no problems.

They are called "Grandfathered Short Spaced 2nd Adjacent Stations" that run at MANY TIMES 1000 Watts.
Since 1963 ... with NO COMPLAINTS OF INTERFERENCE.
More info: [URL=http://members.aol.com/wrfr/smokinggun.htm]http://members.aol.com/wrfr/smokinggun.htm[/URL] 
 

The NAB themselves argued for GREATER flexibility of movement for 2nd Adjacent stations in 1996!!

That is what the LPRS basically *is* (with ownership restrictions added) except we only get to use third adjacent frequencies but the Big Broadcast Trust stations are allowed to also use the SECOND Adjacent frequencies AND run well over 1000 watts also!

There has BEEN *NO* ABANDONMENT OF SPECTRUM INTEGRITY POLICY.
But the NAB would like to have you believe otherwise!!

ALSO: THE NAB has now turned right around and argued that we must allow stations to DOUBLE THEIR BANDWIDTH to create Digital Radio.
That would use the exact same space that the LPRS folks argued we could use!!

And even more ironically, the main makers of Digital, USADR suggest that they only need 70kHz of the available 137kHz out of 200kHz that are the current available subcarrier capacity!!
More info: [URL=http://members.aol.com/wrfr/VCPPIBOC.htm]http://members.aol.com/wrfr/VCPPIBOC.htm[/URL] 
 

THERE HAS ALSO OCURRED THE EXCELLENT SUGGESTION TO ENLIST THE HAMS!!
In that last URL is our suggestion to the FCC re: the Digital Audio Broadcasting Proposals.

In there we suggest creating "2nd Adjacent Test Festivals" where they run the In Band On Channel (IBOC) Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB) down some existing 2nd Adjacent Full Power stations and invite people to come and try out their radios in proximity to those two stations as well as testing out (lay down a deposit, drive around the county with a sample Digital Audio Broadcasting radio to see what you think of it).

This way people will SEE AND DISCUSS FOR THEMSELVES:

1)Do any of the several variations of IBOC DAB cause interference 
   to analog radios under worst-case REAL WORLD conditions?
   (That is, used at multi-thousand watt 2nd adjacent Short Spaced radio stations).

2) Are the new DAB recievers really so awesome that they are worth the hassle? 
   DO we really give a damn about this or is this just another government 
   mandate that creates Corporate Welfare by :

2a)  forcing us to buy billions of new reicevers and 
      send the old ones to the landfill!!?
2b)  Cause the elimination of many small college and community radio stations 
       that cannot afford the digital transition?

Will the slight increase in sound  quality of the same old same old programming make up for the loss of minority niche programming provided by small independent, religious, community and college radio stations?

Consultants Think NOT!!! 
http://www.duncanradio.com/Major%20Warning%20Signs%20for%20Radio.htm

Notice they cite loss of listenership due to "Lack of programming innovation", NOT to lack of the "near CD quality" or (nonaudio)"auxiliary services" that are the two main offerings of the proponents of the new Digital Audio Broadcasting proposals.

Notice also that people will suffer with the incessant rebuffering and less-than-AM-radio sound quality of online Internet bitstreaming of audio. Why? 

CONTENT IS KING ... and that is what the Big Broadcasting Trusts of NPR and Clear Channel will not admit.

Because as long as they can run on the myth of a technological fix to the slash-and-burn of thier staff ... they can pull off Frauds like this Digital Disaster!

In short, evidence suggests that Digital Radio will not only NOT save the broadcasters, it will kill what little variety is out there thus stomping the golden goose to its final death !

----------------

Sincerely, Christopher Maxwell
Radio Free Richmond Project of the 
Virginia Center for the Public Press [URL=http://members.aol.com/Wrfr]http://members.aol.com/Wrfr[/URL] 
Wrfr@aol.com
804-649-WRFR

PS: Who are we?
We got a resolution from the City Council of Richmond Va in favor of the Low Power Radio Service ... apparently that encouraged the FCC staff a great deal.
We also brought in 1081 signatures for the LPRS, as well as approval by the local Labor and NAACP boards.

