Tag Archives: ERT Greece

Greek mediumwave station on-track to resume operation

Many thanks to our friends at The Greek Radio who share this news:

The medium wave broadcasting center of the Greek Radio in Pachi Megara is likely to go live again after three and a half years, since the procedures for the necessary maintenance and repairs have recently been initiated, with a high possibility that one of the two transmitters will operate again soon. It is worth noting that the broadcasting center, which used to host two powerful mediumwave transmitters (the ones of multilingual “Filia” and of EPA Sport) had been subject to looting by burglars, few days after the ERT closure by the Samaras government, which left the premises unattended. Since then, it has not operated again.

Repairs and maintenance

As revealed by official announcements, ERT is launching a tender for the maintenance of the building and electricity poles with a budget of EUR 18,703, while in December they proceeded with a maintenance of the broadcast center and a cleaning of the 100 KW mediumwave transmitter. In November, a dummy load was installed by a team of the ERT subdivision of structural and electromechanical projects and they checked the generator Nautel, which ensures the continuation of the broadcast in case of power outage. They also installed a new grounding network in the main building of the transmitters.

Alongside, there were other smaller operations required for the safe operation of the facilities, such as the placement of fire extinguishers by a private firm, the restoration of the water supply, the maintenance of fence lighting. In October there was also a visit by a private security company, in response to a tender, whereas data were collected for the water insulation and the lighting of the buildings where the transmitters are placed.

Continue reading at The Greek Radio website…

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Greek police use tear gas to empty former broadcaster ERT’s offices

(Photo source: AP / Petros Giannakouris)

(Photo source: AP / Petros Giannakouris)

It looks like the staff protest, which has occupied ERT headquarters since June 11, has finally come to an end.

I’m not sure how/if this will have an effect on the Voice of Greece, but I will be listening for them on 9,420 kHz tonight.

(Source: BBC)

Greek riot police have cleared the headquarters of the former state broadcaster ERT, using tear gas to gain entry and arresting several people.

Police formed a cordon round the building in Athens, before going from room to room to evacuate protesters.

Former employees have occupied the building since the government closed ERT and sacked its 2,600 staff in June.

Greece’s conservative-led coalition said the state broadcaster cost too much to run in an economic crisis.

[…]The BBC’s Mark Lowen, in Athens, says the question is whether the ERT debacle again fuels social unrest here – and how much stomach the Greeks still have for a fight.[…]

Continue reading…

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The Voice of Greece Avlis shortwave transmitter site may be scrapped

GREECE-ECONOMY-MEDIAAccording to TheGreekRadio.com, 39 shortwave antennas located at the Voice of Greece Avlis transmitter site may soon be sold as scrap metal. It seems this information is based on a statement by ERT employees from Monday (September 16, 2013):

“in the shortwave broadcasting center of Avlis, a representative of a company that sells metal showed up and started taking photos of the site. After we, ERT people, asked him, we got informed that he had been mandated by the Ministry of Finance to give an offer for the dismantling of 39 masts and purchasing the metal as scrap.”

[…]The name of [the] company and the registration plate of the car are available. The union body of ERT notes that this is an area of 1160 acres, featuring 39 metal masts, with a height between 30 and 70 meters each, that function as the shortwave aerials that transmit the “Voice of Greece”, the ERA-pénte, across the world.

“Greek shortwave started operating in 1938 and later was also used sent information to the Greek soldiers fighting Fascists in Albania. The only ones who dared to turn it off were the Nazis during the occupation. Since the liberation, it never stopped to link the country with Greek seafarers and the Diaspora. The Voice of Greece broadcasts information, entertainment, culture and tradition from Greece with programs in 12 languages, all over the globe”.

You can read the full article by clicking here. Many thanks to Andrea Borgnino for the tip.

I’ve predicted that the Voice of Greece may not be on the air even by the end of 2013.  I certainly hope I’m wrong, but I simply can’t imagine there will be enough money in the reincarnated ERT budget to pay for the Voice of Greece Avlis shortwave transmitter site.

Follow the tag “ERT Cuts” for the latest developments.

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“You are listening to the Free Hellenic Radio”

TheParthenonAthensYesterday was the first day in nearly a month that I had turned on my SDR to record broadcasts. Between my travel schedule, getting the PC fixed, and near-constant summer thunderstorms, my SWLing has been limited to portables and sporadic travel listening. It felt so great yesterday to turn on the WinRadio Excalibur and do a little band-scanning. As I skimmed across the bands, I checked in with my good friend, the Voice of Greece, on 9,420 kHz. And, as I listened, I flipped on the “record” switch.

