NASB NEWSLETTER             www.shortwave.org

 

February  2011

 

IN THIS ISSUE:    

    

 

A Potpourri of Shortwave Broadcast News

 

 

The Ship is Set to Sail for the NASB 2011 Annual Meeting

Shortwave broadcasters and listeners from throughout the U.S. and as far away as Finland and Japan will take part in the 2011 NASB/DRM USA Annual Meeting May 13-16.  For the first time in NASB history, the meeting will take place on a cruise ship – Royal Caribbean's Majesty of the Seas, sailing from Miami to the Bahamas. 

The NASB has always invited shortwave listeners and anyone with an interest in shortwave radio to take part in its annual meetings.  This year, Risto Vahakainu and Arto Mujunen of the Finnish DX Club will join us, as well as Toshimichi Ohtake of the Japan DX Club and Michael Murray, former secretary general of the European DX Council.  Representatives from NASB members WEWN, WWCR, Trans World Radio and WRMI will be onboard, as well as representatives from associate members HCJB Global and the International Broadcasting Bureau.  The NASB's webmaster and former president Doug Garlinger will also take part. 

Seminars at the annual meeting, which will take place in the ship's conference center, will deal with topics such as Latin American shortwave broadcasting, Florida's shortwave stations, shortwave listening in the Arctic, and a DRM update.  The results from the NASB's year-long shortwave listener survey will be announced for the first time.

Many participants are bringing their spouses to this NASB meeting/cruise.  There will be plenty for family members to do if they don't want to sit in on the meetings and seminars.  The Majesty of the Seas features a wide variety of entertainment and activities for people of all ages, and the ship will make stops in Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas; and Great Stirrup Cay, with its pristine beach and snorkeling opportunities. 

The cost for the three-night cruise is $299.00 plus $66.41 tax per person, based on double occupancy of an inside cabin.  Oceanview cabins are also available, as are single, triple and quad occupancy options.  The price of the cruise includes all meals, certain drinks, most entertainment and meeting costs.  There is no separate meeting fee.  For more information and to make a reservation for the meeting, go to www.shortwave.org.  Click on “Annual Meeting.”

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Another New Religious Shortwave Station for the US?
by Andy Sennitt, Radio Netherlands Media Network (Jan. 17, 2011), via Bill Damick, TWR

On their Facebook page, the Stinson Family write: “We are praising the Lord! We just saw God provide the money to start a shortwave radio station at our home base! This radio station will have a worldwide reach. We will be broadcasting in multiple languages to reach the unreached with the Gospel! Please help us pray as Spring City Baptist Church and Independent Baptist Media endeavor to get the station on the air by the end of 2011!” According to their website, The Stinson Family are based in Lebanon, VA.

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New DRM North America Website

Benn Kobb informs us that Christopher Rumbaugh has started a companion website to the DRM North America group on Yahoo.  Please visit:  http://drmna.info

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Danish Shortwave Club Annual Meeting

News release from Tibor Szilagyi, Secretary General of European DX Council

 

The 2011 Annual General Meeting and DX--Camp of the Danish Shortwave Club International, DSWCI, will take place in Vejers Beach, western Denmark, western Part of Jutland on May 20-22, 2011.  If you wish to book hotel rooms, you may do so using the E--Mail address:  klithjem@live.dk

 

Homepage of the Hotel:  www.klithjembadehotel.dk

 

You can receive more details from the Chief Editor of Shortwave News, DSWCI, Kaj Bredahl Joergensen in Denmark:  Kaj.Bredahl@mail.dk

 

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HCJB Program Host/Engineer Clayton Howard Dies At 92

HCJB news release January 28, 2011 by Ralph Kurtenbach and Harold Goerzen

The longtime host of a popular shortwave radio listeners’ program, Clayton Howard, died on Thursday, Jan. 27, in Tahlequah, Okla. He was 92. He had served from 1941 to 1984 as an engineer with Radio Station HCJB, an international shortwave station in Quito, Ecuador.

 

For more than two decades he and his wife, Helen, hosted the “DX Partyline” program. (“DX” is a radio term for distance; DXers are listeners to distant radio stations.)

Clayton was born on Nov. 27, 1918, to missionary parents in Canton, China. His father, Charles Howard, an entomologist and college professor, and his mother, Anne, a biologist and teacher, served at a Christian university and conducted research for the Chinese government to develop a finer grade of silk. When Clayton was 9 years old the family returned to the U.S. where his father developed the biology department at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Ill.

At Wheaton Academy, Clayton loved learning about radio and electronics. In 1939 he graduated from Wheaton College with a physics degree followed by a year of graduate studies in physics at the University of Chicago.

“I heard HCJB on Easter Sunday of 1940 while [the station was] inaugurating a new 10-kilowatt transmitter,” Clayton once said in an interview. “I had known there was a missionary shortwave station in South America previously, but knew very little about it until 1940.”

Clayton contacted HCJB Global co-founder Reuben Larson who then recruited him to join the technical team at La Voz de Los Andes (the Voice of the Andes) in Quito. College Church in Wheaton later commissioned him as a missionary, and he arrived in Ecuador to begin serving at Radio Station HCJB in 1941.