We are now one of 46 commentators to the Digital Audio Broadcasting proposal 99-325 that COULD DESTROY THE LPRS from the inside!!
 

==============================================
==============================================
==============================================

What is funny, is they know it, even skirt the issue ... yet still can't help themselves:
Check out these comment by Sony Corp in support of the Digital Disaster in 99-325:

Subj: Fwd: [MRN] GETTING *WORSE*: DEATH OF *EXISTING* COMMUNITY RADIO ALSO MANDATED...
Date: 1/28/2000 9:56:28 PM Eastern Standard Time
From: WRFR
To: brookesaunders@hotmail.com

In a message dated 1/28/2000 9:46:11 PM Eastern Standard Time, WRFR@aol.com writes:

<< Subj:  [MRN] GETTING *WORSE*: DEATH OF *EXISTING* COMMUNITY RADIO ALSO MANDATED???
 Date: 1/28/2000 9:46:11 PM Eastern Standard Time
 From: WRFR@aol.com
 Sender: worker-microradio@lists.tao.ca
 Reply-to: microradio@lists.tao.ca
 To: microradio@lists.tao.ca
 
 Woa!
 
 In going thru the comments regarding the Digital Audio Broadcasting Proposal, 
 y'all will LOVE the Sony Comments!
 
 Basically, it calls for 400kHz FM stations AND
 MANDATORY SUNSET OF ANALOG.
 
 This means:
 1) No 2nd adjacent for LPRS *EVER*
 2) No room for pirates ... no American Civil Disobedience possible!!!!
 3) Likely death of existing small independents, religious, community 
    and college radio stations that can't afford the mandatory Digital 
    by the sunset date!!
 
 
 Check out some excerpts from the Sony comments on 99-325
 (however, there are some juicy admissions on their part we can use if we pull 
 out the BIG GUNS of public opinion on this!!)
 
 ==============================
 
 Julio Posse, Sony Electronics Inc.   1/24/00
 
 "...Sony Electronics Inc. recognizes the inevitability of terrestrial digital 
 radio and the exciting benefits it can offer the consumer in the future."
 
 " One obvious lesson that is sometimes too easy to ignore when enticed with 
 new technology is the importance of weighing value against the cost to the 
 consumer."
 
 SIDE NOTE:] The reason that Sony thinks it is important that Broadcasters be 
 allowed to use packetized digital to deliver audio is that there will soon be 
 wireless surfing of the Internet audio sites.
 Why does this prove anything? Digital or not, the vital difference between 
 Internet (wireless or not) is that the Internet is point-to-point where the 
 content is chosen and started by the individual user. Broadcasting (digital 
 or otherwise) is reversed where the *SOURCE* edits and chooses the content! 
 This means that this is a comparison of apples and oranges. Digital Audio 
 Broadcasting has NOTHING in common with Wireless Internet bitcasting other 
 than that the audio is packetized bits of digital data. But from the user's 
 point of view, they could not be more different!!
 
 "There are many emerging technologies that will offer broadband Internet 
 access. Services for fixed applications will be offered by DSL technologies, 
 Cable Modem, LMDS and satellite services at s-mKu- and Ka-gands. It is simply 
 a matter of time before the wireless industry can offer broadband Internet 
 access to mobile applications, using point-to-point or broadcast connections 
 and directly compete with Broadcaster markets. It is therefore important for 
 the Broadcaster to be given the opportunity to convert to digital in the near 
 future."
 
 "The players (of Internet Audio files such as MP3) themselves are offering 
 high quality digital audio and are increasingly becoming a more desirable 
 alternative, in some cases, to the limited variety of music offered on the 
 radio. This is, therefore, another reason the Broadcasting Industry needs to 
 advance to a digital format and offer not only digital quality, but also an 
 alternative pipe fo rthe value-added services offered over the Internet."
 
