Radio Currents Online - Nov 7 - Nov 13, 2005

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SBE Certification Celebrates 30 Years
Indianapolis - Nov 11, 2005 - During a Society of Broadcast Engineers Board of Directors meeting on Nov. 13, 1975, a decision was made to commence a Program of Certification for broadcast engineers. The result of this action has become one of the foundations of the SBE and benchmark for the entire broadcast industry.

The SBE originally petitioned the FCC to create more stringent licensing requirements for broadcast engineers and operators. When the FCC decided to take the opposite action, the SBE stepped in and created the Program of Certification. The concept was first discussed in 1973. The Program was introduced during a session called, A New Broadcast License Certification Program, at the NAB convention in 1975. Since its introduction, the SBE Program of Certification has evolved and grown to establish a recognized standard of ability for broadcast engineers, audio and video engineers, broadcast IT professionals and radio and television operators.

The SBE Program of Certification is administered by the SBE National Certification Committee. The chairman of this committee is appointed by the SBE president with the approval of the SBE Board of Directors. The members of the National Certification Committee must hold SBE Certification. This group reviews, updates and develops the Program of Certification on an ongoing basis to keep the Program fresh and relevant to current broadcast engineering standards.

While looking back to the start of the Program of Certification, Jim Wulliman, CPBE, the first chairman of the National Certification Committee and one of the founders of the Program of Certification, said, "We created Certification because of a recognized need in the broadcast industry. We didn't know for sure how successful the Program would be, but the results have been amazing."

Jim Bernier, CPBE CBNT, chairman of the National Certification Committee, added, "Today, there are more than 5,600 active SBE Certifications held by broadcast professionals. This is a number that continues to increase every year as we continue to adapt the Certification Program to the changing demands of our industry."

The SBE Program of Certification includes four successive levels of certification (called the Core Four) that include a requirement of professional experience (Certified Broadcast Technologist, Certified Broadcast Engineer, Certified Senior Broadcast Engineer and Certified Professional Broadcast Engineer), and several types of Certification that evaluate a knowledge of specific elements of broadcasting, including broadcast computer networking (Certified Broadcast Networking Technologist), audio and video engineering (Certified Audio Engineer and Certified Video Engineer) and broadcast operations (Certified Television Operator and Certified Radio Operator). Recently, the National Certification Committee created the first of a series of Specialist Certifications as enhancements to the Core Four Certifications. The first two Specialist Certifications recognize an individual's skill with AM directional antennas and 8-VSB technology.

The SBE will celebrate the anniversary during the SBE Membership Meeting at NAB2006, which will be held on April 25 in Las Vegas. Contact Linda Baun at for additional information about the SBE Program of Certification.

FCC Revises Complaint Forms
Washington - Nov 1, 2005 - The FCC's Office of Management and Budget issued a Notice of Action approving the revised FCC Form 475 (General Consumer Complaint Form) and new FCC Form 475B (Obscene, Profane, and/or Indecent Material Complaint Form).

The new FCC Form 475B enables the Commission to collect detailed data from consumers on the practices of those broadcasters that may air obscene, profane or indecent material by giving consumers an opportunity, for the first time, to use a specific form to file their complaints. Form 475B will be used only for complaints associated with obscene, profane or indecent material.

Both forms are intended to improve the informal complaint process for consumers, industry and Commission staff by minimizing confusion on the information that the Commission requires.


International Datacasting Completes Acquisition of Profline
Arnhem, Netherlands, and Ottowa, Canada - Nov 3, 2005 - International Datacasting has completed its acquisition of Profline. Profline will retain its name and full product line and will continue to operate with its existing team as a wholly owned subsidiary of IDC from its location in Arnhem, the Netherlands. The deal has been approved by the boards of both companies and is effective Nov. 1, 2005.

Profline was founded in 1989.

Sales Call
  • Algerian National Radio has ordered a Netia Radio-Assist production and broadcast system to modernize its operations by digitizing and computerizing all its centers, including 30 local radio stations.
  • The Canadian Broadcast Corporation has purchased V-Soft Communications’ allocation software package to be used for in-house AM standard-band allocations analysis.
  • Entercom Wilkes-Barre stations WKRZ and WGGY have purchased six Airtools 6200 dual-channel digital voice processors from Symetrix.
  • Sermon Audio has signed an agreement with Netherlands-based Solutions Radio, to provide webradio appliances to listeners to access the nearly 70,000 sermons available online. The plug-and-play Web receiver connects to a power outlet and telephone line or broadband connection.
  • People

    Sennheiser Adds Regional Market Development Rep
    Old Lyme, CT - Nov 10, 2005 - Sennheiser has appointed Dave Missall to the position of eastern region market development representative, professional products. Missall joins the company with more than ten years of experience with one of Sennheiser's key dealers, Location Sound located in North Hollywood, CA, where he held the positions of service manager, rental assistant manager and audio rental technician. His most recent experience was as sales rep/product specialist for Talamas Broadcast Equipment, Newton, MA.