Clayton’s marriage to Helen Marie Prestidge on Sept. 12, 1942, was broadcast live from Quito via shortwave “so the folks back home could hear it,” according to his son, Chuck Howard. The couple had met in Wheaton, and Helen went to Ecuador after she graduated. It was her father, a Baptist minister, and Rev. Evan Welsh, pastor of College Church, who together prepared the phonograph record with the marriage ceremony, leaving gaps for “I do” from the couple.

Many station employees remembered Clayton as a technician whose special knack was keeping the tape recorders, record turntables and mixing consoles going, according to Chuck, an HCJB Global missionary teacher in Quito. Clayton served primarily in audio work, but he was also involved in everything technical such as transmitters, antennas, studios, power and remote programs. He was also actively involved in the search for a new international transmitting site for the station, eventually selecting Pifo.

A career highlight for Clayton was helping a fellow engineer at the station, Clarence Moore, design and build the world’s first cubical quad antenna. Also, in an era in which Ecuador’s communication resources were marginal, Clayton actively handled remote broadcasts for the Ecuadorian government. He contributed to the growth of HCJB from a small radio facility to a major international broadcaster, reaching out with the gospel message in many major languages.

Blessed with an excellent bass voice, Clayton loved his involvement with regular live music programs in English and Spanish. He took part in concerts each year to honor the station’s host city, Quito. In the mid-1960s Clayton took over as host of “DX Partyline,” a semi-weekly program for shortwave enthusiasts.

Clayton and Helen also began Andes DX International (ANDEX), a club for shortwave radio listeners, and the ANDEX magazine. The Howards corresponded with people around the world. In addition to shortwave listening tips, they shared “Tips for Real Living,” focusing on a meaningful relationship with the Creator. It was their joy to lead many to the Lord Jesus through the programs and follow-up correspondence.

After their final “DX Partyline” program aired in June 1984, Clayton received what Chuck referred to as an unusual tribute from an unlikely source, Radio Moscow, which stated, “The living legend of the Andes has retired!”

Upon retirement, the Howards spent 10 years in Florida, then moved to Go Ye Village, a Christian retirement center in Tahlequah. “When Clayton and Helen came to live at Go Ye Village,” said retired HCJB Global missionary Don Schroder, “Clayton set up closed-circuit TV to televise the Sunday chapel services, Bible studies and memorial services. These televised services went into all the homes and apartments of residents in the village.”

Clayton was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years on Jan. 3, 2010. Survivors include three children, Chuck Howard of Quito, Leland Howard of Missouri and Ruth Anne Leaf of Illinois (recently retired from missionary service in Japan), as well as 11 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.

He loved to share his enthusiasm for radio, and he enjoyed meeting with radio clubs in the U.S. “On one occasion,” Chuck remembered his father telling, “he was met at the door to the club by a lively group of young men, all sporting T-shirts with his picture on the front!”

One such teenaged fan of Clayton and Helen’s radio show was Rich McVicar who quipped, “It was one of the very few programs I would actually listen to. The rest of the time, I was constantly tuning the dial for new catches!”

Years later, when McVicar arrived as an HCJB Global missionary in Ecuador, the Howards were there, having been coaxed back to Ecuador for a short visit. “In fact, Clayton and I co-hosted my first four ‘DX Partyline’ programs,” McVicar said. “Becoming the producer of ‘DX Partyline’ was a dream come true for me, and being introduced to the famous host of my teenage listening days was a uniquely wonderful experience.”

Another young listener was John Beck. Upon Clayton’s retirement, Beck was the program’s new host. “I was scared. I had listened to Clayton and Helen since high school. But he told me not to worry and that he would help me in the transition,” Beck said. “I watched him conduct a couple of tapings, introducing me on the second to the audience and then he turned to me and said, ‘OK, now it’s your program.’ I stammered. ‘But I thought we would have a transition of at least a couple of months!’” Beck said Clayton’s reply was, “Oh no … we leave next week.”

“Clayton not only taught me over the air much of what I learned about shortwave radio as a hobby,” added Ken MacHarg, who later hosted the same radio program. “He was also the door through which I began doing programming on HCJB.”

“Before my wife and I ever went there, he asked me to adapt portions of my book, Tune in the World, for broadcast as a series,” MacHarg explained. “I recorded profiles of various international broadcasters who were featured in the book and sent them for use on the program.”

Chuck described his father as one who loved Ecuador and its people. Although he was a practical joker at times, his passion for Christ was evident. “He was a humble, rather private man who felt rather awkward in large groups, but in his quiet way, he was a very effective servant of the Lord,” Chuck said. “He didn’t preach, but he made it possible for others to preach the Word to millions of needy souls around the world.”

His life verses were, “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6, KJV).

A memorial service is set for Go Ye Village Chapel at 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 29.