 SideNote:] Who wrote this?!? They keep getting cause and effect mixed up. 
 People are buying digital audio not for sound quality but for VARIETY. They 
 practically say that themsevles but then inexplicably support a top-down 
 system editing system of Broadcasting that Destroys the very variety that the 
 Internet lives off of!
 What Sony and the Broadcasters fail to realize is the power of the Internet 
 music is NOT SOUND QUALITY, IT IS THE VARIETY AND THE FACT THAT THE CONSUMER 
 DOES THE EDITING, NOT THE CORPORATION!! In the Internet, the USER starts the 
 transmission, chooses the content of the transmission, NOT THE PROVIDER. 
 
 Thus if anything, the popularity of Internet Audio is a resounding rejection 
 of the old "gatekeeper" model of culture distribution where a central set of 
 "experts" tells us what we want to hear and serve it to us like so many 
 drooling mental patients.
 
 PAGE 2!!!!!!!!
 
 "Sony additionally urges the Commission to mandate a fixed analog 'sunset' 
 date in an effort to continue fostering a transition to an all-digital 
 service."
 
 SN] This after they themselves noted that "it remains to be seen whether or 
 not the proposed IBOC system can attract a market larger than simply the 
 'early adopters' in the interim before an all-digital system is deployed."
 
 So in other words, Sony does not trust this system to sell in the free market 
 and they wish to force the issue on us!!!
 
 Page 3:
 "Sony has seen a very slow market penetration in Europe with DAB, which 
 employs the Eureka-147 standard. The disappointing ramp-up is attributable to 
 a service that offers little more than improved audio."
 
 and then they condemn (accurately) the lack of anything worth buying a DAB 
 for:
 "... needs to be more of an empetus fo rthe averag consumer to adopt DAB. 
 This empetus is either derived from a variety of new channels or new 
 value-added services. S-DARS in the U.S. has chosen both methods. A 
 value-added service offered by S-DARS, as an example, is commercial free 
 radio broadcasting."
 
 SN] In other words, greater variety of programming innovation ... like the 
 Low Power Radio Service!!!!
 
 Page 3
 "As stated by the Commission, a system that permits stastions to implement an 
 all-digital radio service rapidly may serve the public interest better than 
 one that delays the opportunity to fully realze the benefits of DAB for 
 possibly several years. Sony also recognizes the potential benefit of a fixed 
 analog "sunset" date to foster a transition to an all-digital service and, 
 believes one should not preclude the other. In fact, both may be necessary to 
 stimulate the market to fully adopt the digital transition."
 
 Page 4
 
 : ... over the 12 years before the fixed analog 'sunset', proposed by USADR."
 
 "In Europe, Eureka-147 sales have been very slow. This is largely due to 
 there not being enough incentive for consumers to buy a more expensive radio 
 for simply getting digital quality and very limited data services. "
 
 Page 5:
 
 "Today's technology will permit a spectrum efficiency of between 0.7b/s/Hz 
 and 1.5b/s/Hz. With a 200kHz bandwidth, data rates between 140kbps and 
 300kbps are achievable. With PAC or AAC, near CD quality at 64kbps should be 
 possible with enough link margin. However, in order to attract customers, CD 
 quality at 128kbps (MPEG AAC) and a limited data capability is preferred. 
 This still translates to a bandwidth of between 100kHz and 200kHz. Sony 
 believes, however, that bit rates of 64-384Kbps are required to add enough 
 value to attract customers to this new technology. The exact rate depends on 
 wheter the service would carry text, a still picture or moving picture. This 
 additional bit capacity would require a frequency bandwidth between 200kHz 
 and 400kHz, which is equivalent to what is offered by the all-digital system. 
 If these rates are attempted at narrower bands, the system becomes too 
 susceptible to frequency-selective fading and compromises robustness."
 
 "AM which offers a bandwidth of less than 9-10 kHz should accomodate FM 
 quality audio and a very limited auxiliary data service. However, full stereo 
 quality will not be available with a 9-10kHz bandwidth. A frequency bandwidth 
 between 18-20kHz would be needed, given today's audio coding technology."
 
 Side Note:] Has anyone asked the public if we would prefer several stations 
 of the same audio quality (with new music forms and new news/talk programming 
 innovation) or if we prefer the same "limited programming choices" cited 
 above with slightly better sound?
 
