Radio Currents Online - Nov 25 - Dec 08, 2002

Publish date:

Radio Currents Online - Nov 25 - Dec 08, 2002

Dec 1, 2002 12:00 PM

Radio technology news updated as it happens.

Click here to view the Currents Online archive list.

Image placeholder title


| Business | People |Internet Watch | Products


Arbitron Extends PPM Trial Due toSingle Encoder Glitch

New York - Dec 5, 2002 - Arbitron will extend the ratings comparisonportion of the Portable People Meter (PPM) market trial through March28, 2003. The extension makes the report coincide with the ArbitronWinter 2003 radio survey period, and the Nielsen Media ResearchJanuary, February and March 2003 local market television surveyperiods. However, the main reason for the extension is the setup of oneencoder installed at KYW-AM. Following a routine upgrade of encodingequipment in late October, Arbitron technicians discovered that audioinput to KYW's PPM encoder was not set to the appropriate level, whichmay have inhibited the encoder's performance at KYW during the spring,summer and the early part of the fall 2002 radio ratings periods. KYWengineers, working with Arbitron technicians, remedied the problem onNov. 13, 2002.

Based on data from a new diagnostic tool created to facilitate theupgrade of encoding equipment, Arbitron also asked engineers at fourother radio stations to slightly increase the audio input levels totheir respective encoders. Arbitron believes that the encoders at thesestations were receiving sufficient audio input throughout the test andthat the performance of their encoders were not inhibited. During thepast few weeks, Arbitron has reviewed the performance of every encoderat the 49 radio stations, 11 TV stations and 26 cable networksparticipating in the Philadelphia market trial.

Arbitron stated that extending the ratings comparison by another fullradio survey period will allow the company to determine if theout-of-spec encoder input might have affected the performance of thePortable People Meter during the spring and summer ratings period.Arbitron does not expect this extension to affect the current schedulefor PPM development in 2003. The previously announced response ratetest will still take place in the first half of 2003, in parallel withthis additional ratings analysis period.

Once Arbitron refines the PPM sampling methodology through its responserate research, the company plans use that methodology to build thefirst of the twin panels, as previously announced, in the latter partof 2003. The second of the twin panels will be built in 2004.

Arbitron further stressed that the KYW situation does not represent aflaw in the PPM technology. The company added that it has learned thatit needs to refine its installation specifications and refine itsprocedures for verifying that the encoders have been properlyinstalled. Arbitron is improving the design of its in-stationmonitoring equipment to allow it to analyze more completely the qualityof the encoded signal.

Mandatory Electronic Filing for FCC319, 340

Washington - Nov 25, 2002 - The FCC's Media Bureau issued a reminderthat FCC forms 319 (Application for a Low-Power FM Broadcast StationLicense [June 2000 Edition]) and 340 (Application for ConstructionPermit for a Reserved Channel Noncommercial Educational BroadcastStation, [March 2001 Edition]) are now required to be filedelectronically.

The mandatory electronic filing commenced on Nov. 18, 2002. Paperversions of these forms will not be accepted for filing after Nov. 15,2002, unless accompanied by an appropriate request for waiver of theelectronic filing requirement. Users can access the electronic filingsystem via the Media Bureau�s website at

Pursuant to the 1998 Biennial Regulatory Review, mandatory electronicfiling was to commence six-months after a given form was made availablefor electronic use. FCC Forms 319 and 340 available for electronic useprior to April 1, 2002.

While the FCC recognizes that some limited waivers of this requirementwill be necessary, such waivers will not be routinely granted and theapplicant must plead with particularity the facts and circumstanceswarranting relief.

PPW Study Calls for National WarningSystem

McLean, VA - Nov 25, 2002 - The Partnership for PublicWarning� an organization formed to promote and enhance efficient,effective and integrated dissemination of public warnings and relatedinformation to save lives, reduce disaster losses and speedrecovery� conducted a study to gauge the effectiveness of currentpublic warning systems. The study found that, "many different [public]warning systems exist that are quite heterogeneous, are notinteroperable, and do not reach all of the people at risk."

In its study,Developing a Unified All-Hazard Public Warning System, the groupfound that "the many government agencies issuing such warnings areinconsistent in their terminology, leading to confusion and inadequateresponse."

The Partnership for Public Warning was established in January 2002 at ameeting of the nation�s leading public warning experts fromgovernment, business and academia. A public and private non-profitconsortium, the group combines the experience of its members to promotethe efficient, effective and integrated dissemination of publicwarnings and information about national security threats, as well asnatural disasters and other emergencies.

