October 2010 Personalities:
Lee Abrams - (3) - former Tribune Co Chief Innovation Officer- suspended then resigned after row about e-mail; Richard Bacon -British broadcaster; George G. Beasley - Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Beasley Broadcast Group, US; Hamish Blake - Hamish of Austereo "Hamish and Andy" drivetime show; Helen Boaden - Director of BBC News - to join Executive Board April 2011; Mark Byford - BBC Deputy Director General & Head of BBC Journalism - to be made redundant - post goes summer 2011; John Cassaday - President and CEO, Corus Entertainment, Canada; Chris Chapman - Chairman, Australian Communications and Media Authority; Anthony Cumia - Anthony of US Opie and Anthony show; Mark Damazer - former Controller BBC Radio 4 and BBC 7; Tim Davie - (2) - Director BBC Audio & Music; Clare Duignan - (2) -Managing Director of RTÉ Radio; Ford Ennals - Chief Executive Digital Radio UK; Chris Evans - (2) - British broadcaster and former radio mogul; Konrad von Finckenstein - Chairperson, Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission; Mark Fratrik - SVP, BIA Advisory Services; Don Geronimo -(real name Michael Sorce) -US radio host; Ian Greenberg - President and CEO of Greenberg family owned Astral Media Inc, Canada; Ray Hadley -2GB, Sydney, morning host and former sports commentator, 2UE , Sydney; Andrew Harrison - chief executive UK RadioCentre; Derryn Hinch - Melbourne 3AW Afternoon host - inducted into Australian Radio Hall of Fame; Peter Horrocks -BBC Director of Global News; Gregg Hughes - Opie of US Opie and Anthony show; Mel Karmazin - CEO Sirius XM Radio; William T. Kerr - President & CEO Arbitron; Ana Leddy- (2) - Head RTÉ Radio 1- to return to programme making when contract expires; Andy Lee - Andy of Austereo "Hamish and Andy" drivetime show; Sir Michael Lyons - (2) - chairman- BBC Trust; John McMahon- Head of RTÉ 2fm; Randy Michaels- (7) - former CEO Tribune Co. (Resigned); ; Chris Moyles - (2) - BBC Radio 1 breakfast host; Mrs. Ruxandra Obreja - chair Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) ; Donnach O'Driscoll - Chief Executive Absolute Radio UK; William Rogers - Chief Executive UKRD radio group; Vivian Schiller- (2) - President and CEO, US NPR; Harriet Scott - UK Heart FM breakfast co-host; Gordon H. Smith -President and CEO, US National Association of Broadcasters; Jeffrey H. Smulyan - Chairman, president, and CEO, Emmis Communications; Lisa Snowdon - London Capital FM breakfast co-host; Howard Stern - (2) - US shock jock; Farid Suleman - (2) - Chairman and CEO Citadel Broadcasting; Jamie Theakston - UK Heart FM, London, breakfast co-host; Mark Thompson - (3) - BBC Director General; Johnny Vaughan - Breakfast co-host for Capital FM, London; Joan Warner - CEO, industry body Commercial Radio Australia; Ellen Weiss - Vice-President for News, US National Public Radio; Roger Wright - Controller BBC Radio 3; Sam Zell - chairman, Tribune Company;
Numbers in brackets indicate the number of stories involving an individual mentioned more than once

October 2010 Archive

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Radiofeeds UK -for comprehensive list of UK broadcast radio stations on the Internet

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UK -Radio 2 :
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BBC Where I L
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Radio 4 stream (AM):
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Links to audio streams:

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Music Streams
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- September 2010 -- November 2010 -
Links- internally where there are follow-up stories we try, at the end of each story, to put a pertinent link to the top of the previous relevant story. Regarding external links see note at end of page.

2010-10-31: Last week was yet again quiet as regards radio decisions from most of the regulators with only a few postings: In Australia there was only one, a decision by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to make frequencies available in the Bunbury and Busselton areas of Western Australia.
These will allow the introduction of the ABC radio service NewsRadio at Busselton; new translators for commercial radio broadcasting services 6TZ Bunbury at Augusta and for 6SUN Bunbury at Collie and Margaret River; two new community radio broadcasting services -at Augusta and Harvey; and a new high power open narrowcasting service at Collie.
The ACMA has also changed the category of service of a planned (but unallocated) community radio broadcasting service at Bunbury to a high powered open narrowcasting service.
Canada was also quiet with only one radio posting from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), a notice asking for comments by December 2 concerning an application by My Broadcasting Corporation to increase the power of its CHMY-FM. Renfrew, Ontario, from 1,660 to 7,100 watts.
In Ireland the only radio-related posting from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) was of the latest radio ratings (See RNW Oct 29) and in the UK Ofcom also made only on radio- related posting, the release of its latest Broadcast Bulletin in which it found breached of licence condition by three stations in the same group (See RNW Oct 25).
In the US, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had a fairly busy enforcement week as regards radio, proposing two USD 10,000 penalties at the start of the week (See RNW Oct 25) followed by a USD 8,000 forfeiture - reduced from an initial 18,000 (See RNW Oct 26); then fines on two stations totalling USD 9,000 - reduced from USD 42,000 (See RNW Oct 28); and then proposing another USD 10,000 penalty (See RNW Oct 29).
Apart from that the agency also dismissed an application for a new non-commercial educational (NCE) FM in Maryland and issued construction permits for two new low power FMs (LPFMs) in Wisconsin.
Dismissed was an application from Edinboro Early School for a new NCE FM in Ocean City. Edinboro along with Allied Communications Network Two, Allegheny East Conference Corp of Seventh-Day Adventists ("AECC"), and Priority Radio, Inc. ("PRI"), had filed mutually exclusive applications for NCE FM station construction permits and in an initial points-based decision AECC and PRI were eliminated after which Edinboro was tentatively selected.
Allied in a petition to deny argued that Edinboro's application was defective on the basis that it is not a non-profit corporation; had failed to disclose its ownership of WEES-LP; had improperly claimed points for diversity of ownership;) did not fully disclose its existing authorizations and pending NCE applications; and improperly claimed points as an established local applicant.
Edinboro did not respond to Allied's petition and the FCC noted that its review of the State of Maryland's Department of Assessments and Taxation database confirms that Edinboro is a for-profit stock corporation.
On this basis it found that Edinboro is ineligible to hold an NCE licence and granted Allied's petition to deny the licence to it.
In Wisconsin, Mt. Zion Education Association was granted an LPFM licence for a station in Baraboo and Heart to Heart Educational Association was granted a licence in Beaver Dam.
The agency noted that it had received two informal objections and a memorandum in support of the objections from the National Lawyers Guild Center on Democratic Communications, The Microradio Implementation Project, and the United Church of Christ (collectively Lawyers Guild) to which the applicants filed a joint opposition to the informal objections. It also received a Consolidated Opposition filed on behalf of national cable programming network Eternal Word Television Network, Inc. (EWTN).
Lawyers Guild asserted that the Applicants are sham organizations that serve as a front for the real parties in interest, EWTN and/or Starboard Broadcasting, Inc. and that the EWTN/Starboard had conspired to file twenty-three LPFM applications, including the Applications.
The applicants in a joint filing said they were wholly independent of EWTN but Starboard, a non-profit corporation dedicated to dissemination of the Roman Catholic Church's teachings, recruited the Applicants and handled the bulk of the administrative and technical aspects of the filing process, free of charge.
They added that they are not-for-profit unincorporated associations and said their proposed use of EWTN's satellite-delivered network programming complies with the Commission's rules.
The FCC in granting the licence applications said that there was no substantial and material question of fact concerning whether EWTN or Starboard will be in a position, actually or potentially, to control operation of Applicants' stations.
Previous ACMA:
Previous BAI:
Previous CRTC:
Previous FCC:
Previous Licence News:
Previous Ofcom:
ACMA web site:

BAI web site:
CRTC web site:
FCC web site:

Ofcom web site:

2010-10-30: BBC Radio 3 has announced the launch of a podcast of its weekly Official Specialist Classical Music Chart that will feature for the first time for the corporation several complete classical tracks from some of the week's new entries, re-entries and other CDs in the top 20.
The 25-minute programme will be hosted by Rob Cowan and Sara Mohr-Pietsch and will be available for download from noon on Tuesday (November 2) from the BBC Radio 3 website and also on i-Tunes.
The station began broadcasting the Official Specialist Classical Chart in April this year and the podcast will initially be made available for a six-month trial. Musical excerpts will run for a maximum of nine minutes.
The podcast has the support of the BPI (the former British Phonographic Industry, the UK recording industry's trade association) and Ginny Cooper, Vice Chair of the, BPI Classical Committee, commented in a BBC News Release, "We are delighted with the ongoing support Radio 3 is providing the specialist classical chart by making a podcast available. This will further enhance listeners' ability to access the plethora of fantastic and innovative new recordings released every week. The UK has a wonderful history of both classical music and record companies making recordings, and we are happy that Radio 3 is providing us an opportunity to present these recordings within a modern world."
Radio 3 Controller Roger Wright said of the offering, "This is the podcast for any music fan who wants to keep an eye on the most popular new classical CDs making an impact across the UK and is a breakthrough in offering listeners complete tracks to enjoy wherever they are and whatever device they're listening on. We have worked together with the classical recording industry on this initiative and we know that it will bring to a wider audience the new releases that have captured the imagination of the public."
BBC Radio 3 has also announced as we reported earlier this month (See RNW Oct 19) that from December it will make its programming available as a special high-quality - it terms this HD - stream that it had launched on an experimental basis for the final week of The Proms this year using a bite rate of 320kbps and AAC encoding - a significant improvement over the 192kbps MP2 signal it uses for its DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) signal.
Previous BBC:
Previous Wright:

2010-10-30: Corus Entertainment has promoted Vice President and General Manager, Corus Radio Toronto and Hamilton, Chris Pandoff, who has held a number of senior management positions in Toronto and Vancouver, to the post of Executive Vice President and President of Corus Radio. He will succeed Hal Blackadar, who announced his retirement as President of Corus Radio earlier this year after a radio career spanning four decades.
Pandoff will take up his new post on December 1 and will be responsible for Corus' stable of radio stations as well the division's interactive arm, Corus Interactive and Integrated Solutions.
He has more than 25 years of radio experience at the local, regional and national level and recently retired as Chairman of the Bureau of Broadcast Measurement (BBM), the Canadian broadcast ratings service, having served on that board not only as Chairman but also as Chair of its Radio Executive Committee.
Previous Corus:

2010-10-29: US NPR (National Public Radio) NPR ombudsman Alicia C. Shepard in a second blog posting concerning the ending of Juan Williams' contract after comments he made on Bill O'Reilly's Fox TV programme (See RNW Oct 21) says that following the dismissal her office was deluged with calls as were those of "dozens of public radio stations around the country that were deep into their pledge drives with volunteers answering phones and processing donations."
As a result she later comments, "NPR has been damaged - at least temporarily and possibly for the longer term - by the negative fallout resulting from the Williams' firing." Williams notes that her office received hundreds of calls and 22,769 emails many of which "said the same thing: 'NPR, you're fired.' Or, 'I'm never donating to NPR again.'"
Williams notes that NPR, as a matter of policy, said it wouldn't share how many emails it's received and also that some messages asked for pledges back.
She notes in relation to this that donations are not made to NPR but to public stations, which do not have control over NPR day-to-day operations and which use the funds for purposes from buying equipment and hiring their own staff to purchasing programming from other suppliers including NPR.
NPR in turn supplies programming over which it has no direct control including that from the BBC and US programming including Car Talk, Fresh Air, Marketplace, This American Life, and Prairie Home Companion.
In her posting Shepard quotes Texas Public Radio's development director Laverne Pitts as criticizing the way NPR handled the affair, saying, "The fact that there seemed to be no thought put into how the handling of this situation would affect the stations makes me less inclined to want to help Schiller (NPR Chief Executive Vivian Schiller who took the decision to fire Williams) . She said we should all stand together. Well, she didn't stand with us. We were in the middle of a pledge drive, and she handed us a huge mess which we were expected to handle locally with no information until late on Thursday."
Shepard says the controversy did not hit all stations' pledge drives with some breaking records and in some areas "stations actually benefited from a backlash against the backlash; listeners said they wanted to support NPR against what they perceived as a Fox-News generated attack."
Of Williams' comments, Shepard says they "may have been relatively benign in the full context of his appearance on the Bill O'Reilly show" (RNW question why the "may"?) and adds, "Many people told me they could relate to what he said. He spoke to fears, misunderstandings, and prejudices that many Americans share."
She continues, "Williams raised valid points about prejudices and not legislating policy based on emotion. The problem was the venue. If you watch the clip, Williams was struggling to make his point, and O'Reilly, as is his method, kept interrupting him."
Of the dismissal itself she writes that "it was the last straw because his appearances on Fox News had become a frequent source of embarrassment to NPR" and links to earlier postings that refer to criticism from NPER listeners about Williams' appearances on Fox including a 2009 posting specifically on this topic.
He posting has not dampened down criticism of NPR - when we last checked it had attracted some 275 comments with more critical of NPR than defending it, albeit it is fair to say that some of those posting would almost certainly condemn anything they see as "socialism" and use the word as a blanket term of abuse in the way the left used to use "Fascism".
Previous NPR:
NPR Ombudsman blog:
2009 NPR Ombudsman comments re Williams:

2010-10-29: Latest Irish radio ratings from the JNLR/Ipsos MRBI survey just released - covering the period October 2009- September 2010 - show listening down from the previous survey with 85% of the country's adult population listening daily to a mix of national, regional, multi-city and local radio, - 86% in the previous survey covering July 2009 to June 2010 and 87% a year earlier.
Listenership to any multi-city/regional/local radio service remained the same as the previous survey at 58% but up from 57% a year earlier.
Compared to the previous quarter commercial service Newstalk increased its weekday reach from 7% to 8% (8% a year earlier) and national broadcaster RTÉ held its audience - weekday reach was unchanged at 24%, for RTÉ Radio 1 (23.3% a year earlier); 14% for RTÉ 2FM (16% a year earlier); and at 3% for RTÉ Lyric FM (3% a year earlier); whilst Today FM lost ground - down a point to 13% (15% a year earlier).
In terms of market share, Newstalk was up to 4.1% (+0.1 - it was at 4.0% a year earlier); RTÉ Lyric FM retained a 1.6% share (the same as a year earlier); RTÉ 2FM was down to 8.7% (-0.6 - it was at 10.5% a year earlier and 12.4% a year before that); RTÉ Radio 1 fell to 22.1% (-0.5 - it was at 23.3% a year earlier); and Today FM dropped to 9.3% (-0.3 - it was at 10.7% a year earlier) although overall an increased figure of 53.8% (+1.3 and also up from 49.6% a year earlier) was recorded for any multi-city/regional/local station in the 7a.m.-7p.m. period.
Of the regional stations Beat 102-103FM took its weekday reach figure up from 19% to 20% (also 20% a year earlier) with its market share up from 11.5% to 12.3% (12.5% a year earlier); regional youth service Spin South West was up 2 to 21% (18 % a year earlier) with its share up 0.9 to 10.9% (9.8% a year ago); and North-West regional service i102-104FM was up 1 to 20 % (16% a year earlier) with share up 1.1 to 14.7% (9.9% a year earlier).
North-East/Midlands regional service i105-107FM (which launched in February 2009) took its reach up 1 to 7% (3% a year earlier) with share up 1.3 to 5.1% (1.7% a year earlier) and multi-city service 4 FM (which has been on air since the end of February 2009) maintained a 3% reach (2% a year earlier) with share down 0.1 to 1.9% (1.4% a year earlier)
Amongst local stations, excluding Dublin and Cork, the top five stations (weekday reach compared to the previous ratings) were Highland Radio with an unchanged 69%; Radio Kerry (up 1 to 51%) & Limerick's Live 95FM with an unchanged 51%; Mid West Radio with 50% - down 2; WLR FM- up to 48% and then Shannonside/ Northern Sound with 46% (down 1).
Tipp FM dropped out of the top five as its reach fell five points to 44%.
In weekday share terms the top five were Highland Radio - down 0.3 to 63.4%; Radio Kerry - up 0.7 to 56.3%; Tipp FM - down 3.5 to 54/3%; Mid West Radio - down 0.90 to 49.6%; and Shannonside/ Northern Sound - down 0.6 to 46.2%.
In Dublin the leaders in terms of weekday reach were RTÉ Radio 1 which fell 1 to 28%; FM 104 with an unchanged 19%; 98FM with an unchanged 14%; Spin 1038 with an unchanged 14%; and Q102 with an unchanged 13%.
In weekday share terms they were RTÉ Radio 1, which fell 1.3 to 30.9%; FM 104 which was up 1.8 to 11.5%; 98FM, which was up 0.4 to 11.3%; Dublin's Q102, which was up 0.9 to 11.2%; and RTÉ 2FM, which fell 0.6 to 7.5%.
In Cork the leaders in weekly reach were Cork 96FM/County Sound 103FM with an unchanged 48%; Cork's 96FM , which was down 2 to 36%; RTÉ Radio 1 with an unchanged 25% ; Cork's Red FM, which was up one to 21%; and Today FM, which was down 1 to 15%.
In weekday share terms they were Cork 96FM/County Sound 103FM, which was up 0.2 to 43.5%; Cork's 96FM, which was down 0.8 to 32.4%; RTÉ Radio 1, which was down 0.1 to 20.6% ; Cork's Red FM, up 0.9 to 11.3%; and C103, which was up 0.9 to 11.1%. Today FM, which lost 0.9 to end with 10.1%, dropped from fifth to sixth rank.
RTÉ emphasised the weekends in its comment, which it headed, "Radio Sees Massive Gains at Weekends as it Takes 19 of the Top 20 Radio Programmes in the Country." It also noted that "RTÉ Radio 1 has further consolidated its position as Ireland's most popular radio station, with a clean sweep of the top ten most-listened-to programmes in Ireland" and noted "massive gains concentrated at weekends."
Clare Duignan, Managing Director, RTÉ Radio, commented: "The RTÉ Radio 1 weekend phenomenon continues, with gains for the majority of the key weekend shows, some of them exceptionally large. A notable outcome of this latest book is that Radio 1 is seeing gains also for weekday evenings; we are seeing the first signs of growth across our arts, factual and music output, as well as sport, which has seen significant gains also at weekends, including nudging a major rival out of the Top 20."
"Daytime programmes," she added "are down across most national stations and my instinct is that the scale of societal change going on at the minute has to be a factor. However, RTÉ Radio 1 daytime remains undeniably strong, with Drivetime still a clear 70,000 ahead of its nearest rival. As we move into winter we will see a natural seasonal adjustment and probable stabilisation of daytime figures."
Ana Leddy, Head of Radio 1, commented, "There's no denying that there have been drops for daytime programmes across many national radio stations in the country. Yet Radio 1's daytime schedule remains the strongest. I am delighted that our long-term schedule planning for evenings on Radio 1 is bearing fruit."
John McMahon, Head of RTÉ 2fm, commented, "This book was about holding our ground. We are mid-way through a three-year regeneration of 2fm. There is a palpable sense of confidence at the station as we witness unprecedented levels of listener interaction with Hector's new breakfast show, with Ryan Tubridy and with Colm Hayes."
Previous Duignan:
Previous Irish Ratings:
Previous Leddy;
Previous McMahon:
Previous RTÉ:

2010-10-29: Jeff Smulyan has moved the lawsuit filed by JS Acquisition against Alden Global Capital, which pulled out of its agreement to finance his bid to take Emmis private from an Indiana Court into the Federal Court.
The lawsuit, which was originally filed on September 15 in Marion County Superior Court (See RNW Sep 16) is now listed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana and names Alden Global Distressed Opportunities Master Fund, LP, Alden Global Value Recovery Master Fund, LP and Alden Media Holdings, LLC.
A group of preferred shareholders had held out for a better deal than was being offered but Alden baulked at the improved deal offered to get their agreement after, according to Emmis, initially agreeing. Alden said that it participated in discussions in relation to the offer to a "limited extent" but could not agree to the terms agreed (See RNW Sep 10) but Smulyan said he did not agree that this was the reason they had backed out.
JS Acquisition is reported to have spent more than USD 10 million on the bid but the legal bill, of some USD 5.5 million will have increased the total spent.
Previous Emmis:
Previous Smulyan:

2010-10-29: Beasley Broadcast Group has reported third quarter revenues down by 0.9% on a year earlier at USD 24.2 million although for the first nine month it rose 0.6% to USD 71.0 million.
Station operating income was up 22.5% to USD 8.4 million for the quarter and 21.1% to USD 23.0 million for the first nine months but operating income for the quarter was only up 1.5% - to USD 5.9 million - whilst for the first nine months it was up 22.4% to USD 15.1 million.
Same station reported revenues were down 0.9% in the third quarter but same station net revenue was up 2.6% - both to USD 24.2 million and operating income was up 10.3% to USD 8.41 million whilst for the first nine months same station reported revenues were up 0.6% to USD 70.99 million, same station net revenues were up 2.6% to USD 70.88 million with operating income up 14.1% to USD 23.01 million.
Beasley noted that the third quarter rise in operating income reflects a 1.6% reduction in total operating expenses during the period which more than offset a USD 1.5 operating expense benefit in the 2009 third quarter related to the sale of Las Vegas radio assets: In that quarter Beasley recorded a USD 1.7 million gain on sale of KBET-AM and certain assets used in the operations of KCYE-FM and KFRH-FM in Las Vegas (See RNW May 29, 2009).
Overall Beasley reported net income for the third quarter up 51.2% to USD 2,1 million (from six cents to nine cents per diluted share) and up 122% to USD 4.7 million for the first nine months (from Nine cents to 21 cents per diluted share).
Commenting on the results Chairman and Chief Executive Officer George G. Beasley said the company "continues to benefit from the rebound in radio advertising activity and is focused on driving profitable revenue growth from our market clusters."
"Reflecting this focus," he added "during the 2010 third quarter we significantly improved operating results at our station clusters in Miami and Las Vegas, two of the three largest markets where we operate."
He also noted that the company had repaid borrowings and at the end of the quarter had reduced the borrowing under its credit facility from USD 151.8 million at the end of 2009 to around USD 145.3 million.
"Looking forward," he said "Beasley Broadcast Group has opportunities for further financial growth by improving our station clusters' sales to match or exceed the market revenue performance, continuing to grow revenue related to our interactive initiatives and by addressing the balance sheet through further reductions in borrowings."
Previous Beasley:
Previous George Beasley:

2010-10-29: Continuing a run of enforcement decisions relating to the keeping of public inspection files, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issues a USD 10,000 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NAL) to 6 Johnson Road Licenses, Inc. (Pamal broadcasting), licensee of WXPK-FM, Briarcliff Manor, New York.
The proposed penalty follows an inspection in September last year during which the FCC agent found that found that the file did not contain any issues/programs lists for the current license term: The only issues/programs lists in the file were from 2004 and 2005 and staff could not locate any more recent entries.
Previous FCC:

2010-10-28: UK radio listening in the third quarter of this year remained high according to the latest survey from RAJAR (Radio Joint Audio Research) which showed 46.8 million listeners a week (90.6% of the UK's 15 plus population) - up from 45.7 million a year earlier.
Within the figures the numbers listening to a digital platform has increased 15.4% year-on-year to 20.4 million a week from 17.7 million whilst digital listening hours were up 22.8% from 213 million to a new high of 262 million hours a week. Digital's share of total listening was up from 21.1% a year ago to 24.8%.
DAB radio accounted for 61.8% of the digital listening - reaching a total of 162 million hours a week (up 20.8%). Other digital listening rose more - to 47 million hours for listening via a digital TV platform (up 27.1%) and 30 million hours via the Internet (up 35.2%).
DAB's share of total listening was up from 15.3% a year ago but fell back from the second quarter figure of 15.8%: Under current plans all digital listening has be at least half the total before any switch-off of analogue with a 2015 switchover date pencilled in but at the rates of growth seen over the past few years - digital listening was around 16% three years ago - this target will not be reached until after 2020.
Digital Radio UK, the body promoting digital radio, put the slow rise down to the absence of "major developments" in the quarter adding that the latest figures "do not include the full effect of recent content developments including the launch of Smooth UK in October, and the expansion of Absolute 90s" and adding "Further announcements about new content, cars, coverage and communications programmes should begin to see benefits from quarter 4 onwards."
The fall in DAB's share led the UK Guardian, whose parent owns the Smooth and Real Radio stations, to refer to a "stutter" in digital radio listening growth whilst the Daily Telegraph took a much harder line, heading its report, "Digital radio switchover 'never likely' as listening levels fall, figures show."
The Telegraph report quoted William Rogers, chief executive of local radio operator UKRD, who has previously criticized the pressure for a switch-off of analogue radio, as saying, "It doesn't come as a surprise to me because, as we all know, this whole DAB project is fraught with difficulties and simply does not have the overwhelming support of the listening public in the country."
"At this rate, "he added, "there is never likely to be a DAB switchover and with all the problems that exist, I don't think there should be."
It also quoted Digital Radio UK chief executive Ford Ennals as saying, "We've achieved a step change in digital listening growth in 2010 and we see that sustained in Q3, with 17.5 per cent year on year growth. The Digital Radio Action Plan aims to create a further step change in digital listening in 2011, when we should begin to see the benefits of investment in coverage, content, communications and cars."
Earlier this month speaking at the UK Radio Festival, Ennals had said that the 2015 target date for switchover was challenging but achievable, cited the success of digital TV and said a switch to digital would also be a massive success adding, "we have set a course to double listening and expand coverage by 2013, and to switchover by the end of 2015."
Ennals said there was real momentum for conversions of automobiles, noting that the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) have confirmed that all new cars will have digital radio fitted as standard by 2013.
RNW comment: Ennals in our view is so close to being on another planet that it might be a good idea to move him to one. It seems to us that the likelihood of doubling digital listening by 2013 is almost as great as that of Ennals personally paying all consumers for their new receivers and disposing of all the perfectly good analogue receivers that will be rendered largely redundant.
The comparison with digital TV is nonsensical - digital TV did give a cleaner picture and access to many more channels whilst the extra choice on DAB is much more limited, there is no quality gain but rather a quality loss for those with good quality FM set-ups and the cost of conversion is currently higher for radio than TV - usually a new receiver rather than a set-top box.
Apart from a lack of some interference - which is why we use DAB receivers for speech channels - there is very little benefit for most listeners and with coverage more limited geographically than that of FM a significant potential problem for automobile use.
the Internet provides not only greater choice but in many cases better quality audio.
We remain of the view that the whole issue needs a rethink, agreement on a Europe wide standard for digital radio, and no consideration of any switchover until at least five years after all digital equipment sold can handle all those systems as well as AM and FM (thus ruling out the current UK DAB using MP2 encoding as opposed to the more advanced AAC of DAB+).
Equipment should also be manufactured made with a standard plug-in fitting for chips so as to enable to simple future updating if ever needed without having to dump whole receivers.
In practical terms this would rule out a switch-off so it would seem sensible to allow the market to decide - some companies might well switch to digital platforms only - but in the UK insist that the BBC provide at least a national news and a national music analogue service as long as a tenth of listening remains analogue.