 We could get the latter by actually REDUCING THE SIZE OF EXISTING STATIONS 
 AND LICENSING MORE LOW POWER FM STATIONS. Competition would equal a wider 
 array of programming service options.
 
 The Broadcast Trusts have proven that given the choice between competing with 
 "programming innovation" and competing by buying up the competition and using 
 government regulation to squash competition, then cutting staff to save 
 money, the Broadcast Trust has consistently chosen the latter way of making 
 more profit.
 
 Why would they act any different with Digital? They will continue to gut and 
 automate and reduce the variety available as long as real competition 
 continues to evaporate due to the ologopolistic effect of the 1996 "reforms".
 
 
 =================================
 END SONY COMMENTS AND ANALYSIS
 =================================
 
 

They have been so busy cutting staff to make money, that now less people are listening to them.

Rather than admit that even the consultants are right, they run to the FCC and Congress to protect them from competition!

Radio Consultants "Duncan Radio Research" points out that the reason for the drop in listenersrs is "lack of programming innovation."

Why?
 
 

Why do most radio stations 

leave me feeling like a 

"Stranger In A Strange Land"?
 
 
 
 
 
 

   Because they can.
 
 
 
 
 
 

  Competition between 
  radio station owners 
  used to prevent 
  too many ads or 
  overly bland or 
  insulting programming. 
 
 

  You could turn the dial 
  to "the other guy".
 
 

  Then the 1996 Telecom
  Act allowed a huge
  merger frenzy so that ...
 
 

  Now "... 
  we are the Other Guy", 
  says George Sosson, 
  Clear Channel Inc. 
  senior vice president.
 
 
 
 


In spite of industry claims that 
"there's no room for more stations" 

and 

'there's more diversity than ever' :


 
 
 

FCC  Commissioner Gloria Tristani said, 

"less than 3% of radio stations are 
minority owned ... 

Black-owned stations dropped 26% 
and 
Hispanic-owned stations dropped 9% 

between 1995 and 1997." 
 
 
 
 
 
 

35% of all advertising revenue 
last year went to the top three
[soon to be two] station owner groups:

  • Chancellor Media/Capstar, 

  • (Chancellor became "AMFM") 
  • Clear Channel/Jacor Communications 

  • (merging with AMFM)
  • CBS Radio/Infinity Broadcasting
 From the 6/3/99 PR Newswire quoting BIA Companies

 
 
 
 

Before the 1996 Telecom Act that 
allowed these mergers, the largest 
radio chain owned only 38 radio stations. 
When the latest AMFM/Clear Channel 
merger is complete, they will dominate 830 stations.

NPR ATC 10/5/99

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

" ...common for two or three companies 
to own 80% to 90% of the radio ad revenues 
in a market
In Rochester, N.Y., for example, 
14 stations owned by CBS, Jacor and Entercom 
held 94% of the radio ad revenues in 1997, 
according to Duncan's American Radio, a research firm"

From 7/7/98 USA TODAY
 
 
 
 
 


And the Broadcast Turst plan on keeping it that way

BY KILLING COMMUNITY AND COLLEGE RADIO AS WELL AS ANY NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOU TO STATRT OR HEAR NEW RADIO STATIONS.
 
 
 
 



 
THE BOTTOM LINE:

--Grab The Brass Ring--


The Federal Communication Commission has recently voted 4-1 to open thousands of new 
legal  frequencies on the FM dial
and restrict their control to 
new and local groups/people. 
 

This proposed new set of rules is referred to as the Low Power Radio Service (LPRS).
 

The LPRS CREATES COMPETITION 
by enabling thousands of new and new local
community, church or small business radio stations to serve those ignored by current radio stations.
 
 

A stable society 
is an inclusive 
and just society.

The LPRS, is designed to encourage a diversity of cultures represented on the airwaves 

by encouraging a diversity of ownership/control. 

A diversity of people and organizations 
with different values and priorities 
will create a more inclusive media 
(and therefore government policy) 
because they will have different definitions 
of what is “newsworthy” and “viable” 
for sharing on the public's airwaves.
 

BUT THE TRUSTS ARE 
PLANNING TO KILL IT!!
  