The group�s study calls for the Federal government, specificallythe new Department of Homeland Security, to take responsibility forleading the development of a "national all-hazard public warningarchitecture in partnership with other Federal agencies, state andlocal governments, industry, universities and other stakeholders." Sucha system will save lives, reduce disaster losses and speedrecovery.

The development of a unified, national all-hazard warning system mustincorporate insights derived from more than 60 years of social scienceresearch on how people respond to disaster warnings and how warningscan be made more effective. Contrary to popular belief, "mass panic ishighly unlikely when accurate information is provided," the studyreports. "People want accurate and reliable information, and ifofficial sources do not provide it, they will seek it from lessreliable sources."

The group�s study points out that "people rarely respondeffectively to a last-minute, �out-of-the-blue� alert totake action unless they can directly perceive the threat." Instead,public warning must be a "continuous process that peaks during rarecrisis events." People at risk need to participate in the progressionfrom tenuous information to increasingly specific information so thatthey "understand the imminence, severity and likelihood of experiencinga hazardous situation."

The full report is available at A direct link tothe report may be found here.

The Partnership for Public Warning�s report was prompted by aDepartment of Justice request for public comment earlier this year on aproposed Homeland Security Advisory System. In June, the group conveneda workshop of experts�from the social sciences, physicalsciences, communications technologies, emergency management and Federallaw enforcement terrorism experts�at the National EmergencyTraining Center in Emmitsburg, MD. The group�s report is a resultof that workshop.

Image placeholder title

NAB2003 Housing Opens December 4

Washington - Nov 25, 2002 - The National Association of Broadcastersis working with 20 hotels in Las Vegas to provide rooms to attendeesfor its annual convention, NAB2003, April 5 to 10. Housing willofficially open Dec. 4.

The hotels participating in this year's room block are the Aladdin,Alexis Park, Bally's, Bellagio, Caesars, Palace Tower, Circus Circus,Flamingo, Gold Coast, Harrah's, Las Vegas Hilton, MGM Grand, Mirage,New York New York, Paris, Rio, Riviera, Sahara, Stardust, TreasureIsland and Venetian.

Reservations can be made by calling (888) 622-8830 or (703) 205-9114 oronline at

Radio magazine will have free exhibits-only passes available.Look for details closer to the convention.


Clear Channel RadioMakes Syntrillium its Standard

Tulsa, OK, and Scottsdale, AZ - Dec 2, 2002 - Clear Channel Radiohas standardized Syntrillium's Cool Edit Pro version 2.0 as its choicefor digital audio editing, recording and mixing. The announcement comesafter two rounds of purchases of Cool Edit Pro licenses fordistribution to many of the 1,300 Clear Channel radio stations.

Steve Davis, senior vice president for capital management for ClearChannel Radio, placed the first order just after NAB2002 and made thesoftware available to some Clear Channel stations through its network.It proved to be so popular that a second order was needed two monthslater.

Cool Edit Pro is a PC-based platform, and it has been integrated withClear Channel�s own PC-based systems already in place.

Music Choice Selects OMTTechnologies

Winnipeg, MB - Nov 28, 2002 - OMT has signed an agreement with MusicChoice to supply and install a new multichannel digital audio broadcastsystem. The system features OMT's iMediaTouch broadcast automationsoftware and uses the Dolby AC-3 audio technology. The agreement isvalued at more than CDN $1 million, and will be implemented over thenext several months.

Stu Farber, vice president of information technology for Music Choice,stated that the company selected OMT because the system could supportthe use of Dolby AC-3 for storage and delivery.

Music Choice provides cable and satellite customers in the UnitedStates with 54 channels of commercial-free, CD-quality music in a widevariety of music genres, along with original programs, 24 hours a day.Music Choice produces an exclusive concert series through a nationwidenetwork of cable systems. Music Choice's audio service reaches 25million households and the concert series airs in 30 million homesnationally. Headquartered in Horsham, PA, Music Choice is a partnershipbetween subsidiaries of Microsoft, Motorola, Sony Corporation ofAmerica, Warner Music Group, EMI Music and several leading U.S. cableproviders, including Adelphia Cable Communications, Comcast CableCommunications, AT&T Broadband, Cox Communications and Time WarnerCable.


