Tag Archives: ABC

Radio Waves: Taiwan Radio Enthusiasts, ABC Radio Still Vital, Funklust DRM, and Democracy’s Reliance on Quality Information

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Eric Jon Magnuson, who has been taking an active role in helping to curate our Radio Waves tips.


Taiwan radio enthusiasts tune in as Chinese, U.S. warplanes crowd sensitive skies (Reuters)

SYUHAI, Taiwan, May 24 (Reuters) – Shortly after dawn on a southern Taiwanese beach, Robin Hsu’s iPhone pings with the first radio message of the day from Taiwan’s air force as it warns away Chinese aircraft.

“Attention!” a voice says on the radio, speaking in Mandarin to a Chinese military plane flying at an altitude of 3,500 meters. “You have entered our southwestern air defence identification zone and are jeopardising aviation safety. Turn around and leave immediately.”

Taiwan, which China claims as its own territory, has complained for years of repeated Chinese air force missions into its air defence identification zone (ADIZ), which is not territorial airspace but a broader area it monitors for threats.

Although Taiwan’s Defence Ministry details these almost-daily incursions on its website, including maps outlining the activity, a band of Taiwanese radio enthusiasts like Hsu has been tuning in to related radio traffic and publishing the recordings online. [Continue reading…]

ABC’s oldest medium, radio, still vital in a world of streaming and podcasts (ABC News)

Thelma Denny doesn’t know life without the ABC.

Now 84, the resident of Apple Tree Creek near Bundaberg, was born six years after radio announcer Conrad Charlton announced to the country: “This is the Australian Broadcasting Commission.”

As a young girl, Thelma remembers her father “always had the radio on”, especially for the cricket or her mother’s favourite long-running radio drama Blue Hills.

These days the radio is her comfort and companion, especially since her husband, Ronald, died in 2016, two days after their 58th wedding anniversary.

Still living independently, the great-grandmother loves nothing more than to unwind with Phillip Adams talking from her bedside table each weeknight as she falls asleep.

But ABC radio is also her lifeline, so when her radio went on the blink, Thelma was at a loss.

“That’s been the problem, I can’t get an update on the weather,” she said.

“If there is a storm on, I have to turn off the television and the computer which has the weather bureau site.”

In times of emergency, it’s recommended battery-powered radios are part of home emergency kits, with power outages, poor internet and phone coverage meaning many regional areas’ only source of information is the radio. [Continue reading…]

Funklust is back on air with a boost (Red Tech)

ERLANGEN, Germany — Funklust, a German Digital Radio Mondiale shortwave station that began broadcasting in 2003, has returned to the air after undergoing extensive improvements.

Funklust is the student radio station of Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg in Germany. The station is a partnership between the university and the nearby Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits.

Friedrich-Alexander-Universität describes itself as “one of the largest research universities in Germany,” while Fraunhofer bills itself as “Europe’s largest application-oriented research organization.”

A joint effort

The students produce the program content and schedule. Fraunhofer handles the technical side of Funklust. Programming is mostly non-stop music, but it does carry a few external programs, such as Radio Goethe. The station was originally on the air as BiteXpress in 2003 and switched to Funklust several years later.

Fraunhofer recently updated the station’s equipment, and Funklust returned to shortwave in October 2021 after going off air in 2018.

The original transmitter was a 1,000 watt Telefunken S2525 DRM-capable transmitter. Fraunhofer replaced it with a new RFmondial 250 watt transmitter, which feeds the signal into a vertical lambda/four-monopole antenna mounted on a concrete mast at a height of 58 meters (just over 190 ft.)

A shortwave broadcast station typically broadcasts an analog signal using amplitude modulation. A single transmitter would only carry a single audio service, nothing more. By contrast, a DRM transmitter offers additional signal options, including the carrying of transmission information and other data. [Continue reading…]

Public Media and Direct Democracy (Public Media Alliance)

By Gilles Marchand, Director General of SRG SSR

“The fate of democracies will depend on their ability to produce and disseminate quality information.”

This article was originally published in Le Monde on 15 April 2022.

The debate surrounding funding for public service broadcasting is wide open and has, in particular, been covered by this newspaper. The French Presidential election campaigns have provided various different proposals, ranging from replacing the licence fee with an allocated budget to privatising the entire sector.

