Tuesday, May 31, 2011

New Directions for Radio and TV Marti

New programming and social media initiatives at Radio and TV Marti are attracting widespread media attention for their innovative approaches to reaching audiences in Cuba

NBC TV6 in Miami recently profiled El Revoltillo, the Martis' new radio program designed to connect Cuban listeners to the island's nascent online marketplace. Click here for the full story at NBC Miami, including video.

The Martis' increased efforts to incorporate social media in their outreach to Cuban audiences has been profiled by the Associated Press and Fox News Latino. An AP report in April on the innovations ushered in by Carlos Garcia-Perez, the recently appointed director of Radio and TV Marti, was reprinted in dozens of news outlets nationwide. 

(Source : Broadcasting Board of Governors Press Release)

Radio Netherlands (RNW's) José Zepeda honoured in Latin America

Freedom of speech in the Netherlands and a prison cell in Chile were the main sources of inspiration for the Dutch-Chilean journalist José Zepeda Varas. Now he has been awarded with an honorary doctorate by the University of Encarnación in Paraguay. Mr Zepeda and Radio Netherlands Worldwide were named as major players in the battle for press freedom and dialogue in Latin America.

Mr Zepeda was praised for decades of journalistic effort promoting democracy and the observance of human rights. As head of RNW’s Latin American department, he oversaw the reporting of abuses, interviewed presidents and brought opposing opinions together.

His is the first honorary doctorate to be granted in Encarnación, a fast-growing city on the River Paraná, which forms the border with Argentina.

In his speech, Mr Zepeda said he had been moulded as a journalist by the 2½ years he spent in a Chilean jail during the Pinochet dictatorship and by his subsequent work for RNW. His prison stretch made him realise journalism must be impartial and free from political prejudice. Dutch attitudes towards democracy, human rights and freedom of speech then turned him into a passionate journalist with a microphone for everyone.
Mr Zepeda’s speech was conciliatory in tone, even towards his former enemies.
It is not acceptable to say that impunity is the price a democracy has to pay for the crimes of dictators. That does not mean I think they should be thrown in jail. Sometimes the truth is enough to reconcile the victims with their oppressors.

(Source : Radio Netherlands Worldwide)

Continued suspension of Japan’s Radio Nikkei 2nd broadcast

In order to deal with the electric power shortage caused by nuclear power plant accident, Radio Nikkei 2nd broadcast continues to suspend its weekday transmission. They only air a test signal from 23:00-23:25 UTC on weekdays  Japan time.  At present, they air from 23:00 through 09:00 UTC only on Saturdays and Sundays on 3945, 6115 and 9760 kHz. Radio Nikkei’s 1st broadcast is aired from 22:25 through 15:00 UTC on weekdays, and from 21:55 through 12:00 or 12:30 UTC on weekends.  Frequencies for 1st broadcast are 3925, 6055 and 9595kHz.

(Source : Mr. Toshi Ohtake, Japan Short Wave Club via JSWC Bulletin)

Digital radio demonstration launches in France

Lyon, 20 May 2011: Yesterday saw the launch of the digital radio project, RNT Lyon, in Lyon, France. At a press conference organised by the project leader, VDL, over 50 journalists joined the RNT Lyon partners to officially announce the launch of digital radio in Lyon. Radio listeners in the Lyon area can now tune in to 15 new stations on digital offering a variety of programme types.

Senior members of the Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel (CSA) Mr Patrice Gelinet and Mr Rachid Arhab opened the event with Mr Gélinet saying ‘The digital radio roll out in France is taking longer than expected, but has not stopped’. Mr Arhab added, ‘It’s a great day for radio in France, and I am happy that we are speaking about digital radio in a positive way’ He went on to emphasis that future tests and trials of digital radio should be directed towards the consumer.

Attending the launch were representatives from each of the 15 new digital stations on-air in Lyon. The stations represented at the press conference spoke of the 1980s decision in France to allow commercial radio. At this time they were seen as pioneers of radio. Once again there is the feeling that digital radio offers them the opportunity to become pioneers. Digital radio was seen by all to provide new opportunities in terms of content and revenue streams something which is attractive to all commercial broadcasters: “the future of radio is digital”.

Stations included on the demonstration are; Africa N°1, Cap Sao, FG DJ Radio, France Maghreb 2, Impact FM, Latina FM, MFM radio, Nova, Ouï FM, Radio Orient, Radio Scoop, RCF, Sol FM, Sud Radio and TSF Jazz. These stations will join in the promotion of the RNT Lyon project both on analogue and on their new digital stations.

On display at the press conference were a large range of digital radio receivers provided by project partners; PURE, Revo, Sony, DUAL, Roberts, Lingo and Tivoli. These receivers covered all price ranges and included kitchen radios, hi-fi sytems, iPod docking stations and iPod mobile adapters. Hybrid radios including digital, FM and internet connected radios showed that radios future is one of combined technologies offering a rich radio experience.

The press conference also launched a listener awareness campaign providing information to educate consumers on the benefits of digital radio. To do this www.rntlyon.com a website is now live giving radio listeners in Lyon details of; what’s on-air, where to buy a digital radio receiver, which areas in Lyon are covered by the digital signal and news on events and giveaways.

The RNT Lyon project is supported by local retailers Auchan, Boulanger, DARTY, Grosbill, FNAC, Musikit (Digital Group) & Virgin. Digital radio products are currently available in these stores and the www.rntlyon.fr website includes store information so consumers can easily find a local digital radio retailer.

A debate on digital radio and its place in the French radio market and in the wider European zone ended the morning. Mr Yannick Andre-Masse, CEO of VDL, the project leader, said ‘Again we need to focus on the listener, these new services offer listeners in Lyon something new and exciting in terms of radio. We are concentrating very much on getting the message out there – Le radio numerique c’est fantastique!’

The next event for the RNT Lyon project will be a public event in Place de la République, Lyon on 25th June 2011. Listeners will be able to hear some of the new digital station DJs live, with information given out and competitions to win some of the fantastic digital radio receivers now available!