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Information for Participants in the 2011 NASB/USA DRM Annual Meeting

 Itinerary:

May 13, 2011 - Majesty of the Seas leaves the Port of Miami at 4:30 pm (Eastern Time)

May 14, 2011 - Arrival in CocoCay, Bahamas at 8:00 am; departure at 5:00 pm

May 15, 2011 - Arrival in Nassau, Bahamas at 8:00 am; departure at 5:00 pm

May 16, 2011 - Return to Port of Miami at 7:00 am

Please note that you may board the ship on Friday, May 13 from 11:30 am-3:00 pm.  Due to government security regulations, everyone must be on board by 3:00 pm.  Please make any connecting airline reservations with sufficient time to get from the airport to the Port of Miami (a distance of about 20 minutes).  If you miss the departure, you would not be able to catch up with the ship by air flight until Sunday when it gets to Nassau (i.e. there is no airport in CocoCay).  To be sure, you may even want to get to Miami on Thursday.  We can help you with hotel reservations in Miami if necessary. 

You will want to board the ship as early as possible on Friday in order to take advantage of the buffet lunch (which is included in your cruise fare) and various talks and activities which will take place on the ship on Friday afternoon, including talks about the ports, excursions and shopping.  At around 4:15 pm, there will be a mandatory safety drill which will take about 15 or 20 minutes. 

 If you are flying out of Miami on Monday, be sure to make flight reservations for the afternoon or evening.  Because of sea conditions, the 7:00 am arrival time in Miami is approximate, and it will likely take at least 1-2 hours to disembark, go through immigration, pick up luggage and pass through customs.  You do not have to leave the ship at 7:00 am, but you will have to leave your cabin by around 8:00, and leave the ship by around 9:00 am.  You will have time to eat breakfast on Monday morning (included in your cruise fare). 

 Luggage:  Cruise lines are not as strict about luggage as airlines.  You can basically take as much as you can carry.  However, the cabins are relatively small, so you won't want to bring a lot of luggage.  You can carry on a small bag, which you will have to keep with you until your cabin is ready at around 1:00 pm.  Checked luggage will be delivered to your cabin, but it could take until 7:00 pm to arrive.

 Security:  Before you board the ship in the Port of Miami, you will have to go through an x-ray procedure much like when you get on an airplane.  When you check-in, you will get a SeaPass card, which doubles as a cabin key and an ID/charge card.  You will be asked for a credit or debit card guarantee to pay for any items that you charge onboard with your SeaPass, or you can leave a cash deposit.  When you leave the ship in CocoCay, you must take your SeaPass card with you and show it to get back on.  When you leave the ship in Nassau, you must take your SeaPass card and a photo ID with you which you will have to show when getting back on the ship.

 Shore Excursions:  Royal Caribbean offers a large number of optional shore excursions in both CocoCay and Nassau.  There is a shore excursion desk on Deck 4 where you can purchase tickets for these excursions, and you will also find information about them in your cabin and on the in-cabin television. 

You can also find excursion information on the Royal Caribbean website (www.royalcaribbean.com).  You do not have to take any excursions; you can always wander around on your own in the ports or take tours or local transportation on your own. 

 CocoCay:  This is Royal Caribbean's private island.  You will have to take a tender (a small boat) just a few minutes from the ship to the shore.  There is a nice beach, snorkeling opportunities, an aqua park (extra charge) and a free barbecue lunch on the beach.

 Nassau:  This is the capital of the Bahamas.  There are plenty of historical and tourist attractions which you can visit on your own or take tours from Royal Caribbean or private operators in the port area.  You can walk from the ship to a terminal area with shops, tourist information, etc.  Leaving the terminal you can easily walk to the main shopping streets and the Straw Market, where you will find tons of souvenirs and local handicrafts.  Excursions are offered for water sports and trips to nearby Paradise Island, where the world-famous Atlantis resort is located.  (Atlantis has a nice aquarium which can be visited; there is an entrance fee.) 

 Money:  The Bahamian dollar is on a par with the U.S. dollar, and U.S. dollars can be used anywhere.  Many if not most places also accept credit cards.  There are many ATM's in Nassau (but not in CocoCay), where you can use your credit or debit card to get cash in Bahamian or U.S. dollars.  On the ship, you will only use your SeaPass to purchase anything, including casino chips and tokens. 

 Tips:  Royal Caribbean suggests a total of $9.75 per person per day for tips, which are distributed among the cabin and restaurant staffs.  This amount can be charged to your SeaPass, or they will leave envelopes in your cabin in which you can put cash and give them to the appropriate personnel.  In addition, tips will be automatically added to certain services on board such as drink tabs.

 Swimming Pools:  There are swimming pools and jacuzzis on Deck 11.  The water is salt  water.  Towels are available on the pool deck; do not take towels from your cabin.

Customer Service, Questions on Board:  If you have any problems or questions while on board, see the Royal Caribbean Guest Relations desk on Deck 4.  If you have a question about the NASB meeting itself, come to the NASB registration desk in the Conference Center.

Drinks:  Your cruise fare includes certain drinks such as (non-bottled) water, hot and cold tea, coffee, milk and juice for breakfast.  There is an extra charge for soft drinks and alcoholic beverages, which can be charged to your SeaPass.  You will find "packages" offered for soft drinks and wine, or you can purchase them separately.  Prices are typical hotel-type rates.  The tap water in your cabin is safe to drink.  Your cabin steward will bring you ice upon request.  Technically, you are not allowed to bring water, soft drinks or alcoholic beverages onto the ship.  They do inspect your bags when you get back onto the ship in a port, and they will hold any bottles for you until the end of the cruise.