Clearly, this is a sensitive issue. It concerns a fragile ecosystem that has been disrupted by international pressure from streaming platforms and turned upside down by social media. It also fascinates politicians who enjoy the rush of being regulators, clients and media consumers all at the same time. Switzerland, with its direct democracy model, is an interesting testing ground as the citizens of this small multilingual and multicultural federal state get to decide regularly on the fate of the country’s public service with a vote.

Switzerland: a testing ground

As such, SRG SSR (Swiss Broadcasting Corporation) is the only public service provider in Europe to have come face to face with universal suffrage. In 2018, a referendum on abolishing all forms of public funding for it sparked fierce, unprecedented debate surrounding SRG SSR’s radio, TV and online programmes. The European broadcasting industry watched on in amazement as the battle lines were drawn between those for and against the existence of public service media. In the end, following a lot of intense campaigning, there was a convincing outcome at the polls as over 70% came out in favour of this public service and a licence fee which at the time amounted to around 360 euros a year per household! [Continue reading…]


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Radio Waves: Radio Liberty Journalist Killed in Ukraine, Group Asks FCC to Revoke License, Labor & Shortwave Restoration, and “The Earth Is An Image”

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!


Ukraine war: Russian strike on Kyiv kills reporter Vira Hyrych (BBC News)

A journalist working for Radio Liberty in Ukraine was killed in Russian rocket strikes on Kyiv on Thursday evening, the station has confirmed.

Vira Hyrych was at home when a rocket hit the residential building where she lived in the capital, it says. Her body was pulled from the wreckage on Friday.

She “will be remembered for her professionalism and dedication to our mission”, the US-funded station says.

Kyiv was hit as UN Secretary General António Guterres was visiting the city.

The UN chief – who only a day earlier had held talks in Moscow with Russian President Vladimir Putin – said he was “shocked” by the Russian attack.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused the Kremlin of trying to humiliate the UN, while Kyiv Mayor Vitaliy Klitschko said the Russian leader had shown “his middle finger” to Mr Guterres.

Moscow has confirmed it hit Ukrainian targets, but has not commented on the strike on the building.

“We are deeply saddened by the death of our Ukrainian Service staffer Vira Hyrych in Kyiv overnight,” Radio Liberty President Jamie Fly said in a statement.

“We are shocked and angered by the senseless nature of her death at home in a country and city she loved. Her memory will inspire our work in Ukraine and beyond for years to come.” [Continue reading…]

Group Wants to Shut Down Garziglia Station (Radio Ink)

A group calling itself the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America has filed a petition with the FCC asking the Commission to revoke the license of the translator owned by John Garziglia. FM translator W288BS in Reston, Virginia rebroadcasts WZHF-AM in the Washington DC metro which carries Radio Sputnik. Continue reading

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Radio Waves: Station of National Resistance, CEPT Suspends Russia/Belarus, ABC Pacific Expansion, Live Ukraine News Stream, and Mali Bans French Radio & TV

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!

Many thanks to the SWLing Post contributors who share the following tips:


Ukraine’s radio station of national resistance (The New Yorker)

High up in the Carpathian Mountains, two Kyiv broadcasters keep the signal alive.

Recently, at a closed ski resort in Ukraine’s Carpathian Mountains, Roman Davydov leaned into a microphone and announced the latest news from the war. Kryvyi Rih, in southern Ukraine, was being attacked; a U.S. journalist had been shot; and the British Foreign Secretary had announced new sanctions on Russian oligarchs in London. Davydov, who is forty-three, with dark hair and an oft-furrowed brow, is the voice of Kraina FM, an independent radio station that, after Russian bombing began in Kyiv, relocated to an undisclosed location. (The staff of Kraina FM asked me not to identify the village, for security reasons.) Outside Davydov’s improvised booth, a corner office lent to Kraina FM by a local accountant, an odd sense of normalcy reigned. Beyond the ski-rental shop, where a cluster of sandbags had been piled, a man in a blue jacket and ski goggles operated a small lift for a children’s slope in the bright sunshine.