Harris Adds Highsmith inSales

Image placeholder title

Cincinnati - Dec 4, 2002 - Harris has added Jeff Highsmith to thecompany's Broadcast Communications Division (BCD) as a salesrepresentative for the Broadcast Center Sales. Highsmith will be basedat the main facility in Mason, OH, and will be responsible for clientbroadcast equipment needs for the U.S. southeast territory thatincludes Florida, Georgia and Louisiana. He also will provide clientaccount back-up for Harris District Sales Manager Hall Kneller.

Highsmith joins Harris from WGCU-FM Public Broadcasting, Ft. Myers, FL,where he worked in radio production, operations and engineering.

Adelstein Appointment toFCC Finalized

Image placeholder title

Washington - Dec 3, 2002 - Jonathan S. Adelstein was sworn in as amember of the Federal Communications Commission on Dec. 3, 2002. Beforejoining the FCC, Adelstein served for 15 years as a staff member in theU.S. Senate. For the past seven years, he has been a senior legislativeaide to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD), where he advisedSenator Daschle on telecommunications, financial services andtransportation. Previously, he served as professional staff member toSenate Special Committee on Aging Chairman David Pryor (D-AR),including an assignment as a special liaison to Senator Harry Reid(D-NV), and as a legislative assistant to Senator Donald W. Riegle, Jr.(D-MI).

Prior to his service in the Senate, Adelstein held a number of academicpositions, including: teaching fellowship in the Department of History,Harvard University; teaching assistant in the Department of History,Stanford University; and communications consultant to the StanfordUniversity Graduate School of Business.

Adelstein received a B.A. with Distinction in Political Science fromStanford University, an M.A. in History from Stanford University,studied at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University andis a graduate of Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. He is amember of the National Academy of Social Insurance, the Phi Kappa PhiNational Honor Society and the Pi Sigma Alpha Political Science HonorSociety. Adelstein, 40, was born and raised in Rapid City, SouthDakota.

Adelstein was sworn in for a term that expires June 30, 2003.

Adelstein also appointed his staff. Lisa M. Zaina will become hissenior legal advisor and wireline competition advisor. Three interimlegal advisors were also appointed: Eric Einhorn for wirelinecompetition, Barry Ohlson for spectrum and international and SarahWhitesell for media, and Kevin Venters as staff assistant. KatherineLapin is joining his permanent staff as confidential assistant.

Adelstein on Hold for FCCSpot

Washington - Dec 2, 2002 - After the momentary excitement of finallybeing confirmed as a new member of the FCC by the U.S. Senate a coupleof weeks ago, Democrat Jonathan Adelstein is back to waiting. PresidentBush has been so busy with other matters that he hasn�t foundtime to sign the final paperwork needed for Adelstein to be sworn in asa commissioner. It appears the fifth FCC member of the Commission willhave to continue his wait. No word yet as to when the President willfind the time to make the appointment official.

Atkins Named VP/DOE for BackyardBroadcasting

Image placeholder title

Balitmore, MD - Dec 2, 2002 - Backyard Broadcasting has hired TomAtkins as its vice president/director of engineering. Atkins has 30years of experience in all aspects of the broadcast business. Atkinshas been with Entercom for the past three years as director ofengineering for the group�s Buffalo radio stations. Prior tothat, he held similar positions with Sinclair Broadcast Group, RiverCity Broadcasting, Keymarket Radio and Cap Cities. Atkins hascontributed several articles to Radio magazine during the pastfew years.

Backyard Broadcasting owns WTYX and WRXW in Jackson, MS, and will closeon its purchase of Sabre Communications in December 2002. The stationsin the sale include:
Elmira/Corning NY Market: WNKI(FM) Corning, NY; WPGI(FM)Horseheads, NY; WNGZ(FM) Montour Falls, NY; WWLZ(AM) Horseheads, NY;WGMF(AM) Watkins Glen, NY.

Olean, NY (Regional): WHDL(AM) Olean, NY; WPIG(FM) Olean,NY.

Williamsport, PA Market: WGXR(FM) Lewisburg, PA; WZXR(FM) SouthWilliamsport, PA; WBZD(FM) Muncy, PA; WILQ(FM) Williamsport, PA;WSFT(FM) Williamsport, PA; WWPA(AM) Williamsport, PA.

Muncie, IN (Regional): WURK(FM) Elwood, IN; WXFN(AM) Muncie, IN;WLBC(FM) Muncie, IN; WHBU(AM) Anderson, IN; WERK(FM) Muncie, IN;WHTI(FM) Alexandria, IN; WHTY(FM) Hartford City, IN.