Conference Center:  The NASB and DRMUSA meetings will take place in the ship's Conference Center on Deck 7.  There will also be an NASB registration desk there that will be manned during meeting hours and certain other times.  After you board the ship on Friday, please pick up your meeting registration packets at the NASB desk in the Conference Center on Friday afternoon or evening.

Meeting Times:  We will set exact times for the NASB and DRMUSA meetings as we get closer to the event.  We will do our best to schedule the meetings so that you will also have ample time to take part in other activities on the ship and to explore the ports of call.  We have scheduled a group dinner each night at 8:30 pm in the main restaurant.  Several talks and presentations have already been tentatively scheduled.  We will have computer projectors, other audiovisual equipment, screens, podiums, etc. in the Conference Center.

Attire:  Generally casual.  Whatever you feel comfortable with is OK.  The weather will likely be hot and humid.  During the daytime and for breakfast and lunch, shorts and t-shirts are fine, especially in the pool area.  For dinner, you should wear long pants in the main restaurant.  (Shorts are fine in the buffet.)  There is an optional formal night on the second night of the cruise.  (You don't have to have formal wear; smart casual is fine.)

Food:  The main restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner on an a la carte basis.  There is open seating for breakfast and lunch.  There are two main dinner seatings.  Our group is booked for the late seating at 8:30 pm each night in the main restaurant.  We will be able to all sit together in the same area.  However, you are welcome to eat by yourself at other times if you prefer.  You can also eat in the buffet restaurant anytime.  It is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Exact times are in the daily Cruise Compass newsletter that you will receive in your cabin.  In addition there is a pizzeria open until the early morning hours, and a deli as well.  All of these restaurants are included in your cruise fare, as well as free room service from 5 am till midnight.  (There is a flat $3.95 charge for room service from midnight till 5 am.)  There is a fast-food restaurant, Johnny Rockets, which has hamburgers, fries, milk shakes, etc.  Johnny Rockets charges a flat $4.95 for whatever food you want, plus they charge for drinks and shakes.  The ship also has a specialty coffee shop and an ice cream parlor which have a la carte charges.

 Stores:  There are a few stores on the ship selling items such as jewelry, clothes, perfumes, souvenirs, liquor, photo accessories, etc.  Most of these shops are open only when the ship is in international waters.  Of course there is a lot of shopping available in the ports.  U.S. citizens are allowed to bring back up to $800 in merchandise duty-free (no Cuban cigars). 

 Telephones:  Each cabin has a telephone.  Calls from one cabin to another are free, but if you call outside the ship there is a $7.95 per minute charge.  Cell phones will work on board if you have international roaming activated on your account; check with your cell phone provider about this.  Charges depend on your provider.  For example, AT&T charges about $2.50 per minute; T-Mobile charges about $5.00 per minute.  On CocoCay, there is no cell phone service (except the service on board the ship).  In Nassau, most cell phones will work; again, charges vary by provider.  For example, T-Mobile's rate for international calls from the Bahamas is about $3.00 per minute.  Of course messaging rates are much lower.

 Internet:  There is an Internet Cafe on the Majesty of the Seas, and you can also use your own laptop and connect to WiFi Internet in various hot spots on the ship, including the Conference Center.  The charges are the same for the Internet Cafe or WiFi connections.  The base rate is US 65 cents per minute, or you can buy "packages" of 60 minutes or more for lower rates per minute.  In downtown Nassau, a short distance from the ship, there are Internet Cafes with much lower rates per minute.  Please note that Internet service on cruise ships is generally much slower than what you are used to on land, and it varies depending on location, amount of traffic and other conditions.

 Port of Miami Location:  The Miami cruise port is located downtown, about 20 minutes from the airport.  The exact address is 1015 North American Way, Miami, Florida 33132.  Royal Caribbean offers transportation from the airport to the cruise port for about $30 per person.  But you can also take a taxi for about $24 for one to five persons.  If you are driving, there is a parking lot in the port which charges $20 per day. 

 Hotel Option:  We have had a few inquiries about hotels in Miami from people who plan to spend a night or more here before and/or after the NASB 2011 cruise.  Some people may want to stay on Miami Beach or in downtown Miami near the cruise port.  But if you are looking for a hotel near the airport, we might suggest the Red Roof Inn Miami International Airport, located right across the street from the airport on LeJeune Road.  This is a very nice Red Roof which offers a free shuttle service between the airport and the hotel, a free shuttle from the hotel to the cruise port and free continental breakfast.  The least expensive rate we found on their website for May 12, for example, is $95.00 plus tax.  But we have arranged for a special rate of only $55.00 plus tax for NASB 2011 attendees for any night in May.  You will not find this discount on the Red Roof website.  But you can call them (+1-305-871-4221) and give them the corporate code CP 609133 for the $55.00 rate.  Or simply send us an e-mail (info@wrmi.net) and we'll be glad to make the reservation for you and we'll send you a confirmation number.