The area, which is several hours south of Lviv, has become a shelter for displaced people, Bogdan Bolkhovetsky, Davydov’s colleague, told me. Bolkhovetsky, Kraina FM’s station general manager, said that he and Davydov had arrived in the village “by pure chance.” The west of the country is full of refugees, and there are few places for families to stay as they make their way toward the borders of Europe. “We found this place because it was the only place vacant,” Bolkhovetsky said. They arrived in the evening on February 27th; just days later they were setting up the station in a sloped-ceilinged, wood-panelled space that barely fit their two desks. They acquired laptops and a mixer from the supply of aid making its way from the rest of Europe to Ukraine. “We called our friends in Austria and they were so quick,” Bolkhovetsky said. “Guys we’ve never met just sent us the equipment, and a friend of ours brought this equipment in. I mean, they brought us these German laptops and the mixing console and we’ve never seen these people before.” [Continue reading…]

Russia and Belarus suspended from CEPT membership (CEPT via Southgate ARC)

On March 17 the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications (CEPT) announced the indefinite suspension of Russia and Belarus following the invasion of Ukraine

The CEPT announcement said:

Outcome of the written procedure with the CEPT Assembly regarding suspension of the Russian Federation and Belarus from CEPT Membership.

Based on a request from a number of CEPT members, the CEPT Presidency carried out a written procedure, in accordance with the CEPT Arrangement, on the proposal to suspend indefinitely and with immediate effect the memberships of the Russian Federation and Belarus in the CEPT.

Thirty-four responses were received to the CEPT Assembly letter in support of the proposal and one abstention.

Based on the above, the CEPT Assembly has therefore decided: Continue reading

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Radio Waves: RNZ & TVNZ Merging, Tech Keeping Ukrainians in Touch, Solar Storms Documentary, and Aspidistra

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!


RNZ and TVNZ to merge (RadioInfo)

New Zealand’s Minister for Broadcasting and Media Kris Faafoi has announced the government’s decision to create a new public media entity by merging RNZ and TVNZ.

According to Faafoi, ensuring New Zealanders continue to have access to reliable, trusted, independent information and local content sits at the heart of the decision.

“The public media sector is extremely important to New Zealanders in providing them with high quality, independent, timely and relevant media content,” Faafoi said.

“But we know the media landscape is changing and the sector is having to adapt to increased competition, changing audience demands and ways of accessing media, falling revenue, and new and emerging digital platforms. We need public media which is responsive to these changes and can flourish.

“RNZ and TVNZ are each trying to adjust to the challenges, but our current public media system, and the legislation it’s based on, is focused on radio and television.

“New Zealanders are among some of the most adaptive audiences when it comes to accessing content in different ways; like their phones rather than television and radio, and from internet-based platforms. We must be sure our public media can adapt to those audience changes, as well as other challenges that media will face in the future.”

“The new public media entity will be built on the best of both RNZ and TVNZ, which will initially become subsidiaries of the new organisation. It will continue to provide what existing audiences value, such as RNZ Concert, as well as better reaching those groups who aren’t currently well served; such as our various ethnic communities and cultures,” Faafoi said[…]

Read more at: https://radioinfo.com.au/news/rnz-and-tvnz-to-merge/ © RadioInfo Australia

Technologies old and new keep Ukrainians in touch with the world (The Economist)

Battery radios and satellite internet both have jobs to do

In communist Eastern Europe a shortwave radio was a vital piece of equipment for anyone wanting to stay ahead of the censors. Stations such as the bbc World Service, Radio Free Europe and Voice of America broadcast news, entertainment and rock-and-roll across the Iron Curtain.

After the cold war ended, shortwave radios gave way to television and the internet, and the broadcasts were wound down. But on March 3rd, in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the bbc announced their return. The World Service has begun nightly news broadcasts into Ukraine and parts of Russia (see map). Continue reading

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Radio Waves: Life-Changing Song on Radio Australia, NZ Voices in the Air, NIST Test Signal on WWV/WWVH, and 1980s NYC Offshore Pirates

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributors Paul, Dave Zantow, Mark Fahey, Jerome van der Linden, and Phil Brennan for the following tips:


A former Chinese soldier turned artist explains how a song on Radio Australia changed his life (ABC)

It was 1979 and Jian Guo was stationed at a military camp in Yunnan, a province in south-western China bordering Vietnam, when he listened to Radio Australia for the first time.

The then-17-year-old was patrolling the base one night when he saw a group of fellow People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers tuning radio equipment on the back of a truck.

