South Sudan: Eye Radio reaches new audience via shortwave

EyeRadio

You might recall a post from Robert Gulley earlier this week about Eye Radio. Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Andrea Borgnino who shares a link to the following article from the BBC about Eye Radio’s broadcasts over shortwave:

(Source: BBC)

A radio station in South Sudan is using older, but tried and tested technology to reach new audiences.

Radio is a crucial medium in South Sudan, where illiteracy is high and many areas lack an electricity supply.

But many people living in remote villages are out of range of existing FM and mediumwave (AM) broadcasts.

Huge distances

To reach these potential listeners, Eye Radio, which is based in the capital Juba and can be heard in regional capitals, has just started broadcasting on shortwave.

The new service covers “the whole of South Sudan, including remote areas in which communities are not able to access FM radio”, says Eye Media head Stephen Omiri.

[…]The station is thought to be renting airtime on a transmitter based outside South Sudan.

Funding for the shortwave service comes from USAID, the international development arm of the US government.

[…]Eye Radio broadcasts in English, standard Arabic, and local languages Dinka, Nuer, Juba Arabic, Bari, Shilluk, Zande and Moro.

The shortwave broadcasts are on the air from 7-8 a.m. local time on 11730 kHz, and 7-8 p.m. on 17730 kHz.

Another station using shortwave to reach South Sudan is Radio Tamazuj, which is based in the Netherlands.

Click here to read the full article at the BBC Monitoring website.

New Shortwave Station in South Sudan

Radio-TamazujThere’s a new shortwave station in South Sudan!
Kudos to Eye Media for their Shortwave Radio efforts in South Sudan to complement and extend their reach beyond local FM radio. And I must add, kudos to the United States for their part in helping to fund the venture. While I am quick to criticize my country for their cutbacks in SW funding, I have to be fair and say “well done” when something like this comes along. Here is the news report as posted April 26 (yesterday) on Radio Tamazuj and which was reported by Alokesh Gupta New Delhi on the Cumbre-DX  Yahoo Group:

Eye Media, the parent organization of Eye Radio, has announced that it has launched a new shortwave broadcast service to complement its existing FM broadcasts in South Sudan.

The broadcasts starting today will bring listeners news and information in Arabic, as well as Dinka, Nuer, Shilluk, Bari, Zande and Lutoho.

According to a press release today from Eye Media, “the Eye Radio Shortwave will cover the whole of South Sudan including remote areas in which communities are not able to access FM radio stations.”

Eye Radio is one of the fastest expanding media houses in South Sudan after launching FM repeaters in several state capitals last year, expanding the station’s reach beyond Juba where it is based.

In its press release, the station noted that the funding for this initiative came from USAID, the international development agency of the US government.

Shortwave radio is used for long distance communication by means of reflecting or refracting radio waves back to Earth from the ionosphere, allowing communication around the curve of the Earth. It was a popular means of long-distance news sharing before the advent of the Worldwide Web, and it is still used for reaching remote areas.

Only two other media houses broadcast on shortwave with content specifically for South Sudan: Radio Tamazuj, which operates two hours daily on the shortwave, and Voice of America, which produces the 30 minute program South Sudan in Focus.

Radio Tamazuj broadcasts from 6:30 to 7:30 each morning on 11650 kHz on the 25 meter band and 9600 kHz on the 31 meter band, and 15150 kHz and 15550 kHz on the 19 meter band each evening from 17:30 to 18:30.

Eye Radio’s new broadcasts will run from 7:00 to 8:00 each morning on 11730 kHz on the 25 meter band and 17730 kHz on the 17 meter band from 19:00 to 20:00.


Robert Gulley, AK3Q, is the author of this post and a regular contributor to the SWLing Post. Robert also blogs at All Things Radio.

Mark’s rekindled interest in shortwave radio

Sony-ICF-2001D

Many thanks to SWLing Post reader, Mark Lane, who writes:

Hi Thomas,

I just wanted to thank you for a great website, I have been interested in SW since I was a boy and used to listen to my grandfather’s world radio. I cannot remember the make or model now but it was an amazing experience.

After all these years, at the age of 44, my interest perked again and I happened across your site.

Like a lot of people I was wondering “is there anything left to listen to on SW now we are truly in the ‘digital’ age”? After reading the content on your site and the blog I made up my mind, jumped onto eBay and after a number of failed attempts at winning any auctions I managed to bag a near mint Sony ICF 2001D [photo at top of page]!

I did get rather over excited and probably paid a bit too much for it, but too be honest I don’t care. I have already had a good couple of evenings trying to bag some far off stations and I am still trying to figure out all the buttons on the thing.

Then this past weekend, my daughter (15) asked about the radio and I showed her what I had been doing–she was hooked and kept asking me to try for some more stations. We spent the whole evening with the help of a couple of other websites trying to track down more distant stuff.

I have to say the 2001D is now my prize possession and my daughter was messaging her friends telling them all about the wonders of SW.