(Source : Press Release via WorldDMB forum)

Digital radio sales and listening up: latest figures from RadComms 2011

“Digital Radio prices have come down to as low as $49,” Joan Warner told the Radcomms Conference in Sydney today. Reviewing the roll out of digital radio so far, Warner revealed that 824,000 people are now listening to digital radio, more than are listening to internet streaming.  Warner suggested that digital radio sales are probably higher than the “conservative estimate” of 457,000 measured by the official figures. Those figures do not take into account iPod docks and other devices which also have digital radio receivers included in them, such as the Grundig iPod dock (pictured), which also includes a digital radio

(Source : www.radioinfo.com.au via WorldDMB forum)

Zimbabwe broadcasters ignore radio licences advert

Potential broadcasters have failed to respond to the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ)’s offer for two commercial radio licences. BAZ advertised in state print and broadcasting media last Thursday, giving applicants five days to respond to the advertisement for two radio licences. Critics described the advertisements as “bogus”, stating that the licence offers were merely an attempt by ZANU-PF to deflect criticism at the slow pace of reforming the broadcasting sector.

(Source : Media Network Weblog)

First DAB+ AM/FM portable radio launched in Australia

Australian IT and consumer electronics accessories company Laser Corporation today launched the DG200AM – the first portable Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB+) radio featuring digital and analogue.

The DG200AM DAB+ digital/analogue radio displays scrolling broadcast information via the backlit LCD screen including name of track and artist on air, plus up-to-date news and sports results. Along with scrolling information, the DG200AM DAB+ digital/analogue radio presents auto and manual scanning for stations, allows listeners to tune in to AM or FM radio and preset 20 favourite AM, FM and DAB+ stations. The DG200AM DAB+ digital/analogue radio is lightweight and considerably small measuring only 200 x 170 x 75mm, making it perfectly portable.

Chris Lau, Managing Director of Laser Corporation, said, “The uptake of DAB is progressing steadily with digital radio coverage in major capital cities across Australia. It still however leaves a large percentage of the population without full DAB+ reception. Laser developed the DG200AM to cater to a wider society, for listeners that still don’t have digital radio coverage, as well as listeners that miss their AM radio. According to Digital Radio Plus, there are no plans to switch off AM and FM radio services just yet, so the DG200AM offers an ideal and inexpensive all-in-one solution for radio fans.”

The Laser DG200AM DAB+ digital/analogue portable radio is now available in Australia through selected retailers. RRP AU$99.95 inc GST.

(Source: Laser Corporation via Media Network Weblog)

English teaching programmes launch in Sierra Leone

The British Council with sponsorship from Standard Chartered Bank in Sierra Leone and in partnership with Plan Sierra Leone is starting to support English teaching and learning in Sierra Leone, using radio. The launch of these new radio programmes by the Chief Education Officer takes place today in the British Council auditorium in Freetown.

The British Council is using radio because it can reach many more people this way, across the whole country. The radio programmes consist of two series: Teaching English Radio for teachers and ‘Obla Air’ for young people.

Teaching English Radio is a series of radio programmes aimed at teachers with low level qualifications who lack confidence in their knowledge of English. The programmes are designed to motivate teachers and encourage them to use more learner-centred practices so their classes are more effective. They give teachers practical guidance on how to teach big classes without any resources. In addition to the broadcasts, the British Council and Plan Sierra Leone are utilising the programmes in teacher training in four districts.

‘Obla Air’ Learn English Radio is a series of radio programmes that provide general listening practice, basic English language skills and entertainment. The intended audience is young adults: students, job hunters and aspirants – but anyone may find the programmes appealing.

(Source: sierraexpressmedia.com via Media Network Weblog)

First community radio station testing in Bangladesh

The first community radio station in Bangladesh, named Lokobetar, has begun test transmissions in the district town of Barguna to build public opinion on development issues like democracy, good governance, human rights, anti-corruption, health and women empowerment. Mass-Line Media Centre (MMC), a development organisation, with financial and technical support from Unesco, set up the radio station, which has been on trial since 27 May and is expected to go for full-fledged transmission by mid-June. The station will cover a radius of about 17 kilometres around Barguna town on FM 99.2 MHz.

(Source : Media Network Weblog/The Daily Star)

A new revolutionary sound for Nile FM

It may not be as popular as it used to be 50 or 60 years ago but radio, nonetheless, remains a fixture in daily Egyptian life, and that includes the English-language commercial station 104.2 Nile FM, which has found a niche for itself in Cairo.

Recently, the station changed its sound. Its new motto: “The Sound of Now,” an appropriate title for a station that acted quickly after the revolution to meet the needs and demands of an audience that, in the words of the station's programming manager Safi, wanted the changes “now,” immediately.

Eight years since going on air, 104.2 Nile FM has evolved from an English-language station with a predominantly British staff to a uniquely Egyptian radio station. Today, six out of the nine presenters are Egyptian and anyone listening can clearly identify a particular personality of the station.

(Source : Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Thaicom gets go-ahead to launch $160m satellite in 2013

Thailand’s Information and Communication Technology Ministry (ICT) has given Thaicom Pcl the go-ahead to launch a new, $160 million satellite in the next two years to expand capacity and serve rising broadcasting demand in Asia. Thaicom, which had been seeking permission from the ICT ministry for two years, will be the sole investor for the new satellite, Jirawan Boonperm, permanent secretary at the ministry, told reporters today. The ICT ministry would not extend the existing concession with the company when it expired in 2021, Jirawan said.

The new broadcast satellite, Thaicom 6, would be launched into orbit in the second quarter of 2013 and would have a minimum working life of 15 years, with 26 transponders to transmit satellite signals, it said in a statement to the stock exchange. The aim is “to increase the company’s revenue in the future and to meet increased demand for satellite service in the future as the trend of demand for Ku-band and C-Band is rising in Southeast Asia, East Asia and South Asia”, it said.

Thaicom 6 would be a medium-size satellite, with capacity close to Thaicom 5, and the company expected it to break even before the eighth year after launch, Thaicom Chief Executive Arak Arak Chonlatanon told reporters. Thaicom 6 will also replace existing satellites that have reached the end of their life and the company will use long-term loan and its cash flow to finance the project.

Thaicom now operates two satellite - broadband IPSTAR and Thaicom 5, which is almost running at full capacity. Analysts said the approval was good news for the company and should boost Thaicom’s traditional satellite business.