Moving on to listening as opposed to platforms, weekly reach remained unchanged from the second quarter at 90.6% of the 15 plus population, an increase from 89.2% a year ago whilst listening hours rose - from 1.008 billion a year ago to 1.03 billion in the second quarter, and 1.055 billion in the latest figures.
In terms of BBC and commercial listening the ratings showed the BBC's share falling slightly from the second quarter - down from 54.6% to 54.3% compared to 55% a year ago whilst commercial share was up slightly - from 43.2% to 43.4% compared to 42.4% a year earlier.
The BBC's weekly reach was down slightly from the second quarter at 34.243 million compared to 34.585 million in the second quarter but it was up from the 33.577 million of a year ago whilst commercial radio reach has increased- from 31.225 million a year ago to 32.873 million in the second quarter and 33.373 million in the latest figures.
Amongst stations, the BBC's big winner was Radio 3 whose audience was boosted by the 2010 Proms Season - its listening was up to 2.145 million compared to 1.858 million in the second quarter and 2.192 million a year ago. Digital-only station BBC 6 Music, whose threatened closure led to many protests and a reprieve, held on to its increased audience that followed the row - up from624,000 a year ago to 1.194 million in the second quarter and 1.196 million for the third quarter.
Amongst commercial stations UTV's talkSPORT was the main gainer as its weekly reach went up from 2.474 million a year ago to 2.507 million in the second quarter and 2.960 million in the third. The success seems likely to continue as cuts at the BBC bite with possible losses of more rights - talkSPORT and Times of India's Absolute Radio have already taken UK Premier League soccer rights packages, reducing BBC Radio Five Live's dominance.
Also doing well were Guardian Media Group's Smooth Radio network whose weekly reach fell from 2.804 million a year ago to 2.801 million in the second quarter but then moved up to 3.053 million in the third quarter and Global Radio's The Gold Network whose weekly reach has gone up from 1.211 million a year ago to 1.2888 million in the second quarter and 1.465 million in the third.
Amongst commercial digital stations Absolute Radio Classic Rock has increased its reach from 179,000 a year ago to 278,000 in the second quarter and 303,000 in the third and Bauer's Smash Hits has increased reach from 961,00 to 990,000 to 1.109 million over the same periods.
Losers at the BBC were BBC Radio Five Live - it s weekly reach increased from 6.390 million a year ago to 6.763 million in the second quarter but then fell back to 6.295 million and its digital sister station Five Live Sports Extra - this did well quarter on quarter but fared badly year on year with reach of 963,000 dropping to 547,000 but then bouncing back to 648,000.
Amongst the commercial networks Global Radio's Galaxy Network's weekly reach, which went up from 3.813 million a year ago to 4.329 million in the second quarter, fell back to 3.779 million whilst amongst commercial digital stations Bauer's Heat saw a weekly reach of 623,000 a year ago rise to 672,000 in the second quarter then fall back to 578,000.
In London Global Radio's Capital FM increased its audience from 1.818 million to 1.921 million and then 2.125 million over the same periods; Absolute Radio took a weekly audience which had fallen from 877,000 a year ago to 821,000 in the second quarter up to 911,000 and Smooth Radio, which had seen a fall from 583,000 to 415,000 was up to 544,000. BBC London also increased its audience - from 405,000 to 507,000 to 560,000
Losers in London included Bauer's Kiss - from 1.563 million a year ago to 1.848 million and then down to 1.771 million and Global Radio's Heart FM which went from 1.893 million to 2.185 million and then fell back to 2.057 million.
In the national breakfast shows battle, BBC Radio 1's Chris Moyles lost 615,000 listeners compared to the second quarter to record 7.10 million listeners a week (up slightly on the 7.04 million a year ago) whilst rival Chris Evans at BBC Radio 2, who at one point added some 1.5 million extra listeners to the total inherited when he took over from Sir Terry Wogan, was down 341,000 to 8.14 million (Five thousand down on his figures a year ago).
In the London commercial competition, Bauer's Magic was back in the top spot with a weekly reach of 2.15 million - up 103,000 on the quarter and 140,000 on the year - and a 6.7% share - up from 5.5% and 5.0%.
Global Radio took the next two spots with Capital FM overtaking sister station Heart to take second spot as it added 204,000 listeners a week (307,000 on the year) to reach 2.13 million. Its share rose from 4.9% to 5.3% (5.5% a year earlier). Its breakfast team of Johnny Vaughan and Lisa Snowdon remained comfortable in top place with their reach going up to 1.15 million from 1.12 million in the second quarter and 1.03 million a year ago.
Heart lost 128,000 listeners quarter on quarter to end up with 2.06 million (Up 164,000 on a year earlier) but its share was equal to that of Capital - up to 5.3% from 5.1% (4.7% a year earlier).
At breakfast Heart's Jamie Theakston and Harriet Scott remained second but their audience was down from 925,000 in the second quarter to 834,000 ( 816,000 a year earlier). Magic was third at breakfast with an audience of 787,000, down from 841,000 in the second quarter but up from 780,000 a year earlier.
BBC Radio 2 for comparison was in the lead a year ago with 2.4 million but lost 339,000 listeners year on year and 19,000 on the quarter to end up with 2.06, just ahead of Heart in reach although it comfortable retained the lead in share - 10.7%, up from 10.6% in the second quarter but down from 11.7% a year earlier.
Commenting on the figures, Tim Davie, Director BBC Audio & Music, said. "These are strong figures for the industry, with BBC networks posting solid year-on-year performances after a quarter that saw records broken across the portfolio. Radio 3's commitment to bring the BBC Proms to a wider audience has been rewarded as the network bounces back above the two million mark."
For the commercial sector, RadioCentre Chief Executive Andrew Harrison said, "This is another very encouraging set of results for the commercial radio sector. On reach this is our second consecutive quarterly record, with listener hours also up modestly quarter on quarter. The fact that commercial radio continues to grow listeners and gain market share against the backdrop of relentless competition for listeners' time is a reflection of the sector's ongoing momentum."
Within the figures compared to the second quarter of the year and a year ago:
*BBC Radio 1 lost 163,000 listeners and had a weekly audience of 11.647 million and listening share was down from 9.3% to 9.1% (9.9 % a year ago when it had 11.112 million listeners).
*BBC Radio 2 lost 47,000 million listeners and had a weekly audience of 13.682million with listening share down from 15.9% to 15.6% (15.9% a year ago, when it had 13.622 million listeners)
*BBC Radio 3 gained 287,000 listeners to end with a weekly audience of 2.145 million and listening share up from 1.0% to 1.2% (1.4% a year ago, when it had 2.192 million listeners).
*BBC Radio 4 lost 35,000 listeners to end with a weekly audience of 10.368 million and listening share was up down from 12.5% to 11.8% (12.41% a year ago when it had 10.218 million listeners).
*BBC Radio 5 Live, excluding Sports Extra, lost 468,000 listeners to end up with a weekly audience of 6,295 million, with listening share down from 4.8% to 4.7% --(4.9% a year ago when it had 6.390 million listeners).
(Including Sports Extra it lost 365,000 listeners to end with a weekly audience of 6.439 million and a listening share down from 5.0% to 4.9% (5.3% a year ago when it had 6.535 million listeners).
*BBC World Service gained 34,000 listeners to end up with a weekly audience of 1.319 million and listening share unchanged at 0.6% (0.6% a year ago when it had 1.257 million listeners).
*BBC Asian Network gained 25,000 listeners to end up with a weekly audience of 462,000 and an unchanged listening share of 0.2% (0.2% a year ago when it had 357,000 listeners).
On the commercial side for national networks:
*Bennett, Coleman & Co Ltd's (Times of India parent) Absolute Radio (total including all AM and FM) - gained 67,000 listeners to end up with a weekly audience of 1.654 million and listening share up from 1.1% to 1.2% (1.1% a year ago when it had an audience of 1.587 million).
*Global Radio's Classic FM lost 33,000 listeners to end up with a weekly audience of 5.676 million and listening share down from 3.8% to 3.5% (3.7% a year ago when it had 5.445 million listeners).
*UTV's talkSPORT gained 453,000 listeners to end up with a weekly audience of 2.960 million and listening share up from 1.7% to 2.1% (1.9 % a year ago when it had 2.474 million listeners.).
Among digital stations the top ten stations in the survey had a weekly audience as below - (previous quarter in brackets) - this excludes Bauer's Kerrang! which has a substantial analogue and digital listenership and had a total weekly reach of 1.416 million including its analogue stations (up from 1.324 million quarter on quarter and up from 1.277 million a year ago) but includes BBC Radio Five Live Sports Extra and Asian Network:
1: BBC 6 Music - 1.196 million (Up from 1.194 million and up from 624,000 a year ago.).
2: The Hits (Bauer) -1.153 million (up from 1.138 million and from 1.151 million a year ago).
3: Smash Hits (Bauer) - 1.109 million (up from 990,000 and from 961,000 a year ago).
4: BBC 7 - 1.045 million (Up from 949,000 and up from 884,000 a year ago).
5: BBC 1Xtra 806,000 (up from 600,000 and from 547,000 a year ago). Up from seventh to fifth rank.
6: Planet Rock (Independent) - 783,000 (up from 718,000 and up from 708,000 a year ago). Down from fifth rank.
7: Absolute Radio 80s - making a debut with 564,000.
8: Heat (Bauer) - 578,000 (Down from 672,000 and up from 623,000 a year ago). Down from sixth rank.
9: BBC Five Live Sports Extra - 648,000 (up from 547,000 but down from 963,000 a year ago). Down from eighth rank
10: BBC Asian Network - 462,000 (up from 437,000 and from 357,000 a year ago). Same rank.
Jazz FM dropped from ninth to 11th rank with 452,000 (down from 463,000 but up from 416,000 a year ago). This pushed NME Radio down a rank to 12th with 257,000 (up from 253,000 and from 218,000 a year ago), ahead of 13th-ranked Bauer's Q with 246,000 (Up from 233,000 but down from 270,000 a year ago). Q was taken off DAB in May this year by Bauer.
Previous Bauer:
Previous BBC:
Previous Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd (Absolute Radio's ultimate owners):
Previous Davie:
Previous Digital Radio UK/Get Digital Radio:
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Previous Evans:
Previous Global Radio:
Previous Guardian Media Group:
Previous Harrison:
Previous Jazz FM:
Previous Moyles:
Previous Planet Rock:
Previous RadioCentre:
Previous RAJAR (Q2, 2010 ratings): :
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Previous Scott:
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UK Daily Telegraph report:

2010-10-28: The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) has rejected a complaint that a description of an incident in Germany when a man tore off another man's testicles and threw them out of a window was "obscene" and "sexually explicit", and so should not have been broadcast although it has criticised the decision to broadcast the story.
The broadcast was made on the Big Breakfast Show on Harvard Broadcasting's WFWF-FM (The Wolf) in Regina, Saskatchewan, at around 07:25 on January 14 this year and he station's Program Director and Morning Show Co-Host responded to the complainant saying that "while the story is disturbing, it was a news story" and adding, "The story was in bad taste; however, there was no profane language used outside of everyday terms."
The complainant was not satisfied with the response and said the broadcast was "obscene and/or profane and this is not admitted by the broadcaster"; "was obscene and/or profane and this is not admitted by the broadcaster"; "was "sexually explicit" and this is not admitted by the broadcaster"; and that it breached "CRTC radio regulations including those which prohibit "sexually explicit" material and "obscene or profane" language."
The complainant also added that broadcaster "claims that the words used were "everyday terms" and this is not accurate"; "claims that the words used were not profane and this is not accurate"; "admits that the story was in "bad taste" but this admission is insufficient"; and "appears to indicate that similar stories and language will be repeated in the future."
The comments made after describing the incident were "You heard that correctly. Hans ripped off his friend's gonads and threw them out the window. Alex woke up and was rushed to hospital. A few hours later, the cops found his nuts lying in a snow bank. [laughs] I'm sorry. But that's just hilarious. It's unclear whether they were able to re-attach his gonads. Hans was arrested and charged with sexual abuse and grievous bodily harm. The case is ongoing. We're still not sure about Alex's nuts though. [laughs]."
The CBSC Prairie Regional Panel concluded that the broadcast did not violate Canadian Association of Broadcasters' standards and said it "does not consider that the use of either the colloquial or the anatomical terms is either obscene or profane. If anything, the Panel believes that there was an attempt by the broadcaster to avoid being crude with his choice of words."
It did however raise concern about "the appropriateness of broadcasting such a gruesome, undeniably sexually-tinged, story on a Thursday morning at 7:25 am, when families, including children, are rushing about, and heading toward work or school" and added, "The Panel simply cannot understand that program choice by the broadcaster. The way the story was reported was, at the very least, in bad taste, juvenile, crude and highly inappropriate for the hour of the morning when it was broadcast."
Previous CBSC:

2010-10-28: Northern Broadcasting, which operates six stations in Michigan, has pulled out of the US National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) in a protest over the organization's handling of the issue of performance royalties.
Its general manager Charlie Ferguson in his letter re-iterates the position the NAB itself had taken, namely that the free airplay is balanced by the promotional value of it to the recording companies.
Ferguson argues on the basis both of this "mutually beneficial relationship with the artists" and also because radio has other options, commenting, "We don't have to have to settle anything. We need to preserve the current relationship we have with the artists. We already flipped one of our FM stations to Talk -- and it saved us USD 40,000 in music royalties by switching to Talk ... and we're just in a little tiny market."
He goes on to say that should performance royalties become law he would flip more stations from music to some form of talk and would charge recording companies for mentioning artists when they play in local venues, adding that there are "an awful lot of small market stations" in the same position as Northern.
Northern he says is not going to renew its Arbitron ratings contract and is "definitely not interested in paying performers royalties in any way, shape or form".
Of the NAB's quid-pro-quo - getting lawmakers to mandate FM chips in mobile phones, Ferguson calls this a red herring.
Previous NAB:

2010-10-28: The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued forfeitures totalling USD 9,000 - reduced from a proposed total of USD 42,000 - to two Tennessee stations.
The largest penalty goes to Rodgson, Inc., licensee of WSDQ-AM, Dunlap, for failure to maintain operational Emergency Alert System ("EAS") equipment; enclose the base of its AM antenna structure within a locked fence; and maintain and make available a public inspection file at its main studio.
The penalty follows an August 2009 inspection at which FCC agents found that the station's EAS receivers were not receiving audio from any monitoring assignment regarding which they found that neither the station staff nor its general manager knew how to send alerts and were told by them the EAS equipment had not worked for at least a year.
The agents also asked to inspect the public file only to be told that there was no file and the station had never had one and when they inspected the station's antenna found that the lower planks of the wooden fencing surrounding the tower were missing and thus provided access to the base of the antenna structure. The agents also found that the gate for the fence was removed from its hinges and was propped up against the gate opening.
As a result Rodgson was issued with a Notice of Apparent Liability (NAL) for USD 25,000 in January this year to which it responded requesting reduction or cancellation on the basis of inability to pay but did not deny the breaches although it did not steps taken to correct things.
Having examined documentation provided, the FCC reduced the penalty to USD 5,500 based on ability to pay.
In the second case Stone/Collins Communications, Inc., licensee of WEPG-AM, in South Pittsburg, was issued with a USD 3,500 forfeiture for Collins' failure to enclose the base of its AM antenna structure within an effective locked fence; and maintain and make available a public inspection file at its main studio.
Agents had inspected the station in August 2009 and when they asked to view the public inspection file were told by the station owner and personnel that there was no public inspection file and that the station never had one. The agents also inspected the fence surrounding the station's antenna structure and found observed that the gate on the chain link fence surrounding the base of the tower was wide open, there was no lock to secure the gate, and there was no evidence of any prior lock on the gate. They also did not see any perimeter property fence.
Following the inspection Stone/Collins was issued with a USD 17,000 NAL and responded requesting reduction or cancellation on the basis of inability to pay but did not deny the breaches.
In this case the penalty was reduced to USD 3,500 on the basis of ability to pay.
Previous FCC:

2010-10-27: Astral Media and rival Corus Entertainment have each reported fiscal 2010 revenues up 6% on a year earlier - at CAD 961.0 million (USD 935.3 million) and CAD 836.2 million (USD 813.8 million) respectively although Astral fared better in the fourth quarter with its revenues up 9% on a year earlier at CAD 238.4 million (USD 232 million) whilst those of Corus were up 4% to CAD 202.8 million (USD 197.4 million).
Astral's figures for the year - which it headlined as a 14th successive year of growth - were boosted by a favourable Part II licence fees accrual reversal of CAD 11.60 million (USD 11.3 million) but on the other side of the balance sheet reduced by a USD 9.7 million (USD 9.4 million) copyright charge to its radio operations as the result of an increase, retro-active to 2008, in Copyright Board tariffs.
Excluding these figures EBITDA for the year was up 5% to USD 306.8 million (USD 298.6 million) whilst for the final quarter it was down 3% to CAD 74.0 million (USD 72.0 million).
Overall the company recorded net earnings for the year up 13% to CAD 175.4 million (USD 170.7 million - from CAD 2.77 to CAD 3.11 per share) whilst for the fourth quarter net earnings were up 2% to CAD 45.1 million (USD 43.9 million - from CAD 0.70 to CAD 0.80 per share).
Within the figures Astral's TV revenues were up 7% for the year and 8% in the fourth quarter whilst radio was up 3% for the year and 7% for the quarter and Out of Home was up 10% for the year and 19% for the quarter.
Commenting on the figures President and Chief Executive Office Ian Greenberg said, "I am particularly pleased with the results delivered by each of our business units in Fiscal 2010 and by their strong performance to finish the year. The fourth quarter showed encouraging signs of recovery for Canadian advertising markets, positively affecting all our business segments and building momentum as we enter the new fiscal year."
At Corus, profits were up 5% to CAD 264.1 million (USD 257.0 million) for the year and overall net income went from a loss of CAD 56.6 million (USD 55.1 million) a year earlier when the figures included a CAD 172.5 million (USD 167.9 million) impairment charge to net income of CAD 126.7 million (USD 123.3 million - from a loss of CAD 0.71 per basic and diluted share to income of CAD 1.57 per basis and CAD 1.56 per diluted share).
For the quarter profit was down 10% to CAD 51.6 million (USD 50.2 million) and overall net income plunged from CAD 18.7 million (USD 18.2 million) to CAD 6.8 million (USD 6.6 million - from CAD 0.23 to CAD 0.08 per basic and diluted share) as a result of the inclusion this year of a Radio tariff accrual of CAD 7.9 million USD 7.7 million) and restructuring charges of CAD 12.9 million (USD 12.6 million).
Within the figures radio revenues for the year were up 0.9% with TV up 8.5% whilst for the quarter radio revenues were up 5% with TV up 3.2% whilst corresponding profit figures showed radio up 8.6% with TV up 8.4% for the year and radio down 12.4% with TV up 0.5% for the quarter.
President and CEO John Cassaday commented of the results, "The advertising recovery continued in the fourth quarter, particularly for our Specialty assets. This continues a trend we have seen for three successive quarters."
He added, "We have also seen a return to growth in western Canada radio markets … Ad markets continue to track well and we will benefit from our investment in technology at our newly opened Corus Quay facilities at Toronto's waterfront."
Previous Astral:
Previous Cassaday:
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Previous Greenberg:

2010-10-27: According to BIA Kelsey US AM stations have embraced the FCC change of its rules to allow them to use FM translators to relay their signals, with a particular benefit in improving their night time coverage in addition to which there are a growing number of FM multicast stations using translators to rebroadcast in analogue as a way to expand audiences with alternative formats while more HD Radio receivers enter the market..
The company recently added FM translators to its MEDIA Access Pro data service and analytical software and in a release says it "discovered that nearly 6,000 FM translators are in use nationwide"
Commenting on the take-up BIA/Kelsey Vice President Mark Fratrik, Ph.D., said, "It's an interesting trend that while translators were originally used to provide underserved areas with the signals of distant stations, today they are providing services for AM and multicast stations looking to broaden their reach," said Mark Fratrik, Ph.D., Vice President, BIA/Kelsey. "As the industry transitions to digital there is great value in translators' ability to give the public more programming options."
(RNW Comment: Using the term "discovered in connection with the numbers suggests to us that whoever wrote it should probably be pushed headfirst up the rear end of a bull as we recall that the latest station totals from the FCC showed 6168 FM translators and boosters licensed at the end of June this year so it's hardly a discovery. We'd also note the wide use of FM translators for years in other countries including Canada, so the development itself is hardly new - just a case of the US being behind other countries again!).
Previous BIA/Kelsey:
Previous Fratrik:

2010-10-27: Emmis has announced the promotion of Ebro Darden to the post of Vice President of Programming for the company in New York where he will oversee "programming aspects" for its WQHT-FM (Hot 97); WRKS-FM (Kiss FM) and WRXP-FM (101.9 RXP (Actually it says "including" these three but either its not let anyone else into a surprise acquisition or the word including is puffery).
Darden, who until the promotion was Operations Manager for WQHT and WRKS, joined Emmis, New York, in 2003 as Hot 97's music director after 13 years in Sacramento, California, and Portland, Oregon. He was promoted to the post of Program Director in 2007, when Arbitron launched its Portable People Meter (PPM) ratings in the city.
Emmis said the appointment is part of a restructuring of its New York cluster which it terms "a continued evolution in modernizing the business to operate more effectively."
Previous Emmis:

2010-10-27: After its initial response raising doubts about the US National Association of Broadcasters (NAB)' Radio Board "Term sheet" setting out conditions under which it would agree with industry body musicFIRST about the terms for payment of performance royalties by US terrestrial radio broadcasters, musicFIRST has reacted more strongly to endorsement of the terms by the NAB Joint Board (See RNW Oct 26).
musicFIRST advisor Tom Matzzie in statement accused the NAB of undermining what he terms "the hard-fought agreement musicFIRST struck with broadcaster negotiators this summer."
"The July agreement, forged together, "says Matzzie "as a very tough compromise that required substantial give on both sides. But it was fair and both radio and music perceived value. We were looking forward to a new chapter where both the music and radio communities could move into the future as partners."
He then goes on to note that musicFIRST had completed a preliminary analysis of the new terms after commenting that the original agreement on "fundamental economic terms was jointly communicated by the NAB and musicFIRST to Congress in late July."
In the new proposal says Matzzie, "the radio broadcasters unilaterally cut their digital royalty rates and lowered their terrestrial royalty payment."
"Those changes by themselves" he adds "undermine the fundamental economic equation that was core to the July agreement. The NAB's term sheet gives the idea of a sweetheart deal a bad name. It might even be worse for the music community than the status quo. Fortunately, Congress writes the laws, not trade associations like the NAB. The musicFIRST Coalition will continue to press forward."
RNW note: So far the NAB has posted no response to this latest musicFIRST statement although it had already said as we reported that no agreement was reached in July. Whatever it says, however, there is a direct contradiction in the statements issued by the two parties. We do note, however, that in August NAB released details of its proposals and EVP Dennis Wharton referred to discussions continuing between the parties, saying that NAB's Radio Board had taken no vote on the matter and adding "Interested parties will be updated quickly if and when new developments emerge."
We have seen no such update and think it most likely that if any firm agreement had been reached both NAB and musicFIRST would have made some formal announcement and find no trace on either organization's web site of them having done so.
It would seem likely therefore that the NAB is being more accurate on this than musicFIRST, a point we have made to musicFIRST in an email to which we await a response.