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First DRM  General Assembly in the Asia-Pacific Region

DRM Press Release - 31 January 2011

 

The DRM Consortium will hold its 23rd annual General Assembly Meeting on the 7th - 8th March 2011 at the Hotel Istana, Kuala Lumpur. This will be the first time that DRM has held its key internal meeting in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

The General Assembly is the largest decision-making body of the DRM Consortium. It meets once a year to oversee the Consortium’s activities and progress made in spreading knowledge on the use and implementation of DRM digital radio technology. The two day conference (7th-8th March 2011) will be attended by many DRM members and supporters from around the world who will not only review the work that has been undertaken, but will discuss the progress of DRM technology and the challenges faced when introducing digital radio.

 

Sharad Sadhu, Director of the ABU Technical Department says, "The radio broadcasters in the Asia-Pacific can look forward to reaping immense benefits by implementing digital services. In that effort, the DRM and DRM+ technologies are poised to play a pivotal role, more so where the broadcasters plan to cover large areas."

 

 

Ruxandra Obreja, DRM Consortium Chairman added, “We will use the opportunity of being hosted by the ABU right on the eve of the Digital Broadcasting Symposium to give our members a deeper understanding of the Asian market and its particular challenge on its way to digitalization.”

 

At the end of the General Assembly, the DRM Consortium hopes to meet many DRM members and friends at a networking event organized just before Digital Broadcasting Symposium (8th-11th March 2011).

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Intern at HCJB Global Technology Center Helps with Digital Radio Technology
(HCJB Global news release - January 28, 2011 - by Marla Bender)

Investing in young technologists who will help develop new means for the propagation of the gospel is a core purpose of the HCJB Global Technology Center in Elkhart, Ind. One of the ways the center accomplishes that goal is through its internship program.

John Moore, a computer science major at Taylor University, recently completed an internship at the center and was excited about the opportunity to work on a project that truly could be called a “family affair.”

Cutting-edge technology called Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) is being developed. It has many innovations that will make it superior to traditional radio. One of those features will allow a single station to send out one signal with multiple streams of information.

A new style of radio receiver will separate the streams, enabling individual listeners to hear the gospel programs in the language of their choosing. This technology will be most useful in the many places around the world where multiple languages are spoken.

Some of the computer software involved for the DRM project was developed by John’s father, Bob Moore, who served at the Technology Center for many years. John’s older brother, Josh Moore, also contributed to the project during his time at the center, and brothers David and Daniel have helped with other projects at the HCJB Global Technology Center.

Most recently, John was able to add some desired functionality to the DRM software. It’s
actually the ability to transmit multiple audio programs simultaneously on a single channel that John has been working on.

Since the information that goes onto the DRM signal is generated by a computer, John said this project is well suited to a computer science major.

“The computer coding was deeper than anything I have ever done,” he said, admitting that his background gave him confidence to tackle the challenge.

“I’ve had computers in my house for my entire life,” John related. “We had access to the
Internet before most of my friends, and my brothers and I knew how to take apart a computer and put it back together at age 8 or 9.”

In addition to a love of technology, John inherited from his father a desire to serve others. Bob left a position as director of research at a successful company in order to serve at the
Technology Center. “Dad worked here more years than I know,” John reported with obvious admiration.

He also received valuable training for service when attending Word of Life Bible Institute in Argentina for nine months, and he has served on short-term mission trips to Canada and Costa Rica.

 

As to future work or ministry, John is uncertain. His interests are varied. In addition to
technology, they include music, athletics and Spanish. While at Word of Life he became
conversational in Spanish and hopes to spend at least some time serving in a country where he could use all of his skills.

When asked about a dream job, he said it would be fun to write computer code for video
games. But his immediate plans following graduation are much more practical: “I need to get a normal computer science job and pay off my school debt!” he said.

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BBC Says Most World Service Listeners in Egypt Tuned in on FM or Via Local Partners

by John Plunkett in guardian.co.uk, Thursday 3 February 2011


The BBC is standing by its decision to cut back its World Service broadcasts to Egypt despite the political crisis that has engulfed the country.  Over the past week the popularity of the BBC's Arabic website surged as president Mubarak's government looked to clamp down on media reporting of the uprising, shutting down the al-Jazeera news channel,arresting journalists and pulling the plug on mobile phone and internet services.


Short-wave broadcasts of the BBC Arabic service, which has around 400,000 listeners in Egypt, will be shut down as part of plans to save £46m from the World Service's budget. The changes follow a 16% cut in its funding by the government and are likely to lead to the loss of 30 million listeners worldwide.  There will also be "significant reductions" in the BBC's Arabic TV services, according to the plans outlined by the BBC's global news director, Peter Horrocks, last week.


The National Union of Journalists described the World Service's transmission policy as "short sighted.”  "The Egyptian government's attempt to close down the internet and mobile phone network demonstrates how short sighted the current World Service transmission policy is," said an NUJ official at the World Service.  "In a volatile world the World Service needs to maintain its own network of transmitters beyond the reach of dictators so it can continue to reach its audience."