Earlier on Monday, Thaicom signed an agreeement with a subsidiary of Malaysia’s MEASAT Global Bhd to provide broadband Internet services via IPSTAR in Malaysia and expected to book revenue from the third quarter.

(Source: Reuters via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

UWC appeals cancellation of RUI Ukrainian service

The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) has called on Ukraine’s authorities to cancel the decision to shut down the Ukrainian language section of Radio Ukraine International (RUI).

“The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) expressed grave concern in a letter to President Viktor Yanukovych, Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada, Volodymyr Lytvyn, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov and the Head of the State Committee for Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine, Yuriy Plaksiuk, over the 25 May, 2011 decision of the General Director of the National Radio Company of Ukraine to shut down the Ukrainian language section of Radio Ukraine International,” the information posted on the UWC web site reads.

The UWC is calling on Ukraine’s authorities to cancel the decision by Director General of the National Radio Company of Ukraine Taras Avrakhov to shut down the Ukrainian language section of Radio Ukraine International due to its importance as a source of information on national issues for Ukrainians living abroad, according to the letter.

In its letter, the UWC pointed out that Radio Ukraine International is broadcasting in the Ukrainian language, providing a listening audience of more than 20 million in the Ukrainian diaspora with information about life in Ukraine and the lives of Ukrainians beyond its borders.

(Source: Interfax via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Radio Taiwan International Broadcast Problem to North America

On May 26th, our broadcast to North America from 0225 to 0330 UTC on 9680 KHz was temporarily suspended due to technical problems. We apologize for the inconvenience.

(Source : Radio Taiwan International)

Dubai Media Inc to launch new radio station/magazine

Dubai Media Incorporated (DMI) has announced the launch of a new magazine and radio station catering to Dubai’s GCC and Arab population. The two new media platforms which will be launched in September will cover a wide range of topics from news to lifestyle with a Gulf focus.

The radio will feature Khaleeji and Emirati music along with live programmes which will be announced at a later date. The magazine which will be weekly will be 100 pages. Both will be distributed and broadcast across the UAE.

“The introduction of the weekly magazine and new radio station would be a qualitative addition to the national, regional and Arab media. The two new products will also reflect the integration between the various arms of Dubai Media Incorporated as they will act as a bridge to connect between the various media and channels of the DMI,” said Dhaen Shaheen, executive director for press at Dubai Media Incorporated at the conference.

(Source: gulfnews.com via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Libya’s Tribute FM carries on in the face of attacks

Last week, pro-Gaddafi television accused Libya’s new English-language radio station Tribute FM of being a foreign-financed attempt to spread Christianity. Then their studio was bombed with an improvised explosive device (IED). The damage was superficial, but they now have a police escort to and from work.

The National Transitional Council (NTC) have told them to move, but they think that it was the process of getting people in for live interviews that made their location an open secret in the first place, so they would soon get found out somewhere else. The day after, two men were shot and killed on the doorstep of the building opposite, in an attack that they are certain was intended for them.

Read more from The Guardian

(Source : Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

PCJ & Media Network Contest

How would you like to win a shortwave radio?

Well PCJ will have a contest to make this happen. We are giving away 3 Tecsun DR920, and a grand prize a new Sangean ATS909X.

How will this work?

1. Beginning on the May 28th edition with Media Network Plus there will be a small that id asking a question that will be played in the show (very easy question). This ID will also be used on Happy Station, Nash Holos, & Switzerland In Sound. All you need to do is answer the question and give details on where you heard the show either FM/AM/Shortwave or internet.

2. There are 3 Tecsun DR920 that we are giving away in June, July and August. Everyone that enters will be entered into the draw to win a new Sangean ATS909X. Winners will be announced in Media Network Plus. The grand prize of the Sangean ATS909 will be announced in the September edition on Media Network Plus.

3. Just make sure when you enter that you also give some program details.

The address to enter for winning one of the 3 Tecsun's and the final grand prize is:

You will receive a small thank you gift when you enter by snail mail.

PCJ Radio
c/o: Contest
8FL, No. 47, Lane 31,
Section 1, Sanmin Road,
Banciao, Taipei, Taiwan,
ROC 22070

Or email: ats909x@gmail.com
(Source : BCL News blog/PCJ Media)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

RFI's The Sound Kitchen Quiz!

This week’s quiz question is about the Cannes film festival. You’ve surely been listening all week to our reports from Laura Angela Bagnetto.

On Sunday night, the jury announced the winners, and my question to you is, who took the top prize? Which film won the Palme d’Or – the Golden Palm – at this year’s Cannes Film Festival?

You have until 27 June to send in your answers; the answer and the winners will be announced on the 3 July programme. 

Send your answers to:
Susan Owensby
Service anglophone
BP 9516
75016 Paris

Send your “This I Believe” essays, your musical requests, your mini book reviews, your community hero essays, your proverbs and your general all-around thoughts to:

All the best,
(Source : Radio France International)

RFI's The Sound Kitchen 24 April quiz winners

Today’s quiz question was read on 24 April … and was suggested by the youngest Sound Kitchen listener I know of: nine-year-old Rayaan Ba, who lives in New York.

He requested an animal question, and so I asked you to send in the name of the fastest land animal.

That animal is the cheetah. Cheetahs can run up to 120 kilometres per hour – and can get up to speed in about three seconds – that’s faster than any race car. But he can only keep that speed up for a very short time – about 10 to 15 seconds.

Rayann Ba is of course the top winner this week!

There’s also Mr.Vishal Priya of the Cosmos Radio Club in Muzaffarpur, India, and MN Sentu from Rajshahi, Bangladesh. From Accra, Ghana, Alimou Diallo, and from Nairobi, Kenya, Mr Edmond Muhinzi.
Congratulations, winners!

(Source : Radio France International)

BBC Hindi New Frequency on 9395

Due to interference on 9685 kHz(AIR on 9690 kHz at 1330-1500) BBC Hindi is now using 9395 kHz (from Thailand)1400-1500 UTC since 23rd May and continues 9685 kHz from Oman. It was a dual transmission from Thailand and Oman on 9685 kHz , now it has been b'casting on 2 different frequencies - 9395(THA) and 9685(OMA). 