What I recorded was more than three hours of uninterrupted Greek music. Click hear to download the full recording, or listen via the embedded player below:

Three hours of music with no commentary (save a little dead air) is certainly not a typical format for the Voice of Greece, so I took note. If you’ve been reading The SWLing Post for long you’ll know that the Voice of Greece and its domestic broadcasting counterparts have been going through a major shake-up. In the wake of the government closure of ERT on June 11th, within hours, former ERT journalists defiantly got back on the air. Until courts ordered the immediate re-opening of the Greek national broadcaster, the Voice of Greece was, in a sense, a very powerful pirate radio broadcaster. Interestingly, since the shakeup in June, I learned that the Voice of Greece has barely been off-air.

Since I don’t speak or understand Greek, and since they’ve only made a few public statements in English, I turned to my friend and SWLing Post reader/contributor, Christos, for details.  He writes:

I will try to describe…the current situation regarding the ERT issue, I hope in an objective way.

…[I]n front of the Radio House in Aghia Paraskevi suburb…all the fence[s] and part of the building [are] covered by banners. Almost every [evening], concerts take place in the yard. The participant artists express their solidarity [with] those who run the ERT since 11 of June, when the government fired 2,650 employees in order to recruit some 2000 again.

The so-called occupiers of the Radio House demonstrate signs of [fatigue] as less producers and known journalists appear in the programmes. Their programme is transmitted from medium waves 729, 1008, 1260 1404 and 1512 KHz…enough to cover the whole country during night time. I checked the short wave frequency of 9420 KHz; they [host] a different musical programme…the one you receive in [the US] [hear this above]. I think that this is a dead end for those who continue, as 3,000 people in the media business have applied for job[s] in the new ERT. The vice minister responsible…will recruit only 500 of them…

Two days ago, we had a night of tension as some protesters appeared on the mountain where the antennas are located…[P]olice arrested some of them.

You can get an idea of this incident [by] watching the following two videos:

Another source of [information about] the ERT occupiers is:

http://www.ertopen.com/news-in-4-languges/english

…[T]here have not been announcements about the future of the Voice of Greece. Think that some 10 million…Greeks live in the country, and some 10 [million] more [live] abroad.

[The pace of] Greek summer…[is] slow. People go to the beaches or to their native villages. Everybody looks exhausted as the last two days the temperature reached 39 degrees Celsius which is 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit. Today the SKAI, one of the biggest private radio stations, fired 10 journalists add[ing] to [the] 50 [previously fired]. Now they repeat older programmes and there [is] no news broadcasted.

Remaining journalists in ERT refer to [the broadcasting service] as: Hellenic Radio – The Voice of Freedom, and often announce, “You are listening to the Free Hellenic Radio.”

Once again…giving you an idea [of the political] climate here…this morning the government announced the names of 2,122 teachers – public servants from technical education [–] who lost their job[s].

I hope this will be of…interest.

Christos, we thank you so much for your insight and opinions about the state of Greek national and international broadcasting!  We at The SWLing Post support freedom of press in Greece, and commiserate with those who have lost their jobs, especially in such an oppressively hot summer. Please do continue to keep us informed.

I have sincere doubts about the longevity of the Voice of Greece (or Free Hellenic Radio) on shortwave. With the serious budget cuts the new ERT must be built on, I doubt they’ll consider funding shortwave radio in Greece. I feel like it may only be a matter of time before we lose yet another shortwave broadcaster.  I certainly hope I’m wrong…

In the meantime, I’ll be dedicating more hard drive space to spectrum recordings of VOG.

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ERT still broadcasting while Greek Public Television (EDT) emerges

Station name and logo of the new TV service, EDT

Station name and logo of the new TV service, EDT

I have recorded hours of the Voice of Greece on shortwave since they were supposed to shutdown weeks ago. This update, via EnetEnglish, describes a re-branded TV service; Greek Public Television (EDT):

(Source: EnetEnglish.gr)

Greek Public Television (EDT), the replacement station for ERT which was shut down last month, has commenced broadcasting a basic signal.

A screen depicting the new station’s name and somewhat uninspiring logo appeared at about 8.30am on Wednesday morning, against a backdrop depicting a globe and waves of colour.

The decision to commence the signal follows the vote on Tuesday night, at committee, of a bill establishing New Greek Radio, Internet and Television, or Nerit, the new national broadcaster.

The bill received only the support of the coalition parties, New Democracy and Pasok, with all other parties against. Debate on the new legislation will be completed on Thursday.

Despite the move, ERT staff at the station have entered their second month of continuous broadcasting via a livestream hosted by the European Broadcasting Union, which has demanded that the station reopen.

[…]ERT staff are asking whether EDT has been approved by the state’s broadcasting regulator, the Greek National Council for Radio and Television (ESR). They also ask who is paying the staff working in EDT and on what kind of contracts.

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