The BBC said the majority of its World Service listeners in Egypt tuned in on FM or via local broadcasting partners.  Short-wave broadcasts accounted for around 400,000 listeners out of the World Service's Egyptian radio audience of 1.6 million, the corporation added. BBC Arabic's total audience in Egypt, across TV, radio and online, was 3.4 million.


"With satellite TV becoming virtually ubiquitous in the Arab-speaking world, and the success of its own TV channel, the BBC has decided to stop its short wave broadcasts to some countries in the Middle East," the corporation said in a statement.  "However, BBC Arabic will continue to serve its radio audiences on medium wave, through its network of FM relays and via existing and new rebroadcasting partnerships.


"It will also continue to serve its most sensitive audiences in Sudan and Arabic peninsula with short wave and medium wave broadcasts.  We have seen a significant spike in the number of people visiting bbcarabic.com. It's now at record levels – 1.3 million unique users in the week commencing 24 January, generating a total of 8.5m page impressions.  This is the highest weekly reach ever measured, more than twice as high as the average week in December, despite the fact that the majority of our audience in Egypt, our biggest market, cannot reach the website because of the internet restrictions introduced by the Egyptian government."

 

But one visitor to the Save World Service page on Facebook said: "With the events in Egypt this week where the internet was shut down, how can the BBC honestly believe that satellite and internet feeds will replace shortwave?" 


Another said: "As shown in Egypt the internet and cell phones can easily be cut off. In many places where the internet does exist service is not reliable ... You cannot compare a relatively inexpensive radio set with a costlier computer or hand-held electronic device."


With short-wave broadcasts of the BBC Arabic service also due to cease in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, the West Bank, Libya, Iraq and the Maghreb region of north Africa, it is expected to lead to the loss of around 5.7 million listeners across the region.

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EWTN lanza servicio de noticias en espanol:  EWTNNoticias.com

Irondale, Alabama, 02 Feb. 11 / 05:01 am (ACI/EWTN Noticias) via Yimber Gaviria, Colombia

La red católica global EWTN firmó un acuerdo con ACI Prensa para compartir recursos informativos de todo el mundo con los católicos de habla hispana y a todos aquellos interesados en la fe católica, las noticias católicas y la perspectiva católica en general a través del sitio web EWTNNoticias.com.

"EWTN Noticias se agrega a los servicios de noticias en inglés que lanzamos en conjunto con CatholicNewsAgency.com en marzo de 2010 (www.ewtnnews.com), pero también a nuestros demás servicios en español: nuestro canal de televisión EWTN Español y nuestro servicio radial, Radio Católica Mundial", afirmó Michael P. Warsaw, Presidente y CEO de EWTN.

Alejandro Bermúdez, Director de ACI Prensa, comentó que este acuerdo constituye una nueva expansión de la sociedad que mantiene con EWTN desde hace varios años.

"Desde su creación en Lima, Perú, en el año 1980, ACI Prensa ha ofrecido noticias católicas. 1996 fue un año crucial para ACI, cuando se hizo presente en la web, convirtiéndose en uno de los principales servicios de noticias católicas del mundo. Nuestra sociedad con EWTN para realizar EWTN Noticias marcó otro momento histórico fundamental para nuestro servicio a los católicos de habla hispana de todo el mundo", indicó.

También en 1996, EWTN lanzó su servicio online, con lo que fue pionera en el uso de Internet para ofrecer noticias e información católicas, recordó Doug Keck, vicepresidente ejecutivo de EWTN.

Keck alentó a todos a ingresar en el nuevo sitio y disfrutar del amplio contenido que ofrece.  Ya casi cumplidos sus 30 años de existencia, EWTN la Red Católica Global está disponible en más de 160 millones de hogares a través de sus señales de televisión, en más de 140 países y territorios. Con servicios satelitales directos de televisión y radio, una cadena radial de AM y FM, una estación de radio de onda corta, el sitio de Internet www.ewtn.com y su brazo editorial, EWTN es el mayor conglomerado religioso de multimedios del mundo.

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Shortwave Works during Cyclone Yasi in Australia
from Glenn Hauser's DX Listening Digest

Hi everyone.  Have been listening to coverage on ABC-Queensland. They have been repeatedly mentioning that people should tune to 9710 or 6080 kHz, "if (their) local ABC transmitter goes off." Then the announcer added: "Shortwave is 'crackly' but at least IT WORKS!"

First World broadcasters who think shortwave is redundant, TAKE NOTE.  One final thought -- it's good to see the Australian government acknowledge the benefits of HF broadcasting, especially when in the past, Radio Australia's future was uncertain. If the axe had fallen on RA, how would people impacted by [Cyclone] Yasi get their news (if the local stations are off the air)? 73s (David Sharp, New South Wales, Australia 1903 UT Feb 2, dxldyg via WORLD OF RADIO 1550, DX LISTENING DIGEST)

 

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Three months left for NASB Shortwave Listener Survey

                                                                       

Those who have not yet taken the NASB shortwave listener survey still have time to take part.  Several hundred people from around the world have answered the survey since mid-2010, when it went online.  The survey asks about shortwave listening habits, listener demographics, equipment used, etc.  Results will be announced by the survey coordinator, Dr. Jerry Plummer of WWCR, at the NASB annual meeting onboard the Majesty of the Seas May 13-16.  They will later be printed in the NASB Newsletter and made available to other shortwave media.  The survey can be found on the NASB's website, www.shortwave.org. 