Zimbabwe villagers refuse to pay ZBC licences

Irate villagers in Nyanga North are refusing to pay licence fees that the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) is demanding because they say it is failing to transmit a reliable signal in the area. Last week, ZBC dispatched its officers to collect listener’s and viewer’s licence fees in the area, but villagers resisted saying they last accessed ZBC programming long ago.

“We are very isolated and we wonder whether we are Zimbabweans. We watch foreign programming from Mozambique and Voice of America (VOA). Important information about our country remains elusive. $50 is too much for such a shoddy job,” said Maruta, who was listening to Studio 7 from the Voice of America.

Residents in Penhalonga interviewed by The Zimbabwean said they would not pay up if the national broadcaster does not improve its programming.“ They can take us to court but we will not pay. We cannot bankroll activities of one political party in the inclusive government. The local content is not educative or informative in anyway,” said Misheck Runhanya of Penhalonga.

Most residents in urban areas are now subscribing to MultiChoice TV and free-to-air decoders to run away from propaganda being churned by national broadcaster.

(Source: The Zimbabwean via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

RDP to suspend shortwave transmissions from 1 June

Portuguese public broadcaster RDP confirmed yesterday it was temporarily suspending its shortwave transmissions as of 1 June because of the low number of listeners and as a means of cutting costs. RDP said it would be reviewing the service to see whether it would go back on air at a later date. Listeners around the world can still follow their favourite programmes via satellite, cable and Internet.

The Portuguese broadcaster said it was “just one of many global broadcasters who are reducing or closing their SW transmissions”.

(Source: The Portugal News via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

HCJB Global-UK Garners 3 Awards in One Week for Radio Programs

HCJB Global-UK picked up three radio awards last week at two different awards ceremonies for excellence in programming. At the Sandford St. Martin Radio and Television Awards the ministry came away with a Merit Award for a series of five short radio spots played on commercial station the Pulse in West Yorkshire.

“The spots (titled ‘Jesus Meek and Mild? … As if’) explored popular misconceptions about the person of Jesus using music, vox pops and punchy commentary,” stated HCJB Global-UK Chief Executive Colin Lowther in a press release.

The event took place at Lambeth Palace in London, and the award was presented to the Bradford-based team by the new bishop of Bradford, Nick Baines, who is also chairman of the Sandford St. Martin Trust.
Just two days later the HCJB Global-UK radio production team (also known as Whistling Frog Productions),  received the Gold Award for “Best Speech Magazine Program” at the Christian Broadcasting Council (CBC) Media Awards that also took place in London.

“This prize was for a special Christmas feature commissioned by Sunrise Radio, a station for the Asian community in Yorkshire,” wrote Lowther. “The program aimed to explode some myths about the real meaning of Christmas and featured Asian Christians talking about their faith.” The CBC Media Awards were presented by stand-up comedian Tim Vine.

The CBC also handed HCJB Global-UK a Highly Commended Award for the “Jesus Meek and Mild” spots.

“We are delighted to have made such an impact with our creative radio material,” Lowther added. “As religious content becomes harder to find in the world of commercial radio, it’s more important than ever that we keep the rumor of God alive on the commercial airwaves.”

To hear the winning Pulse spots, visit www.audiopot.org.

(Source: HCJB Global-UK

DRM Steering Board

The Steering Board (SB) of the DRM Consortium will meet at Südwest Rundfunk, Stuttgart, Germany on 8th June to discuss and set the strategy for the next months.

The Steering Board members will also receive updates from the DRM work-groups, like the Technical Committee, the Asian sub-group and the Receiver group. The full-day meeting will give participants the chance to discuss upcoming DRM events and agree on key activities and initiatives.

> If you are a member of the Steering Board, please confirm your attendance to the DRM Project Office, projectoffice@drm.org

(Source : DRM Website)

DRM+ successfully tested in New Delhi

New Delhi, 27th May, 2011: The first ever DRM+ trial measurements in India have thrown up very satisfactory results. The test, organised jointly by All India Radio (AIR) and Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) Consortium, was an effort to test the strength and coverage of DRM digital radio in FM band (VHF band II).

The single test frequency of 100.1MHz carried three programme channels - Gold DRM (FM), Rainbow DRM (FM) and AIR news in Journaline and its reception was measured by a test vehicle going in four directions from central New Delhi where the transmitter was installed. Nautel VS-1 transmitter with 300W output power (500W radiated power) along with RFmondial DRM+ Modulator and Fraunhofer DRM Content Server were used.

Two test modes were measured - robust 4-QAM and high capacity 16-QAM and the DRM+ coverage was found to be comparable with that of analogue FM station operating at approximately 5 times the power of the DRM+ signal. A full report will jointly be published by AIR and DRM.

This week long DRM+ Showcase (23rd - 27th May 2011) in New Delhi was also accompanied with an extensive workshop on DRM technology covering crucial issues of planning, transition, simulcast, content and receivers. A large number of participants from all across the country attended the sessions that also had interactive discussions with DRM experts.

DRM members Nautel (Canada), Fraunhofer, RFmondial, University of Hannover (Germany) KETI (South Korea), Analog Devices (USA) and BBC (UK) took part in the test either with equipment or experts or both. DRM Consortium will provide more information along with the test results shortly. For details log on to www.drm.org or write to projectoffice@drm.org

Ruxandra Obreja, Chairperson DRM Consortium said “This test was a successful culmination of a close partnership of DRM Consortium and All India Radio and the whole hearted support of the DRM members who took part in this event. AIR has already adopted DRM30 for its SW/MW network and DRM+ will play a complementary role operating in VHF band.”

(Source : DRM Website)

Quebec plans to launch traffic radio stations on AM

Quebec’s Transport Department will be subsidizing two all-traffic stations on the AM dial this fall. The stations will broadcast what roads to avoid, possible detours and any problems with public transit. One will be in French at 690 AM and one in English at 940 AM, pending approval by the Canadian Radiotelevision and Telecommunications Commission.