Previous musicFIRST:
Previous NAB:

2010-10-26: Citadel Broadcasting's Louisiana stations WIBR-AM, Baton Rouge, and WEMX-FM, Kentwood, have each been fined USD 4,000 by the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for failure to properly maintain the stations' public inspection files.
Each had initially been issued with a USD 9,000 Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NAL) after the company declared in its licence renewal applications that each had failed to place various issues/program lists in their public files for periods between 1999 and 2003.
Citadel had responded challenging the proposed forfeitures on the basis that the agency had imposed small penalties on other stations - it provided a list of these - for similar violations and that because it only became licensee in 2001 it is only responsible for the lists missing since then ( four for WIBR and seven for WEMX).
The FCC noted other recent penalties in line with those proposed but also accepted that because Citadel only became licensee in June 2001 it should reduce the penalties accordingly. It therefore cut the penalty on each station to USD 4,000 to make a total of USD 8,000.
Previous FCC:

2010-10-26: Arbitron has reported third quarter revenues up 1.4% on a year ago at USD 99.5 million but costs and expenses were up by 7% - put down mainly to the costs of commercialization of its Portable People Meter (PPM) ratings service - to USD 78.6 million. EBITDA (Earnings before interest, income tax expense, depreciation and amortization) fell by 11.7% to USD 25.4 million.
Overall the company reported net income of USD 11.3 million - down 17.4% on a year earlier (down from 51 cents to 42 cents per diluted share).
For the first nine months of the year, the company's revenues are up 0.1% to USD 283.7 million whilst costs and expenses were up 1% to USD 237.0 million. EBITDA was up 2.1% to USD 66.1 million but net income was down 2.3% to USD 28.9 million (from USD 1.11 to USD .1097 per diluted share).
Commenting on the figures, Arbitron President and Chief Executive Officer William T.Kerr said in a release, "In the third quarter, the radio advertising marketplace continued its recovery from the severe advertising recession of 2009. At the same time, radio broadcasters remain cautious in this still uncertain economic environment. This uncertainty has kept some of our customers on the sidelines in terms of discretionary services and contract renewals."
He went on to say that Arbitron wasn't "simply waiting for an economic rebound to undo the impact of the ad recession" but was "focused on strengthening the value proposition that an Arbitron ratings subscription represents to broadcasters in markets large and small."
"Thanks to this focus," he added "we recently signed the last of our top-five renewals for 2010, as well as additional contracts in PPM and diary markets, including in competitive diary markets.
Looking ahead, Arbitron has updated its guidance and says that for the full year it expects its revenue increase to be near the lower end of the previously announced range of 2 percent to 6 percent versus 2009 with Earnings per Share is now expected to be USD 1.60 to USD 1.65, compared to the Company's previous earnings guidance of USD 1.50 and USD 1.75 per diluted share.
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Previous Kerr:

2010-10-26: BBC World Service and Deutsche Welle have announced the launch of a new Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) digital radio channel for South Asia that will carry a four-hour daily broadcast that includes the best international programmes in English and Hindi from BBC World Service and Deutsche Welle.
The new service starts on October 31 and will broadcast from 1400-1800 GMT daily from two transmitters with a signal that covers most of the Indian sub-continent on 13590 and 5845 kHz (SW) and additionally on 1548 kHz (MW) between 1700-1800 GMT.
DRM Chairman Ruxandra Obreja said of the launch, "Digital radio is as much about technology as it is about content. Through DRM we hope to increase the digital radio offer to South Asia giving people access to audio and multimedia content, which should in turn convince manufacturers that digital radio brings something new worth investing in."
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Previous Deutsche Welle:
Previous DRM:
Previous Obreja:

2010-10-26: musicFIRST, the body that would collect performance royalties if these are introduced for US terrestrial radio, has said it will review the legislative terms presented to it to solve issues of performance royalties for US terrestrial broadcasters following a vote by the US National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Radio Board of Directors on their terms to resolve the issue of such fees and a new spat seems to be developing between the two organizations.
The NAB's joint board has now endorsed this vote
In voting for the package the NAB reiterated the organization's opposition to what NAB Radio Board chair Caroline Beasley termed "performance fee legislation pending in Congress."
The NAB support for its "Term Sheet" is conditional on all provisions in it remaining part of any legislative package: These include the removal of the Copyright Royalty Board from involvement in setting rates for music on terrestrial stations' broadcasts of Internet streams; resolution of the "AFTRA issue" - "outside of the legislative process by the musicFIRST coalition that would facilitate simulcast of over-the-air radio commercials on the Internet"; "musicFIRST's acknowledgment and recognition of the unparalleled promotional value of terrestrial radio airplay"; "Simplified airplay reporting requirements similar to the model used by ASCAP/BMI" and "Congressionally-mandated radio-activated chips in mobile devices such as cell phones and BlackBerry smartphones, with an acceptable phase-in period and inclusion of HD Radio chips when economically feasible."
NAB adds in regard to this that if this mandate is "initially unattainable" , radio broadcasters would agree to an initial performance fee payment of .25% of net industry revenue with the performance fee to mirror the actual percentage of radio-activated mobile phones in the United States and become the full 1% terrestrial transmission performance fee once market penetration of radio-activated mobile devices reaches and maintains a level of 75 percent of all mobile devices, broadcasters agree to pay the full one percent.
In addition if the mandate does get enacted streaming rates up to 2016 would be reduced but if it is not enacted the reduction would not take effect until half of mobile phones have radio chips.
The sheet also makes provisions for small radio station operators, non-commercial stations, religious broadcasters and incidental uses of music by news/talk and sports stations.
NAB Joint Board Chairman Steve Newberry said of the proposals, "From a position of strength, we have fashioned a Term Sheet for resolving the performance fee issue that in the long run is acceptable for radio. No broadcaster that I know relishes paying a new fee, but the terms of this agreement provide badly needed certainty for our business to move forward, and the positives of this accord far out-weigh the negatives. "
NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith said the Term Sheet "represents a path forward for radio broadcasters and musicFirst to resolve this contentious issue in a manner that is fair and equitable to both sides."
"Radio stations, artists and the record labels have more commonalities than differences," he added, "and adoption of legislation that reflects this Term Sheet will provide a framework for untold new revenue opportunities for both sides. We look forward to working with musicFIRST and its allies for swift legislative adoption of this entire package of initiatives that will help our businesses flourish in the digital age."
Responding to the terms, musicFIRST advisor Tom Matzzie said in a news release, "While we are pleased that the radio broadcasters have for the first time acknowledged their obligation to pay the artists who are the foundation of their business, we are disappointed that they failed to vote on the deal both parties agreed upon in July. After a quick review, this new term sheet differs significantly from that agreement. We will be reviewing their term sheet further."
Smith responded to musicFIRST's statement by denying that the parties had agreed a deal in July, commenting, in his release, "We are disappointed by comments from our friends at musicFirst representing that there was a definitive July agreement or a handshake settlement with NAB on terms for resolving the performance royalty issue. This is demonstrably false. If this were true, why would our two sides have continued with negotiations in August, September and October?"
RNW Comment: When we first read the NAB statement it seemed to us as full of holes as a colander and heavy on the organization's usual mix of wishful and woolly thinking combined with misrepresentation.
It also yet again places the NAB in a position where it shows that it actually has no belief in a free market if this affects its bottom line - in the words the usual position of NAB's only principle being self-interest: NAB, as we have already commented, has a point in that the structure of the US mobile communications industry is such as to deny customers the choice in handsets and equipment that is widely available to consumers in the rest of the world and it would have been on firm ground to have argued that in consumers' interests mobile communications providers, like the landline companies, should have to allow use of any technically suitable equipment on their networks.
This would be a market solution that would allow consumers additional choice and, if the NAB's arguments in relation to take-up of radio-enabled mobiles in the rest of the world are accurate, considerably increase the choice and take-up of these n the US.
What should not be acceptable is to force consumers who do not want facilities on their phone for whatever reason - complexity, additional power consumption or size, or cost - to have to accept them because the NAB wants a grubby deal with the music industry.
As it is it seems to us that the NAB, which has failed to make any sound market argument against the introduction of performance royalties (it could in our view have argued as we suggested years ago for tiered rates for royalties to introduce market disciplines on the recording companies with those that wanted exposure providing music for lower rates than those who think they do not need it) has again performed the feat of displaying both its weakness in practical terms and lack of principle in market terms - a real double-whammy.

Previous musicFirst:
Previous NAB:
Previous Smith:
NAB "Term Sheet" (6-page 52kb PDF):

2010-10-26: Former BBC Radio 4 Controller Mark Damazer writing in the latest issue of the Radio Times (the UK radio and TV listings magazine) has warned that the quality of BBC output is likely to be hit by the funding cut of 16% over the next four years and that "efficiency" savings are unlikely to be able to meet the cut.
Describing the agreement as a "very tough settlement", Damazer commented, "It is going to be a great deal harder to sustain quality while still providing something for the many different audiences the BBC must serve".
He noted that his views were not shared by a "sympathetic cabinet minister" he met this week and whom he described as "a very likeable fellow and, in broad terms, a BBC supporter" who "regaled me with some anecdotes of BBC inefficiency."
"I winced," wrote Damazer, "because I knew that he probably had a point. But only a point. He went on to assure me that quality need not suffer - and if it did, the BBC would be to blame, he said. I have no idea why he could be quite so certain. Some money will be saved by stopping waste. My instinct is that this, by itself, will not be enough. I hope I'm wrong."
Regarding cuts in executive pay, Damazer said this "might provide a tiny fraction of the answer to the BBC's new financial problems but no more than that."
Damazer also commented on cuts he had made to reach existing budget targets - including the cancellation of the "Friday Play" and more repeats.
"In my BBC past, latterly as controller of Radio 4," wrote Damazer, "I either presided over salami-slicing or was on the receiving end of the slicer. Salami slicing is a term of abuse in budget circles - but we muddled through and nothing terrible happened."
Noting the BBC decision to divert money from various areas to fund new ventures - "the BBC iPlayer, TV in Arabic, a boost for drama on BBC1" - Damazer said that at Radio 4 he was "largely left to get on with balancing the books and making the cuts."
"At Radio 4 the programme-makers all wanted to find other solutions," he writes. "So I repeated some good programmes that had previously only had one outing (The Archive Hour, Material World etc) and decommissioned others to make the figures add up. And lengthened some programmes, too."
Previous BBC:
Previous Damazer:
RNW Note: The Radio Times listings and some other features are available free online but the magazine itself requires a subscription.

2010-10-25: The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued two USD 10,000 Notices of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture, one to Multicultural Radio Broadcasting and the other to a New York man for operation of an unlicensed transmitter.
Multicultural's proposed penalty follows an inspection of its WNYG-AM, Babylon, New York, at which the FCC agent asked to view the public inspection file and was told that it had been moved to Multicultural's main office in Manhattan so that it could be reviewed in connection with a pending lawsuit.
Staff told the agent that they would ask for its immediate return and the agent said he would inspect another station co-located at the Long Island site and review WNYG's public inspection file it arrived before he left and a company employee delivered the file some 90 minutes later whilst the agent was still there.
On inspection he found the most recent issues/programmes list in the file was dated March 1999 and there were no lists for the most recent licence period that began in October 2007.
The FCC sent a Letter of Inquiry to Multicultural, which admitted that the file had not been available at the time of inspection and added that information regarding programming since the third quarter of 2007 had not been presented in the "proper form" in the file. It attached properly formatted issues/programs lists from third quarter 2007 through second quarter 2009.
The FCC in proposing the penalty noted the speedy return of the file but said rules were breached because it was not available and because of the missing items: it proposed the base penalty of USD 10,000.
In the second case, agents responding to a complaint traced a signal on 90.5 MHz in Spring Valley, New York, to an address where two businesses were located - P.C. Taxi Services, LLC and P.C. Auto Repair, Inc.
On October 29 last year they spoke to the dispatcher at PC |Taxi and she contacted the owner Vicot Chery, who showed them the broadcast antenna on the roof and the transmitter, which was behind a stack of car tyres in an attic. He said he was allowing a friend to use the space and at the agents request turned off the transmitter. He also agreed to remove the antenna.
A Notice of Unlicensed operation was issued to Chery on November 4 and he responded through an attorney who said Chery "had no knowledge of the events which you have charged him with."
He repeated the contention that Chery had allowed an unspecified person to use the space in his businesses where the radio station was located but the FCC notes that Chery has not provided the person's name.
In proposing the penalty the FCC commented that the facts show Chery had control of the station and was involved in the general conduct or management of the station and that the fact that someone else also may have been involved in the station's operation does not make Chery any less of a participant in the station's operation.
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2010-10-25: US NPR (National Public Radio) CEO Vivian Schiller has apologized to staff over the way she handled the termination of former senior news analyst Juan Williams (See RNW Oct 21) but stood by the decision which she "was a decision of principle, made to protect NPR's integrity and values as a news organization."
She has also expressed similar views in a separate message to member stations and had already issued a statement of apology in regard to her comment that Williams should have kept his feelings about Muslims between himself and "his psychiatrist or his publicist " concerning which she said she "spoke hastily, and I apologize to Juan and others for my thoughtless remark."
In her message to staff Schiller said Williams' comments on Fox News - which has extended his contract in the wake of his dismissal by NPR - were "the latest in a series of deeply troubling incidents over several years."
"In each of those instances," wrote Schiller, "he was contacted and the incident was discussed with him. He was explicitly and repeatedly asked to respect NPR's standards and to avoid expressing strong personal opinions on controversial subjects in public settings, as that is inconsistent with his role as an NPR news analyst."
"After this latest incident," she continued, "we felt compelled to act. I acknowledge that reasonable people can disagree about timing: whether NPR should have ended our relationship with Juan earlier, on the occasion of other incidents; or whether this final episode warranted immediate termination of his contract."
Schiller then wrote, "the process that followed the decision was unfortunate - including not meeting with Juan in person - and I take full responsibility for that. We have already begun a thorough review of all aspects of our performance in this instance, a process that will continue in the coming days and weeks."
Comments (approaching 800 when we last checked) made in response to a report on NPR's web site about the apology were mixed albeit with more against Schiller than for her and with a number being removed as they did not "not adhere to the discussion guidelines" although some that were posted were strongly critical of Schiller with one saying she made a "HUGE mistake", another terming her a "two-faced hypocrite who cares nothing about discussing how tens of millions of American citizens view Muslims in the wake of 9/11", quite a few commenting about her incompetence and calling for her resignation and others making the point that Schiller did not explain what NPR policies Williams breached, what warnings had previously been given to Williams, and what exactly he had done wrong.
Some defended the decision with one pointing out that Williams' contract was as an "analyst" as opposed to a personality and others
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NPR report re Schiller apology:

2010-10-25: The UK's Department of Media, Culture and Sports has advertised the job of the Chair of the BBC Trust at GBP 110,000 ( USD 173,000) a year, some 18% less than the GBP 131,000 (USD 206,000) paid to the current chairman Sir Michael Lyons, who has said he will step down in may next year when his current term runs out. Lyons was on GBP 143,000 a year (USD 225,000) a year but volunteered to take a pay cut.
The advert is headlined "Lead strong and independent BBC" and applications close on November 12 with interviews scheduled for January 27 and 28 next year. The search is said to be for "an outstanding individual" who will commit 3-4 days a week to the post, possess "Excellent leadership skills and ability to chair effectively at senior board level"; "The ability to lead strategy and decision making across the range of the Trusts responsibilities"; "A commitment to effective financial stewardship and ability to ensure value for money is achieved"; "Excellent communication and representational skills"; and "A commitment to equal opportunities and diversity."
Amongst names rumoured to be in the running are the outgoing Tesco chief executive Sir Terry Leahy, the YouGov chairman Roger Parry and the former Marks & Spencer chairman Sir Stuart Rose.
Previous BBC:
Previous Lyons:

2010-10-25: UK media regulator Ofcom in its latest bulletin has found one Breach of Licence Condition by three radio stations in the same group and also upheld standards complaints against six TV programmes, considered four more TV standards case resolved by action taken by the broadcasters, and gave details of another TV standards complaint not upheld. No fairness and privacy cases were adjudicated in the bulletin.
The Breach of Licence Condition ruling was against Total Star Bridgwater, Total Star Swindon and Total Star Bath. with the
The Swindon and Bath stations have permission to share all programming provided they continue to deliver their individual Format requirements, which includes a local news service relevant to each area. and they being marketed as Total Star Wiltshire and Bath.
Total Star Bridgwater shares programmes with the Swindon and Bath services at off-peak times, but provides its own separate output between 06:00 and 10:00, and 16:00 and 19:00 each weekday.
Ofcom has given the go ahead to the transfer of the stations to current owner One Gold Radio Ltd. in June this year on the basis that among other things, One Gold Radio would continue to abide by the existing published Format for each of the three services.
In July it undertook a content sampling exercise to check if the stations were complying with their format requirements and from its monitoring concluded that the three licensed services had failed to fulfil their commitment to broadcast local news hourly during weekday daytime (06:00 to 19:00). In addition, where local news was run, the report found that the bulletin content on all three stations fell far short of the basic quality, quantity, production and news commitment levels which listeners in each of the three areas are entitled to expect.
It wrote to One Gold in September and the company responded by explaining that a technical error had led to the non broadcast and minimal broadcast of local news on the days in question and acknowledged the other shortfalls in the requirement to meet the terms of the Format: One Gold also said steps had been taken to rectify the shortfalls identified.
Ofcom has formally recorded a breach of the licence conditions and says it will monitor the three stations again in the near future in order to ascertain whether each of the three services are now broadcasting in compliance with their Formats.
The numbers compare with rulings in Ofcom's previous bulletin that a Nottingham community station had breached its licence conditions and the upholding of seven TV standards complaints, one TV Fairness and Privacy Complaint, and the posting of details of its ruling that complaints against a TV advert broadcast on various channels did not breach Ofcom rules.
In addition to this Ofcom also listed without details 588 complaints against 165 TV items (102  of   them against the X-Factor and 71 against This is England) and 11 radio complaints against 11items that it did not uphold: This compared to 189 complaints against 132 TV items and 12 radio complaints against 12 items that were similarly listed in the previous bulletin.
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Previous Ofcom Complaints Bulletin:

2010-10-24: Last week saw the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) finally post its order regarding the rules that will determine how Sirius XM Radio should make four per cent of its channels available to qualified entities as at agreed at the time the merger of Sirius and XM were allowed to merge but as regards terrestrial radio things were fairly quiet for all the regulators.
In Australia, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) made two postings, both relating to community radio.
In one it found Perth community station 6SON had breached licence conditions requiring it to encourage community participation in the operations of the service and the selection and provision of programmes but has accepted an enforceable undertaking from licensee Good News Broadcasters Inc. that requires 6SON to improve its corporate governance and management practices, conduct appropriate training and develop a strategy to encourage community participation. It will now monitor the station's compliance and has required the station to report on implementation of the measures by 28 February and 31 August 2011.
ACMA Chairman Chris Chapman, who earlier this month was re-appointed to the post with Richard Bean appointed as deputy chairman, commented, "The initial provision of inaccurate information by 6SON was a matter of particular concern during this investigation. 'The undertaking given by 6SON should enable 6SON to more effectively verify the accuracy and completeness of the information it provides."
"Licensees," he added, "should be aware that providing inaccurate information to the ACMA can understandably raise concerns about a licensee's continued suitability to hold a broadcasting licence."
The ACMA is also seeking comment on a proposal to make FM frequencies 103.1 MHz available at Wilcannia, New South Wales , 99.9 MHz available at Mossman, Queensland, and 107.1 MHz available at Tiaro, Queensland, for new long-term community radio broadcasting services.
Chapman said of the proposals, "The ACMA believes that the current temporary community broadcasting licensees in these areas have generated sufficient interest to consider providing long-term community radio broadcasting services." Responses have to be submitted by October 29.
In Canada, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has launched a consultation on the possible effects of consolidation in the Canadian broadcasting industry that will include a public hearing starting on May 9, 2011, in Gatineau, Quebec. Comments can be submitted up to March 7, 2011, and the CRTC notes that it has stated the consultation following several recent transactions including Quebecor Media Inc.'s purchase of the TVA television network in 2001; Rogers Media Inc.'s purchase of five Citytv stations in 2007; Shaw Communications Inc.'s purchase of the Canwest Global Communications Corp. television properties; and the announced intention of BCE Inc. to acquire full control of CTVglobemedia Inc.
CRTC chairman Konrad von Finckenstein, Q.C., commented of the move, "The broadcasting industry is being significantly reshaped by a series of major transactions. As a regulator, it is only prudent that we study the implications to ensure we have the right tools to deal with competitive concerns as they arise. Transactions will continue to be considered under the existing rules until we have completed our review."
In other postings the agency noted that in 2010 the total for Part III licence fees for 2010 will be CAD 100 million (US 98 million) noting that the figure is to be the lower of either CAD 100 million or ".365% multiplied by the aggregate fee revenues for the return year terminating during the previous calendar year of all licensees whose fee revenues exceed the applicable exemption levels, less the aggregate exemption level for all those licensees for that return year" (CAD 139.6 million - USD 136.9 million- in 2010).
The CRTC also posted the following radio decisions (In order of province):
*Short-term renewal from 1 December 2010 to 31 August 2014 of the licence of Peace River Broadcasting Corporation Ltd.'s CKKX-FM Peace River and its transmitters CJHP-FM, High Prairie; CKKF-FM, Fairview; CKKX-FM-1, Manning; CFFC-FM, Fox Creek; and CFKX-FM, High Level.
The CRTC noted that the licensee was late in submitting annual returns for each of the 2004 to 2009 broadcast years but has said the firm hired to provide them will ensure all future returns meet the November 30 deadline.
*Short-term renewal from 1 December 2010 to 31 August 2014 of the licence of Peace River Broadcasting Corporation Ltd.'s CKHL-FM, High Level, and its transmitters CKLA-FM, La Crete, and CJRA-FM, Rainbow Lake.
The CRTC noted that the licensee was late in submitting annual returns for each of the 2004 to 2009 broadcast years but has said the firm hired to provide them will ensure all future returns meet the November 30 deadline. The CRTC also noted other breaches relating to contributions to Canadian content development (CCD) in 2009 - a shortfall of CAD 100 said to be due to a broadcasting error- and in provision of logger tapes - a monitoring of the broadcast week of 29 March to 4 April 2009 revealed 50 hours of missing programming and the licensee says it has now instituted a system where dual recordings will be kept and moved the monitoring to its Peace River station where more staff are available to monitor the logging system.
*Short-term renewal from 1 December 2010 to 31 August 2014 of the licence of R.B. Communications Ltd.'s CIXL-FM, Welland. The CRTC noted that the licensee may have failed to comply with regulations relating to the provision of annual returns for the 2003-2004 to 2008-2009 broadcast years and also was late in paying its contributions to Canadian talent development (CTD) for the 2003-2004 to 2007-2008 broadcast years, and to Canadian content development (CCD) for the 2008-2009 broadcast year. The licensee indicated that it has amended its internal procedures to ensure that all payments are made within the correct broadcast year.
There were no radio postings from Ireland and only one in the UK where Ofcom is to cut its staff by nearly a fifth (See RNW Oct 21).
The posting related to a consultation, for which responses have to be made by November 17, on an application by Celador to change the format of its recently acquired Star Radio in Bristol.
The station's current format is described as a "soulful, adult contemporary music based service" and Celador wishes to change it to an easy listening service, a change that would be in line with Star's sister stations in Hampshire, which broadcast as The Breeze. The application does not indicate any intention to change the station's name.
In the US, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as already noted has now posted its order concerning the provision, agreed to by Sirius and XM as a condition of their merger into Sirius XM, for four per cent of the satellite channels of Sirius XM to be made available to qualified entities (See RNW Oct 19).
It also seems to have finally wrapped up objections to the merger and thrown them away, rejecting a petition from Mt Wilson FM Broadcasters Inc. to reconsider its July 2008 approval of that merger.
Mt Wilson had claimed that the conditions imposed were inadequate because the merged company was not being required to comply with FCC rules prohibiting the broadcast of obscene or indecent material, a condition that had been proposed by Clear Channel.
Mt Wilson alleged that the condition was warranted because the Commission had become aware that allegedly indecent satellite radio programming was being received over terrestrial radio frequencies on broadcast receivers.
The FCC on investigating complaints concerning this had found that the programming concerned had been heard because of the use of FM modulators to enable subscribers to listen to the service on their automobile radios and noted that it had dealt with the matter of over-powered FM modulators in consent decrees with Sirius and XM.
Mt Wilson then argued that the FCC should have imposed a condition requiring the merged entity to abide by the Commission's indecency rule with respect to the "use of unauthorized frequencies to air indecent programming" although it acknowledged that the FCC did not require subscription services to abide by the rules. It contended that it was immaterial how people were able to listen to the service and further in response to Sirius XM's opposition argued that the satellite radio company should voluntarily accept a condition that satellite programming received by a terrestrial radio station would be subject to the FCC rules.
The FCC denied the petition commenting that it found Mt Wilson's apparent contention that a low-power FM modulator should be considered tantamount to a broadcast station and therefore subject to the broadcast indecency rule and noted that issues relating to this were settled in the consent decrees already agreed with Sirius and XM. It said Mt Wilson has pointed to no material error or omission in the Commission's resolution of the issues and denied the petition.
In enforcement actions as we have already noted the agency issued two USD 7,000 forfeitures to college stations for late filing of renewal applications and subsequent unauthorized operation (See RNW Oct 22).
It also issued a USD 7,000 Notice of Apparent Liability to Forfeiture (NAL) to Mansfield University, licensee of WNTE-FM, Mansfield, Pennsylvania, for late filing of renewal application and subsequent unauthorized operation. It also renewed the licence.. It also renewed the licence.
In Alabama it issued a USD 1,000 NAL to Katherine Timmerman Hagler, the licensee of FM Translator Stations W285AJ and W296AI, Montgomery, again for late renewal and subsequent unauthorized operation. The proposed penalty was made up of USD 250 penalties- two to each station of which one was for late renewal and the other for unauthorized operation.
In Texas Ray R. Silva, licensee of KMXO-AM, Merkel, received a USD 1,500 penalty for late filing of renewal application. An NAL for this amount had been issued in January 2007 to which Silva responded by requesting cancellation on grounds of financial hardship and because the failure was not wilful - he said that the failure was because at the time he was unable to pay the USD 150 filing fee
The FCC in confirming the penalty noted that federal tax returns provided for 2002, 2003, and 2004, showed revenues of more than USD 30,000 each year and that the penalty was below 4% of this and that it has previously found forfeitures of this percentage to be reasonable.
More fortunate was O-N Radio, Inc., licensee of WOON-AM, Woonsocket, Rhode Island, which in 2007 had been issued with a USD 1,500 NAL for late filing of renewal application. O-N had responded by arguing for cancellation on the basis that it had filed a renewal application on time although it had not done so electronically as required. The FCC on this basis substituted an admonishment for the fine.
In contested licensing decisions, the agency dismissed five informal objections, four from one woman, to applications from Spirit of Alaska Broadcasting, Incorporated, licensee of KMBQ-AM, Wasilla, which it had issued with a USD 7,000 NAL in April last year for failing to erect a secure locked fence around the transmitter of the 1kw station.
Spirit of Alaska subsequently erected a fence that complied with the FCC's rules but objections were filed on the basis that the FCC's emissions standards were inadequate.
Bonnye L. Matthews, who filed four of the objections, argued that the agency's standards are outdated and said her abnormal brain waves are so sensitive to RF radiation that prolonged exposure to the radio tower could make her unable to function physically or mentally.
The FCC rejected the contention that its standards are inadequate and denied the objections. It has ordered Spirit of Alaska to file an amended form to describe how its protective fence complies with its rules.
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Previous Chapman:
Previous CRTC:
Previous FCC:
Previous von Finckenstein:
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2010-10-24: Former Washington D.C. host Don Geronimo (Michael Sorce), now with CBS Radio's KTHK-AM, Sacramento, who received head injures with head injuries after falling of a stage during a live show on Friday night at Cal Expo has now been transferred from the Intensive Care Unit of UC Davis Medical Center to the trauma recovery unit, a move the station termed a "huge upgrade" on its web site.
Geronimo, best known as part of the syndicated "Don and Mike" show with Mike O'Meara on CBS Radio's WJFK-FM.. He announced in February 2008 that he was to leave the show in April 2008 (See RNW Feb 5, 2008) with the last Don and Mike show airing on April 11 but then returned to the airwaves two months later on WOCM, Ocean City, Maryland. He lasted only a month with WOCM, subsequently joining WGMD-FM, Reheboth Beach, Delaware. He announced in October last year that he was leaving the station (See RNW Oct 13, 2009) and in December started fill-in shifts on CBS Radio's WCBS-FM, New York, before joining KTHK-AM in June this year to host the midday show.
Postings on the KTKH web site said the 52-years-old host had a large laceration to his head but he was in good spirits. The station had already scheduled Best-off shows for the coming week and says that because of this there will be no real change, commenting, "The prognosis is excellent, and right now our minds are focused on a speedy recovery."
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Previous Don Geronimo:
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2010-10-23: BBC Radio 2 starts its annual "Faith In The World Week" tomorrow with programming on the theme money and faith including a special programme presented by millionaire Duncan Bannatyne of the TV Dragons' Den programme asking Can Money Make You Happy?
In his programme Bannatyne meets young city philanthropists, a church organisation helping people crippled by debt, psychologist Dr Linda Papadopoulos, media guru Max Clifford and TV vicar Peter Owen Jones, who tried to live for a year without money, asking amongst other questions whether money be a means to an end or the goal itself and asking if people have learnt anything from the current situation in which the UK faces severe cuts in government expenditure as well as general economic problems.
Bannatyne says of his own success "I get more happiness and joy out of knowing that I've built the business and have achieved that, than the money - which in some ways is a by-product of it" and of the wider picture, "What's happened is we have developed a country where we need money ... but, in some ways, we focus on it too much instead of focusing on the things that are important. I think what we need to learn is that people are more important than money, people around you, relationships."
The week begins tomorrow with the breakfast "Good Morning Sunday" show hosted by Aled Jones in which he talks to Howard Marks.
An Oxford graduate and former international cannabis smuggler Howard Marks - said at one stage to have controlled a tenth of the world trade in the drug - served seven years in jail in Indiana after he and his wife were extradited to and convicted in the US.
He subsequently wrote a best-selling autobiography "Mr Nice", now made into a movie of the same name that has just been released. Marks talks about the role money has played in his life and talks about his interest in eastern philosophies and the influence both now play in his life.
Also on the show is Matthew Syed, The (London) Times correspondent and sports journalist, who joins the show to mark the 50 year anniversary of Muhammed Ali's first professional fight and to discuss how his iconic status and wealth has enabled him to promote good works and philanthropic endeavours.
Jones' show ends the week next Sunday including as guests social entrepreneur John Bird who founded the street newspaper The Big Issue, which is sold by homeless people, and who talks about how money and resources can help alleviate the plight of those most marginalised and Benedictine monk Christopher Jamison, the former Abbot of Worth Abbey in Sussex, England. He speaks about the relationship between the financial markets and ethics
Between the two shows other contributions to the theme will include the "Pause For Thought" segment on Chris Evans's Breakfast Show and Alex Lester's Early Morning Show, which precedes it on weekdays.
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2010-10-23: Mexican radio group Grupo Radio Centro has reported third quarter revenues up 18.3% on a year earlier at MXN 226.15 million (USD 17.7 million) - put down to higher advertising expenditures in Mexico plus revenue from KXOS-FM, Los Angeles, - with broadcasting expenses up 8.6% to MXN 172.51 million (USD 13.56 million) and broadcasting income up 65.6% at MXN 53.64 million (USD 2.22 million).
Operating income was up 94.1% at MXN 45.00 million (USD 3.54 million) and overall Grupo Radio moved from a net loss of MXN 7.22 million (USD 567,000) to net income of MXN 11.99 million (USD 942,000).
For the first nine months revenues are up 14.5% to MCB 601.02 million (USD 47.23 million) with broadcasting expenses up 18.6% to MXN 500.54 million (USD 39.33 million). Broadcasting income fell 2.3% to MXN 100.48 million (USD7.90 million) and operating income was down 1.3% to MXN 72.00 million (USD 5.66 million) and overall a net loss of 20.84 million (USD 1.64 million) was reduced to a net loss of USD 12.49 million (USD 981,000).
Previous Grupo Radio Centro:

2010-10-22: The number of licensed broadcast stations in the US fell in the third quarter of this year to a total of 30,785 at the end of September compared with 30,855 at the end of June according to figures from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)..
The number of radio stations, however, increased to a total of 14,547 licensed radio stations compared to 14,503 at the end of June and 14,397 a year earlier: Within these figures commercial AM numbers at 4,784 were down two from the figures at the end of June and down five from a year earlier.
The number of commercial FMs was up from 6494 at the end of June and 6472 a year earlier to 6512 and Educational FM numbers rose from 3223 at the end of June and 3136 a year earlier to 3251.
The total of Low Power FMs remained the same 864 as at the end of June but was up three from a year earlier.
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2010-10-22: As widely forecast Tribune Co.'s chief executive Randy Michaels resigned today and is to be replaced by a four-member Executive Council that the Chicago Tribune says will be "charged with stabilizing the company while it struggles to exit bankruptcy court after almost two years of fractious, stop-and-start negotiations with creditors." The council will run the company until it and its creditors agree on a restructuring for it to exit bankruptcy at which stage a new board will be chosen and select a new CEO.
The Council is comprised of Eddy Hartenstein, president and publisher of the Los Angeles Times; Tony Hunter, president and publisher of the Chicago Tribune Media Group; Nils Larsen, Tribune Co. chief investment officer; and Don Liebentritt, who is in charge of the company's Chapter 11 restructuring.
Larsen will also serve as chairman of the company's television operations; Jerry Kersting, who Michaels brought into the company, will continue as president of Tribune Broadcasting; and Gerry Spector, who, like Michaels, was appointed by Tribune Co. Chairman Sam Zell after the company's 2007 leveraged buyout, will stay as chief operating officer,
The paper says of Michaels that since Tribune Co chairman brought him to the company he has "maintained that his raucous, unconventional style was intended to foster creativity at a company desperate for new ideas" but goes on to quote sources as saying he "undone by a growing perception among once-supportive Tribune Co. board members that his tactics were more irresponsible than effective. His behaviour, they concluded, not only publicly embarrassed the company but exposed the board to potentially damaging charges that directors were standing by while management ran amok."
It quoted a board member who wanted to remain anonymous as saying, "Some of what he was doing was necessary (to shake up a stale corporate culture), but he was way too heavy handed."
The report goes on to give further details of both the perceived successes and faults of Michaels and his team.
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Chicago Tribune report:

2010-10-22: The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) , which earlier in the week issued a USD 7,000 forfeiture to one Massachusetts school station has ended it with a penalty of the same amount on another college station in the state.
The first penalty went to Pittsfield Public School Committee, licensee of WTBR-FM, Pittsfield, which was issued with a USD 7,000 Notice of Apparent Liability (NAL) for late filing of renewal application and subsequent unauthorized operation in October 2007.
The station responded by calling for cancellation of the penalty because it had taken steps to develop policies and procedures to ensure that all future filings with the Commission will be done in a timely manner and has no operating budget and is financially unable to pay the proposed forfeiture.
The FCC dismissed the first argument and noted that it could not accede to the second because it had not received documentation in support of its argument. The full penalty was confirmed.
The second penalty went to the Trustees of Mount Holyoke College, licensee of WMHC-FM, South Hadley, to whom it issued a USD 7,000 NAL in November 2007. The licensee responded by saying the forfeiture should be cancelled or reduced because the Station is a completely student-run organization, and the student administrators at the Station were "completely unaware" of the deadline for filing the application or the Station's license expiration date.
The FCC did not consider this any kind of mitigation and confirmed the full penalty.
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2010-10-22:Tribune Co. is expected to file a new bankruptcy-exit plan that has support from its leading creditors tomorrow according to the Wall Street Journal, which adds that Tribune's creditors are sounding out candidates to run the company post-bankruptcy. Creditors opposed to the plan have until October 29 to file alternative proposals.
Amongst the names being considered to lead the restructured company says the Journal is former News Corp. executive Peter Chernin (he was News Corporation President and COO and Fox Entertainment chairman and CEO when he left at the end of June last year).
Chernin's spokesman it added said he wasn't interested in the post of CEO - currently held by Randy Michaels, who according to earlier reports has decided to resign by the end of this week and would be replaced temporarily by a four-man team (The Journal says person but the list is all male - See RNW Oct 20) - although the spokesman declined comment about Chernin's interest in the post of chairman, currently held by Sam Zell, who led the USD 11.7 billion leveraged buyout of Tribune in 2007.
According to Tribune the new plan has the backing of both unsecured creditors and leading lenders J.P. Morgan, Angelo Gordon & Co. and Oaktree Capital Management but, says the Journal, it was told by a "person familiar with the matter" that the creation of the four-man team was led by Tribune's board with little consultation from the company's creditors, some of whom were surprised and concerned that the group didn't include a broadcast executive
The New York Post, which like the journal is owned by News Corporation, says Tribune creditors are planning to ask a judge to rule on whether they have the right to sue Zell and others who had a role in the buyout that preceded the bankruptcy adding that if the judge rules in their favour they have until December 7, two years from the date Tribune filed for bankruptcy, before the statute of imitations runs out.
The post that the issue of whether creditors can pursue legal action against Zell, bank lenders and others who had a hand in saddling the company with debt has been an obstacle to reaching an agreement in the bankruptcy case and says the unsecured creditors, who rank below other creditors in the line to get paid, have made it clear that they would not agree to any reorganization plan that barred them from going after Zell.
Earlier Tribune reorganization plans it says had included indemnity from lawsuits for Zell, the board and others and JP Morgan's is it says reported to be backing the latest plan in exchange for immunity from any pending suit that would be brought by unsecured creditors.
The unsecured creditors says the post allege that the buyout was a "fraudulent transfer" because it piled USD 8 billion of debt on Tribune, setting the company up to fail: Zell, who initially became chairman and CEO of Tribune Co. after the 2007 buyout put in only USD 315 million of his own money.
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2010-10-21:A day after the UK government announced spending cuts and a new licence deal with the BBC that will see the Corporation instead of the Foreign Office pick up the cost of BBC World Service broadcasts; news has come of the first likely job buts.
At BBC World Service, which will see its budget cut by 16% over the next four years (See RNW Oct 20), Peter Horrocks, the BBC's Director of Global News, has told staff there will be job losses and programme cuts, although he did not give any details of scale beyond describing the change as a "seismic shift" and saying the losses would be substantial: He said that the cuts were such that they could not be acheived by "salami-slicing" and sharing the pain out.
In addition more foreign language services are to be ended, although this action requires approval from the Foreign Secretary.
As well as taking over the cost of the service - the service had a GBP 272 million (USD 440 million) a million budget under its grant from the Foreign Office although this had already been cut by some GBP 10.9 million (USD 17.2 million - See RNW Sep 24) - the BBC will also take over extra costs including pensions and Horrocks said this would mean the cut would amount in real terms to more than quarter of its income over the next four years.
Horrocks also told global news staff that the Corporation was looking at the introduction of advertising on some of the World Service's 31 foreign language services: The BBC has carried adverts on the international news site since November 2007: it was re-launched in July this year using geographical IP information to present various versions of the web site with different displays of news and features - including USA and Canada and Latin America news sites - to that on the site. advert sales grew by more than 40% to GBP 14.5 million (USD 22.8 million) last year but it lost around GBP 13 million (20.4 million) - 8% more than the previous year - because of the cost of building infrastructure and its advert sales teams. The site attracts around 18 million unique visits a month in the US and approaching 60 million worldwide and the corporation appointed an "editorial guardian" to prevent adverts from compromising its journalism.
Commenting on the BBC licence fee agreement UK Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the talks "went on right through Monday night" and must "be the fastest negotiation in the Corporation's 83 year history."
He said of the actual settlement that it was rough but fair to the corporation and also of comfort to the BBC's commercial rivals, commenting that the deal was "Tough because the BBC, like everyone, is going to have to make demanding efficiency savings. But fair because it allows them to continue to make the great programmes that we all love and licence fee payers won't have to pay any extra for the privilege" and adding "The assurances I have secured on magazines, local and online activities will also give some comfort to the BBC's commercial rivals that the licence fee will not be used to blast them out of the water
Also being cut back severely is UK media regulator Ofcom which has agreed with the Treasury (UK Finance Ministry) cuts of some 170 posts - approaching a fifth of its 870 staff - and reduce its spending - it currently has an annual budget of GBP 143 million (USD 225 million) - by around 28% in real terms over the next four years
The cuts were announced to staff by chief executive Ed Richards who told them, "These are difficult times for everyone in the public sector and it is right that Ofcom plays its part meeting the challenge facing the public finances."
He added that the regulator also needed to be re-focussed "in the light of changing markets and technological developments, and of course in respect of the budgetary constraints" adding "This is why we have taken the initiative and today set out detailed proposals for both reducing expenditure and achieving greater strategic focus and organisational effectiveness."
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2010-10-21: US NPR (National Public Radio) has fired veteran journalist Juan Williams as a senior news analyst following comments he made about Muslims and terrorism on "The O'Reilly Factor" on the Fox News Channel.
In a statement NPR said it had terminated his contract because his remarks were "inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR."
The statement said he had "been a valuable contributor to NPR and public radio for many years and we did not make this decision lightly or without regret" and thanked him "for his many years of service to NPR and public radio."
In the broadcast on Monday O'Reilly commented that "jihad, aided and abetted by some Muslim nations, is the biggest threat on the planet" and Williams agreed with the assessment and commented, "I mean, look, Bill, I'm not a bigot. You know the kind of books I've written about the civil rights movement in this country. But when I get on a plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they're identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous."
He also commented on a statement made in a New York courtroom by Pakistani American Faisal Shahzad, who pleaded guilty to trying to detonate a bomb in Times Square, noting, "He said the war with Muslims, America's war is just beginning, first drop of blood. I don't think there's any way to get away from these facts."
Williams however took issue with comments O'Reilly made recently on the ABC TV show "The View" to the effect that "Muslims killed us on 9/11" and said, "We don't want, in America, people to have their rights violated, to be attacked on the street because they hear rhetoric from Bill O'Reilly and they act crazy."
Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) was quoted by the Washington Post as defending the firing, comparing it to Don Imus's ouster by CBS Radio for his "nappy-headed hos" comment about the Rutgers' University Women's Basketball Team (See RNW Apr 13, 2007) and the retirement in June this year of veteran White House reporter Helen Thomas after criticism of comments she made about Israel, the Jews and Palestine.
"If you pay a professional price for those kinds of comments about other groups, it's only reasonable that you should do so when speaking about Muslims or Islam," said Hooper, asking "How would [Williams] react if someone said the same thing about African Americans or another minority?"
The decision was attacked by Republican politicians and Conservative commentators and the Post reported that former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and former US Vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin are calling for an investigation into the federal funding (around 2% of its budget) NPR receives, and former House speaker Newt Gingrich is demanding a congressional probe.
It quoted Gingrich as saying, "It's an act of total censorship. ... Every listener of NPR should be outraged. What he said was very balanced. People should read what he had to say."
In a recorded statement aired by Fox News, for whom he remains a commentator, Williams said he was told his contract was being ended by NPR Vice-President for News Ellen Weiss, who asked him what he had meant to say during the O'Reilly exchange to which he replied, "I said what I meant to say, which is that it's an honest experience… You cannot ignore what happened on 9/11 and you cannot ignore the connection to Islamic radicalism."
He said he'd asked for a face-to-face meeting to discuss his dismissal and Weiss told him she could not agree as "this has been decided up the chain."
The dismissal was condemned by many media commentators and Huckabee issued a statement in which he said of Williams, "There isn't a more honest and fair-minded person in journalism."
Huckabee said that he would no longer appear on NPR, called for its public funding to be cut off, saying, "As long as they are going to practice a form of censorship, and since NPR is funded with public funds, it is a form of censorship. It is time for the taxpayers to start making cuts to federal spending, and I encourage the new Congress to start with NPR."
Gingrich appearing on the Fox News Channel agreed and said Congress should "investigate NPR and consider cutting off their money."
On today's edition of The View all the hosts said Williams should not have been fired with Barbara Walters commenting that he had made a "silly statement" for which he should have been "chastised but not fires" whilst co-host Whoopi Goldberg said firing Williams "was ridiculous."
RNW comment: Normally we'd find ourselves with NPR and Weiss - and certainly not with Gingrich, Huckabee, or Palin if only because we don't believe it is to the long-term health of any nation to be fed with fables rather than facts but in this case we think NPR has made a serious error.
Whether or not anyone agrees with the thoughts expressed by Williams, we have little doubt that many people would share the feelings he expressed (and indeed would probably have similar fears about other groups - be they of a certain age, wearing particular clothing, or come from a particular ethnic background in various circumstances - think of some of the nonsensical comments made in the UK in the fairly recent past about youngsters wearing hoods).
That being so it is not only a matter of censorship but one of foolishness to ignore the existence of such attitudes.
In our view NPR would have done much better to have put him on air with a panel that could have debated the issue thoroughly and shone light on the matter not tried to bury it.We take a similar view as regards Helen Thomas's comments not those if Imus, which in our view were unacceptable abuse of individuals for which no redeeming arguments could be advanced, albeit we would take the same view of many a US host who adopts a policy of abuse rather than argument.
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2010-10-20: The BBC Trust, which had come under criticism from a number of Conservative Party MPS including current Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt who said when in opposition that he wanted to scrap it, appears to have survived British Government Cuts but the Corporation has made a number of concessions including a six-year licence-free freeze that will see its spending cut by around 16% while its costs go up by around GBP 340 million (USD 540 million) a year.
Making the announcement chancellor George Osborne, described the cuts as "similar to the savings made by government departments."
Under the agreement between the government and the BBC, the corporation will take on responsibility for funding the BBC World Service - its budget of GBP 272 million (USD 440 million) a year under a three-year deal agreed in 2007 was paid by the British Foreign Office but had already been reduced by GBP 10.9 million (USD 17.2 million - See RNW Sep 24) and will now be cut by 16% over four years. It will also freeze the licence fee at its current level of GBP 145.50 (USD 227) a year for six years - the Trust had already announced a freeze at this level for this year and next (See RNW Sep 16).
The Corporation will also take over the funding of Welsh Channel S4C (GBP 102 million - USD 162 million- a year, although S4C's board has said it will seek judicial review of this) and BBC Monitoring ( USD 25 million 37 million - a year) and GBP 150 million (USD 238 million) towards the rollout of broadband to rural areas from 2013: It is reported to have been under extreme pressure from the government with one suggestion that it should take on the cost of providing TV licences to people aged 75 and above, currently some GBP 556 million (USD 887 million) a year.
The BBC Trust board is reported to have considered a mass resignation had this proposal been forced through although Trust Chairman Sir Michael Lyons, who has already announced that he is to step down next May when his current term expires (See RNW Sep 14) refused comment on whether he and his board members had discussed this.
Lyons in a news release responded to the announcement of the licence fee settlement commented, "This is a tough settlement, but it's also a settlement that delivers certainty and stability for the BBC and licence fee payers through to 2016/17. It reflects the centrality of the licence fee in securing and safeguarding public service broadcasting. We recognise the importance of securing such a settlement at such an unprecedented time."
He went on to say that it would present the Trust with "some difficult choices, but importantly, these choices will remain firmly in the hands of the BBC Trust" and added that Trust believes the settlement is in the best interests of licence fee payers.
"It brings with it new obligations for the BBC," said Lyons "But importantly they are all obligations that are relevant to the BBC's mission and purpose - to be a public service broadcaster of the highest quality that serves all audiences… The BBC is not government funded, but these are pressing times for the nation as a whole, and we believe licence fee payers would expect us to see what contribution we can properly make. The extra responsibilities the BBC will now take on are consistent with this and will deliver benefits to licence fee payers across the UK."
BBC Director General Mark Thompson added in the release, "This is a realistic deal in exceptional circumstances securing a strong independent BBC for the next six years. It means that efficiency and reform will continue to be key issues for us. But our focus remains providing distinctive, high quality programmes valued by the public. This deal will safeguard that until 2017."
In an e-mail to staff Thompson said of the finances of the settlement, "These new commitments will add approximately GBP 340 million a year to our costs which will be found through making 4% efficiencies on our cost base each year from 2013/14 through to 2016/17, a total of 16%."
"The idea of reaching an early multi-year settlement," he added, "came from the BBC and negotiations on it began more than a week ago. Because of the work we had done for our ongoing strategy review, Putting Quality First, we were in a good position to carefully weigh the implications of the settlement and to inform the BBC Trust's final decision to accept it. Our next task is to develop detailed plans for the future based on this settlement.
"This is a realistic deal in exceptional circumstances securing a strong independent BBC for the next 6 years. It means that efficiency and reform will continue to be key issues for us. But our focus remains providing distinctive, high quality programmes valued by the public. This deal will safeguard that until 2017."
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2010-10-20: The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) has ruled that comments made on Corus Entertainment's CFNY-FM (The Edge), Toronto, by its morning show hosts that included sexual reference to young fans of Canadian singer Justin Bieber breached the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' (CAB) Equitable Portrayal Code which prohibits the sexualisation of children in broadcasting.
The CBSC received a complaint following comments posted by host Dean Blundell on his Twitter page in which he expressed his dislike for Bieber and suggested that he was likely to be a homosexual and in an on-air discussion he and his co-hosts (Todd Shapiro and Jason Barr) noted that the fans with whom he had exchanges were likely to be about 12 years old and they repeated two of the tweets: In one he said to a female fan, "Save your energy for puberty or to fend off your dad tonight while you're sleepin'" whilst to the sole male fan who contacted him Blundell responded, "He'll be chuggin' before he's 18 [...] if he likes that music."
A listener complained that the suggestion that the female fan would be a victim of incestual rape and the male would become a male prostitute were totally inappropriate because they were directed at minors to which the station responded that the comments were not sexually explicit.
It commented "There is no question that this segment was juvenile and we can certainly appreciate that some of our listeners would find it offensive" but contended that there had been no breach of Canadian codes, adding "While we agree that the comments in question may have contained innuendo, they were not of an explicit nature."
CFNY's program director also commented that "the program is directed at an adult audience, and as such, does not need to be rigorously screened" but did not defend the comments as such, saying, "All of this being said, we agree with you that this segment was neither compelling nor entertaining. Since receiving your email, we have discussed the segment with the members of the morning show and expressed our view that this type of programming does not reflect well on the station or on its hosts."
The CBSC Ontario Panel agreed with the station regarding the fact that the comments were not explicit but found that they inappropriately sexualized children.
The CBSC noted that it has found no justification for allegedly humorous references to children in sexual contexts, including those of the nature of sexual innuendo, double-entendres and inexplicit sexual comments that would not be problematic if the references were to adults and considered the two comments cited to be "gratuitous, unnecessary and a clear violation of Clause 8 of the Equitable Portrayal Code."
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2010-10-20: Although Tuesday's board meeting of Tribune Co. did not result in the departure of chief executive Randy Michaels as it had forecast (See RNW Oct 19) - he told a Chicago Tribune reporter after its meeting "I work here today and I'm still working "- the New York Times is reporting that his ouster may be near and the Tribune says he has decided to go before the end of this week..
The New York Times quotes an unnamed person "directly involved in the discussions" as saying the board agreed that he should resign soon but stopped short of asking for his immediate resignation.
Tribune did not comment on the report but issued a statement saying, "Tribune's board of directors is focused on filing the company's plan of reorganization this Friday and has no comment on any other issue."
The Chicago Tribune quoting unnamed "sources close to the situation" said Michaels intends to leave before the end of the week and that he will be replaced by a four-member office of the president that the sources said would comprise Eddy Hartenstein, president and publisher of the Los Angeles Times; Tony Hunter, president and publisher of the Chicago Tribune Media Group; Nils Larsen, Tribune Co.'s chief investment officer; and Don Liebentritt, chief restructuring officer.
Tribune Co. would not comment on either the departure or succession plans and the paper says Michaels and the other executives involved did not return calls and e-mails seeking comment.
It says the "development comes after weeks of turmoil at the bankrupt company, brought on by assertions that Michaels and his management team displayed boorish behaviour and fostered a sexist, hostile work environment."
It adds that Michaels decided to go because he concluded "that it was best for the company under the circumstances. He and the board had determined that the turmoil is distracting employees, threatening to hurt business and complicating the company's efforts to emerge from an especially contentious bankruptcy process."
The paper adds that Michaels' departure may have become inevitable following a New York Times report describing the company as a sexist "frat house" (See RNW Oct 6 ).
The paper then goes on to say the "perception seemed to be confirmed several days later when Lee Abrams, whom Michaels handpicked as his chief innovation officer, sent all employees an e-mail containing a link to a video of a newscast parody with nudity and profanity that he labelled "Sluts."(RNW comment: See report below - the term nudity is an exaggeration.) and notes that Chicago Tribune's editor, Gerould Kern said Abrams' video was "offensive" and "completely inappropriate."
It then goes on to say Michaels' denials of a crude corporate culture encourages some people to speak out and quotes amongst others Denise Brown, a former member of the company's corporate communications staff, who in an interview with the paper described an incident in 2008 when she had been given the task of organizing a Mardi Gras lunch for people on the sixth floor.
The Cajun food came with a set of colourful beads and she put them on as she walked down the hallway and when she encountered Michaels in the hallway he asked, "What did you have to do to earn those beads? Will you do that for me?"
Brown said she took it as a clear reference to the Mardi Gras tradition in which women earn beads for exposing their breasts.
It also quotes other sources who it says asked not to be named because they were embarrassed or were worried about their jobs, as describing the general atmosphere in Tribune Co.'s executive suite since Michaels arrived was often loud, profane and juvenile.
One woman spoke of Michael's asking her to lean down and when she was crouching at his side commenting, "'Did anyone tell you that you'd look really good on your knees?"
She said she turned red and Michael's responded, "'Oh, you're embarrassed. I hope I didn't offend you. But he was laughing about it."
"What gives him the right to say something like that?' she asked."I didn't know him. It wasn't friendly banter. It was sexual… It made me feel like I couldn't respect an organization run by these individuals." The woman added that she didn't complain officially because she decided "it wasn't worth my while."
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2010-10-20: The UK Radio Academy has made three awards at its Radio Festival dinner as well as inducting four broadcasters into the UK Radio Hall of Fame as already announced (See RNW Oct 18) and naming a new Radio Academy fellow - Lisa Kerr, the Campaign Director for Digital Radio UK.
Kerr, a former student at Edinburgh Music School, moved into radio following a work placement at Forth FM whilst in her fifth year. After graduating from York University's music department she joined the station and won a Sony Gold Award for presenting and producing the (Edinburgh) Festival programme "Hot in the City".
She joined Classic FM as a producer in 1993 and two years later became Manager of Radio Services for a company set up to run Channel Travel Radio, becoming its managing director the following year, thus making her the youngest MD in UK commercial radio.
The awards announced were The Nielsen Award for Most Played Artist on UK Radio which went to Lady Gaga (who was not present to collect it); the PRS John Peel Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music Radio which went to Tim Westwood, who hosts the drivetime show on BBC digital station 1Xtra; and the Local & Regional Lifetime Achievement Award - formerly a Sony Award - which went to Alan Robson who has presented the "Night Owls" show on Metro Radio, Newcastle, since 1983. He began his career in local rock bands and stand-up comedy and as well as hosting radio shows has appeared in a number of TV series and on ABC TV's "The Scariest Places on Earth."
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2010-10-19: The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has finally - after multiple postponements- adopted implementation details for Sirius and XM Satellite Radio to make 4% of the full-time audio channels on their satellites available to "qualified entities": It made two main changes to the original plan that followed a commitment the companies made to gain approval of their merger.
The two provisions of the Leasing Condition adopted in the agency's Sirius XM Merger Order that are to be amended will allow Sirius XM to become involved in selection of the organizations to run the channels and also change language relating to race: The FCC will now define the term "Qualified Entities" to ensure that lessees are independent from Sirius XM and to make the criteria for selection of lessees race-neutral and also involve Sirius XM in the selection process subject to FCC oversight. Sirius XM will have responsibility for making timely selections of entities that are both qualified for the set-aside and technically compatible with the SDARS platform, but without editorial control over lessees' programming.
This is a reversal of the FCC's previous position and the FCC adds that it will require Sirius XM reasonably to exercise its good-faith judgment to select as lessees those Qualified Entities that it believes will advance our diversity goals although it will require Sirius XM to submit its selections for proposed lessees to the Media Bureau for review prior to signing an agreement for the lease channel or channels.
The FCC says it expects that Sirius XM will use this selection process to create opportunities for a variety of programmers, including new entrants and notes that it had adopted a "definition of Qualified Entity that 'includes any entity that is majority-owned by persons who are African American, not of Hispanic
In response to its call for comment Randolph J. May, President of the Free State Foundation, questioned the constitutionality of the Qualified Entity definitions and the FCC says some of those commenting said that the original definition is race-conscious and, if challenged, would not withstand strict scrutiny under the Equal Protection Clause
Organizations who qualify for channels will be limited to a maximum of four - the FCC says it believes this will further "Two important goals" - of a diversity of programming and ensuring that the capacity will not be dominated by a single programmer: Sirius XM will be allowed to allot a channel to more than one lessee and the FCC says the plan will "allow a single lessee to provide a variety of high-quality, diverse programming that is not otherwise available to SDARS subscribers and may attract new subscribers and enhance the commercial viability of SDARS (Satellite Digital Audio Radio Services)."
The FCC comments that the intention of its order is to ensure that all the channels set aside will be taken up and it will allow an exception to the cap of a maximum of four channels if the demand for channels were less than the number available but any lease of this nature will only be allowed to run a maximum of three years.
The agency has confirmed its plan for allocation to be by channel rather than other options such as bit rate or bandwidth and in line with the original commitments says the minimum number of channels to be set aside shall be six on each (Sirius and XM) platform but that should introduction of advanced signal compression techniques increase the number of channels, this might be increased.
All the channels are to be made available to all subscribers at no additional charge -they have to be part of any package offered by Sirius XM including a la Carte packages for which they are to be added to the packages at no charge) The FCC notes that the company currently offers a la carte packages of 50 channels for USD 6.99 a month and 100 channels for USD 1.499 a month).
The FCC has however rejected suggestions from AIR and FluteRadio that it require Sirius XM to make the leased channels available free-of-charge to anyone who has an SDARS receiver or a mobile device that can receive Sirius XM streaming audio, regardless of whether the listener is a Sirius XM subscriber: Sirius XM had opposed this proposal although the commission notes that it is free to negotiate such delivery with lessees should it so choose.
Normal leases will be for a minimum five years and the FCC rejected suggestions from AIR, FluteRadio, and Mosaic that we adopt a lease term that is coterminous with the SDARS licenses, noting that the company owns a number of satellites, each of which has its own licence, making such a proposal complicated to implement. Subleasing will only be allowed with agreement by Sirius XM, which will also be allowed to require lessees to indemnify Sirius XM against liability arising from their conduct as lessees.
Also at Sirius XM, it would appear that CEO Mel Karmazin may be taking seriously the possibility of Howard Stern - or of course is just placing an open marker in the negotiation process.
Bloomberg quoted him as saying in an interview that should Stern, whose five-year contract expires at the end of the year, not renew Sirius XM stations, such as Raw Dog Comedy and Playboy Radio, would help retain many of Stern's listeners.
Negotiations with Stern said Karmazin were continuing but he added, "There's no deal. The only announcement will be when there is a deal, or there's not a deal. And I'm hopeful there will be a deal." He also noted that the company, which limits advertising on Stern's programming to six minutes an hour, could sell more - in all Sirius takes around USD 56 million a year, some 2% of its revenues, from advertising.
Bloomberg notes that according to Tuna Amobi, an analyst at Standard & Poor's in New York Stern has added some two million subscribers to Sirius XM since he moved to Sirius Satellite Radio in 2006 - around a tenth of the subscribers the company is predicting at the end of this year.
Karmazin, it says declined to estimate the number of cancellations should Stern leave but noted that his departure would save the company around USD 100 million a year that would be used for other programming - he said he would "go and try to get different people who might appeal to different audiences" and suggested expanding areas such as "classical music, or maybe we would do a little more in the opera area, or maybe we would do something that we're not doing today."
"You don't try to replace Howard," Karmazin said. "I don't think there's a radio personality that's out there that we would bring in and say to the Howard Stern fans 'let us introduce you to this new talent.'"
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2010-10-19: Lee Abrams, who resigned from Tribune Co after complaints over an e-mail he sent to an Onion News Network "Sluts" video that satirized US TV and included images of women showing their breasts (not naked as some reports erroneously stated), has defended himself in an e-mail according to Jeff Bercovici in his blog.
Bercovici quotes Abrams as writing in reference to the video "My apology for sending the Onion News Network parody clip stands. Though, as Tribune is a multi-media company competing at the most dramatic cross-roads in media history, I would have hoped that the use of a brilliant parody to demonstrate the ills of popular TV would have been an effective communication vehicle and that people would have taken it as it was intended; a parody that illustrates what not to do."
He continues, "I am sorry for the timing and the results of my action, but continue to believe that people working in traditional media needs to open their eyes to the realities of our culture in 2010 without denial, self-righteousness or arrogance. It was my intention to use any reasonable vehicle to help that happen."
Bercovici's blog includes the full e-mail, which he says he has established as coming from an address belonging to Abrams: In it amongst other things Abrams speculates that a "a major component of this debacle is being motivated by a power play to seize creative, cultural and business control of the company as it emerges from Chapter 11" and that newspaper staff were concerned that his "mere presence posed a threat to their grip on the past."
He also notes that it is "ironic that the Onion is a business partner of the Chicago Tribune and that very clip was shown at a recent Chicago Tribune sales meeting to a rousing and positive reaction" and says this leads him to suspect the motivation behind the "aggressive coverage this event."
Abrams also comments on the way he involved himself in editorial issues, noting that he has no print journalism expertise and "focused solely on the creative and marketing side" and says of suggestions that he "created a hostile and sexist environment" that "This is depressing if not insulting."
Abrams also notes in relation to suggestion that he was "part of some ex-Clear Channel boys club" that he never worked for Clear Channel and says he hopes "for nothing but success for everyone at Tribune and that includes some of the newspaper people that I can't help thinking were focused on undermining my work and accelerating my decline at the company instead of moving us to the future."
RNW Comment: Having now viewed the video that led to Abrams departure, it seems to us that his defence is sound. We were not aware that The Onion was a business partner of the Chicago Tribune nor that the clip had been shown at a company event but even without that think it is fair to say that most news organisations owe Abrams an apology over the manner in which they reported the story - we suspect had the fact that it's an Onion News Network report been made clear many people like us would have felt that those objecting needed to be told to get a sense of hour rather than being humoured.
For our part we regret that we were not aware of this and regret that we were not able to give a link to the video in our original report (See RNW Oct 14 LAbrams1): It is below and in advance may we suggest that the humourless not bother to follow it - especially the ending line in a two-way between the anchor (female) and reporter (male) at the scene over what he is told he should not do with the "sluts."
We would like to take this opportunity to wish Abrams well, apologize for not providing the link earlier; suggest that the whole issue indicates that he is correct about the row being whipped up to a significant degree because of other agendas - indicating a significant lack of fairness and basic decency amongst some of those involved; and that a number of Abrams critics deserve the appellation "pompous asses" (For the humourless note that this is a reference to beasts that bray not human posteriors!). Burkas all round for the critics!