Please urge your federal 
elected representatives:

ASK FOR:
1) to write a public letter to the Federal Communications Commission 
in support of a Low Power Radio Service.

2) Opposition to the "Broadcasting Preservation Act of 1999" that specifically reverses the Low Power Radio Service vote (and thereby kill budding community radio stations).

3) Ask your representative to support asking the military to release the alternative to IBOC by letting the FCC assign the new Digital Audio Broadcasting technology to the World-Accepted "L-Band" at 1400mHz.


 

Free Radio Network
 
 
 


If you want to keep updated 
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THANK-YOU for 
contacting your 
Senator/Congressperson.

Thank-you for reading all this 
and considering helping us 
create a radio dial as diverse 
as the population that listens 
and pays taxes to regulate it.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 


 
 
Contact Information
for Congress HERE
FREE LPRS eZine
RESTORE
FREE
ENTERPRISE

RESTORE
COMPETITION



Please call  your representatives
in Congress and the Senate 
and urge them to oppose the anticompetitive action of the Broadcasting Trusts :

1) The Digital Disaster that will:

  1a) Put your favorite little 
       college or community radio 
       station out of business, and

  1b) force all the radios you own 
        now to be obsolete, unable 
        to  receive any radio  stations!!
 

2) The "Broadcasting Preservation Act of 1999" (HR3439) that preserves the monopolies that would destroy college and community radio!!
 

Also ask your Congressmen and Senators to support the Low Power Radio Service that could open thousands of new frequencies on the FM band for people like you to be heard. 

Ask them to oppose HR3439 and oppose the Digital Disaster (see below for more detail or click )
 

Lookup 
Your Congressmen
and Senators
by ZIP Code HERE


Unrepresentative
Radio is 
Taxation
Without 
Representation


UPDATES:
Time Is Fleeting ...


1) "Goliath" will now 
attempt to kill Community 
Radio with the Digital Radio Farce.
 
 

2) Failing that, friends of 
monopoly are taking a direct assault ... 
Rep Oxley has sponsored HR3439, 
The "Radio Broadcasting Preservation Act of 1999" That would specifically kill the Low Power Radio Service by preserving the near monopoly that the big broadcasters enjoy at taxpayer expense.
 
FREE LPRS eZine
Subscribe for updates or

CLICK HERE
FOR UPDATES


 

A stable society 
is an inclusive
and just society.
 
 

A healthy democracy hears from everyone, not just the
beautiful or profitable people.
 
 

 WHY doesn't the 
"Almighty Market"
 Serve Everyone?
 
 

Media is the 
lifeblood of 
a Free Society", 

Newt Gingrich, 1994

 
 
AMMO:
What to say when someone says "What's the problem?" 


 

Radio Station 
Ownership Changes 
(Less decision makers
... for more stations)

1997 5,222 owners controlling 10,246 stations
1998 4,241 owners controlling 10,636 stations
# of owners
DOWN
18.7% # of stations 
UP
03.8%
ARGUMENTS:
LPRS Discussion

Corruption and 
prejudices can destroy this opportunity 
if we don't act!

ACTION:
What you can do to solve the problem of an 
unrepresentative radio dial. 

(Critiques)

"Information is the  currency of democracy.",

Thomas Jefferson



Full Index of documents
on this web site as 
well as the hundreds 
of links to the outside 
world. 
SELECTED LINKS:

OTHER VOICES:
Microradio Empowerment Coalition

Amhearst Alliance

Prometheus Project

Radio For All website ... button refers to idea that the National Association of Broadcasters has NABbed the public resource for private gain

CDC: Legal Thinking ...

Essay featuring FCC's Chair, Kennard talking up radio access

Paper Tiger TV ... Smashing the myths of the information industry ...

Freedom Forum, go to search and type Microradio

American's for Radio Diversity

Newseum story following a demonstration by Microbroadcasters that day

Mother Jones

Adbusters
 

GREAT article on the corporate socialist protectionism of the Big Boy Broadcasters

Community Radio Coalition Radio For the rest of us

Federale Communication Commission  ... some say For Corporate Concentration ... you decide
 


 

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