Transport Quebec has struck a three-year deal with broadcaster Cogeco, at a cost of $3 million a year to the government.
(Source : Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Friday, May 27, 2011

SES Astra signs first Italian station at 19.2E

SES Astra has signed a first broadcaster for Direct-to-Home services in Italy. Italian TV operator Promosat will use capacity on SES Astra’s 19.2 degrees East orbital position for the free-to-air transmission of its ABChannel to TV viewers in Italy.

ABChannel provides popular entertainment, including feature films, TV series and documentaries. The channel will help to significantly increase the attractiveness of SES Astra’s 19.2 degrees East orbital position, which to date reaches more than 2 million households in Italy.

ABChannel can be received with the following parameters:
  • Satellite: Astra 1L
  • Transponder: 1.037
  • Frequency: 11023.25
  • Polarization: H-Pol
  • Fec: 5/6
(Source: SES Astra via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Radio Nord Revival announces shortwave frequencies

The Radio Nord Revival blog has announced that it will be on shortwave today at 1600-1800 UTC on 7385 kHz and 1800-2000 UTC on 9940 kHz (which I seem to recall was one of the frequencies used by the RNI World Service in the 1970s). The station says “Please report in this blog [theirs, not this one] how you are receiving us and if there is any interference from other stations. We will be able to change frequency at short notice if needed.”

(Source: radionordrevival.blogspot.com via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

American Internet pioneer receives German tech award

Vint Cerf received an award from the Hasso-Plattner Institute in Potsdam earlier this week. Cerf, along with another American colleague, is well-known for having developed the Internet's underlying protocol.

Vint Cerf, a legend in the computer science and Internet world, has once again been honored for his achievements as one of the key pioneers in creating the Internet. This time, though, it was the Hasso-Plattner Institute, in Postdam, just outside of Berlin, which made Cerf an honorary fellow on Wednesday. He now joins the ranks of Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel, and Cerf's colleague, Robert Kahn, with whom he developed TCP/IP, the fundamental protocol that makes the Internet function. While the Hasso-Plattner Institute is fairly young, Cerf said he was impressed with the creativity and innovation being fostered there - it is the only institute in Germany to offer graduate-level degrees in computer network engineering. "For me this is a special honor because it comes from a community that cares about technology, that care about the kinds of things that I care about," Cerf said in his remarks.

Read the story from DW

(Source : Deutsche Welle)


VOA Georgian Service Marks 60th Anniversary

Voice of America’s Georgian Service, which first went on the air May 26, 1951, is being hailed for the role it has played in helping bring democracy to the former Soviet republic. 

In a message marking the 60th anniversary of the service’s creation, Georgia’s Ambassador to the United States, Temur Yakobashvili said, "Without any exaggeration I can say that the VOA Georgian Service has played a big role in spreading America’s voice to the people of Georgia and making it possible for me to represent a sovereign nation here in the United States. VOA’s Georgian Service is as relevant today as it has always been in the past." 

VOA began broadcasting a one-half hour daily program to the Georgian people during the most frigid days of the cold war, when Georgia was still a Soviet Socialist Republic. For the past sixty years, through the country’s transition to democracy, the service has continued to provide accurate, balanced and comprehensive news and information to the people of Georgia. 

Among its many admirers is Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, who has praised the service as “unique and important in covering events in and around Georgia.” 

VOA’s Georgian Service radio broadcasts were increased to one hour daily in August 2008 following Russia’s military incursion into Georgian territory. The Service broadcasts seven hours of original radio programming a week, reaching listeners via the FM network of Georgia’s Public Broadcasting Corporation, the country’s most powerful FM distribution facility. The broadcasts are also heard on shortwave frequencies. 

Since November 2010, the VOA Georgian Service has also produced a weekly 15-minute TV program that is broadcast by Georgia’s Public Broadcasting Corporation. The Service’s video reports, along with its daily radio programs, are also available on its website and through Facebook, Youtube and Twitter. 

Visit VOA’s Georgian Service at www.voanews.com/georgian/news

(Source: VOA press release via The Association for International Broadcasting)

Radio Bulgaria's DX MIX (Frequency Update)

All times are in Universal Time Coordinated (UTC), all frequencies in kilohertz (kHz).

Russia: Another frequency change made by the Voice of Russia in French:
on a new frequency of 13850 Kichinev 500 kW / 235 degrees for Northwest Africa. The changed rate is 9410, due to interference by the BBC in English and Swahili
Portugal: As of May 11, RDP Internacional broadcasts in Portuguese from Monday to Friday from 0500-0655 on a new frequency of 11840 Lisbon-Sao Gabriel 300 kilowatts / 144 degrees in direction Sao Tome / Principe / Angola / Mozambique. The old frequency was 12060.
UK: Two changes made by radio stations via BABCOCK transmitters:
EDC Sudan Radio Service, program Darfur from Saturday to Thursday, a new
schedule in effect from  May 1 via a transmitter in Rampisham 250 kilowatts / 125 degrees
a new morning broadcast on 11800
on a new frequency of 15500 instead of the previous frequency of 17770 Ascencion. For this emission, the frequency 11770 Meyerton is no longer used.
FEBA Radio in Pushtu to Western Asia on 1 May had a new evening broadcast
1530-1600 on 11755 Yerevan 300 kilowatts / 100 degrees. The morning broadcast is cancelled.
0200-0230 on 9725 Dhabayya 250 kilowatts / 045 degrees 

The Philippines: Frequency changes made on 15 May by Radio Veritas Asia:
- via the transmitter in Palauig Palang 250 kilowatts / 280 degrees to South Asia:
0000-0027 in Sinhala on a new frequency of 9670 instead of 9720
0030-0057 in Bengali on a new frequency of 11710 instead of 11945
1430-1457 in Chin dialect on a new frequency of 9535 instead of 9620

- via a transmitter of The Vatican Radio in Santa Maria di Galeria 250 kilowatts
1430-1457 in Urdu on a new frequency of 15260/ 070 degrees to South Asia, instead of 15435
1500-1557 in Tagalog on a new frequency 15280/ 130 degrees to the Middle East, instead of 15350 