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Radio Slovakia International to Continue on Shortwave in 2011

News release from WRMI

 

A last-minute agreement between Radio Slovakia International and Radio Miami International allowed the international radio station of Slovakia to continue its shortwave transmissions in English and Spanish to the Caribbean and Latin America.

 

Radio Slovakia International had announced that its shortwave broadcasts would end on December 31, 2010.  However, Radio Miami's station WRMI is now broadcasting RSI's program in English at 0130-0200 UTC Tuesday-Saturday and RSI's Spanish program at 0330-0400 UTC seven days per week.  Both of these transmissions are on 9955 kHz with 50 kilowatts of power from Miami using a beam of 160 degrees directed to the Caribbean and Latin America. 

 

"We are glad to be able to help Radio Slovakia International continue its shortwave transmissions to this part of the world," said WRMI General Manager Jeff White.  He added that listener reports will be appreciated and will be verified with a special WRMI QSL card commemorating the Radio Slovakia International relay.  Reports may be sent to Radio Miami International, P.O. Box 526852, Miami, Florida 33152 USA, or by e-mail to info@wrmi.net.

 

UPDATE:  Radio Prague also ended its shortwave transmissions from the neighboring Czech Republic on January 31, 2011, after 75 years of shortwave broadcasting.  WRMI also reached an agreement to carry several broadcasts of Radio Prague in English and Spanish daily, including a Spanish broadcast at 0300-0330 UTC on 9955 kHz to the Caribbean and Latin America.  WRMI had been relaying Radio Prague programs to the Americas for several years.

 

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New Program from Radio Marti

Station news release, via Yimber Gaviria

 

“El Revoltillo” (“The Scramble”), a groundbreaking new program on Radio Martí, brings online classifieds to the airways, bridging the information gap in Cuba. This daily interactive broadcast connects buyers and sellers looking to make an exchange via cash, goods or services, a free market practice that is often curtailed by the Cuban government. 

“El Revoltillo marks another way that Radio and TV Martí provide access to information otherwise unavailable to the Cuban people,” said Carlos García-Perez, director of Radio and TV Martí. “We heard from our research focus groups with recent Cuban immigrants about the increasing popularity of a Craigslist-like Cuban website and responded by creating this on air barter program.” 

Given that access to the Internet in Cuba is highly restricted, show co-hosts Karen Caballero and Alfredo Jacomino read online classifieds and audience e-mails, and open the phone lines to Cuban listeners who have something to buy, sell, rent or trade. "El Revoltillo" provides Radio Martí’s audience with a unique opportunity to connect to a growing network of small businesses and entrepreneurs.“El Revoltillo” airs daily from 10:30 to 11:00 a.m. on Radio Martí’s AM and shortwave frequencies, and is available online at 
www.Martinoticias.com.

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Radio Free Asia Issues Year of the Rabbit QSL Card

January 2011 news release

 

Radio Free Asia (RFA) announces the release of our 35th QSL card. This latest card continues our series of Chinese Lunar New Year commemorative QSLs. 2011 is the Year of the Rabbit and began on February 3, 2011 and runs through January 22, 2012. Those born in a rabbit year are said to be kind, sensitive, soft-spoken, gracious, good natured, reserved, cautious, artistic, thorough, self-assured, shy, astute, and lucky. This QSL card will be used to confirm all valid reception reports from January 1 – March 31, 2011.

 

RFA is a private, nonprofit corporation that broadcasts news and information to listeners in Asian countries where full, accurate, and timely news reports are unavailable. Created by the U.S. Congress in 1994 and incorporated in 1996, RFA currently broadcasts in Burmese, Cantonese, Khmer, Korean to North Korea, Lao, Mandarin, the Wu dialect, Vietnamese, Tibetan (Uke, Amdo, and Kham), and Uyghur. RFA strives for accuracy, balance, and fairness in its editorial content. As a ‘surrogate’ broadcaster, RFA provides news and commentary specific to each of its target countries, acting as the free press these countries lack. RFA broadcasts only in local languages and dialects, and most of its broadcasts comprise news of specific local interest. More information about Radio Free Asia, including our current broadcast frequency schedule, is available at www.rfa.org.

 

RFA encourages listeners to submit reception reports. Reception reports are valuable to RFA as they help us evaluate the signal strength and quality of our transmissions. RFA confirms all accurate reception reports by mailing a QSL card to the listener.  RFA welcomes all reception report submissions at www.techweb.rfa.org (follow the QSL REPORTS link) not only from DX’ers, but also from its general listening audience.