He initially thought they were intercepting enemy signals, but, as he got closer, he realised they were listening to a radio broadcast.

It was the ABC’s international broadcasting service, which was considered an “enemy channel” at the time.

“The so-called ‘enemy channels’ included almost every station outside mainland China,” Guo told the ABC.

“The biggest ones were the VOA [Voice of America] from the US, Voice of Free China from Taiwan, and Radio Australia.”

Guo had joined the PLA in 1979 during the peak of the Sino-Vietnamese War but, thanks to his talent in the arts, he was chosen to be a secretary of his company, so he could avoid fighting on the battlefield.

Apart from painting propaganda materials, he also looked after weapons and communication equipment like the radios, which was an extraordinary privilege.

He was not supposed to use the equipment he maintained, and was fearful of breaking the rules, but after seeing his comrades listening to the Australian broadcast the curiosity grew inside him.

One night, alone in his room, he turned on a radio.

It took a while for him to find the right frequency, because of the interference put out by China, but then suddenly he was listening to Radio Australia and the song that would change his life.

“It was broadcasting The Moon Represents My Heart by Teresa Teng,” Guo said.

“That was the first time I knew such music existed in the world.” [Continue reading…]

Voices in the Air: Sarah Johnston on 100 years of radio (RNZ)

Kia ora koutou k?toa. Thank you to RNZ and National Library for organising this celebration of the start of radio in New Zealand, 100 years ago tonight.

Tonight is something of a game of two halves: first I will talk about the first broadcast of voice and music by radio and the start of radio broadcasting in this country – and then I’m also going speak about a research project I am working on, radio recordings made of New Zealand’s forces overseas during World War II.

I have always been a huge fan of radio, ever since childhood listening to the Weekend children’s request sessions, and then as a teenager, eating my breakfast with Morning Report coming out of the family transistor beside me. As a radio journalist I became one of those voices and worked for RNZ and Deutsche Welle in Germany, where I experienced the power of voices coming out of the air from the other side of the world. And as a sound archivist working with the Radio New Zealand archives, I learnt that that power of the voice doesn’t diminish with time – listening to a voice from 80 years ago can transport you not just through space but also time. Sound to me, has a power that in many ways seems different to that of visual images. Continue reading

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Paul Walker featured as a DXer and broadcaster on ABC Newcastle

Our friend and contributor here on the SWLing Post and the Shortwave Radio Audio Archive, Paul Walker, has been interviewed and featured on the ABC Newcastle program Drive with Paul Turton. It’s a great segment! (Congrats, Paul!)

I’ve embedded the audio from this segment below, but you can also listen via the ABC Newcastle website:

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Radio Waves: Deep ABC Cuts, Ham Radio Saves a Life, SDR Academy Updates, and a new free e-magazine from RASA

Radio Waves:  Stories Making Waves in the World of Radio

Because I keep my ear to the waves, as well as receive many tips from others who do the same, I find myself privy to radio-related stories that might interest SWLing Post readers.  To that end: Welcome to the SWLing Post’s Radio Waves, a collection of links to interesting stories making waves in the world of radio. Enjoy!

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributors Michael Bird, Alexander von Obert, and the Southgate ARC for the following tips:


Up to 250 ABC jobs to go, ABC Life brand scrapped, flagship radio news bulletin dumped to tackle $84 million budget cut (ABC News)

The ABC will axe up to 250 jobs and cut programming as it deals with budget cuts of $84 million.

Managing director David Anderson said a flagship radio news bulletin would go, the ABC Life lifestyle portal would be rebranded, and programs would be reviewed as part of a major overhaul of the national broadcaster.

There will also be cuts to travel and to spending on television productions, as the organisation moves to become more relevant to more Australians and better reflect community diversity, he said.

Mr Anderson said the redundancies and savings would affect every division across the ABC.

“We anticipate we may farewell as many as 250 colleagues through this process,” he told staff in a briefing.

The News division is set to lose about 70 staff, the Entertainment and Specialist division 53 staff and the Regional and Local division 19.

Mr Anderson said there would be changes to executive staffing, but did not offer any details.

And he said the organisation would aim to have 75 per cent of its content-makers based outside its Sydney headquarters by 2025.

The ABC had already flagged that it would shed about 250 jobs due to a three-year funding indexation pause announced by the Federal Government in 2018.