Tunisia: And here is the summer schedule of RTV Tunisia in Arabic through transmitters in Sfax:
0300-0610 and 1600-2110 on 9725, 250 kilowatts and on 12005, 500 kilowatts, both frequencies in azimuth 100 degrees to the Middle East
0400-0630 on 7275 and from 1800-2210 on 7225, 500 kW / 340 degrees to West Europe
0700-0830 on 7335 and from 2000-0010 on 7345, 500 kW / 265 degrees to North Africa 

Nigeria: We continue with the current schedule of the radio station Voice of Nigeria through a transmitter in Ikorudu/ 250 kilowatts broadcasting in two directions:
To North Africa on a frequency of 15120, azimuth 007 degrees
From 0500-0700 in English, with interference from China Radio International in English
From 0700-0800 in French, from 1500-1600 and 1800-1900 in English, and from 1730-1800 in Arabic
-to West and Central Africa with azimuth 248 degrees
 0800-0900 in Hausa, from 0900-1500 in English and 1600-1730 in Swahili, Youruba and Igbo on a frequency of 9690, with interference from All India Radio in English from 1330 to 2500 and from Radio Romania International in Romanian from 1600-1655
 1900-2100 in English and French and 2100-2300 in Fulfulde and Hausa on a frequency of 7255, with strong interference from Radio Belarus and China Radio International in different languages

Kuwait:  We continue with the summer schedule of Radio Kuwait via transmitters in Kabd:
-Main program (General Service) in Arabic
From 0200-0900 on 5960, 250 kW /omnidirectional antenna to the Middle East, with interference from Radio Japan NHK in Japanese until 0500
1000-1500 on 21540, 500 kW / 310 degrees to West Europe, with strong interference from Radio Exterior de Espana in Spanish
1100-1600 on9750, 300 kW / 275 degrees to north-east Africa, with interference from Radio Radio Japan NHK of Japan, and after 1300 also from Voice of Russia in DRM mode
1600-2200 on 6080, 500 kilowatts /omnidirectional antenna to the Middle East, with interference from Radio Minsk in Belorussian,
and after 1700 by VOA in English
from 1700-2000 on 13650 and 2000-2400 on 17550, 500 kW / 350 degrees to North America
-          Holy Qura'n-program in Arabic via Kabd 250 kilowatts
 0500-0900 on 15515 / 059 degrees to East Asia, with interference from the BBC in Hausa from 0630-0700
 0930-1600 on 11630 / 230 degrees toCentral Africa, with interference from China National Radio in Kazakh and Chinese
transmissions in other languages ​​by Kabd 500 kilowatts
 0800-1000 on 7250 / omnidirectional antenna to West Asia in Persian (Farsi)
 1800-2100 on 15540 / 310 degrees to West Europe in English

USA:  Finally, the frequency changes made by the International Broadcasting Bureau /IBB

Radio Liberty
1200-1300 in Russian new frequency 13745 Lampertheim 100 kilowatts / 056 degrees to Russia, instead of 15130
1300-1400 and 1400-1500 in Russian on a new frequency 13745 Rampisham 500 kilowatts / 062 degrees to Russia instead of 9710 and 13830
1500-1600 in Azeri on a new frequency of 12025 100 kilowatts / 088 degrees to Central Asia. The changed frequency is 9405

Radio Farda in Farsi /Persian/ to West Asia
0430-0500 on a new frequency 17880 Iranawila 250 kilowatts / 316 degrees instead of 17 845
0500-0600 and 0600-0800 on a new frequency 17880 Udorn Thani 250 kilowatts / 304 degrees instead of the old frequencies 17845 and 21715

VOA in Hausa to Central Africa
0500-0530 on a new frequency 5995 Sao Tome 100 kilowatts / 335 degrees instead of 7320
0700-0730 new frequency 17530 Talata 250 kilowatts / 305 degrees instead of 17 525
2030-2100 Monday to Friday new frequencies 9810 Nauen 250 kilowatts / 190 degrees and 11 990 Botswana 100 kilowatts / 350 degrees instead of 9815 and 15185 

(Source : Ivo Ivanov, Frequency Manager of radio Bulgaria, DX MIX)

Radio Bulgaria – 75 years on the air

In the history of Bulgarian radio, June 1, 1936, is a historic date associated with the first regular radio broadcast transmitted from Bulgaria to abroad. The first records of a radio news bulletin in French and German come from Rodno Radio Varna (Native Radio Varna) and date back to1935. Broadcast at medium waves and having a local purpose, they were targeted at foreign holidaymakers along the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. 

In 1935, a group of technicians and radio amateurs in Sofia decided to adapt two inactive telegraph stations so that they could be used for broadcasting speech and music on shortwave. The two telegraph stations were internationally registered as LZA, and were known as Elza.

In the late 1935, trial broadcasts began and on January 19, 1936, the first transmission on short wave was carried out from Bulgaria to the world on a frequency of 7460 kilohertz. The program was in the Bulgarian language and was broadcast only on Sundays. At the end of January the same year, a new law was adopted, stipulating that radio stations in this country could be state-owned only. The enthusiasts from LZA were soon summoned by the authorities due to violating this new law. They were not punished, but their radio station was nationalized. On June 1, 1936, on the frequency of 7460 kHz, after the usual introduction saying “This is Radio Sophia”, a news bulletin was read in Bulgarian, French, German, English and Italian. Such broadcasts started being transmitted on a regular basis with an interruption between April 1938 and January 1939 for technical reasons. Meanwhile, the authorities purchased another short-wave transmitter produced in Germany. After 1942, it was used for radio broadcasts of radio Obedinena Bulgaria (United Bulgaria) and of radio Predavatel Bulgarski Novini (Transmitter of Bulgarian News).

In 1945, Bulgaria sent troops to fight against Germany on the territories of Yugoslavia and Hungary. For them, a radio station called Military Front and Homeland started broadcasts. In the late 1960s, there were short-wave broadcasts of Radio Rodina for Bulgarians living abroad. Otherwise, until the late 1980s, the external service of the Bulgarian National Radio was known under the name Radio Sofia, which was later changed to Radio Bulgaria.

After the war, a transmitter was imported from the USSR with a capacity of 5 kilowatts, transmitting on a frequency 9350 kHz. News in 12 languages were broadcast as follows​​:

to the World in Bulgarian, English, French and Esperanto;

to Northern Europe in Russian, Polish and Czech;

to the Balkans in Serbo-Croatian, Albanian, Greek ,Turkish and Romanian .

