Radio Currents Online - Dec 8 - Dec 14, 2008


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Appropriate Use of EAS?
Lubbock, TX - Dec 8, 2008 - The Collegiate Broadcasters reports that it received the following EAS message on Dec 4, 2008.

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
Civil Emergency Message
Texas Emergency Management Agency Lubbock Texas
Relayed By National Weather Service Lubbock TX
531 PM CST Thu Dec 4 2008
The following message is transmitted at the request of the Childress Office of Emergency Management.
At 530 PM this evening officials with the Childress Office of Emergency Management and the Childress Banking Center are advising bank customers to be aware of a telephone scam being conducted in the Childress area. The scam involves either a recorded telephone message or a live person calling who represents them self as an employee of either the Childress Banking Center or Wellington State Bank. The scam requests specific information about your personal accounts. You are advised to be very wary of any calls requesting information about your personal accounts. The banks do not make calls such as these. If you have given out any information that may have compromised your accounts you should contact your bank immediately.

Was this an appropriate use of EAS? Share your comments in Talkback.


House Report Investigates FCC Problems Under Martin
Washington - Dec 9, 2008 - A majority staff report prepared for the House's Committee on Energy and Commerce titled Deception and Distrust: The Federal Communications Commission Under Chairman Kevin J. Martin was released to address accusations of misconduct by the commission chairman. A bipartisan investigation was begun because of allegations that Martin abused FCC procedures by manipulating or suppressing reports, data and information. The allegations were made by current and former FCC employees, telecommunication industry representatives and other commissioners.

The 100-page report outlines five points:

  • Martin has manipulated, withheld or suppressed data, reports or information in multiple instances.
  • Commission matters have not been handled in an open and transparent way.
  • The Commission has failed in some of its responsibilities.
  • Martin's methods have created distrust among all the commissioners.
  • Commission staff have not been effectively managed.

    It was expected that the investigation would lead to a congressional hearing, but it appears that this report is the only action. Further, the report is a majority staff report, not a report of the entire House Energy and Commerce Committee.

    Two specific allegations of interest to radio broadcasters include ignoring complaints of interference from and suppressing engineering reports about broadband over power lines, and micromanaging FCC staff and demoting or forcing retirement by FCC staff who do not agree with Chairman Martin. There is no mention of the recent approval of the unlicensed use of TV white spaces.

    The entire report is available at this link.


    Business

    Nautel's Quincy Office Now Open
    Quincy, IL - Dec 4, 2008 - Nautel Limited officially opened the company's new customer support center in Quincy, IL. The office expands Nautel's customer service team with the addition of industry professionals boasting many years of broadcast transmitter experience.

    Officials from Quincy's Great River Economic Development Foundation were on hand for the opening ceremony. Peter Conlon, Nautel president and CEO, said that the warm greeting Nautel has received, as well as the local media coverage has made Nautel feel like it is already an integral part of the community.

    The office, located at 301 Oak Street, Suite 2-24; Quincy IL 62301; is currently staffed by Mark Morrison, Nelson Bohorquez and Jim Krueger in customer support positions, and Steve Schmitt in a sales engineering role.


    International Datacasting Corporation Wins Canadian Forces Radio and Television Network Contract
    Ottawa, ON - Dec 9, 2008 - International Datacasting Corporation has won a tender with the Canadian Department of National Defence (DND) to continue broadcasting radio and television channels to Canadian Forces serving overseas. Valued at $2.7 million for the first year, the contract has renewal options for an additional two years for a total potential value of more than $8.1 million.

    The Canadian Forces Radio and Television (CFRT) network delivers entertainment programming, sports and news over two TV channels (English and French) and FM radio. IDC has provided this service since 2000 to Canadian troops deployed in regions around the globe. Today CFRT serves Canadian Forces stationed in Afghanistan and on ships at sea in the region.

    IDC is responsible for all aspects of programming including negotiating rights and permissions, scheduling, recording, and uplinking the network from its Ottawa-based network operations center. This is the fourth time IDC has won the competition for this contract.


    Florida Public School Deploys Via Radio Warning System
    Melbourne, FL - Dec 2, 2008 - Leon County Florida Public Schools has activated its Emergency Warning System from Via Radio. The Via Radio receivers, branded Hearo, are now in the county's 24 elementary schools, nine middle schools, six high schools, six special/alternative schools, five charter schools and various administrative offices.

    By placing the Hearo receivers in schools and all district facilities, Leon County Public Schools will inform the schools' administration of lock downs, weather emergencies and other pertinent information. The Via Radio local alert system consists of a network of radio receivers that display informational text messages in English and Spanish to notify residents in an emergency. The Via Radio receiver carries NOAA weather warnings and other public safety text alerts. Using FM radio subcarriers, the receivers have a 60-hour battery life in case of power outages.