Mr Anderson said the flagship 7:45am radio news bulletins would end, and be replaced by a five-minute bulletin at 8:00am. A 10-minute bulletin at 7:00am will remain.

The changes include:

  • ABC Life will become ABC Local and have a “broader editorial direction”
  • The travel budget will be cut by 25 per cent
  • Spending on external and independent television productions will be cut by $5 million a year
  • The ABC Comedy television channel will be rebranded to cater for a broader array of programs and content
  • Leasing of space at the ABC’s Sydney headquarters will be explored
  • TV and radio broadcast channels will remain, but transmission cuts have been flagged for future years[]

Ham Radio Saving A Life Locally! (Western Massachusetts ARRL)

On Tuesday, June 15, Alden Sumner Jones IV, KC1JWR, was hiking on the southern part of the Appalachian trail in Vermont (it’s also been reported as being on the Long Trail) with his cousins at around 12:30 PM. Alden started feeling light headed, his pulse was racing and the next thing he remembers is waking up with an EMT named Dave, from AMR out of Springfield, MA, who was hiking and saw Alden go down. Alden had suffered seizures. It was later determined that this was caused by low blood sugar. Dave attempted to call 911 on his cell phone. He could connect, but the 911 operator couldn’t understand him. At this point, Alden pulled out his HT ham radio, a BaoFeng.

He made contact through the K1FFK repeater. This repeater is located on Mt. Greylock on 146.91. The repeater is owned and maintained by the Northern Berkshire Amateur Radio Club. The initial call went out just before the Cycle 1 of the Western Massachusetts Traffic Net. Ron Wonderlick, AG1W, took the call. Alden initially asked if the 911 call went through. Ron began an eight hour process of acting as a relay between Alden, the emergency crews and various others.

The Traffic Net was truncated and the frequency was cleared by Peter Mattice, KD2JKV, who also stood by as a backup for Ron. KC1JPU, Matthew Sacco, was also monitoring and after a short consultation with Ron & Peter, proceeded to head to the staging area where the Fire and EMS crews were going to come from.[]

Software Defined Radio Academy 2020 Update (Markus Heller)

Dear ARRL recipients,

this year’s Software Defined Radio Academy is going to take place during the next weekend on June 27 / 28. We have now finalized the programme.

Since we decided very early in March that we’d organize an online strategy, we were not grounded by Corona. Using YouTube and our video conferencing system, we were able to organize a rich SDRA conference with speakers from all over the world.

Since this year’s European GNURadio Days conference in Besancon, France, could not take place either, we were asked to give their speakers a stage. This is the reason why we have a specially strong GNURadio focus.

With such a rich programme, we decided to span the talks over two days and start in the European afternoon, so that we could give our overseas audience a chance to participate live.

The mode is this: Even though all the talks are pre-recorded, the speakers will attend in the video conferencing system and respond to questions that come in through the YouTube channel. This way we can maintain a certain degree of interaction, which is important for any kind of scientific conference.

Here is the programme:
https://2020.sdra.io/pages/programme.html
and here is our YouTube stream URL:
https://youtube.sdra.io

We will start on Saturday 27 at 12:30 UTC+2
and on Sunday June 28 at 13:00 UTC+2.

For those of you who understand German, please note that this year’s HAMRADIO conference will also go online. We have worked hard in the past two months to record 65 hours of talks and discussions. Here is the HAMRADIO programme, which the SDRA is part of:

https://www.darc.de/fileadmin/filemounts/gs/oeffentlichskeitsarbeit/Veranstaltungen/HAMRADIOnline/HAMOnline_Sendeplan.pdf

QTC e-magazine (RASA via the Southgate ARC)

RASA is pleased to announce the release of a new E-magazine for Amateur Radio in Australia.  The magazine, QTC, named after the Q-code “I have a message for you” will be published every two months.

We’ll be renaming our regular email bulletins QTC-Lite and they’ll be aligned with the release of our fortnightly Podcast.

In this first issue of QTC, we have news and updates about regulations, and information on our 60m submission in response to the ACMA’s Consultation paper.  There’s a “Getting started” regular column, with this issue covering HF DX-ing.  There’s also a regular column on how you can deal with QRM and RFI in your shack.  This month we have a feature technical article on 3-Phase Power Converters.

Click here to download the first issue of QTC.


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