On December 18, 1948, the restored LZA transmitter resumed broadcasting to the Balkans on a frequency of 7670 kHz. During the 1960s and afterwards, serious funding was allocated to the external service of the Bulgarian National Radio,  new powerful transmitters and modern studio equipment were imported. In the coming years, broadcasts in Arabic and Portuguese were added, and the Romanian language section was closed down. Later, the Italian and Portuguese sections were also closed down. Currently, Radio Bulgaria has reached its 75th anniversary with short-wave broadcasts in 10 languages.

(Source : Radio Bulgaria's DX program compiled by Rumen Pankov)

Search on for New Zealand's oldest TV set

A competition to find New Zealand's oldest television set has received almost 300 entries from across the country, Voxy reports.

The Oldest Telly competition, part of a campaign by Going Digital, a government body, to raise awareness of the switchover to digital television, encouraged New Zealanders to rummage through their garages or wardrobes for their oldest working TV set.

The competition closed on 25 May and an expert judging panel has now been tasked with identifying the winning set, which will then be converted to digital live on TV next month.

Greg Harford, National Manager of Going Digital, said: "We've been delighted with the number of entries and the level of interest shown in the competition. 

"Now we're looking forward to showing New Zealand that almost every TV set can go digital, including those with only wires for aerials.  

"Making New Zealand's oldest working television go digital will prove to viewers that there is no need to go out and purchase a new TV."

The winner of the competition will receive a home theatre system including a 46-inch television with an in-built satellite TV receiver and Internet video.

New Zealand will go digital, region by region, by November 2013, beginning with Hawke's Bay and the West Coast in September 2012.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

France helps Vietnam train radio and television broadcasters

Representatives from Canal France International (CFI), Fracne 24, Tv25 and Radio France International (RFI) and Shanghai media group (SMG) are keen to cooperate with VOV.
  CFI General Director Etienne Fiattee and Frank Melloui who is in charge of France 24, Tv5 and RFI expressed their wishes when they were received by Radio the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) Deputy General Director Vu Hai in Hanoi on May 25.

They praised VOV for successfully organising the 8th Asia Media Summit (AMS 8) which has left a deep impression on international guests. They said that the event has provided a good opportunity for them to seek cooperation partners in the digital era.

After listening to presentations by Tran Dang Khoa, director of VOV TV channel and Vu Minh Tuan, director of VOV traffic channel, Etienne Fiatte and Frank Melloui proposed cooperating with VOV, especially in training and information sharing.

The same day, VOV Deputy General Director Dao Duy Hua received President of the Shanghai media group (SMG) Li Rui-gang who is attending AMS 8 in Hanoi.

Mr Li was pleased to note that VOV and Shanghai Radio Station have cooperated effectively with each other for a long time. He said he was very interested in the development of four means of communication by VOV, such as radio, television, printed newspaper and online newspaper.

(Source : VOV News)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Voice of Vietnam pledges to help Indonesia broadcast in Vietnamese

Radio the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) will help Indonesia’s national radio broadcaster to launch a programme in Vietnamese.
  Prior to a gala dinner welcoming delegates to the eighth Asia Media Summit (AMS8), on May 24, VOV General Director Vu Van Hien received Rosarita Niken, President Director of Indonesia’s national radio broadcaster and Kim Inkyu, President of the Korean Broadcasting System (KBS).

At the meeting with Mr Hien, Ms Rosarita said her radio broadcasts in nine languages but there is no Vietnamese language programme. She said she hopes VOV will help Indonesia build a Vietnamese language programme for its world service.

Ms Rosarita also proposed signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between VOV and Indonesia’s national radio broadcaster.

Mr Hien welcomed her proposal and said the signing would take place at an appropriate time, probably in September this year.

During the meeting with Mr Hien, Mr Kim praised VOV’s efforts to hold the AMS8 and wished the event a great success. He expressed the hope that his organisation and VOV will join hands to celebrate the 20th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Vietnam and the Republic of Korea (RoK) in 2012.

The VOV Chief said almost all of VOV’s radio programmes are digitalized.

Mr Kim lauded VOV’s great efforts over the years and wished to see Mr Hien at the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) meeting in the RoK next year.

(Source : Voice of Vietnam)

Mediahub Launched at the Asia Media Summit

Mediahub, a convenient and cost-efficient e-platform for content providers and users to share, buy and sell programs, was officially launched today at the Asia Media Summit 2011.

This business-oriented video sharing website is a new service AIBD members can benefit by uploading, sharing, exposing their trailers, demos or pilots to more than 140 registered high profile customers ready for content acquisition.

AIBD Director Yang Binyuan and Mr. Hughes D’Annoux, Chairman of Worldview Global Media Centre for Development and the Global Media Centre for Development graced the launching of Mediahub.

In his message, Mr. D’Annoux said Mediahub is an essential service for broadcasters to tap content from leading content providers across the globe. He said there has been excitement over this service that hopefully will lead to more face to face engagement and help secure business opportunities to buy and sell content between content providers and content users.

Mr. Binyuan urged AIBD members to take advantage of this service, which will add value to their programming for greater audience reach as well as open up new business opportunities, and expand their market share and maximize distribution revenues.

At the launch, participants had the opportunity to view a short video clip of the Mediahub profile, its benefits to subscribers and some trailers it has secured from some content providers around the world.
Mediahub also provides other services to include capacity building, marketing and promotion, and educational certification.

MediaHub is operated by the Kuala Lumpur-based Global Media Center for Development (GMCD), a joint initiative between AIBD and WGMH.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development)

A Successful Asia Media Summit in Hanoi

The Asia Media Summit 2011 concluded today in Hanoi, contributing to a growing consensus that it was no longer business as usual for broadcasters in the battle for attention that has become more intense than ever in the digital world.

In his closing remarks, AIBD Director Yang Binyuan said the Summit has helped raise awareness and understanding among broadcasters of new and innovative ideas as well as opportunities offered by technological advances and multiple delivery platforms such as the web, mobile, and social media that will expand their audience reach, address strong competition and improve their products and services as well as business returns.