    Sales Call
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    Radio Free Europe is installing 49 Axia Element consoles and an Axia IP-audio routing network in its new Prague studios. Coinciding with a move to a new location, the new studios will come online to feed RFE programming throughout Europe in early 2009, joining Axia installations in Bangkok and Washington, DC.
    Zephyr/IP IP-audio codecs have been installed at CBS Radio in Philadelphia; Entercom in Buffalo, NY; and KCRW-FM in Santa Monica, CA.
    Axia Audio systems have been installed at Wyoming Public Radio in Laramie, WY; Multicultural Radio's WPAT, WKDM, WJDM, WWRU, WZRC and WNSW in New York City; KMXZ, KQTH, KGMG and KFFN, Journal Broadcast, Tucson, AZ; and Retro-FM in Moscow, Russia.
    Omnia One processors are now in use at WCBS Newsradio 880 in New York City; Riverfront Broadcasting's KYNT and KKYA-FM, Yankton, SD; Family Life Network/WCIK-FM in Bath, NY; and KCHU in Valdez, AK.
    WJMJ-FM, owned by the Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford, CT, has selected Axia IP-audio consoles and routing equipment for the upcoming rebuild of its on-air studio. The sale was made through Axia distributor Broadcasters General Store of Ocala, FL.

    Internet Watch

    FCC's Martin Pushes Free Internet, With a Catch
    from Broadcast Engineering
    Washington - Dec 8, 2008 - FCC Chairman Kevin Martin, a Republican whose time is almost up as chairman, will leave the job with a bang by pushing a controversial proposal on Dec. 18 to create free Internet access for all Americans. Mobile phone companies, who paid billions of dollars for their spectrum, vehemently oppose Martin's plan to auction spectrum with a mandate to set aside part of it for free Internet use. Free speech advocates don't like Martin's idea that the winning bidder must block adult and other "offensive" content from the free access.

    "Everybody likes the concept -- free broadband, free access to the Internet -- but in practice, the way the model is set up, it may present problems," Ben Scott, policy director of advocacy group Free Press, told Reuters.

    The winning bidder would be required to set aside a quarter of the airwaves for free Internet service and could establish a paid service that would have a faster wireless Internet connection.

    T-Mobile, a unit of Deutsche Telekom, argued that the free Internet component of the proposal would lead to interference with the adjacent spectrum. The FCC's office of engineering and technology said that is not true.

    Reuters noted that Martin's proposal is similar to one offered by startup M2Z Networks, a group backed by investors including venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers. M2Z President John Muleta envisions consumers buying a router for free Internet access at midlevel DSL speed and paying a fee to upgrade to a faster service. A lack of competition and rising prices for Internet services are creating consumer demand for cheaper service, he said.

    Martin, unlikely to get the support of his two Republican colleagues on the FCC, must persuade the commission's two Democrats, who have supported the free Internet concept, to side with him. It is unclear whether the Democrats will back the proposal.


    Products

    Yangaroo, Micropower Integrate DMDS and Powergold
    Toronto and Little Rock, AR - Yangaroo has integrated its Digital Media Distribution System (DMDS) with Powergold, the music scheduling software produced by Micropower.

    With the integration, Powergold Music Scheduling Software can import new music available through Yangaroo's DMDS directly into music libraries. The new music imported from DMDS also includes the related track information.

    Yangaroo's DMDS is a Web-based delivery system available for free. It replaces the physical distribution of music.


    V-Soft Releases New FCC 30 Sec. Terrain
    Cedar Falls, IA - Dec 8, 2008 - V-Soft has recently has acquired a new terrain database to use with FM Commander, Probe 3 and other V-Soft programs that access terrain. The database is the actual NGDC database used by the FCC. When using this database and the new vsvbtsvr.dll, provided with the last FM Commander and FMCONT program updates, and by setting the HAAT Method to 0, users can get the same numbers as the FCC. V-Soft says that its new numbers typically match the FCC's FMOVER reports to 0.01km.

    V-Soft has invested a significant amount of research time identifying the correct FORTRAN code (in the deep recesses of the FCC vaults) and getting the Commission's confirmation that the code it found was the exact code the commission used for a given process. V-Soft notes that it discovered that the FCC uses three different distance algorithms for FM technical regulatory processing.

    The V-Soft FCC30SEC.DAT 30 arc-second terrain elevation database, which is a direct conversion from the FCC's database, includes come patches where the FCC added corrections in converted feet instead of original meters. We have also found that for FMOVER HAAT calculations the FCC is still calculating radials from 2 to 10 miles, not 3 to16 km as the rules read. Also, V-Soft that the commission is using only 51 digital elevation points along a radial instead of a higher resolution approach of using a point every 0.1km.