All I can say is keep up the good work and let’s hope SW does continue for as long as possible I will certainly be listening in until the airwaves go quiet, I trust that won’t happen for some considerable time.

Regards
Mark Lane
Worcester UK

Mark: thank you so much for sharing your message! It’s an honor to know that the SWLing Post played some part in your renewed interest in shortwave radio. The community here is simply amazing and I learn a lot myself from so many reader contributions.

Being a father of two daughters, I can say that there’s no better feeling than to know that a little radio listening time also translated into quality father and daughter time!

You just made my day!

Curating a list of endangered shortwave stations

RCI-Sackville-2012

That’s my minivan parked in front of the RCI Sackville transmitting station in June, 2012. The site was closed by the end of 2012 and towers demolished shortly thereafter.

Recently, my friend and fellow archivist, London Shortwave, and I engaged in a discussion about creating a curated list of “endangered” shortwave radio stations.

The idea being we could use such a list to focus our efforts and those of the archiving community on recording broadcasters that were most likely to disappear in the near future.

London Shortwave published an excellent post about this on his blog.

Please click here to read his post.

We quickly put this page on the Shortwave Radio Audio Archive as a starting point.

We need your help to curate this list!

Please comment either on London Shortwave’s blog, or on this post, and suggest any additional broadcasters we may have missed. Please include a link to news item(s) which may indicate the broadcaster faces closure.

Of course, this list and the categories are subjective–we’re simply using our best judgement in this process. Often, broadcasters can shut down with little or no notice.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Radio Vanuatu on target for nationwide coverage under new leadership

Vanuatu-Map

(Source: Radio New Zealand via Mike Terry on the WRTH FB Page)

The recently appointed chair of the board of the Vanuatu Broadcasting and Television Corporation is confident nationwide coverage will be achieved by Radio Vanuatu soon.

The new government recently replaced the old board following concerns over the lack of the public broadcaster’s ability to reach the outer islands.

Its new chairperson Johnety Jerety said transmission had deteriorated over the years, mostly because of poor maintenance.

He said under the government’s hundred day plan nationwide coverage had to be implemented by July 1st.

But Mr Jerety said part of the problem was that people were buying cheap radios.

“They’re not compatible to meet the standard for our transmission system within here so that is why most of the ni-Van [indigenous people] within the islands are not able to have the coverage received throughout the island.”

Johnety Jerety said they were now advising people to buy short-wave radios that are compatible.

Read this article on Radio New Zealand’s website.

This article is a little vague, but I assume when the new chairperson, Johnety Jerety, is claiming that the problem with reception has to do with “cheap radios” perhaps he means receivers that don’t cover Vanuatu’s nighttime frequency of 3945 kHz? Almost all radios with shortwave should receive their 7260 kHz frequency. Of course, perhaps he simply means that fewer and fewer listeners are purchasing shortwave radios?

Vanuatu is certainly being heard around the world–indeed, only two days ago, SWLing Post contributor, Paul Walker, was over the moon when he snagged Vanuatu on 7260 kHz from Galena, Alaska.  Paul wrote:

I bagged my most wanted shortwave station ever tonight!

Radio Vanuatu on 7260!!!! Heard something under a bunch of Asian hams. [Q]uite good considering they are only running 1.5 kw out of their licensed 10 kw (that’s what they told me after the cyclone awhile back).

Great catch, Paul!

I’m happy to read that Vanuatu is investing in their station once again.

Follow all Vanuatu updates using the tag: Radio Vanuatu

Voice of Justice broadcasts to North America?

SX-99-Dial-Nar

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Richard Langley, who comments:

It seems that the VOIRI “Voice of Justice” broadcast to North America may have been axed.

[I] did a quick search on that phrase in the [Shortwave Radio Audio Archive] but came up empty.

Might be nice if someone with a personal band archive could extract an example of that program and put in on the SRAA.

Can anyone confirm this for Richard? A VOIRI recording would make a nice addition to the archive, where we’re attempting to collect samples of as many shortwave broadcasters as possible.

Can you help Paul ID this station?

SX-99-Dial-Nar

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Paul Walker, who is seeking your help. Paul writes:

Well, I think I have an ID but I also think I’m wrong.

I had weather in english by a female computerized voice on 6518.80USB. Heard on 04/10/16 at 910PM AKDT (0510UTC 04/11/16) in Galena, Alaska using a Tecsun PL880 and 80 foot longwire.

Here’s the audio, all 7 minutes and 3 seconds worth:

Click here to listen on YouTube.

It was fairly clear and pretty steady here in the middle of central Alaska.
It was giving weather for the Caribbean and apparently the only hit I can find online for either both from Eibi and Google says that 6518.80 USB belongs to Punta Carretas, Uruguay.

If that’s really what I heard, A.) It was strong and B.) Why was it in english?
I suspect I didn’t really have them and it was from somewhere else. This signal is just to be good to be Uruguay, but a DX says they are the only things that come up in a search for 6518.80 USB but the times I heard them don’t match.

If you can help Paul, please comment!