The broadcasters’ role in development was not lost in the Summit as UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in his message urged them to use the power of digital media to transform lives and societies for good. The Summit showcased some best practices on how new and social media have contributed towards addressing crisis and development needs in the region.

Close to 600 foreign and local participants from 50 countries and regions participated in the two-day conference that served as a platform for multisectoral and multidimensional dialogue on the challenges and opportunities the digital world offer broadcasters.

Mr. Thoyyib Mohamed Waheed, Minister of State for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Maldives and President of AIBD, said “ broadcasting has to be a dynamic platform that incorporates new digital technology, that accommodates changing consumers’ experiences, and that allows for creative strategies to perform financially and pursue their role in development more effectively. “

(Source : Asia-Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development)

Zimbabwe to license two private radio stations !!

Zimbabwe is ready to license its first two privately owned commercial radio stations, the Broadcasting Authority of Zimbabwe (BAZ) has announced. On Thursday BAZ invited applications for two commercial radio licences, a day after it was heavily criticised by a media lobby group for keeping a “stranglehold” on broadcasting. The licences will run for 10 years each and successful stations will pay $15,000 every year to the authority. Frequency fees have been set $30 per frequency per site every month, while the stations would also contribute 0.5 per cent of their audited annual turnover to the broadcasting fund.

The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) had, in an Africa Day statement on Wednesday, criticised the government for stifling freedom of expression by failing to open the airwaves. MISA said Zimbabwe was lagging behind other African countries in opening the airwaves.

The unity government, formed in 2009 has issued licenses to a number privately owned newspapers after decades of tight media control. Opening up the media to private players was one of the major clauses under the 2008 Global Political Agreement (GPA) that led to the formation of the unity government between President Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai. However, a number of reforms are still pending, leading to calls for the country to delay elections, which are due this year.

(Source: Africa Review via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

P4 Radio Hele Norge to prolong national radio licence in Norway

Modern Times Group (MTG) today announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, P4 Radio Hele Norge, which is the leading commercial radio operator in Norway, will be offered the opportunity to prolong its P4 national analogue radio broadcasting licence until the planned closing of FM broadcasting in 2017. P4 is already broadcast in DAB digital radio in Norway.

A bill was recently passed by the Norwegian Parliament outlining the plan for the digitalisation of radio broadcasting and the closing down of analogue FM broadcasting in Norway. To facilitate the digital transition, the bill makes it possible for existing Norwegian national commercial radio broadcasters to prolong their licences from 2014 until the cessation of FM broadcasting, which is due to take place in 2017. Thereafter, all radio will be broadcast digitally and no licences will be required. Existing analogue licence holders that prolong their licences will be required to participate in the expansion of the existing commercial digital radio networks to cover 90% of the Norwegian population.

P4 Radio Hele Norge is Norway’s leading commercial radio network, with a daily reach of over 1.1 million listeners and a 32.5% audience share amongst 20 to 50 year olds in the first quarter of 2011. P4 Radio Hele Norge also owns and operates the P5 local city network in Norway, which is broadcast in the cities of Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Stavanger and reaches a total potential audience of two million listeners. P4 Radio Hele Norge’s total revenues grew by 25% in 2010.

Hans-Holger Albrecht, President and CEO of MTG, commented: “P4 Radio is the leading commercial radio operator in Norway, one of the largest commercial media in Norway by reach. We are pleased to have the opportunity to extend our broadcasting licence and to play a leading role part in the transition to DAB digital radio broadcasting in Norway. Radio is a major and growing advertising medium in Norway, and the digitalisation process will only accelerate this development.”

(Source: Modern Times Group via Radio Netherlands Media Network Weblog)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

BBC Turkish Service to air last radio program on May 27

The British Broadcasting Company's (BBC) Turkish Service is slated to air its last radio program on May 27 due to a government budget cut.

The service's radio programs, which have been on the air for 72 years, are among the BBC services hit by government budget cuts on public spending. Twenty-five percent of the institution has been affected by the budget cuts as services in five languages, Macedonian, Albanian, Serbian, Caribbean English and African Portuguese, have been shut down.

Among the Turkish Service's 19 employees, three resigned voluntarily, and the contracts of two will not be renewed, according to a decision taken by the BBC human resources department.

BBC Turkish Service Assistant Manager and Editor Murat Nişancıoğlu told the Anatolia news agency that the department was asked to end the radio programs along with the Russian service.

“It doesn't mean that the Turkish Service is being shut down, but we received a blow, of course. Everybody feels resentment for the shutting down of the radio because it is a 72-year-old tradition,” Nişancıoğlu said.

Nişancıoğlu called the decision to end the radio services a strategic decision by BBC senior management. “The BBC World Service didn't have television at all; the main area of activity was radio. … The senior management of the BBC World Service thought radio has lost power in some regions, and it is time to move on new platforms; and it took a decision in this direction.”

He explained that the main activity of the BBC Turkish Service was radio and that it had served important functions in certain periods, especially when the media was immature or faced limitations in Turkey.

Nişancıoğlu noted that now they have to focus on other services as radio will air the last program on May 27 at 6 p.m. Turkish local time.

The main area of activity will be the service's Internet page as the television broadcasts will support the Internet. “We will try to improve them both. We will try to strengthen our social media activities,” he said.

Hüseyin Sükan, the service's manager, is among the employees who quit. Nişancıoğlu will be the new head of the service.

BBC Turkish Service reporter and union member Güney Yıldız pointed out that the BBC World Service, currently funded by grant-in-aid through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the British government, will be financed by compulsory BBC license fees like other branches of the BBC. While noting that there had been rumors regarding budget cuts in recent years, Yıldız said the speculation negatively affected the motivation of the employees at the service. A total of 100 employees lost their jobs as a result of the budget cuts, he added.

Yıldız said there are two powerful unions at the BBC, including the National Union of Journalists, and that a strike may take place in the following weeks.

Yıldız added that the BBC Turkish Service has a special place in Turkish broadcasting history. The radio continued broadcasting despite crises that hit Turkey including military takeovers, and it also delivered news that could not be presented in Turkey, he said.

(Source : TODAY'S ZAMAN, İSTANBUL via Kimandrewelliott.com)