    In his new role, Missall functions as the key liaison with contractors, consultants, sound hire companies and recording studios to introduce new products, implement training sessions, provide product application expertise, and expand the customer base. He is responsible for Sennheiser professional products as well as the company's distributed brands, which include Neumann, Turbosound, HHB, True Systems, Klein and Hummel, Australian Monitor and Rosendahl.

    Bush Nominates Tate to FCC
    Washington - Nov 10, 2005 - President Bush has nominated Tennessee regulator Deborah Taylor Tate to fill the vacant Republican Commissioner seat at the FCC.

    Tate is currently serving a six-year term as a director of the Tennessee Regulatory Authority (TRA). She served a one-year term as chairman of the TRA from 2003 to 2004. Previously, Tate served as director of the State and Local Policy Center at Vanderbilt University.

    Prior to her association at Vanderbilt, Tate served as an assistant to Tennessee Governor Don Sundquist and was a member of his senior staff. She was his designee to the Juvenile Justice Commission, the Tenncare Partners Advisory Committee and the Title 33 - Mental Health Revision Commission.

    Her experience with regulatory affairs includes work on the FCC Federal-State Joint Conference On Advanced Telecommunications Services, and being a member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) Gas Committee and Consumer Affairs Committee.

    Tate's appointment must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. She would fill the seat vacated by former FCC Chairman Michael Powell who stepped down in March.

    Bush also plans to reappoint Democrat Michael Copps to another term. Copps is a former aide to now-retired Sen. Ernest Hollings. Copps has been a Democrat FCC commissioner since May 2001. His term expired in June, but without being renominated and confirmed he can only stay until Congress adjourns next year.

    Conde Joins Burk Technology as Director of Operations
    Littleton, MA - Nov 8, 2005 - Burk Technology has hired Patrick Conde as its director of operations. Conde has 20 years of operation management experience.

    In this role, Conde will review Burk's business infrastructure to better serve the company's broadcast customers.

    Before joining Burk, Conde worked for Imagistics International in Trumbull, CT.

    LBA Names Swiderski as Chief Technician
    Greenville, NC - Oct 31, 2005 - Glenn Swiderski has been named chief technician for LBA Technology. Swiderski will be responsible for electronic fabrication, testing and quality control of LBA antenna system and related radio frequency products. These products are primarily directed to communications, broadcasting, military and public safety sectors worldwide.

    Swiderski comes to LBA from Emmis Communications Group station WIBC in Indianapolis. He previously held field and test engineering positions with Harris working with AM systems at powers up to 1MW. His experience also includes computer field engineering for Harris and independent contract engineering. He holds the Certified AM/FM Broadcast Engineer and Certified Television Operator designations from the Society of Broadcast Engineers and licenses from the FCC.

    Canare Hires Urata as CEO
    San Fernando - Nov 4, 2005 - Canare has hired Kazuo "Woody" Urata as its new president. Urata has 20 years of experience in guiding Japanese/American technology and machinery manufacturers to sales goals. He is a graduate of Keio University in Japan.

    Eye on IBOC

    Broadcast Electronics Supplies IBOC Equipment to WRTI
    Quincy, IL - Nov 11, 2005 - Broadcast Electronics (BE) has supplied the HD Radio transmission equipment to all six Temple University public radio stations in Philadelphia. The renowned classical and jazz music broadcaster received public funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to convert its stations to HD Radio late last year, and has since updated flagship station WRTI-FM to digital using a BE HD Radio turnkey system. Two more BE HD Radio systems were implemented by the NPR affiliate recently. Three other HD Radio systems are planned for implementation soon.

    The six Temple University stations, WRTI 90.1, WJAZ 91.7, WRTL 90.7, WRTY 91.1, WRTQ 91.3 and WRTX 91.7, will broadcast an HD Radio main channel and eventually multicast additional programming as well as text data. Included in the turnkey system are BE’s Now Playing Plus text on-radio management tools for the studio and second-generation HD Radio XPI 10 data exporter and IDI 20 data importer.

    BMW 6 Series to Offer HD Radio Receivers
    Woodcliff Lake, NJ - Nov 4, 2005 - In August 2005, BMW announced that the application of HD Radio receivers would be an available option in its 2006 Model Year 7 Series. BMW is now making the technology optionally available on 2006 6 Series vehicles as well, beginning with October 2005 production. The HD Radio option will have a suggested retail price of $500.


    Digidesign Ships Pro Tools 7
    Daly City, CA - Nov 8, 2005 - Digidesign is shipping Pro Tools 7 software for Pro Tools|HD and Pro Tools LE systems. Pro Tools 7 M-Powered is expected to be released soon. The update delivers many new features and enhancements such as expanded recording and editing capabilities for audio and MIDI, added mixing power and flexibility, and improved ease of use. Pro Tools 7 software is also a cross-platform release, supporting all current Pro Tools systems running on Windows XP and Mac OS X Tiger computers.

    Purchasers of a new Pro Tools|HD or Pro Tools LE system, or an upgrade to Pro Tools TDM 6.9.x or Pro Tools LE 6.9x software from an authorized dealer on or after Sept. 1, 2005, are eligible for a free upgrade to the corresponding version of Pro Tools 7 software.

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