Sacks Heads to ERI

Image placeholder title

Chandler, IN - Nov 27, 2002 - Marty Sacks will join the staff atElectronics Research, Inc (ERI) as director of sales. He will begin hisnew duties on Jan. 1, 2003, and continue to work from his office inBaltimore. In his new position he will manage the worldwide sales forcefor ERI antennas and towers. He will report to Jim Muleski.

Sacks joined Telos Systems in April 1999, taking over the role ofnational sales director. Before that, Sacks began his career inbroadcast engineering in 1976 as a staff engineer for WPGC, Washington,DC. He then went on to oversee numerous studio and transmitter projectsfor then group owner First Media and later for Greater Media as chiefengineer of WGAY/WWRC. In 1992, he transitioned into broadcastequipment sales for Northeast Broadcast Lab and later joined the salesstaff of Pacific Research & Engineering in the major broadcastmarkets on the East Coast.

Audio Precision Appoints New BoardMembers

Beaverton, OR - Nov 18, 2002 - Audio Precision has appointed twoindustry experts to the company's board of directors. The two newmembers are Hisao Shimizu, sales manager, 4th Sales Department, TOYO inTokyo, Japan, and Rudi Heijnen, CEO, Henyen in Heijen/Gennep, TheNetherlands.

Shimizu has been with TOYO for 25 years, holding high-level positionsin sales and marketing. He has a degree in physics from the Universityof Okayama.

Heijnen began his engineering career at Philips in Eindoven, thenjoined Heynen in 1973. He has held the title of CEO of the Heynen groupof companies since 1987. Founded in 1951, Heynen is a consulting firmand distributor of test equipment throughout the Benelux countries.

International Datacasting Addsnew CFO

Ottawa - Nov 26, 2002 - International Datacasting (IDC) has hiredMarc A. Santerre to take over as the company's CFO, effective Dec. 2,2002. Santerre has more than 16 years of senior financial managementexperience in financing, acquisitions and divestiture, and growthmanagement. Prior to joining IDC, Santerre was the CFO for VistarTelecommunications and GPC Government Policy Consultants, where heplayed an integral role in the growth of both of these entities.

Premiere Radio Names Three VPs

Los Angeles - Sep 20, 2002 � Premiere Radio Networks hascreated three executive vice president positions, promoting Lark Hadleyfrom senior vice president of engineering and technology to EVP ofoperations; Martin Raab from senior vice president of marketing andadvertising to EVP of marketing and chief strate gy officer; and EileenThorgusen from senior vice president of affiliate relations to EVP ofaffiliate relations. All three continue reporting directly to Kraig T.Kitchin, president of the network.

In his new position, Lark Hadley will oversee the logistical operationsof Premiere Radio including the following departments: interactive,MIS/IT, engineering and facilities. Prior to joining Premiere Radio in1999, he served as Dallas director of engineering at AMFM for a year,chief engineer at KHKS-FM, Gannett/AMFM Dallas for nine years and asthe design engineer and project manager at AT&E/Seiko, ContinentalElectronics and Amtech, for a span of 15 years.

Martin Raab will be responsible for leading the long-term planning andthe strategic initiatives for the network while continuing to providedirection to the company�s marketing efforts. He was senior vicepresident of marketing and promotion at AMFM for three years when thecompany merged in 2000 with Premiere Radio. He has worked in networkradio since 1989 leading the marketing efforts, first for SatelliteMusic Network and then ABC Radio Networks. Raab began his radio careerin Detroit at WCXI-AM/FM and WXYT-AM and WVAE-FM.

Eileen Thorgusen will oversee all affiliate sales efforts for thecompany's entertainment-based programs and services including allresearch tools, prep services, long-form programming and productionlibraries for Premiere Radio. Prior to joining the company in January1996, Thorgusen served as district director/western region for two andhalf years at CBS Radio Networks and more than 10 years in affiliaterelations at Westwood One.

Staff Changes at BSI

Image placeholder title

Eugene, OR - Oct 1, 2002 - The sales staff at Broadcast SoftwareInternational is seeing some new faces. Jim Zix, who is already anemployee of BSI as the director of training, adds director of sales andmarketing to his list of duties. Hecurrently resides in Indiana and is moving to Oregon to joinheadquarters. Zix has a long history with BSI and began hisrelationship with the company when he was one of its earliestcustomers. Zix joined BSI in 2000.

Mark Ruckwardt has joined the sales staff. He holds an MBA from theUniversity of Oregon, where he also served as the graduate teachingfellow.