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Forbes - Bercovici blog:
The Onion - "Sluts" video (This is a parody report concerning the supposed crash of a bus whose passengers were women from a reality TV show. It does show breasts -briefly- and contain crude language):

2010-10-19: BBC radio has announced the launch from December of what it terms "HD" sound (No connection with iBiquity's HD and a BBC spokesman told us they were unaware of any issues in using the term) on the BBC Radio 3 website: The extra quality audio stream will also be used for special events on other web sites to start with the BBC Radio 2 Electric Proms later this month.
The announcement was made by BBC Director of Audio and Music Tim Davie at the Radio Festival in Salford yesterday and the Corporation is using more advanced encoding and higher bit rates to offer what it terms its "highest audio quality broadcast to date."
The system was used for what was then termed XHQ in an experimental transmission of the final week of The Proms this year - it used a bit rate of 320 kbps and AAC encoding instead of the normal 128kbps transmission rate for most of the corporation's national stations on digital - 192 kbps for Radio 3, but all use the old MP2 encoding for DAB broadcasts. The link from the broadcast truck to BBC Broadcasting House fed uncompressed audio with a frequency response up to 22KHZ.
The BBC has already introduced its "Coyopa" system - named after the Mayan god who makes the noises during thunderstorms (another god Yaluk makes the lightning flashes) for its internet streams using AAC coding and in a blog concerning this on the station web site last month Robert Brun, Head of Technology for BBC Audio & Music, said he wondered "how good we could make Radio 3 sound on the internet and what people would make of it", adding "Would it be a welcome improvement? Or given that most people don't have high quality amplifiers and speakers connected to their computers, would they even notice the difference?"
(RNW comment: A "sample" was aired on the BBC PM programme on Monday but since that is aired in 128kbps in DAB there would be no way listeners could tell the difference, albeit those listing on a good FM set-up with high quality speakers or good quality headphones may have notices slight differences in the two samples aired: The experiment, however, attracted generally favourable comment from those listening online.)
Brun also notes that initially the service will be available as an alternative to the normal iPlayer stream and can be accessed through a web page linked from the Radio 3 home page or from the home page for each special event on the other networks. The BBC he says needs to find out whether the higher bit-rate causes buffering or other reliability problems for people and whether the increased dynamic range is a nuisance for some listeners.
He also commented, "We received a lot of feedback about other platforms and I am committed to exploring ways to further improve the audio we deliver to our audience on all platforms."
Also announced at the conference were details of launch plans for the Radioplayer, an online console for UK radio, that is being developed by a partnership of the BBC, Global Radio, GMG Radio, RadioCentre and Absolute Radio.
Plans are for a phased roll out in first phase in December with at least 50 stations with at least 200 stations to be featured by the time of a full consumer launch in February next year. A fully functional player featuring a test set of stations was demonstrated to delegates by Radioplayer Managing Director Michael Hill.
Previous BBC:
Previous Davie:
BBC Radio 3 - Brun blog (Later one - carries link to earlier blog):

2010-10-18: Tribune Company's board of directors is expected to ask chief executive Randy Michaels to resign tomorrow according to a report in the New York Times, which quotes an unnamed "person directly involved in the matter" who said the board had lost confidence in the ability of Mr. Michaels to lead the company.
Michaels, a former Jacor Communications and Clear Channel executive - amongst the posts he held at the latter were those of Clear Channel Radio CEO and chairman he was pushed out of the company's radio division in 2002 (See RNW Jul 24, 2002 ) and then out of the company- joined Tribune as an executive vice president in charge of the company's broadcasting and interactive businesses and was subsequently promoted to COO (See RNW May 8, 2008) and then to CEO (See RNW Dec 2, 2009).
Michaels had been Jacor President and chairman when Sam Zell, the Chicago real estate tycoon who took Tribune private for USD 8.2 billion in 2007 (See Dec 21, 2007), was Jacor chairman and Zell brought him into Tribune along with Gerry Spector, another long-time associate..
Tribune filed for bankruptcy in December 2008 (See RNW Dec 9, 2008) and is still mired in the bankruptcy court in Delaware. The New York Times says legal feed have now reached more than USD 180 million.
Last week the company announced its support for a re-organization plan agreed by its Official Committee of Unsecured lenders (See RNW Oct 12): It had announced in September that it had reached agreement with two major lenders on a re-organization plan (See RNW Sep 28). An earlier reorganization plan collapsed after two of its main backers pulled out (See RNW Aug 20 ).
Previous Michaels:
Previous Tribune Co.:
New York Times report:

2010-10-18: Spanish Broadcasting System (SBS) has revealed in an SEC 8K filing that it has received a de-listing notice from the NASDAQ stock market because its stock fell below the exchange's minimum USD 1 closing price for 30 days on October 12: The company has until April 11 next year (180 days) to regain compliance for which its stock has to close at USD 1 or more for ten consecutive days.
If it fails to regain compliance it can then appeal to a NASDAQ panel and the company says it "intends to use all reasonable efforts to maintain the listing of its common stock on the NASDAQ Global Market."
SBS had received a previous warning in August 2008, giving it until December last year to regain compliance: it did not meet the deadline but this was moved to June 7 this year - in April it said it had authorized a reverse split if needed to regain compliance (See RNW Apr 26) but this proved unnecessary as it announced in May that it had regained compliance (See RNW May 5). SBS stock ended Monday down 5.59% at 80 cents: It had been above a dollar for most of August but dropped below that figure from the start of September.
Previous SBS:

2010-10-18: Broadcasters Bob Harris, Dave Lee Travis, Nicholas Parsons and David 'Kid' Jensen are to be inducted into the UK Radio Academy's "Hall of Fame" tomorrow night at the Academy's special dinner, which has been moved so that it is part of this year's Radio Festival, which opens in Salford today.
The Hall of Fame is sponsored by PRS for Music and to be announced at the dinner of are winners of the PRS John Peel Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music Radio, the Nielsen Award for Most Played Artist on UK Radio and The Local & Regional Lifetime Achievement Award, which was formerly part of the Sony Radio Academy Awards.
Of the four two launched their radio careers at the BBC: Bob Harris, who was the CMA International Broadcaster of the Year in 2004, began his radio career at BBC Radio 1in 1970 and subsequently worked at Radio Luxembourg, Radio 210, LBC, GWR, Radio Broadland in Norwich, Hereward FM in Peterborough, BFBS, The Superstation and BBC Radio Oxford before returning to Radio One from 1987-93. He then had a spell at BBC GLR before moving to BBC Radio 2 in 1997. He currently hosts Thursday and Saturday shows at the station.
Nicholas Parsons moved into acting whilst working as an engineering apprentice in Glasgow and has worked on films and in TV: He has hosted the BBC Radio 4 panel game "Just a Minute" since it was launched in January 1967
Dave Lee Travis began his career at the offshore pirate station Radio Caroline in 1965 and then moved to BBC Radio 1 in 1968: He hosted its breakfast show from 1978-80 and subsequently quit the station in 1993, by when he was hosting a Sunday morning show, announcing on air that he did not agree with changes being made at the station.
He subsequently hosted a networked Sunday morning commercial show and various shows on Classic Gold before leaving to work for the Army-run Garrison Radio and in 2003 he returned to the BBC, hosting a Sunday morning show for four years on BBC Three Counties Radio. He currently hosts weekend shows on the Magic Network.
David 'Kid' Jensen, who was born in Victoria, British Columbia, began his radio career in Canada when he was 16 but in 1968, when he was 18, moved to Europe and joined Radio Luxembourg. He subsequently worked for Nottingham commercial station Radio Trent before joining BBC Radio 1 in 1976, initially hosting a Saturday morning show.
He left the station in 1980 to join CNN in Atlanta but returned to the station a year later after which he joined Capital FM in 1984, remaining at the station until 1998, when he joined Heart FM in London: he also presented the commercial Network Chart Show until 1993 and hosts Planet Rock's Sunday Morning Show.
Previous Radio Academy:
Radio Academy web site:

2010-10-17: Last week activity perked up a little at the regulators as regards radio although there were no radio postings as such from Australia or Ireland and in the UK only that of its latest Broadcast Bulletin from Ofcom.
In Australia, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) did post its annual report, which was mainly devoted to telecommunications and Internet issues although in broadcasting it did highlight the registering of new Codes of Practice for commercial TV and radio (See RNW Jul 2).
The report also noted the investigation into a July 2009 broadcast of the Kyle and Jackie O Show (Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O'Neil Henderson) in which a 14-years old girl was subjected to a lie-detector test and questioned about her sexual history, saying on air that she had been raped when aged 12 (See RNW Jul 30, 2009). Its investigation subsequently found amongst other things that the then current commercial radio codes did not adequately express concerns, particularly about the treatment of child participants to a programme. It is now working to develop codes of practice that include specific provisions addressing the issues raised in the investigation: It ruled in December that the broadcast had breached codes (See RNW Dec 16, 2009).
The report also noted reorganization in December last year that increased the number of its divisions from five to six (See RNW Dec 4, 2009).
the report also noted the move to digital broadcasting with DAB+ services officially commencing in July last year
In Canada, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has said tha tin December it will give its decision in relation to Cogeco Inc.'s CAD 80 million purchase of 11 of Corus Entertainment's radio stations in Quebec province that was announced in April (the deal was then worth USD 78.7 million - See RNW Apr 30) .
It also posted a number of licensing decisions including the following (In Order of Province):
British Columbia:
*Approved an application by Astral Media Radio (Toronto) Inc. and 4382072 Canada Inc., partners in a general partnership carrying on business as Astral Media Radio G.P. for a licence for an 890 watts FM to replace its CKGR-AM, Golden. The new station will offer a Mainstream Adult Contemporary music format targeting adults 18 to 54 years of age. A three-moth simulcast will be allowed once the FM commences operations.
*Approved an application by Total Change Christian Ministries for a 26 watts low power non-commercial specialty FM radio programming undertaking to provide a Christian music service in Campbell River.
The application was opposed by Vista Radio Ltd., which owns CICQ-FM, Campbell River, and expressed concern on this marginally profitable station. The CRTC in approving the application commented that it considers that the proposed station would not have a significant economic impact on the Campbell River radio market given the nature of the service proposed and that Total Change Christian Ministries would sell only sponsorships in exchange for on-air acknowledgements rather than broadcasting commercial announcements.
*Approved an application by 5777152 Manitoba Ltd. for a broadcasting licence to operate a 3,440 watts English-language commercial FM in Virden. The application was opposed by Riding Mountain Broadcasting Ltd., which expressed concern about the potential impact on its stations in western Manitoba, particularly the Brandon central area. The CRTC said it considered the potential impact would be minimal.
Newfoundland and Labrador:
*Approved application by Newcap Inc. to reduce the night time transmitter power of its English-language commercial station CJYQ-AM, St. John's, from 25,000 watts to 3,500 watts, changing the antenna radiation pattern from directional to non-directional, and changing the antenna site. The daytime transmitter power will remain unchanged at 25,000 watts.
The licensee said the current antenna site is unusable following deterioration of the antenna because of local weather conditions.
*Approved application by My Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) for a licence to operate a 1,370 watts English-language commercial FM in St. Thomas: The station will offer a Gold-based Adult Contemporary music format and MBC will broadcast 125 hours of local programming in each broadcast week to include approximately 14 hours of spoken word programming, of which approximately 5 hours will be devoted to news with newscasts primarily featuring local news. The station will also feature weather, sports and community events.
MBC has committed itself to devote, by condition of licence, at least 38% of all category 2 (Popular Music) selections broadcast during each broadcast week and between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. from Monday to Friday to Canadian selections broadcast in their entirety.
*Approved request from Corus Radio Company to revoke the licence of its CJUL-AM, Cornwall.
RNW Note: Corus closed the station in August. It was the third AM Corus has closed down this year - the earlier closures, announced in January (See RNW Jan 20) were of loss-making Montreal stations CINF-AM and CINW-AM.
*Denied application by Northwest Broadcasting Inc. to increase the power of CFQK-FM, Kaministiquia, from 50 watts to 250 watts and also to increase the power of its CKED-FM, Shuniah Township, from 10 to 250 watts. In each case the change that would mean the transmitter status changes from unprotected low-power to protected,
The CRTC in rejecting the application noted that Northwest is controlled by H.F. Dougall Company Limited, which also controls CJSD-FM and CKPR-FM Thunder Bay and that if approved, the proposed technical contours would be entirely encompassed by the 3 mV/m contours of the two Thunder Bay stations. This would require an exemption to the market cap that in a station such as Thunder Bay where there are fewer than eight commercial stations operating in a given language, one owner can normally only control three stations in any one language and only two in any frequency band.
The application was opposed by an individual and by Northwoods Broadcasting Limited, which operates CKTG-FM and CJUK-FM in Thunder Bay and was concerned that approval would enhance Dougall's strong competitive position. Northwoods noted that Dougall already is able to offer four advertising vehicles - radio, television, print and Internet - in one package, making it difficult for other radio operators to compete on an equal footing.
Dougall responded by saying there would be no negative impact on the market but the CRTC said the change would enhance Dougall's competitive position and added that it had not demonstrated a clear economic need for approval of the application.
The agency also posted a number of public notices including two with a November 18 deadline for the submission of interventions or comments.
The first of these included two radio applications - from Perth FM Radio Inc., which proposed to increase the power of its English-language commercial radio programming undertaking CHLK-FM, Perth, Ontario from 700 watts to 2,800 watts following complaints of weak reception in various communities and from Wilderness Ministries Inc. to renew the licence of its English-language specialty station CIOT-FM, Nipawin, expiring 30 November 2010. The CRTC noted that Wilderness may have failed to comply with regulations concerning filing of annual returns for the 2004-2005, 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 broadcast years.
The second involved applications by:
*Radio communautaire de Harrington Harbour to adding an FM transmitter at Mutton Bay to carry the programming of its Type A community radio programming undertaking CFTH-FM-1, Harrington Harbour, Quebec.
*Astral Media Radio (Toronto) Inc. and 4382072 Canada Inc., partners in a general partnership carrying on business as Astral Media Radio G.P. to renew the licence for its English-language commercial station CKCR-FM, Revelstoke, expiring 30 November 2010: The Commission noted that when it approved the conversion of the former CKCR-AM to FM it issued two-year short-term licence renewal until 31 August 2010, in order to allow the Commission to review the station's compliance with its regulatory obligations at an earlier date. The licence has subsequently been administratively renewed until 30 November 2010.
A third notice with a November 19 deadline for the submission of interventions or comments concerns an application by Blackburn Radio Inc. to increase the power of its English-language commercial station CKLO-FM, London, from 7,000 watts to 40,000 watts, relocate the transmitter, and increase the effective height of antenna above average terrain from 106.5 to 150 metres. Blackburn said the originally approved transmitter site is crowded with other users and that the addition of the CKLO-FM transmitter would cause interference.
The CRTC also said that on December 8 it will resume its hearing, begun on May 12, into CKLN Radio Incorporated's community-based campus station CKLN-FM, Toronto.
The hearing, which was announced in March (See RNW Licence News, Mar 13) was adjourned because of litigation and judicial mediation before the Ontario Superior Court of Justice concerning the governance of CKLN Radio and the legitimacy of the current board of directors but the CRTC wrote to the licensee in June to note that the adjournment did not negate the seriousness of the allegations of non-compliance made against it and announced its intention to require CKLN to file monthly reports with it on the 14th of each month, beginning in June, to identify whether any progress had been made in the mediation. It also noted that it would reconvene the hearing within 60 days of 14 October 2010.
As already noted there were no radio postings from Ireland and just one from the UK where Ofcom posted its latest Broadcast Bulletin in which it upheld one radio complaint (See RNW Oct 11).
In the US, where the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was closed on Monday for Columbus Day, the week was also fairly quiet as regards radio.
On a more general note the agency announced that on November 12 its Office of Communications Business Opportunities is to hold a Capitalization Strategies Workshop.
This it says will be focused on capital acquisition for small and diverse businesses in the communications industry with panellists to discuss capitalization strategies applicable in a variety of business sectors such as broadband technologies, cable and broadcast TV, broadcast radio, wireless services, and common carrier facilities.
Panellists listed for sessions include Jerry Johnson of RLJ Equity, whose prime area of investment is companies valued between USD 50 million and USD 200 million, and equity investments of USD 20 million to USD 45 million; Anita Stephens Graham of Opportunity Capital, whose preferred investment range is USD 2,000,000 to USD 10,000,000; Richard Blewette of the US Small Business Administration (SBA); Maureen Lewis of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA); Gary Bojes of US Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service (USDA RUS); Jim Pastoriza, Managing Partner of the Telecommunications Development Fund, a Washington DC based venture capital fund; Robert L. Greene of Syndicated Communications, Inc (SYNCOM) - Syncom Ventures Partners manages capital in excess of 400 million dollars; Cheryl Miller of the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship; and Carolos Guzman of The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA).
On the enforcement front the agency issued penalties totalling USD 12,600 for late filing of renewal applications and subsequent unauthorized operation (See RNW Oct 12).
Radio licensing decisions included (In order of state):
Partly granted and partly denied applications for new non-commercial FM (NCE FM) licences in McIntosh and Mount Vernon made by TBTA Ministries and Archangel Communications respectively. TBTA Ministries had been made the tentative selectee for the licence after the two organizations applied during a filing window for NCE FM applications in October 2007 in response to which Archangel filed a petition to deny the TBTA application because the FCC Media Bureau's analysis was based on an assessment that TBTA's service would reach 5,000 more people than its own whilst its own analysis showed the difference was not great enough to give TBTA preference.
TBTA filed an application to deny the Archangel petition and provided its own analysis that said it was entitled to preference.
In addition to the above, before the agency made its tentative selection, American Family Association, Inc. had filed a petition to deny the Archangel application claiming that it involved a prohibited overlap with the signal of one of its NCE stations, WZKM-FM, Waynesboro, Alabama, and as a result the FCC after a review dismissed the Archangel Application as unacceptable for filing.
In relation to this Archangel sought reconsideration and submitted technical information that said it showed its application was within FCC rules.
The FCC has accepted Archangel's argument on this matter and is now to send both the Archangel and TBTA applications forward for a points hearing by the Commission to decide the award of the licence.
Denied petitions from Plus Charities for reconsideration of award of a licence for a new NCE FM in Coggon to New Bohemia Group, Inc.: Both organizations applied for a licence in Coggon in a 2007 filing window and the Plus application was dismissed because its facility failed to provide adequate community coverage as required by FCC rules.
Plus petitioned for reconsideration of the dismissal and re-instatement of its application on the basis of an error made in its application relating to tower location and argued that the Commission should accept as a minor change its amended application reflecting the correct coordinates: This petition was dismissed by the Bureau.
Subsequently the New Bohemia application was given a preference over a mutually exclusive application in the same NCE Group that was filed by Calvary Iowa City and Plus filed a petition to deny the New Bohemia tentative selection on the basis that its application was signed by a corporate director, rather than a corporate officer, that the date of the certification of the technical section of the New Bohemia Application post-dated the applicant's certification; and that at the time the New Bohemia Application was certified, the Iowa Secretary of State had dissolved New Bohemia as a corporation. It argued that the agency had treated its violation of rules differently to that of New Bohemia.
The FCC disagreed, holding the New Bohemia breaches to be minor and noting that under its procedures information provided in a technical submission - in this case by Plus - supersedes inconsistent data elsewhere in an application. It rejected Plus's petitions.
Rejected application by Templo Apostoles y Profetas Bethel (TAPB) for a construction permit for a new NCE FM station in Bridgeport, and granted petition from Great Plains Christian Radio, Inc. (GPCR) to deny a tentative grant of the TAPB application.
TAPB, GCR - whose application was for a station in Hutchinson, and Family Station had submitted mutually exclusive applications during an October 2007 filing window and the FCC, having determined that none was entitled to a fair distribution preference tentatively selected the TAPB licence under a points analysis.
GPCR filed a petition to deny on the basis that Bridgeport is not a licensable community - it described it as "no more than a geographic location consisting of a small cluster of about 25 houses approximately 15 miles south of Salina" and added that it estimated a population of fewer than a hundred people and said Bridgeport was not identified by name on any signs and that it lacks paved roads, provides no municipal services, and has no local government, no civic, cultural, or religious organizations, no newspaper, no post office, no zip code, nor even a USPS collection box.
TAPB responded by arguing that Bridgeport was a licensable community and its application should be granted but did not dispute any of GPCR's claims although it noted that Bridgeport is shown on several online maps, including Google Earth, Yahoo! Maps, and Mapquest; is included in a list of towns on the official Saline County web site and is recognized by the United States Geological Survey web site as a "Populated Place."
It also supplied information from a historic "Cyclopedia" of Kansas from 1912, which states that in 1910 Bridgeport had a population of 120, as well as a telegraph office and a post office.
The FCC noted that it defines "communities" as geographically identifiable population groupings, which have common local interests and in this case held that Bridgeport was not a licensable community, dismissed the TAPB application, and accepted the application from Great Plains Christian Radio, Inc. for filing.
Previous ACMA:
Previous CRTC:
Previous FCC:
Previous Licence News:
Previous Ofcom:
ACMA web site:

ACMA Annual Report (3.4 MB 316 page zipped PDF):
CRTC web site:
FCC web site:

Ofcom web site:

2010-10-16: Australian commercial radio revenues in the five metropolitan markets were up 11.8% on a year earlier in September for reach a total of AUD 60.65 million ( USD 59.9 million) according to latest figures from the 2010 Metropolitan Commercial Radio Advertising Revenue, as sourced by Deloitte, that have been released by industry body Commercial Radio Australia.
The strongest growth was in Perth - up 18.4% to AUD 7.98 million (USD 7.88 million) followed by Brisbane - up 12.9% to AUD 9.5 million (USD 9.4 million); Sydney - up 11.8% to AUD 19.0 million (USD 18.8 million); Melbourne - up 11.6% to AUD 18.8 million (USD 18.6 million); and Brisbane - up 2.3% to AUD 5.3 million (USD 5.2 million).
The figures came out before the Australian commercial radio industry held its 22nd annual Australian Commercial Radio Awards ceremony in Melbourne and Commercial Radio Australia chief executive Joan Warner said the industry was optimistic about the prospects for the next 12 months, adding that issues to be discussed would include ways to further grow revenue.
At the awards ceremony, which was held today, comic duo Hamish and Andy (Hamish Blake and Andy Lee) took the Best On-Air Team Award for the third year in a row: The awards also saw the induction into Australia's Radio Hall of Fame of Derryn Hinch, who earlier this year celebrated fifty years in journalism and who currently hosts the drivetime show on Fairfax Media's 3AW in Melbourne.
New Zealand born Hinch began his journalistic career aged 15 on the Taranaki Herald. He moved to Australia in 1963 and joined the Sydney Morning Herald, subsequently working for Fairfax in various including that of foreign correspondent roles and the organization's New York bureau chief.
He returned to Australia and joined 3AW in 1979, later moving into TV and then to Sydney 2GB in 1996 - he was fired after seven months. After a spell bedevilled with alcoholism he re-joined 3AW in 2000 to host Nightline before moving to 3AK in 2001 and then back to 3AW in 2003.
As well as his induction, Hinch also took the Best Talk Presenter for the second year in a row and Hamish and Andy - who are to quit their show next year to develop new ideas mainly expected to be for TV - took two further awards- Best Show Producer - Entertainment/Music and Best Music Special.
Also taking multiple awards was Ray Hadley of Macquarie Radio Network's 2GB - for Best Networked Program, Best Sports Event Coverage and Best Current Affairs Presenter.
The full list of awards was (C indicates country; P provincial; N -Non Metropolitan; and M Metropolitan):
Peter Headen; 3YB & Coast FM, Warrnambool VIC, ACE Radio Broadcasters C
Andy Mathers: Star 104.5, Central Coast NSW, DMG Radio Australia P
Peter Verhoeven: 4KQ & 97.3 FM, Brisbane QLD, Australian Radio Network N
Bill Cacalis and Trevor Friswell; Gold 104.3 FM & Mix 101.1, Digital Data Server, Melbourne VIC, Australian Radio Network
Stephanie Borys; 1503 2BS Gold, St. Vincent's Hospital Closure, Bathurst NSW, Bathurst Broadcasters NM
Sarah Crabb; 2UE, Sydney NSW, Fairfax Radio Network M
Amy Stengert; NOW FM, Moree NSW, Super Radio Network C
Lauren Pilgrim; 969 Star FM & 95 3SR FM, Shepparton VIC, Southern Cross Media P
Daniel Bryant; Nova 100, Melbourne VIC, DMG Radio Australia M
Kelli Paun; 981 2NM & 98.1 Power FM, Muswellbrook NSW, Grant Broadcasters C
Bryan Madigan; 91.9 Sea FM, Sunshine Coast QLD, Southern Cross Media P
Gus Worland; Triple M, Sydney NSW, Austereo M
Andrea Waycott; 3CS Colac, Colac VIC, ACE Radio Broadcasters C
Adam Barratt; 91.9 Sea FM, Sunshine Coast, QLD Southern Cross Media P
Ugly Phil; Triple M, Sydney NSW, Austereo M
Mandy Shepherd; 7AD / 7BU & 7SD, Devonport TAS, Grant Broadcasters C
Mike Welsh; 2CC, Canberra ACT, Capital Radio P
Derryn Hinch; 3AW, Melbourne VIC, Fairfax Radio Network M
EJ & Lia: Zoo FM Breakfast; EJ & Lia (Elliot Kinsela & Lia Crowley), Zoo FM, Dubbo NSW, Super Radio Network C
Holmsey & Flan; Paul Holmes & Sean Flanagan, 102.9 Hot Tomato, Gold Coast QLD, Hot Tomato P
The Hamish & Andy Show; Fox FM, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
Ray Hadley; 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Radio Network
Geoff Mann; 2DU, Dubbo NSW, Super Radio Network C
Steve Allan; 107.7 2GO FM, Central Coast NSW, Southern Cross Media P
Ray Hadley; 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Radio Network M
2009 AFL Grand Final; K-Rock Football Commentary Team, 95.5 K-Rock, Geelong VIC, Grant Broadcasters NM
2009 NRL Grand Final; Continuous Call Team, 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Radio Network M
Cameron 'Action' Jackson; Sun 969, Alice Springs, Alice Springs NT, Commercial Broadcasters C
Rod McLeod; 92.5 Gold FM, Gold Coast QLD, Southern Cross Media P
Kristy Warner; Nova 969, Sydney NSW, DMG Radio Australia M (FM)
Steve Blanda; 2UE, Sydney NSW, Fairfax Radio Network M (AM)
Lauren Richardson; Holmsey & Flan, 102.9 Hot Tomato, Gold Coast QLD, Hot Tomato NM
Sam Cavanagh; The Hamish & Andy Show, Fox FM, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
Monica Masters; Mike Welsh Drive Show, 2CC, Canberra ACT, Capital Radio NM
Justin Smith; 3AW Mornings, 3AW, Melbourne VIC, Fairfax Radio Network M
Rachel McLarnon; 102.5 & 104.3 Power FM, Bega NSW, Grant Broadcasters C
Trent Towson; 90.9 Sea FM, Gold Coast QLD, Southern Cross Media P
Toni Pipicelli; Nova 969, Sydney NSW, DMG Radio Australia M
Dayle Richardson; 98.1 Power FM, Muswellbrook NSW, Grant Broadcasters NM - C
Kim Blair; KO FM / NX FM, Newcastle NSW, Austereo NM - P
Dave Cameron; Fox FM, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
Koffee; Brett Nossiter 'Nozz', National, DMG Radio Australia
Radar Radio; Austereo Digital Radio, Sydney NSW, Austereo
Never Ending Name; Luke Bradnam, 102.9 Hot Tomato, Gold Coast QLD, Hot Tomato NM
Matt Tilley vs Lara Bingle; The Matt and Jo Show, Fox FM, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
Jon & Jane Breakfast Show; Jon Vertigan & Jane Fitzgerald, 3YB Warrnambool, Warrnambool VIC, ACE Radio Broadcasters C
Adam & Joe The Benchwarmers; Sea FM, Gold Coast QLD, Southern Cross Media P
Ray Hadley Morning Show; Ray Hadley, 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Radio Network M
Cover To Cover; Melbourne VIC, MCM Media
Pricey's Tour Of Duty; Steve Price, 4TO FM, Townsville QLD Southern Cross Media NM
Triple M's Tribute To Vic Davies; Paul Murray, Rachel Corbett, Richard Mortlock and Sideshow Mike Andersen, Triple M, Sydney NSW, Austereo M
Power FM's Long Way To Rock; Dayle Richardson, 98.1 Power FM, Muswellbrook, NSW, Grant Broadcasters C
Rock Star Gladiators; Mike Duncan; Dion Clewett & Dave Evans, Star 104.5, Central Coast NSW DMG Radio Australia P
Guy Sebastian vs Every Artist On Our Playlist; The Hamish & Andy Show, Fox FM, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
6KG Production - Glenn Wilson & Jerimiah Busniak, 6KG RadioWest, Kalgoorlie WA, Southern Cross Media C
Dave Post; The Edge 96.1, Western Sydney NSW, Australian Radio Network P
Sideshow Mike Andersen; Triple M, Sydney NSW, Austereo M
Daniel Pearson; Nova 969, Sydney NSW, DMG Radio Australia M
Maria Slater; Spirit / WA FM, Port Headland WA, Redwave Media C
4MK Mackay Team; 4MK 1026, Mackay QLD, Prime Radio P
4BC Sales Team; 4BC, Brisbane QLD, Fairfax Radio Network M
Emma Weston; Regional Mediaworks, Brisbane QLD, Southern Cross Media NM
Brenton Clarke; SA FM & Triple M, Adelaide SA, Austereo M
Jacqueline Jeffrey; 1503 2BS Gold, Bathurst NSW, Bathurst Broadcasters C
Nathan Harrison; 2CC / 2CA, Canberra ACT, Capital Radio P
Adie Williams; Fox FM / Triple M, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
Karis Brussel Sprouts - Veggies With Attitude; Leigh Ratcliffe, 107.7 Sea FM, Devonport TAS, Grant Broadcasters C
ACT Policing - Drink Drive Campaign; Geoff Bickerton, FM 104.7 / Mix 106.3 FM, Canberra ACT, ARN/Austereo P
Sharks - Melton Toyota; Darren Collins & Ray Peters, Gold 104, Melbourne VIC, Australian Radio Network M
Love Month; Online Department, Gold Coast QLD, Southern Cross Media NM
The Hybrid Freeway Challenge; Siobhan Siegert, Brett Sandler & The Nova 93.7 Spark Team, Nova 93.7, Perth WA, DMG Radio Australia M (Sales)
AC/DC;, Triple M Network, Sydney NSW, Austereo M (Station)
The Rocking Santa Cheque Book; 98.1 Power FM, Muswellbrook NSW, Grant Broadcasters C
Scotty & Nige's Daredevil Bingo; 104.7 Product Team, FM 104.7, Canberra, ACT, ARN/Austereo P
Carlton Draught - Drop the Bomb; Fox FM, Melbourne Vic, Austereo M
The Cockroach Cup; 98.1 Power FM, Muswellbrook NSW, Grant Broadcasters C
Sea FM's 80's Vinyl Weekend; Tim Aquiliana, Sea FM, Rockhampton QLD, Southern Cross Media P
Mez vs Wild; Carlie Millican, Merrick Watts & Stefan Mitchell, Nova 969, Sydney NSW, DMG Radio Australia M
Kirsten Willoughby; KO FM / NX FM, Newcastle NSW, Austereo NM
Kirsten Franc; Fox FM / Triple M, Melbourne VIC, Austereo M
Pink FM; Red FM, Remote Western Australia WA, Redwave Media C
i98 FM Camp Quality Convoy For Kids; Tia Robins, Marty Haynes, Bianca Dye & Josh Webster, i98, Wollongong, NSW, Win Corporation P
The B105 Christmas Appeal; Labby, Camilla & Stav, B105, Brisbane QLD, Austereo M
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Previous Hamish and Andy:
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2010-10-15: Tribune Co. Chief Innovation Officer Lee Abrams, who was suspended earlier this week after sending an e-mail that contained a link to a video entitled "Sluts" and containing images of bare-breasted women (See RNW Oct 14) has now resigned from the company.
An e-mail to staff from Tribune's CEO Randy Michaels noted the suspension for distribution of "an email and video link that some employees found offensive" and continued, "Today, Lee offered his resignation and I accepted it. Effective immediately, Lee will no longer be an employee of Tribune.
Reporting on the resignation, Phil Rosenthal in the Chicago Tribune (owned by Tribune Co.) quoted a company source as saying the resignation will not derail the projects on which he had been working, including development of an anchorless newscast to try out at Tribune Co.'s low-rated Houston TV station but adds in a paragraph that refers to a New York Times story on the atmosphere at Tribune Co (See RNW Oct 6) "Some close to Tribune Co.'s Chapter 11 case have said the issues raised by Abrams' memo and the New York Times story are likely to cast a shadow on the bankruptcy proceedings.
He notes that next Friday U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Carey is scheduled to consider a motion that potentially could lead to appointment of a bankruptcy trustee to take over the case from the company.
Rosenthal also reports that before Abrams' exit was announced The Chicago Headline Club's board said it had written to the bankruptcy court and Tribune Co.'s management, directors and creditors to declare that it "strongly objects to the culture of offensiveness" it said "marginalized women at the Chicago Tribune.
Chicago Tribune editor Gerould Kern was quoted as saying people were confusing the parent (Tribune Co.) and the newspaper and adding that that the paper "is being wrongly tarnished by the allegations against Tribune Co. executives and by actions such as Abrams'" and adding "The Chicago Tribune has nothing to do with any of it. It's shameful that significant damage has been done to our reputations and to the good name of the Chicago Tribune."
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Previous Michaels:
Previous Tribune Co:
Chicago Tribune report:

2010-10-15: Emmis has reported revenues in its second quarter, running to the end of August, up 4.1% on a year earlier at USD 66.85 million with overall figures massively boosted by the absence of an impairment loss this year compared to one of USD 171 million in 2009.
As a result a 2009 operating loss of USD 165.2 million moved to operating income of USD 8.4 million and a net loss attributable to common shareholders of USD 135.6 million was reduced to a loss of USD 2.3 million (From a loss of USD 3.67 per share to a loss of six cents per share).
For the first six months of the year revenues were down 2.5% to USD but again the absence of the USD 176.6 million impairment loss recorded in 2009 dramatically changed the overall figures with the 2009 operating loss of USD 171.6 million becoming operating income of USD 12.2 million.
The net loss attributable to common shareholders changed in line with this from a loss of USD 123.6 million to a loss of USD 6.25 million - From a loss of USD 3.35 per share to a loss of 17 cents per share.)
Within the figures Emmis noted that in the second quarter of 2009 it had USD 516,000 of income from operations now discontinued- including USD 591,000 in income from Hungary (Slager Radio whose licence was awarded to another bidder, taking it off air on November 19, 2009 - See RNW Nov 19, 2009) and USD 137,000 from Belgium where a loss of USD 383,000 from its Belgian radio operations was more than balanced from a USD 420,000 gain on their sale: This year it recorded only a USD 40,000 loss for Slager Radio
In divisional terms Emmis reported radio revenues for the second quarter of USD 51.7 million, up 4.1% on a year earlier with an operating loss of USD 152.5 million becoming income of 12.7 million. Publishing revenue was also up 4.1% - this time to USD 15.14 million- and its operating loss of USDD 9.2 million became income of USD 683,000
For the first six months radio revenues were up 3.1% to USD 96.1 million and publishing revenues were up 1.1% to USD 31.1 million whilst a radio operating loss of USD 152.1 million became operating income of USD 22.1 million and a publishing operating loss of USD 10.57 million became operating income of USD 660,000.
Previous Emmis:

2010-10-14: BBC Radio 2 Breakfast host Chris Evans, who hosted the BBC Radio One breakfast show for seven years and has been engaged in a long-running spat with current Radio 1 breakfast host Chris Moyles, re-opened the wounds today in an interview on the Richard Bacon Show on BBC Radio Five Live in which he criticised Moyles for his recent on-air rant about not being paid and said he was too old for his audience and was time for him to leave the show.
Evans was appearing on the show to promote his latest book 'Memoirs of a Fruitcake' (Bacon Show podcast page is here - 25 MB MP3 and interview with Evans, who was, starts around 50 seconds in and runs for around 35 minutes. Moyles comments begin around 28 minutes in).
Evans asked about Moyles, who is 36, says he didn't hear the "rant" and then says Moyles' show, like his ownshow earlier, had become a soap opera and when you use yourself "as your own research" you are "going to run dry some day."
He says he thinks this is what has happened to Moyles and that Moyles has "lost perspective" -then asks "Why do you think you have the right to hijack a BBC microphone to make that complaint", noting that he has done the same kind of thing himself, once ranting for an hour.
He then says arrogance and youth is appealing but not as you get older and later comments on reports of Moyles maybe leaving the BBC to go to commercial radio says "Chris has to go somewhere else next because it's time for him to leave... because he's broken all the records ...he's been the longest-ever serving DJ on Radio 1... he's way out of the demographic already for the listenership..." and then says he should go while he's still "hot".
He then goes on to say Moyles could work at Radio 2 "because he's talented" but says he thinks he'll "go to commercial radio. I think he'll get a massive pay packet and I think he'll do very well... he should be the first, big, big, national commercial DJ"
Also at the BBC, Radio 2 has announced that British comedy duo Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders are to make their radio hosting debut on the station with three shows over Christmas and the New Year - to air on Boxing Day (December 26) New Year's Day and the New Year Bank Holiday on 3 January.
French commented in a BBC news release, ": "I'm chuffed to blooming heck to be joining Radio 2, not least because I get to spend quality time with a) my comedy partner, Sassy Saunders, and b) our combined record collection - two of my favourite distractions. Plus, I can't wait for the opportunity to go to work with my negligee and kitten heels on and no make-up. Warning - this show may contain nuts."
Saunders added, "I is delighted to be presenting a show on the wireless with me good pal Dawn French. We hopes to be doing talking and spinning an unusual mix of happening disc records and talking to guests if any agree to join us. What joy!"
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Previous Bacon:
Previous Evans:
Previous Moyles:
BBC Radio Five Live - Bacon podcasts page:

2010-10-14: Massachusetts public broadcaster the WFCR Foundation has announced that it is purchasing Westfield station WNNZ-AM from Clear Channel for USD 600,000: The station has been programmed by WFCR-FM, whose signal covers western and central Massachusetts, northern Connecticut, southern Vermont and New Hampshire, since 2007 under a special agreement with its former owner.
As a result of the sale the station, whose signal covers Hampden, Hampshire, Berkshire and Franklin Counties, along with northern Connecticut and eastern New York state, will go non-commercial.
Negotiations to purchase the station began last year and the WFCR Foundation's capital campaign will raise funds to pay for the acquisition, which will be initially funded by a short-term (four year) loan from Public Radio Capital: Funds raised through WFCR-FM's annual fund will not be used for the purchase.
WCFR had been looking for a permanent home for an all-news programming service in the late 1990's and in 1997, it began programming 1430AM, originally called WTTT, then WPNI. It moved the programming to 640AM WNNZ in 200.
WCFR CEO and General Manager, Martin Miller said in a news release, "An opportunity like this comes along once in a lifetime. The acquisition of WNNZ by WFCR signals a new era for the greater Springfield/Pioneer Valley broadcast landscape, and for the region's multiple format public radio tradition. WFCR is proud to bring this new level of service to the region."
Foundation President Marc Berman added, "For the million-plus people who reside in the geography that WNNZ covers, there is now a fully accessible NPR News station at their fingertips wherever they are; home, car, or at work. It's a very exciting time for WFCR and WNNZ."
Previous Clear Channel:

2010-10-14: Tribune Company has suspended its Chief Innovation Officer Lee Abrams indefinitely without pay while it reviews a memo he sent company-wide on Monday that included a link to a video "Sluts" - described in a report in the Chicago Tribune as "a fictional report on the crash of a bus full of reality-show contestants and included a gyrating woman baring her breasts as well as a fake anchor urging a fake correspondent on the scene to "stay safe out there, and don't (have sex with) any of those sluts.".
The message led to complaints from employees and Abrams has apologized to "everyone who was offended" by the e-mail.
In a memo announcing the suspension without pay, Tribune Chief Executive Randy Michaels said, "Lee recognizes that the video was in extremely bad taste and that it offended employees. "But, this is the kind of serious mistake that can't be tolerated; we intend to address it promptly and forcefully."
Regarding the action being taken, the memo said Abrams "will remain on suspension indefinitely and without pay while we review the circumstances surrounding the e-mail and video link he distributed on Monday. We're in the process of determining further disciplinary action."
The Chicago Tribune quoted Michaels as saying Abrams in reference to a note sent to employees before the New York Times published a report critical of a "frat house" atmosphere at Tribune (See RNW Oct 6), "As I said last week, a creative culture must be built on a foundation of respect. Our culture is not about being offensive or hurtful. We encourage employees to speak up when they see or hear something that they find offensive, as a number of employees did with regard to this particular e-mail. I can assure you, you will be heard.
Abrams, who joined Tribune after a decade with XM Satellite Radio, reported the paper, had asked Tribune Co to delete the offending e-mail from its servers and promised to ensure that his future e-mails would "contain nothing like this" again.
He said of the video in question that it was "a parody of a cable-type reality show," and added, "It is not something that we would ever air on our TV stations - in fact quite the opposite - we show this as an example of what NOT to do. But, still, I understand that it was very inappropriate to distribute a link to the video to a wider audience."
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Chicago Tribune report:

2010-10-13: Sirius XM Radio has revealed a mix of positive and negative developments in an 8K filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in which it notes a news release saying that it added that it added 334,727 net subscribers in the third quarter of 2010, compared to a net subscriber gain of 102,295 in the third quarter of 2009 and also that it is the subject of a multi-state investigation into its subscription practices.
Regarding the latter the filing says that this month a Multistate Working Group, led by the Attorney General of the State of Ohio and joined by the Offices of the Attorneys General of Arizona, Connecticut, Tennessee, Vermont and the District of Columbia, commenced a multi-jurisdictional investigation into certain of our consumer practices. "
The investigation," says Sirius XM "focuses on our practices relating to the cancellation of subscriptions; automatic renewal of subscriptions; charging, billing, collecting, and refunding or crediting of payments from consumers; and soliciting customers."
It also notes that a separate investigation into our consumer-related practices is being conducted by the Attorney General of the State of Florida and that in September, the Attorney General of the State of Missouri commenced an action against us regarding our telemarketing practices to residents of the State of Missouri (See RNW Oct 7 and Sep 8).
Sirius XM adds that it is cooperating with these investigations and believes its consumer-related practices comply with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations.
Regarding subscriber numbers, Sirius XM notes that it ended the third quarter with 19,862,175 subscribers, an increase of more than 1.3 million subscribers from September 30, 2009, of which XM satellite radio added 469,165 net subscribers compared to a loss of 145,855 net subscribers in the first three quarters of 2009; and Sirius satellite radio added 620,252 net subscribers in the first three quarters of this year compared to a loss of 342,271 net subscribers in the first three quarters of 2009.
XM it said ended the third quarter with 10,218,265 subscribers, an increase of more than 513,000 subscribers from September 30, 2009 while Sirius ended the third quarter with 9,643,910 subscribers, an increase of more than 833,000 subscribers from September 30, 2009.
It expects to end the year with around 20.1 million subscribers.
The company also announced details of two notes offerings by XM - a Cash Tender Offer and Related Consent Solicitation for its 11.25% Senior Secured Notes Due 2013 and an
For the 11.25% notes, XM is offering USD 1,120 for each USD 1,000 principal amount of Notes validly tendered at or before the Consent Payment Deadline of October 26 of which USD 20 is being offered only for notes tended before the Consent Payment Deadline: Notes validly tendered after this but before the November 9 expiry of the tender offer will only get USD 1,100.
XM has also offered a new offering of up to USD 550 million worth of unsecured Senior Notes due 2018, the proceeds of which will be used in connection with the purchase of the 11.25% notes.
Previous Sirius XM:

2010-10-13: Following his announcement on Tuesday that the BBC Deputy Director Mark Byford is to be made redundant (See RNW Oct 12), BBC Director General Mark Thompson has announced further management changes in response to criticism of the Corporation's spending on executives and the possibility that it could face a funding cut in the future.
In a news release the BBC said the "purpose of the restructuring is to further streamline management and management boards at the BBC and to make further progress towards the BBC's target of reducing its senior manager pay bill by 25 per cent by the end of next year."
Departing will be Sharon Baylay, who became Director, BBC Marketing, Communications and Audiences (MC&A) in May last year. She will not be replaced.
In addition Peter Salmon, Director of BBC North, and Lucy Adams, Director of BBC People, will lose their positions on the Corporation's Executive Board but will retain their posts and join an expanded Operations group led by Chief Operating Officer, Caroline Thomson.
Director-General Mark Thompson in a message to staff said of the changes, "My objective is simplification - simplifying reporting lines, simplifying structures and reducing the number of senior managers. No one should doubt our continuing belief in the importance of the work done by these divisions and the crucial role they have to play in the future of the BBC."
After they leave the Executive Board will end up with seven members from April next year when Helen Boaden, Director of BBC News, joins it following Byford's departure: They will be:
Director-General (Mark Thompson) (Chair)
Chief Operating Officer (Caroline Thomson)
Director, BBC Vision (Jana Bennett)
Director, BBC Audio & Music (Tim Davie)
Director, BBC Future Media & Technology (Erik Huggers)
Director, BBC News (Helen Boaden)
Group Finance Director (Zarin Patel).
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Previous Thompson:

2010-10-12: Tribune Co. has announced its support for agreement on a re-organization plan agreed by its Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, Oaktree Capital Management, L.P., Angelo, Gordon & Co, L.P., and JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., and endorsed by mediator U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Gross.
Tribune says that as with the previously-announced settlement, this agreement allows for the distribution of the equity of the reorganized Tribune and its subsidiaries pro rata to the holders of the Initial and Incremental Senior Loan claims.
It adds that an important component of the new settlement is the "contribution of USD120 million in cash by recipients of pre-bankruptcy payments on the Incremental tranche of the Tribune Senior Loan and the Bridge Loan facilities through an optional settlement of those claims, with the arrangers for those facilities providing a backstop to ensure that the estates receive the full settlement payment on the plan's effective date."
This additional settlement payment, together with additional contributions by holders of the Senior Loans, it says allows for Tribune's bondholders to receive USD 420 million, - 32.73 cents on the dollar - on Tribune's emergence from bankruptcy plus their interest in a litigation trust. It also provides for trade creditors of Tribune's operating subsidiaries to be paid in full.
Tribune says it intends to file a plan of reorganization and disclosure statement incorporating both settlement agreements with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware by this Friday and Don Liebentritt, Tribune's Chief Restructuring Officer, commented, "With the able assistance of Judge Gross, we continue to achieve success in our mediation efforts, and are pleased to have now expanded the plan settlement to include the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors. The additional value being allocated to our bondholders and other unsecured creditors represents a fair and equitable settlement for all of our constituencies."
"We remain confident," he said, "that Tribune continues on a path toward resolution of its Chapter 11 cases that maximizes the value of the bankruptcy estates, preserves all stakeholders' legitimate entitlements and enables the company to conclude its bankruptcy proceedings as soon as possible."
Previous Tribune Co.:

2010-10-12: The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued forfeitures totally USD 12,600 to stations in Iowa and Oregon for late filing of renewal applications and subsequent unauthorized operation.
In Iowa, Cornell College, licensee of KRNL-FM, Mount Vernon, attracted a USD 7,000 penalty after it filed its renewal application until a month after the station's licence expired. It had been issued with a Notice of Apparent Liability to Forfeiture for USD 7,000 to which it responded by requesting cancellation on the basis of financial hardship and because it made a good faith attempt to comply with FCC rules.
Financial details provided were not considered sufficient to justify the cancellation and the FCC noted in relation to argument of a good faith attempt that although the licensee initiated its online renewal application on September 28, 2004, it did not actually file the application until March 9, 2005. It commented that licensees are responsible for making themselves familiar with FCC regulations. The full penalty was confirmed.
In Oregon, Applegate Media, Inc., licensee of KAPL-AM, Phoenix, had also been issued with a USD 7,000 NAL to which it responded by arguing for a reduction because of a history of overall compliance with FCC regulations. The FCC having checked its records agreed to reduce the penalty to USD 5,600.
Previous FCC:

2010-10-12: The BBC has announced that it is to make its Deputy Director General Mark Byford redundant: He is to step down from the Executive Board at the end of March next year and will leave the BBC in early summer.
Byford's post will disappear but the Executive Board vacancy will be filled by Helen Boaden, Director, BBC News, who will it in April next year to represent BBC Journalism.
Byford, who is 52, has been with the Corporation for 32 years having joined it as a TV researcher at BBC Leeds in 1979 and amongst the roles he has held are Head of Television News, Bristol; Home Editor, BBC News and Current Affairs, in the BBC Newsroom; Head of Regional and Local Programming for Yorkshire and Humberside; Controller Regional Broadcasting - a post he was appointed to when aged 33 - he joined the BBC Board of Management in 1996 whilst in this role; and Director of the BBC World Service from 1998 until January 2004 when he was appointed Deputy Director-General.
Within weeks of this he became Acting Director-General for five months following the resignation of Greg Dyke and when current Director-General Mark Thompson was appointed his role as deputy was enhanced by making him the head of the BBC's journalism.
Byford's departure is part of a number of cuts in BBC management being made by Thompson in response to critics about the Corporation's management numbers and pay: Thompson in August scrapped pension top-up payments to a number of top executives and in the financial year to the end of March is expected to be paid around GBP 560,000 (USD 885,000) down from GBP 838,000 (USD 1.32 million).
Byford is paid around GBP 500,000 (USD 790,000) and his pay-off will approach twice this amount on top of which he has a pension worth several million pounds.
Announcing the decision Thompson on an e-mail to staff, "Mark has played a critical role in recent years as the leader of all journalism across the BBC and has been an outstanding deputy to me and member of the Executive Board. But as part of our commitment to spend as much of the licence fee as possible on content and services, we've been looking at management numbers and costs across the BBC, and that must include the most senior levels.
"We have concluded - and Mark fully accepts - that the work he has done to develop our journalism and editorial standards across the BBC has achieved the goals we set to such an extent that the role of Deputy Director-General can now end, that the post should close at the end of the current financial year, and that Mark himself should be made redundant."
Byford also sent an e-mail in which he said, "Obviously I will be very sad to leave this brilliant organisation that has been such a dominant part of my life for so long. But I know this decision is the right way forward. From a summer holiday job to head of all the BBC's journalism - I have been fortunate and blessed to have had such a wonderful career at the BBC. Today, I'd like to thank all my close friends and valued colleagues across the BBC for their friendship and support, and their inspiration, creativity and wisdom. I have learnt so much from so many. I feel privileged and proud to have been a part of the best broadcasting organisation in the world."
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Previous Thompson:
BBC Press Office - Byford and Thompson e-mails to staff:

2010-10-11: Citadel has named Deidra Lieberman, the current Director of Sales for the stations, as general manager of its KGO-AM and KSFO-AM in San Francisco in succession to president and GM Mickey Luckoff, who resigned last week (See RNW Oct 5). The company did not say whether she would also retain her current role.
Announcing the appointment to staff CEO Farid Suleman said, "It is a privilege and an honour to promote someone from within this fantastic organization. Deidra is a nationally respected sales professional, and I look forward to working with Deidra, Jack Swanson (Operations manager for the stations), and everyone here in San Francisco."
Lieberman responded by saying it was "absolutely the happiest day of my career. I'm excited beyond words and this comes from the very bottom of my heart. We will continue to focus on relevant content and serving our listeners, community and advertisers. I'm excited to get started!"
There was less happy news for Suleman and Citadel at the end of last week when a hedge fund, that has a small stake in the company, asked a court to revoke a stock award to the company's management and directors.
In another development at Citadel, the New York Times has reported of a filing by R2 Investments that accuses company executives of "a shocking display of corporate greed and dishonesty" in rewarding themselves with grants of stock worth USD 110 million - more than USD 55 million of it to Suleman: The board also awarded more than USD 1.35 million of stock to each of its members, an action R2 termed "a disturbing game of quid pro quo."
The plea asks that the stock award be revoked to "prevent one of the most egregious frauds by a company emerging from bankruptcy under Chapter 11" and said the payouts were contrary to the reorganization plan which called for the award of options not stock grants.
Citadel responded by saying the filing contained "misleading and inaccurate charges" and added that the board "which was appointed by the lenders, acted appropriately, within its authority under the equity Incentive plan that was filed with the court and in the best interests of the company."
"When the court reviews the record, we are confident this motion will be dismissed," it said.
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Previous Suleman:
New York Times report:

2010-10-11: UK media regulator Ofcom in its latest bulletin upheld one Broadcast Licensing breach complaint against a community radio station, seven TV standards complaints, three of them against the Ummah Channel, and one TV Fairness and Privacy Complaint, and also posted details of its ruling that complaints against a TV advert broadcast on various channels did not breach its rules.
The licence condition breach ruling was against Nottingham community station Radio Faza in relation to its "Key commitments" that includes in the programming section a statement that it "programming will typically be broadcast live for at least eight hours between 07.00 and 24.00 on weekdays.
Ofcom received a complaint that only pre-recorded material was being broadcast and wrote to the licensee, which admitted a breach of this condition from the end of June until 19 September this year, saying that this occurred at a time when a change in day-to-day station management had been put in place. During this period, it said, the link which carries output from the studio to the transmitter had been disconnected, due to the non-payment of the bill to the supplier of this link.
During the period this link was out of action the station had broadcast at a time when a change in day-to-day station management had been put in place. During this period the link which carries output from the studio to the transmitter had been disconnected, due to the non-payment of the bill to the supplier of this link but in mid-August steps were taken to resume live output, and six hours a day live material was broadcast between 20 August and 19 September. After this live output was resumed in full.
Ofcom has formally recorded the breach.
The numbers compare with rulings in its previous bullet that 13 community radio stations had breached their licence conditions by failing to submit annual reports by the required deadline and two stations failed to submit an annual report despite repeated requests on top of which two more breached of its advertising and sponsorship regulations. In that bulletin Ofcom also upheld TV Standards complaints involving four broadcasts, rejected TV complaints concerning a Marie Stopes International advertisement and did not uphold a TV Fairness and Privacy complaints.
In addition to this Ofcom also listed without details 189 complaints against 132 TV items and 12 radio complaints against 12 items that it did not uphold: This compared to 138 complaints against 100 items and 15 radio complaints against 9 items that were similarly listed in the previous bulletin.
Previous Ofcom:
Previous Ofcom Complaints Bulletin:

2010-10-10: Yet again last week was fairly quiet as regards radio for the regulators although all of them did post some decisions albeit with only one posting each from most of them.
In Australia, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) made only one radio related posting - finding two New South Wales community stations had breached regulations on advertising and sponsorship (See RNW Oct 7)
In Canada, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) was only a little busier, posting one radio licensing decision and a public notice.
The decision was the renewal from 1 December 2010 to 31 August 2014 of licences of Blackburn Radio Inc.'s Ontario English-language commercial radio stations CFGX-FM, Sarnia; CHKS-FM, Sarnia; CHOK-AM, Sarnia and its transmitter CHOK-FM-1, Sarnia; CKNX-AM, Wingham; CKNX-FM. Wingham and its transmitter CKNX-FM-2, Centreville; CKUE-FM. Chatham, and its transmitter CKUE-FM-1, Windsor; and CFCO-AM, Chatham, and its transmitter CFCO-1-FM, Chatham.
The CRTC noted that annual returns for the 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 broadcast years for all the stations were filed late and that the licensee put this down to the retirement of an experienced accountant whose replacement failed to meet the deadline.
The CRTC also posted a public notice with a November 10 deadline for the submission of interventions or comments relating to an application by HFX Broadcasting Inc. to increase the power of its English-language station CKHY-FM, Halifax, Nova Scotia, from 32,000 watts to 100,000 watts, relocate the transmitter; change the antenna's radiation pattern from directional to non-directional and decrease the effective height of antenna above average terrain from 224.5 to 185.1 meters.
The current transmitter is on a site owned and operated by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and HFX proposes to move the antenna to a tower owned by CTVglobemedia Inc. on which it applicant currently operates CKHZ-FM.
In Ireland, the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI)'s only posting was of its latest Compliance decisions in which it upheld no radio complaints ( See RNW Oct 9) but in the UK Ofcom made two radio postings.
One was of its September update that included the decision not to go ahead with a digital radio stations for the 2012 London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (See RNW Oct 6).
The other related to the way it will determine payment for renewal of national analogue licences including a decision that it will consider the effects of digital take-up on analogue audiences and losses on broadcasting a digital simulcast in setting the price (See RNW Oct 5 ).
In the US the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) also had a quiet time as regards radio although it did post details of a consent decree involving a USD 5,000 penalty each with Peconic Public Broadcasting and Long Island University regarding a change of control of WLIU-FM and two proposed USD 15,000 penalties on Massachusetts pirate operators (See RNW Oct 4 ).
The agency has also announced that it is to hold initial usability test sessions for the proposed Consolidated Licensing System (CLS) on Thursday, October 14.
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Previous BAI:
Previous CRTC:
Previous FCC:
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Ofcom web site:
2010-10-09: The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) has upheld no complaints against radio at the most recent meeting of its Compliance Committee, which considered six complaints against TV of which it rejected three, upheld two relating to the same advertisement, and upheld another complaint in part.
Partly upheld was a Ryanair complaint against RTÉ One in which it alleged that the No Frontiers travel programme had promoted Aer Lingus and ignored Ryanair - the committee upheld the complaint as regarded the presenter advertising advertise products/services and product placement & undue prominence but not the other parts of the complaint.
The other two complaints upheld related to an Optical Express advert broadcast by RTÉ and TV3 and the committee held that in it medical treatment was promoted and endorsed by a renowned individual in breach of Irish regulations.
Previous BAI:

2010-10-08: US NPR (National Public Radio) and AFTRA (the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) have reached tentative agreement on a five-year contract.
NPR President Vivian Schiller released news of the agreement in an e-mail to staff and was also noted on the AFTRA NPR twitter page. It is now subject to ratification by AFTRA members and AFTRA says it will give no details until after ratification.
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Previous NPR:
Previous Schiller:
NPR-AFTRA twitter page:

2010-10-08: Clear Channel has dumped its WLW-AM afternoon co-host Eddie Fingers, who had been with sister WEBN-FM and WLW for 25 years, and he is now awaiting the end of a six-month no-compete clause to resume his radio career according to the Cincinnati Enquirer: All mention of him has been removed from the WLW-AM web site
Fingers had moved over to WLW in January 2008 after Gary Burbank retired and was teamed with former Reds player Tracy Jones on the 1500-18-00 show: The paper says that his absence from the show on Thursday prompted speculation that the dismissal was a stunt but Fingers told the paper, "I can verify this is not a stunt. Apparently I (infuriated) the wrong guy."
He also agreed to chat with his fans at noon next Tuesday on and give details of his firing, which he said came after the company offered him a new contract, an offer to which he responded by noting that he already had an option for a third year on his existing two-year contract.
Fingers told the paper, "They pretended that the option didn't exist" and he countered by proposing to eliminate a bonus, but "keep the basic (contract) structure in place." He added that he was told his dismissal was a corporate decision and that Cincinnati market manager Chuck Fredrick and AM operations director Darryl Parks wanted him to stay and said he'd been told "I was chosen to make an example for Clear Channel. If they can fire Eddie Fingers from a No. 1 show, they can fire anyone."
Previous Clear Channel:
Cincinnati Enquirer report:
WLW-AM web site:

2010-10-08: Two agencies - Mother and AMV BBDO - each took three awards at this year's UK Radio Advertising Awards, the former for it "Frank" adverts for the Central Office of Information drugs awareness brand.
"Frank" took Aerial awards for best writing & direction for Giggles vs Panic Attacks; best campaign for Anti-Cannabis; and outstanding commercial for an existing advertiser for "Frank" whilst AMV BBDO's Aerials were for best use of radio to drive sales (for Heinz - It has to be Heinz); for best use of radio to drive awareness (Department of Transport - THINK Bike, THINK Biker); and most outstanding commercial for a charity campaign (for Kids Company- This Christmas).
Media Agency of the Year award went to Carat and other Aerial awards were:
Best use of radio to drive consideration - Universal McCann & Global Radio for Windows 7 (Capital Jingle Bell Ball Sponsorship).
Best use of radio in a multimedia campaign - MEC for Department of Health (Smokefree).
Best use of radio to drive response - DDB for Volkswagen ("Complimentary" Sat Nav).
Best use of branded content - DrumPHD for O2 (Priority tickets).
Awards web site (Has MP3s of winning and commended entries):

2010-10-07: The Australian Football League (AFL) and Fairfax Media's 3AW, Melbourne, are involved in a row over the identification by the station's breakfast host Neil Mitchell of two Collingwood Football Club players who had been interviewed by police concerning allegations made by a woman that she was sexually assaulted in South Melbourne on AFL grand final night.
Eddie McGuire, president of the Premier League club said Mitchell had interfered with legal process with the naming: The Melbourne Age, also owned by Fairfax, reported that Mitchell did not say the two players involved were suspects and a report on the naming on the 3AW website says the host said he released the names to protect other Collingwood players who were being wrongly identified in connection with the alleged assault. The Age added that Mitchell commented that the players' names were "being whispered behind every hand in Melbourne" but that other players had also been incorrectly named.
McGuire said the identification was a "disgraceful act" and added, "These players, their names, their reputations, their families ... possibly even the case that's up before them has been prejudiced by outside media influence for no other reason than a blatant grab for ratings and notoriety."
On his "Hot Breakfast with Eddie" show on Austereo's Triple M in Melbourne, McGuire called Mitchell "a "self-appointed, self-important windbag" (Audio of McGuire's comments is currently on the station web site).
A survey of readers' opinions on the Age's web site was running 60% saying the naming was wrong to 40% in favour when we last checked with more than 26,000 votes cast and most comments on Australian sites we checked opposed the naming.
The AFL in a statement said it was disappointed Mitchell had chosen to publicly name the players - a move the AFL believed was "inappropriate" and AFL Players Association CEO Matt Finnis said there had been no need to name the players, who now risked being tainted forever.
Previous Fairfax Media:
3AW web site:
Melbourne Age report:
Triple M web site:

2010-10-07: RTÉ has announced that Ana Leddy, Head of RTÉ Radio 1, has decided to stand down as head of the station, confirming that she will not seek a renewal of her contract when it expires next year.
Leddy said that after five years in the post it was time for a change, adding, "I came to RTÉ Radio 1 with a mission and it has been an incredibly satisfying five years as I have worked with colleagues to make RTÉ Radio 1 the best radio station in Ireland."
"It has been both challenging and exhilarating," she added. "As I prepare to hand on the role, I look at my schedule with a sense of pride, the result of some bold and indeed controversial programming decisions… I'm now looking for a new challenge. It's time to reconnect with my creative roots in production. I want to pay tribute to my colleagues: their work has filled our schedules with top-rating, award-winning and critically acclaimed radio, and I look forward to joining them, and making great radio."
RTÉ Radio Managing Director Clare Duignan commented, "Ana Leddy did that rare thing in broadcasting: she reinvigorated a station in decline. In her approach to programming and scheduling, she always put the listener first and this approach delivered results in spades. Her legacy is that she leaves Radio 1 stronger, more audience-focused and more competitive than when she arrived. I am hugely grateful to Ana for her enormous energy and commitment during her time as Head of Radio 1. As programme-makers, we all share that itch to get back to the mixing-desk. Ana is making that leap and management's loss is programming's gain. Listeners have a lot to look forward to once Ana Leddy returns to the talk-back."
Leddy will remain in her post until a successor is in place and will then work at a senior level in programme production on the station.
Previous Duignan:
Previous Leddy:
Previous RTÉ:

2010-10-07: Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has obtained a preliminary injunction against Sirius XM Radio, Inc. for repeatedly calling consumers on the Missouri no-call list who had objected to the calls.
Koster last month filed a lawsuit against Sirius and obtained a temporary restraining order as a result of complaints filed with the no-call division of the Attorney General's Office (See RNW Sep 8).
Koster's lawsuit alleges violations of the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act and the Telemarketing No-Call List Act and Koster said harassing telephone solicitation calls were made to consumers soliciting satellite radio subscriptions.
Sirius XM had contested the preliminary injunction at a hearing in St Louis but according to Koster's office the "court found that the Attorney General's office had established a probability of success at trial on the merits."
It added that the judge found that the Missouri citizens on the no-call list would suffer a hardship if the preliminary injunction was not granted and ruled that the preliminary injunction will be in place throughout the litigation until the full trial on the permanent injunction.
The court has specifically ordered Sirius XM and to stop making repetitive calls to consumers on the no-call list who notified the defendant they rejected the Sirius XM subscription or after their free trial period expired, unless the consumer expressly authorized Sirius XM to call and Koster commented, "Our office will continue to prosecute any business, regardless of its size, when it makes unlawful telemarketing calls to Missourians registered on our no-call list. It is a consumer's right to demand that illegal telemarketing calls that violate Missouri's laws stop, and no matter how aggressively it fights, no business is immune from Missouri's no-call law. We will continue to go after those who violate the law."
Previous Sirius XM:

2010-10-07: The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has found that two New South Wales radio stations breached regulations on sponsorshi0 and advertising.
In one case Coffs Harbour community radio station 2CHY was investigated after a complaint and the ACMA found that interviews with representative of two businesses broadcast during its "The Switch" programme promoted the businesses to the extent that they were advertisements.
Licensee Community Media CHY Ltd has drafted on-air sponsorship guidelines. In response to the findings and accordingly the ACMA is to take no further action for now.
In the second case Ryde community radio station 2RRR was found to have broadcast an advert in its Mahak (Hindi language) programme: In this case the broadcaster failed to broadcast a sponsorship tag.
Licensee Ryde Regional Radio Cooperative Ltd has now amended its sponsorship policy and requires all sponsorship announcements to be pre-recorded and approved by the Sponsorship Co-ordinator prior to broadcast as well as requiring all presenters to undertake accredited training in media law. Again the ACMA is to take no further action for now.
Previous ACMA:

2010-10-06: Tribune Co.'s CEO Randy Michaels has responded to a New York Times article on the company that referred in the headline to its "bankrupt culture" by urging employees in an e-mail sent before the story was printed saying they should "ignore the noise" and saying he anticipated that it would "apparently paint the work environment at Tribune as hostile, sexist and otherwise inappropriate."
The report, by David Carr, was posted shortly after the e-mail was sent and Phil Rosenthal in his Tribune blog says Michaels said it "concerned events, distortions and rumours more than two years old" and an outside firm's investigation found "the most substantial of these allegations ... to be without substance" and added, "Mr. Carr has made clear that he is digging up these old allegations because he believes that decisions about the company's management are about to be made, and he wants to influence those decisions."
Rosenthal also noted that Michael's memo includes "without explanation, a link to a Web site for "The Night of the Gun," Carr's 2008 memoir of drug addiction and recovery."
Amongst the allegations in the Times story are one that Michaels in the company of several senior colleagues offered a waitress at a bar USD 100 to show him her breasts: Carr quotes one of the executives present - who he says did not want to be named - as saying, "Here was this guy, who was responsible for all these people, getting drunk in front of senior people and saying this to a waitress who many of us knew. I have never seen anything like it."
Michaels, who declined an interview, said through a spokesman that he never made the remark.
Supporting Michaels, Frank Wood, a member of the Tribune board was quoted as saying "Randy is a tremendous motivator, very charismatic, but he is very non-traditional. He has the kind of approach that motivates many people and offends others, but we think he's done a great job."
Carr also alleged that based on interviews with more than 20 Tribune employees and ex-employees that "Michaels's and his executives' use of sexual innuendo, poisonous workplace banter and profane invective shocked and offended people throughout the company."
Carr also notes that during and immediately after Michael's tenure as a Clear Channel executive - he was chairman and CEO of Clear Channel radio- three lawsuits were filed alleging sexual harassment at the company: They were settled out of court and Clear Channel has refused comment.
Previous Michaels:
Previous Tribune Co.:
Chicago Tribune - Rosenthal:
New York Times - Carr:

2010-10-06: Astral Media could be worth up to CAD 3.7 billion (USD 3.66 billion) according to note from RBC Capital Markets analyst Drew McReynolds who drew up the figure on the basis of the company becoming the subject of a "vertical integration" bid.
The valuation prices Astral shares at more than CAD 50 compared to today's closing figure of CAD 39.50.
McReynolds wrote his note after Shaw Communications Inc.'s purchase of Canwest Global Communications Corp. and BCE Inc.'s acquisition of CTVglobemedia Inc., suggesting that Astral and Corus Entertainment could become consolidation targets. He valued Astral at up to CAD 3.7 billion on the basis of the earnings multiples paid for Canwest and CTV.
Previous Astral:

Previous BCE:
2010-10-06: Although the 2008 Beijing Olympics and 2010 Commonwealth Games currently under way in India both had their own radio station, the London 2010 Olympics will not because of a lack of interest in providing a service: UK media regulator Ofcom launched a consultation in April about the operation of short-term digital radio services in London for the period of the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (the London 2012 Games) and says that after consultation with the British government if found "The lack of compelling evidence of demand, coupled with the not insignificant process involved (including the drafting of primary legislation) in licensing any such services, has led Ofcom to decide not to proceed with the possible licensing."
In all, says the regulator it received ten responses, not all of which related to providing a digital radio service and thus was unable to gauge how attractive an Olympics station is likely to be to commercial operations and the potential benefits of such a service.
The news came in Ofcom's September Radio Broadcast Update, which also noted a number of licence changes in the month including the following:
New commercial Services:
Chance Radio, an 18-hours a day service of a mix of new and contemporary pop music to be broadcast in Essex. RNW Note: The station's MYSpace page also says it will air nationally on the National Freeview digital TV platform.
Licence renewals and extensions:
Four year licence extension to November 2015 for Wester Ross Radio/Two Lochs Radio and Firth FM Holdings Ltd's Your Radio (Helensburgh.
Twelve year renewals to June 2022 for Fire Media Ltd 's Bournemouth service Fire 107.6 and to October 2022 for Westcom Media Ltd's Weston-super-Mare and North Somerset station Nova Radio (formerly WFM, Star 107 and Star Radio - UKRD).
Analogue Format changes:
Banbury Broadcasting Company Ltd. 's Banbury Sound - to be allowed to co-locate in Honiley with other stations owned by parent Quidem, which took over CN Group's Midland services.
Orion Media's Wyvern FM - to reduce from 10 hears to seven hours a day on weekdays the locally made hours. The weekend requirement of four locally made hours a day is unchanged.
Orion Media's BRMB- to be allowed to share all programming with its Coventry (Mercia) station and also to reduce from 10 hears to seven hours a day on weekdays the locally made hours. The weekend requirement of four locally made hours a day is unchanged.
Orion Media's Mercia FM, Coventry- to be allowed to share all programming with its Birmingham (BRMB) station and also to reduce from 10 hears to seven hours a day on weekdays the locally made hours. The weekend requirement of four locally made hours a day is unchanged.
DAB format changes:
London II multiplex - replace Smooth with French Radio London.
Yorkshire multiplex - replace Smooth Radio with Rock Radio.
South Wales and Severn Estuary - replace Smooth Radio with Rock Radio.
North West England - Add a temporary Radio Festival service (and temporarily reduce bit rate of The Arrow to accommodate this three day service: The Radio Festival will be held in Salford Quays from October 18-20).
Change of Control Reviews:
Star Radio, Bristol (Bought from Tomahawk Radio by Celador No change proposed to service);
Jack FM, Bristol (Former Original 106.5 which was bought by Tomahawk Radio and has now been bought by Celador No change proposed to service);
Radio Ceredigion (Aberystwyth station bought from Tindle Newspapers by Town and Country Broadcasting which is to be allowed to co-locate the station in the Narberth area with the company's Radio Carmarthenshire, Radio Pembrokeshire, and Scarlet FM - licensed to Llanelli).
Community Radio:
New licences:
Gateway Community Media Community Interest Company's Gateway 97.8, Basildon, Essex.
Licence Extensions:
Forest Community Radio's Forest FM, Verwood, East Dorset (To July 2016)
Radio Fiza Limited's Radio Fiza 97.1 fm, Nottingham (To the end of December 2015).
Key Commitment change:
North Manchester FM's North Manchester FM - changes in conditions relating to support and training removing condition related to opportunities for at least 25 volunteers a year to undertake accredited courses, delivered by external bodies; to change work placements for students studying Radio Production at The Manchester College with the same number of placements students studying at school, college and university levels; and removing condition under which it will offer taster sessions at community events, during outside broadcasts and at its Open Days with one that says it will have a presence at local community events in order to raise our profile and attract more volunteers..
Ofcom also noted that the second round for funding applications to the Community Radio Fund in 2010/11 will open on Tuesday 12 October 2010 and will close at close of play on Tuesday 9 November 2010 and that its Broadcasting Bulletin 166 carried findings relating to community stations to have breached licence rules relating to annual reports and to rules relating to advertising and sponsorship (See RNW Sep 27).
Previous Ofcom:

2010-10-06: Arbitron has announced a multi-year Portable People Meter (PPM) and Diary rating agreement with Adelante Media Group LLC, the former Bustos Media that was re-launched at the end of last month after its take-over by NAP Broadcast Holdings, a group of its creditors.
The deal would cover all the company's radio markets and Adalante CEO Jay Meyers commented in an Arbitron release, "Arbitron is the gold-standard in audience measurement and we are pleased to have expanded our partnership for both our PPM and diary markets.," As a new broadcast company serving the fastest growing segment of the U. S. population, Adelante has followed the industry debate closely."
In what was presumably a reference to earlier criticism of the Arbitron's panels when it came to minority representation, he added, "We recognize and appreciate the excellent progress Arbitron has made refining the representativeness of their sample. At Adelante, we will use both Arbitron's Diary and PPM data to give advertisers confidence in their Hispanic radio buys."
Previous Arbitron:
Previous Bustos Media:

2010-10-05: UK media regulator Ofcom is to consider the effects of digital take-up on analogue audiences and losses on broadcasting a digital simulcast in setting the price for renewal of the country's three national analogue commercial licenses: The plan is listed in details of the methodology to be used for the review of financial terms for the country's national commercial analogue licences following provisions in the Digital Economy Act 2010 for the licences to be renewed rather than the licensees having to bid for a new licence in an auction.
The three licences concerned - Global Radio's Classic FM and the AM licences of UTV's talkSPORT and the Times of India's Absolute Radio (the former Virgin) - were renewed in 1999 and 2000 for an eight year period and the act allows renewal for a period of not more than seven years.
Renewal is only allowed if the licensee provides a digital simulcast of its service (as all the three current holders do) and Ofcom has to set payments comprised of its estimate of the cash bid that would have been forthcoming were the licence being auctioned rather than renewed (the Cash Bid) and a percentage of qualifying revenue (PQR).
Following a consultation launched in July Ofcom says it will use the same methodology for these payments as it used in 2006 when the financial terms for each licence were set: Ofcom notes that the potential duration of the renewal is a particular uncertainty in this case and for valuation purposes it says it will consider the renewal as running to the end of 2015.
Classic FM has a licence that expires at the end of September next year whilst Absolute Radio's current licence runs to the end of April 2012 and that of talkSport to the end of December 2012 and in all cases the "relevant Date" from which it will calculate the licence duration for valuation purposes is a year before these dates.
In the case of Classic FM Ofcom notes that the passage of the legislation meant it could not set out the terms before the relevant date and that it intends to announce terms for renewal of this licence and, if agreed, renew the licence by the end of January next year at the latest. All the licensees will have 30 days to accept or reject the terms that Ofcom offers.
Ofcom notes in relation to its calculations that when the two AM licence terms were renewed in 2006 it set the Cash Bid value at GBP 100,000 (currently USD 159,000) and the PQR at zero whilst for Classic FM the Cash Bid was set at GBP 50,000 (currently USD 79,400) with the PQR at 6% of relevant revenues.
Regarding digital simulcasts, Ofcom says that it believes "there would be opportunities to purchase multiplex capacity if an operator wanted to launch a national DAB service" and thus right to reserved capacity on the national commercial multiplex has no significant value: It therefore says that where the costs of broadcasting a simulcast in DAB exceed the revenues associated with the simulcast the net loss "associated with the DAB simulcast will be taken into account in the valuation."
Other simulcasts such as on satellite or digital TV platforms are not part of the licence and accordingly are only taken into account in as far as costs and revenues are shared with a licensed service with these to be apportioned on the basis of listening hours.
Previous Ofcom:

2010-10-05: Michael "Mickey" Luckoff, who resigned yesterday as president and general manager of Citadel-owned KGO-AM and KSFO-AM in San Francisco, has attacked the company's handling of staff but denied rumours that he was forced out
Luckoff had headed the stations for 35 years under four owners - ABC (he joined in 1973 to manage KGO) , Capital Cities, The Walt Disney Co., and Citadel and the San Francisco Chronicle quoted him as saying of Citadel, "These aren't good people. They don't treat people well. They undermine you at every turn."
He added that Citadel were "constantly going behind my back and over my head. Nobody knew who they were supposed to report to. That's the way they operate."
Luckoff was due to appear on Ronn Owens' morning show on KGO-AM but Owens announced that the interview had been "cancelled by management, period."
In a letter to staff announcing his resignation Luckoff commented, "The memories and honours we have shared together are truly extraordinary: 12 Marconi Awards; two EDWARD R. MURROW Awards; the first major station in the country to 'Go Solar;' 37 years of Cal Football; the 'great years' with the 49ers; raising USD 18 million for Leukaemia and Lymphoma research; helping those less fortunate through our Thanksgiving Charities; launching, nurturing and sustaining the best live and local talent in the radio industry; and being on-the-scene for some of the biggest news stories of our lifetime."
Commenting on the resignation in his Inside Music Media blog (soon to become a paid subscription site) Jerry Del Colliano said he spoke to Luckoff, who is 74, and found him upbeat: Luckoff is to get married at the end of the year and is planning to write a book about his experiences.
Del Colliano says Citadel CEO Farid Suleman had kept his hands off KGO but then started meddling and adds that this was the main reason Luckoff resigned.
As an example Del Colliano says that Suleman would send VP/Programming Scott Shannon to tell Mickey's programmers that his station didn't sound like WCBS-FM in New York, adding, "Of course, Luckoff didn't want it to sound like CBS-FM because his hot talk station was in San Francisco - not that a little detail like that would bother a consolidator."
Luckoff, says Del Colliano, wrote his resignation letter nine months ago and kept it in a drawer, adding that when he attended the NAB Radio Show last week Luckoff found it hard to keep his mouth shut about what he was planning to do. Finally, he returned to the Bay Area and he had had enough.
Previous Citadel:
Previous Suleman:
Inside Music Media blog:
San Francisco Chronicle report:

2010-10-05: Absolute Radio, the former Virgin Radio, has reported a pre-tax loss of GBP 4.3 million (USD 6.84 million) in the year to the end of 2009, a performance it says was in line with its expectations.
The loss was up 62% on the GBP 2.66 million (USD 4.23 million) of a year earlier when it had been under its new owners for six months - after impairment charges of GBP 7.9 million (USD 11.1 million) with goodwill now listed at just under GBP 35 million (USD 55.65 million) - with revenues down 32.7% to GBP 14.8 million (USD 23.5 million) from GBP 21.9 million (USD 34.8 million). Costs were reduced by 22.5% to GBP 19.1 million (USD 30.4 million).
After tax the loss was GBP 4.3 million (USD 6.84 million) this year compared to GBP 1.92 million (currently USD 3.05 million) in 2008.
Absolute put the fall down to a combination of the recession and a large audience decline - average weekly reach in the quarter to the end of March this year was a record low of 1.396 million compared to 2.348 million before the re-launch of the former Virgin Radio as Absolute at the end of September 2008 ago although in the most recent quarter to the end of June it rose to 1.587 million. Virgin had reported a profit of GBP 3.8 million (currently USD 6.04 million) in 2007.
Absolute, owned by TIML Radio Limited, a subsidiary of The Times of India group, which in turn is owned by Bennett, Coleman and Co Ltd., says it has prioritised investment in premium content over even market share and noted the signing of talent such as comedians Frank Skinner and Dave Gorman, live music, and this year's acquisition of Premier League soccer rights. It said that as a result of this investment listener satisfaction "reached new highs" with average time spent listening in the quarter to the end of last year reaching a record high for the 16 years the station has been in operation whether as Virgin Radio or Absolute Radio.
"Against a tough economic backdrop, which continued throughout the whole year, the priority afforded to investment in content in 2009 came at the expense of building and developing market share in this period which immediately followed the rebrand to Absolute Radio," it said, adding, "The company continues to reposition itself as it drives towards a digital future, and the strategy of investment in unique and premium content continues in 2010."
Looking ahead it was upbeat with chief executive Donnach O'Driscoll commenting, "The heavy lifting is now behind us. We look forward to building on the strong growth shown in the most recent audience figures and we are optimistic about 2011. We launched Absolute Radio within 90 days of owning the company and then we went into the worst recession in living memory. It's very important to understand that - we never thought the business would be profitable from day one." "
O'Driscoll said revenues last month were expected to be up 20% on a year earlier compared to an estimated 3% fall in the national advertising market for the month.
The group says it now regards itself as a "mobile and entertainment audio brand" rather than a radio station: It offers four digital services as well as the Absolute Radio service and also more than 40 smart phone applications and O'Driscoll said it wants to produce as much creative content as possible and we want them to be accessible to as many people as possible.
It is planning to charge for some of its podcasts - the David Baddiel and Frank Skinner podcasts now attract some three million downloads, triple the estimated number.
Previous Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd.:

Previous O'Driscoll:
2010-10-04: The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced enforcement actions in Massachusetts that include proposed fines of USD 15,000 each on two pirate operators and two consent decrees relating to WLIU-FM involving total payment of USD 10,000 relating to possible unauthorized transfer of control of the station.
The Consent Decrees are with Peconic Public Broadcasting, which has just made its final payment to take over Long Island University's WLIU-FM (See RNW Sep 30) and with Long Island University Public Radio Network, the station's licensee, under which each will pay USD 5,000 to the US Treasury.
The agreement terminates an FCC Enforcement Bureau investigation into whether the two organizations had taken part in conduct that exceeded the scope of a management agreement and could have effected a de facto unauthorized transfer of control.
The FCC launched an investigation after a complaint that Peconic had assumed control of the station without first obtaining Commission approval: it then issued Letters of Inquiry (LOIs) to each organization to which both responded by denying the allegation.
The FCC and both organizations have also agreed a compliance plan under which officers of LIU and Peconic's President will conduct a compliance examination of the Licensee's subsidiaries, companies, or affiliates that have negotiated local marketing or time brokerage/management agreements to be conducted, at a minimum, every six months, for three years.
In each case those involved from each organization will also consult with telecommunications counsel regarding Peconic's overall compliance with the relevant sections of the Commission's rules on an annual basis, if not more frequently and each organization will file compliance reports with the commission in 12 months, 24 months and 36 months.
In other enforcement actions, two Boston, Massachusetts, men have each been issued with USD 15,000 Notices of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NALs) for operating an unlicensed station: one went to Lloyd Morris and the other to Robert Brown.
In Morris's case in response to a complaint from a licensed broadcaster, FCC agents in October last year traced a signal to a multi-family dwelling in the Mattapan area of the city and met by a resident who showed them radio equipment in the basement.
Before leaving they left an on-scene Notice of Unlicensed Operation ("NOUO") in the mail slot identified by the resident as belonging to the building owner and subsequently FCC agents met the two men at the building where they admitted to being owners and operators of the station.
The agents handed Morris an NOUO that outlined potential penalties for operating an unlicensed station and the two men agreed to shut off the transmitter, doing so before the agents left the building.
In February this year the same complainant said the station had resumed operations and agents again traced the source of the signal and tried to conduct an inspection but no-one opened the door to them.
The FCC noted it had received no reply to its earlier NOUOs and on the basis of repetition of the breaches increased the proposed penalty on each man from the base level USD 10,000 to USD 15,000.
Previous FCC:
Previous Peconic Public Broadcasting:

2010-10-04: BBC Radio 2 has moved into broadcasting poetry this week with a week-long poetry season on the midday The Jeremy Vine Show to mark National Poetry Day (on Thursday) and it is also moving into literature and the arts with the launch of the Radio 2 Book Club on Simon Mayo's Drivetime show and its continuing Radio 2 Arts Show on Friday evenings.
Vine is to host discussions, listen to readings and explore poetry's potential to touch and change people's lives with each day's programme featuring on a different them - including include love, war, death, places and children - and including an on-air recital of a poem special to a listener who will its particular appeal and relevance to them.
The programme will have two in-house poets - Mr Gee, DJ, poet and presenter for BBC Radio 4's Bespoken Word series and Lucy Berry, the Jeremy Vine Show's former Poet in Residence- who will write a poem to match the subject of the day.
On the book club, Mayo's first book of the month will be Mr Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt, which will be featured next Monday.
Listeners will be able to take part in an interactive forum and post their thoughts on the Club's selected books, and this will be archived so book-lovers can refer back to it at a later date.
As part of the Book Club's activities Mayo will put listeners views to authors as he interviews them about their life and work, and their featured book and the BBC says the range of titles will cater for all tastes, from blockbusting thrillers to fantasy or romance novels.
At the end each on-air review Simon will announce the next new literary release with a new book announced every fortnight.
Mayo commented in a BBC news release, "Books were an extremely important part of the 5 Live show I did for nine years and for all those who miss it still, the Radio 2 Book Club is what you've been waiting for."
The arts show is presented by Claudia Winkelman on Friday evenings and this month highlights include the Illuminating York Festival, featuring a spectacular new son et lumiere and a preview of the UK's premier horror film festival, Grimm Up North.
Previous BBC:

2010-10-03: Last week was yet again quiet as regards radio postings by the regulators and again there were no postings from Ireland: In Australia, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) posted only one radio decision - a finding that Highland Media Co-operative Ltd, licensee of community station 2WKT, Bowral, breached a licence condition and the Community Radio Broadcasting Codes of Practice 2008 by failing to retain a copy of a broadcast as required and breached the codes by using an inappropriate term when referring to Indigenous people and by failing to respond to the complaint within 60 days.
A complainant had alleged that in one broadcast the station breached codes relating to advertisements but the station was unable to provide a recording because its recording began late as a result of a daylight savings time error and the station had since recorded over it. On this basis the ACMA was unable to rule on the complaint but did find a breach of recording retention rules.
In the case of using an inappropriate term, a guest, who was part Aboriginal, was said to have used the words like half caste and quarter caste, 'no man's land' 'natives and tribes'.
The station argued that the guest, who had traced his ancestry to the Gundungurra people, using documents from the NSW Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages, had referred to being taken away from his parents twice as a small child and said While these terms may be considered as 'derogatory' today, they were in common usage in the 1940s and 1950s, the period to which [the guest] was referring."
The ACMA commented that "it is not so much the intention as the fact that such comments were broadcast and could be interpreted as offensive or inappropriate. In this regard, compliance must be assessed in relation to the words that were used" and said these were not appropriate in referring to Indigenous peoples.
In Canada, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) held hearings over Cogeco's purchase of 11 of Corus Entertainment's radio stations in Quebec province in which Cogeco argued for an exemption to market cap rules in Montreal where the purchase would take it above the limit (See RNW Sep 28).
Amongst decisions taken were:
*Approval of application by Newcap Inc. to replace its AM rebroadcasting transmitter CFXG-AM, Grande Cache, which carried the programming of CXFE-FM, Edson, with a 190 watts FM transmitter.
British Columbia:
*Renewed from 1 December 2010 to 31 August 2017 the licence of Sunshine Coast Radio Society's English-language specialty station C-VUE FM, Sechelt.
New Brunswick:
*Approval of application by Instant Information Services Incorporated, licensee of English-language low-power tourist information station CIRM-FM, Moncton, to relocate the transmitter and change its frequency from 101.9MHz to 90.1 MHz.
The licensee says the change is needed because to allow CKDH-AM, Amherst, to convert to FM Band, Maritime Broadcasting System Limited has been allocated 101.7MHz in Amherst. Newcap says the low-power AM signal has become unreliable due to an increase in the level of various types of interference, and a rise in listener expectations.
*Approval of application by Bayshore Broadcasting Corporation to relocate the transmitters of its English-language commercial radio stations CIXK-FM and CKYC-FM, Owen Sound, to a common tower and decrease the power of CIXK-FM from 100,000 to 28,000 watts and that of CKYC-FM from 31,600 to 22,000 watts. CIXK-FM's effective height of antenna above average terrain (EHAAT) would increase from 171.7 to 189.6 metres and that of CKYC-FM from 114.1 to 214 metres. Bayshore says the move would significantly reduce operating costs associated with the maintenance of transmitter sites.
The move had been opposed by Blackburn Radio Inc. on behalf of CKNX Radio, Wingham, its wholly-owned subsidiary, on the basis that the change would mean Bayshore would be sacrificing service to the Bruce Peninsula to enter the Wingham Central Market with a stronger signal and would have access to that market from several locations. It argued that its would be negatively affected and that the approval would mean Bayshore was violating Canada's market caps as it would control three FMs in the same market.
Bayshore responded that the approval would not provide a stronger signal to the Wingham central market, nor would it have a bearing on Blackburn's market position and argued that it would not breach market caps and the CRTC agreed and approved the applications.
*Approval of application by Communications CHIC to increase from 300 watts to 3,400 watts the effective power of its French-language specialty commercial station CHIC-FM, Rouyn-Noranda, and increase the effective height of antenna above average terrain from 35 metres to 103.3 metres.
*Application by Louis Ledoux, in his capacity as director of operations of Mistawasis First Nations Radio, for a licence to operate a 47 watts English- and Cree-language, Native Type B radio programming undertaking in Leask.
The CRTC also announced a hearing to beheld at its headquarters in Gatineau, Quebec, on November 26 - interventions or comments have to be submitted by October 27 - at which it will consider applications including:
*Application by Rogers Broadcasting Limited for authority to acquire, from CTV Limited and Milestone Media Broadcasting (Edmonton) Limited, partners in a general partnership carrying on business as Edmonton Urban Partnership, the assets of English-language commercial station CHBN-FM Edmonton( "The Bounce.") for CAD 22 million (USD 21.6 million). A benefits package of 6% of this amount - CAD 1.32 million (USD 1.29 million) is proposed - to be paid over seven years.
The CRTC also notes that Edmonton Urban Partnership, which is in its first licence term, may have failed to contribute the required total annual CTD (Canadian Talent Development) amount for the 2007 and 2008 broadcast years; that the specific contributions for each initiative outlined in the condition of licence may not have been met for the 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 broadcast years; and that at present, the Commission does not have CHBN-FM's annual return for the 2010 broadcast year.
British Columbia:
*Application by Gerhard Loeffeler, on behalf of a corporation to be incorporated, for a broadcasting licence to operate an 1,800 watts English-language commercial FM in 100 Mile House.
*Application by United Christian Broadcasters Canada for a licence to operate a 250 watts English-language FM Christian Adult Contemporary music specialty FM in Cobourg.
*Application by CTV Limited for authority to acquire, from Milestone Radio Inc., the assets of English-language commercial station CFXJ-FM Toronto ("The New Flow 93.5.") for CAD 27 million (USD 26.4 million). A benefits package of 6% of this amount - CAD 1.62 million (USD 1.59 million) is proposed - to be paid over seven years.
*Application by Rogers Broadcasting Limited for authority to acquire, from CTV Limited, the assets of English-language commercial station CHST-FM, London (" BOB-FM") for CAD 16 million ( USD 15.7 million). In this case the 6% benefits package, to be paid over seven years amounts to CAD 960,000 (USD 940,000).
* An application by Mario Lacombe, on behalf of a not-for-profit corporation to be incorporated, for a licence to operate a 50 watts French-language FM Type B community radio programming undertaking in Donnacona, Quebec.
As already noted there were no radio postings from Ireland and in the UK there was only from Ofcom - of its latest Broadcast Bulletin in which it took a number of community radio stations to task over filing of annual reports and adherence to advertising and sponsorship regulations (See RNW Sep 27).
In the US, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) also had a quiet week as regards radio with only a few decisions including granting on its own initiative another 90-day extension - this time until January 3 next year -for Cox Enterprises, Inc.; Calvary, Inc.; Bonneville International Corp.; Scranton Times LP; and Morris Communications (jointly "Media Parties") to file amendments to pending waiver requests or renewal applications or to file requests for permanent waivers of the newspaper/broadcast cross-ownership rule.
As with previous extensions this allows time for it to consider the Parties' request that the deadline be delayed until 90 days after the issuance of a final court order on pending judicial challenges to the Commission's modified newspaper/broadcast cross-ownership rule.
It also announced new Deputy Bureau Chiefs for its Media and Wireless Telecommunications Bureaux (See RNW Sep 29).
In licensing decisions it has posted the following (in order of state):
Alabama: Dismissed a petition from Greene/Sumter Enterprise Community to reconsider its decision to dismiss its application for a new non-commercial educational (NCE) FM in Livingston, Alabama.
Greene/Sumter and the University of Alabama had along with two other organizations filed mutually exclusive applications for NCE stations in the agency's October 2007 filing window and Catholic Radio Network (CRN) had been tentatively selected as having preference.
Greene/Sumter argued that its application did not conflict with the CRN application and should be granted as well and the University argued that should it re-instate the Greene/Sumter application it should also reinstate that of the university as well.
The agency has taken the position that only one application from each NCE MX Group would be granted and that the remaining applications, even if not mutually exclusive with the tentative selectee, should be dismissed and on this basis rejected the Greene/Sumter and University petitions.
California: Issued Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) seeking comment on allotment of Channel 258A at Willow Creek, in order to maintain a first local service at that community:
This followed a winning bid placed by Miriam Media, Inc. for Channel 253A, Willow Creek and its subsequent petition to modify its construction permit to specify operations on Channel 254C1 at Loleta, California and to allot Channel 258A at Willow Creek, in order to maintain a first local service at that community.
The signal contour of Channel 258A would not provide 70 dBu city-grade coverage to the entire Census Designated Place, which is a routine requirement but says Miriam would cover then entire town site, and accordingly the agency is seeking comment on whether the proposed allotment would demonstrate substantial compliance with its rules and be in the public interest.
New Jersey: Denied petition from Mariana Broadcasting, Inc., licensee of daytime-only AM Station WGHT-AM, Pompton Lakes, seeking reconsideration of dismissal of Mariana's request for reinstatement of the license for FM translator Station DW276BX, Pompton Lakes.
New Jersey Public Broadcasting Authority, the former station licensee, had requested voluntary cancellation of the license in November 2008 and Mariana argued that 167,000 people located within 5 miles of WGHT-AM's transmitter are served by no other signal that provides coverage of local news or events after sunset and that cancellation of the license was "contrary to the public interest, and harmful to the welfare and safety of the residents of Pompton Lakes."
The FCC in rejecting the petition said it would necessarily prejudice the rights of potential competing applicants if it were to re-instate the licence.
Oregon: allotted FM Channel 257A at Grants Pass, as potentially the community's second commercial FM.
Previous ACMA:
Previous CRTC:
Previous FCC:
Previous Licence News:
Previous Ofcom:
ACMA web site:

CRTC web site:
FCC web site:

Ofcom web site:

2010-10-03: Veteran CBS radio correspondent Howard Arenstein, who is also Radio Bureau Manager for CBS News, Washington, has been arrested along with his wife Orly Katz (Orly Azoulay, a Washington correspondent for Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth) for possession with intent to distribute marijuana according to the Washington Post.
The paper says police raided the couple's home following a tip-off and found marijuana plants growing in the yard, adding that a police report said they found 11 full-grown marijuana plants and six 2-ounce bags of marijuana.
Previous CBS:
Washington Post report:

2010-10-02: Clear Channel is dropping Dan Sileo as morning host on its WYGM-AM (740 AM The Game), Orlando, but will keep him on its WDAE-AM (620-AM), Tampa, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Sileo took over from Pat Clarke and Charles Davis on WYGM-AM in 2002 but after Clear Channel decided to simulcast his morning show on WDAE became more popular in Tampa and the paper says he spent most of his time talking about Tampa teams.
It adds that Clear Channel is looking to air a show more centred on Orlando on 740 AM and quoted Sileo as saying, "That's show business. Nothing lasts forever."
The Game's web site when we last checked has an 0600 to 09-00 hole in its line up whilst WDAE lists Dan Sileo in the slot.
Previous Clear Channel:
Orlando Sentinel report:
740 The Game web site:

2010-10-01: Sirius XM has updated its subscriber guidance and now says it expects to end the year with 20.1 million subscribers, an addition of some 1.3 million over the year.
The company ended the second quarter of this year with a record-high 19,527,448 subscribers and then increased its year-end guidance to a total of approaching 20 million (See RNW Jul 7).
Sirius XM shares were up 3.33% on the day at USD 1.24 a high for the year, in a day that saw 121 million shares traded, up three quarters from normal.
Sirius XM has also re-signed Opie and Anthony (Gregg Hughes and Anthony Cumia) who told their listeners they would be with the company for a further two years. Their contract was due to expire and complained about the deal on the show rather than celebrating it with Opie saying he was "held up" to sign and agreed a "very mediocre deal."
The duo were originally hired by the then XM Satellite Radio as a counter to the then Sirius Satellite Radio's Howard Stern - Stern, whose deal runs out at the end of this year was making comments earlier this year about not renewing but has been quiet on the matter more recently (See RNW May 4) - and Opie complained that the merged company was "the only game in town" and added, "the original deal was mediocre, so this is mediocre.."
So far Sirius XM has not formally announced the renewal.
Previous Opie and Anthony:
Previous Sirius XM:
Previous Stern:

2010-10-01: Radio One Inc. has announced yet another extension, this time until the October 22, of its offer to exchange Senior Subordinated Notes due 2011 and 2013 for new Second-Priority Senior Secured Grid Notes due 2016.
The company said that at close of business today approximately 92 percent of the outstanding existing notes had been validly tendered into the offer and not withdrawn - when it last extended the offer it said the same (See RNW Sep 17) Radio One added that it believes that it continues to make significant progress in reaching an agreement with the members of the ad hoc group of holders of a significant portion of its Existing Notes relating to certain amendments to the terms of the exchange offer and the related exchange notes, including the conditions to the exchange offer, and also with its lenders under its existing senior secured credit facility relating to an amendment to this.
It also notes that as previously reported the agent under the Company's existing senior secured credit facility delivered a payment blockage notice to the trustee under the indenture relating to the 2013 Notes on August 5, 2010, and neither the Company nor any of its guaranteeing subsidiaries was permitted to make the scheduled interest payment on such notes due August 16, 2010.
As a result it is now in default in relation to the indenture and it also notes that its "forbearance agreement with its lenders relating to certain defaults and events of defaults under the existing senior secured credit facility expired in accordance with its terms on September 10, 2010" although it adds that based on its constructive dialogue with the members of the ad hoc group and its existing lenders, the Company does not expect any of them to exercise any remedies under the indenture or senior secured credit facility in the near term.
Previous Radio One Inc:

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