    Vorsis Releases Software Update for AP2000 and FM2000
    New Bern, NC - Dec 10, 2008 - Vorsis has released software version v1.3.0 for the company's AP2000 and FM2000 processors. This latest build packages an assortment of enhancements including:

  • An improved and more powerful main clipper
  • Improvements in the Sweet Spot Technology (SST) algorithm in how it measures and responds to the medium-term energy in program material.
  • Rescaled 31-band limiter main and delayed release times
  • New factory-tuned presets
  • Various minor bug fixes in the GUI software

    The software for AP2000 and FM2000 as well as upgrade instructions and the new factory preset packages are available for download.
    ftp://ftp.vorsis.com/VorsisSupport/GUI%20Software/AP2000
    ftp://ftp.vorsis.com/VorsisSupport/GUI%20Software/FM2000/


    People

    Kropp Joins Media Monitors
    White Plains, NY - Dec 9, 2008 - Media Monitors has added Michael Kropp to its team of sales executives. Kropp has worked in radio for more than 15 years and has network and media research experience.

    Previously with ABC Radio Networks, Kropp was responsible for affiliate relations for the BDS and Spotscan Monitoring Services.


    Greenhut Joins Ibiquity Broadcast Business Development Team
    Columbia, MD - Dec 9, 2008 - Ibiquity Digital has named broadcast industry sales and marketing executive Richard (Rick) Greenhut as director of U.S. broadcast sales. In this newly created position, Greenhut will reach out to stations from coast to coast and work with them to upgrade to digital HD Radio technology.

    Previously, Greenhut advised fortune 500 companies in developing business plans and marketing and sales strategies. He has held numerous senior level jobs in the radio industry, including vice president of new media at Premier Radio Networks, vice president of business development for Westwood One; vice president of customer marketing for Ad Value Media Technology (part of Westinghouse Broadcasting) and regional director of affiliate relations at the NBC Radio Networks.


    Chris Lordots

    Clark Wire and Cable Adds Lordots in Sales
    Mundelein, IL - Dec 10, 2008 - Clark Wire and Cable has hired Chris Lordots as its outside sales manager. Lordots is a graduate of Columbia College in Chicago where he holds a B.A. with a concentration in audio arts and acoustics.

    His career in audio began at Gepco International in 1996 as the termination manager and eventually Midwest inside sales, then later the Western Region. In 2002 he was hired at Switchcraft as a sales engineer and marketing director where he developed products for the broadcast division. In 2005 he returned to Gepco as the central regional sales manager until 2008.

    Lordots recently returned to his Alma Mater as an instructor.


    Vin Scully

    Vin Scully to be Inducted Into NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame
    Washington, DC - Dec 11, 2008 - Sportscaster Vin Scully will be inducted into the NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame during the 2009 NAB Show Radio Luncheon. The luncheon, held April 21, will also feature the annual presentation of the NAB Crystal Radio Awards.

    Scully joined the Brooklyn Dodgers' broadcast team in 1950, and followed the team when it moved to Los Angeles before the start of the 1958 baseball season. As the Voice of the Dodgers broadcasting from the network's flagship station, KABC Radio, Scully won the distinction of being the only current broadcaster to serve 59 consecutive years on one team. In addition to his Dodger broadcasts, Scully has called play-by-plays for 25 World Series and 12 All-Star Games.

    Hailed as the poet laureate of baseball by USA Today and the best of the century in Los Angeles sports broadcasting by the Long Beach Press-Telegram, Scully has captivated listeners for years with his lively delivery. In 1976, Dodger fans named him the Most Memorable Personality in L.A. Dodger history. Scully was also named baseball's all-time best broadcaster in Curt Smith's Voices of Summer, and was voted the top sportscaster of the 20th century by more than 500 national members of the American Sportscasters Association (ASA). In 1982, Scully was inducted into the Broadcaster's wing of the National Baseball Hall of Fame as the Ford C. Frick Award recipient.


    Eye on IBOC

    HD Radio Multicasts Get Exclusive Sponsorship
    Dec 11, 2008 - Verizon Wireless has agreed to sponsor HD Radio multicast and online streams on 21 Clear Channel stations. Verizon New Music features blocks of songs and interviews with new artists. Clear Channel says it's the first national sponsor of a multicast program.

    The stations carrying the sponsored program are:

    KBPI-FM (Denver)
    KDWB-FM (Minneapolis)
    KHKS-FM (Dallas)
    KHMX-FM (Houston)
    KHTS-FM (San Diego)
    KIIS-FM (Los Angeles)
    KSLZ-FM (St. Louis)
    KUBE-FM (Seattle)
    KYLD-FM (San Francisco)
    KZZP-FM (Phoenix)
    WFLZ-FM (Tampa)
    WHTZ-FM (New York)
    WHYI-FM (Miami)
    WIHT-FM (Washington, DC)
    WIOQ-FM (Philadelphia)
    WKLS-FM (Atlanta)
    WKQI-FM (Detroit)
    WKSC-FM (Chicago)
    WKST-FM (Pittsburgh)
    WRVQ-FM (Richmond)
    WXKS-FM (Boston)



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