 

Reception reports are also accepted by email at qsl@rfa.org, and for anyone without Internet access, reception reports can be mailed to:

 

Reception Reports

Radio Free Asia

2025 M. Street NW, Suite 300

Washington DC 20036

United States of America

 

Upon request, RFA will also send a copy of the current broadcast schedule and a station sticker.

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Interview with Rafael Diniz of DRM-Brasil

From drmna.info
Posted on December 9, 2010 by admin

I asked Rafael to tell us about himself, his work and the current status of DRM in Brazil. DRMNA.info is pleased to once again offer an English language exclusive! Although Brazil is not exactly NORTH America, Rafael’s work is a testimony to what can happen in the Americas!

“My name is Rafael Diniz, I’m graduated in Computer Science in the Campinas University (Unicamp) and I’m now working with Digital TV broadcast equipment. I’m a radio aficionado since about 2002 and right now I’m deeply involved with the Digital Radio discussion in Brazil.

“Well, my history in this DRM thing started in about 2007 when almost all the ‘radio people’ here believed HD Radio would be the standard chosen as the Brazilian Digital Radio system. Since then I started publishing some material about an alternative to the proprietary, unknown codec, HD Radio system: the Digital Radio Mondiale system.

“In 2009 the almost certain HD Radio future for Brazil began to change, and DRM trials backed by the government take place again in Medium Waves (previous trials in MW and SW have already happened back in 2005). A little time before I got to know another great enthusiast of DRM here in Brazil: Ataliba, and together we started promoting DRM where we could.

“At the end of 2009 the Minister of Communications himself, previously a big HD Radio supporter, admitted DRM was in the game for the Digital Radio Standard definition in Brazil, and the Ministry of Communications itself started to make the DRM trials all over Brazil with borrowed Digidia, Nautel, Fraunhofer and RF Mondial equipment. In January 2010 we went to visit Radio Cultura broadcasting in DRM in 1210 kHz in Sao Paulo. Also in the beginnings of 2010 the first DRM+ trial (in the Minas Gerais University Radio) took place and we started to believe that DRM could be THE standard for Digital Radio in Brazil.

“In June 2010 a major thing happened to me, I went to London for vacations and in there I met in the BBC facilities Fanny Podworny and Ruxandra Obreja, the DRM Chairman. We had two meetings, and one definition: the Brazilian DRM Platform was created (www.drm-brasil.org).

“I, Ataliba, and other radio aficionado friends built the Brazilian DRM Platform with the purpose to help broadcasters, the government, and the people in general to test and implement DRM in a way to show that it is the standard that should be used worldwide for Digital Radio, and that it’s well suited for the Brazilian needs, including educational purposes, large coverage issues, optimization of the spectrum, low cost radio possibilities and so on.

Ruxandra Obreja said one thing very important: if Brazil chooses DRM system as a whole for the Digital Radio, Brazil will be the one to take DRM, including DRM+, “out of box”, everybody will look at Brazil to see how to make DRM work. And we already have some kind of experience with that, with our modified ISDB-T Digital Television System, that we exported freely to the entire South America and some countries in Africa also.

“After that many things happened – more DRM+ trials (Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro), we showed the government a low cost DRM+ transmitter setup (using the USRP and Spark) and low cost receiver solutions Ataliba is developing.

“Now the government is changing here in Brazil (Dilma Rouseff is the newly elected President) and the Minister of Communications will be aligned with the government (left wing), and we expect that 2011 will be year of DRM here in Brazil.

“We of DRM-Brasil will continue our listening tests, and also our developments in the transmitter area (big thanks to Michael, the author of Spark, and Matt Ettus, the creator of the USRP) and receiver area.

“The news about the DRM developments in Brazil can be read in www.drm-brasil.org in Portuguese, but we hope to start translating the most important news for the interested English and Spanish speakers.”

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DRM Sponsors Radio Asia Conference

Dates: 21-Feb-2011 to 23-Feb-2011
Location: New Delhi, India

DRM is to be the principal sponsor at the Radio Asia Conference. Radio Asia 2011 addresses on-going developments in radio broadcasting, highlighting future opportunities and challenges. This event is supported by Consortium members Babcock, Fraunhofer, TDP and Transradio.  You can find out more about Radio Asia on http://www.radioasia.org/

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NASB Members

 

Adventist World Radio

Assemblies of Yahweh

EWTN Shortwave Radio (WEWN)

Family Stations Inc.

Far East Broadcasting Co.

Fundamental Broadcasting Network

La Voz de Restauracion Broadcasting, Inc.

Le Sea Broadcasting Corp.

Radio Miami International

Trans World Radio

World Christian Broadcasting

World Wide Christian Radio

 

NASB Associate Members

 

Babcock (formerly VT Communications)

Comet North America

Continental Electronics Corporation

Galcom International

George Jacobs & Associates

Hatfield and Dawson Consulting Engineers

HCJB World Radio

IBB

Kintronic Labs, Inc.

Richardson Electronics

TCI International, Inc.

TDF

TDP

Thomson Inc.

 

National Association of Shortwave Broadcasters

10400 NW 240th Street, Okeechobee, Florida 34972

Ph: (863) 763-0281 Fax: (863) 763-8867 E-mail: nasbmem@rocketmail.com