Image placeholder title

Internet Watch

WOR Launches New Online Format

New York - Dec 9, 2002 - WOR New York has launched The Best ofEverything, a new music format incorporating a variety of pop musicon one stream that listeners customize to their tastes. This newpersonalized online player also offers additional flavors of thisunique format featuring all-Christmas music.

According to WOR, the format is targeted to adults who think that radiohas forgotten them. Each listener can customize his own individualmusical stream to play more of his favorites. Special buttons on theplayer allow listeners to play specific artists more, less or not atall.

The online station is powered by iSelector from RCS, learns andremembers a listener's musical tastes to create a specific music mix,different from any other listener�s stream. The iSelector systemcomplies with the DCMA, and RCS has arranged approved use with all thenecessary record companies.

Listeners obtain their own personalized online player from the WORRadio website,, for $4.95 per month. The first 48 hoursare free. The monthly fee covers streaming costs, database management,plus record label and music publishing company fees. The online streamis delivered without commercials.

Radio Free Virgin Taps BlueFalcon Networks

Los Angeles - Nov 25, 2002 - Radio Free Virgin (RFV) has selectedBlue Falcon Networks to provide the distributed delivery technology andinfrastructure for its Internet broadcasting networks. The new high-endsubscription audio product is called RFV Royal. RFV also turned to BlueFalcon for assistance in developing the transaction processing andaccount management system as well as many other features in cooperationwith RFV's product and technology teams.

RFV had previously used Blue Falcon�s technology in its existingfree ad-supported offering, to stream more than 50 channels of live andpre-recorded broadcasts to nearly 4.5 million consumers. While manyInternet broadcasters have shut down or limited their offerings due tobandwidth costs, legislative pressures and the inability to profitablyscale their services, RFV is moving full steam ahead with fullimplementation of the cost savings and scalability improvements enabledby Blue Falcon�s distributed platform.

Blue Falcon uses a distributed architecture that replicates content oneach user�s machine, allowing each listener to become a miniserver of content. Instead of listeners accessing one central server,they receive streams from other nearby listeners of the same content.This structure decreases distribution costs by reducing the number ofstreams originated by content providers. With Blue Falcon, eachlistener is also a distributor, sharing resources to streamlinedelivery across the network. Blue Falcon states that cost reductionscan be as great as 90 percent but average 60 percent.



London - Nov 29, 2002 - has released its newest CADpackage called Users can design integrated systems usingan online library of more than 30,000 symbols through a Web-basedtechnology that incorporates tools and data from Stardraw'sconventional software packages, including Stardraw Audio, Stardraw AV,Stardraw Lighting 2D, Stardraw Professional and Stardraw Radio.

While traditional software is shipped on CD and installed on the user'scomputer, is delivered to a browser through HTML pages,using tools that download themselves as they are needed. Through aclient/server split, drawing operations and rendering are executed onthe client side, and symbols libraries and product information arestored in databases on the server. One advantage of the client/serversystem is that every user will always be using the most currentsoftware and symbols available. Files can be accessed, worked on andsaved locally even if the Internet connection is broken. The system canbe viewed at

EMF Broadcasting Picks up 70 OmniaProcessors

Cleveland - Dec 2, 2002 - EMF Broadcasting�s K-LOVE( and Air 1 ( networks will install newOmnia6-fm audio processors in its network. The K-LOVE Radio Networkrecently ran an audio processor shoot out between five major audioprocessing manufacturers, and chose the Omnia-6 for its installations.The units have been delivered and are currently being installed.

EMF operates 67 full-power radio stations and 145 translators. Itsthree Christian music networks are heard in 34 states and streamedonline. The Omnia processors were sold through Broadcast SupplyWorldwide.

Sonic Solutions No Noise for ProTools|HD Now Shipping

Nov 27, 2002 - Sonic No Noise, a suite of noise-reduction andaudio-restoration plug-ins for ProTools|HD, is now available. The TDMand Audio Suite plug-ins for Mac OS and Windows XP-based Pro Tools|HDsystems perform noise reduction and audio restoration, useful in themixing and mastering stages of audio production. Its set of plug-insisolate and eliminate audio artifacts such as hiss, scratches, hum,mechanical and impulsive noise. These processors work to removebothersome noise without damaging original program material. No Noisecan be used to restore old recordings, remove unwanted noises fromfield recordings and repair audio materials that have suffereddamage.

An upgrade will be available for DINR users. Digidesign and Sonic willrelease those details when they are available.