Friday, September 30, 2011

BBC Radio 4 on the brain

Starting on 7 November, BBC Radio 4 presents a new season of programmes about the brain. The season includes: a major 10-part series about the history of the brain; the story of the lobotomy craze in the Forties and Fifties; an exploration of what the latest discoveries in neuroscience might mean for the way we live our lives; an interview with one of Britain's leading brain experts and the slaying of common myths about the brain and its workings; and a new radio science website.

The season starts with Dr Geoff Bunn’s 10-part A History Of The Brain series which takes listeners on a journey through 5,000 years of our understanding of the most complex thing in the known universe. Moving from Neolithic times to the present day, Geoff journeys through the many and varied ideas about what the brain is for and how it fulfils its functions. This ground-breaking series, written and presented by Dr Geoff Bunn, can be heard on weekdays at 1.45pm starting on Monday 7 November, with an omnibus on Fridays at 9pm. 

In a three-part series, Brain Culture: Neuroscience And Society, starting on Tuesday 15 November at 4pm, Matthew Taylor explores how new imaging techniques have produced some remarkable insights into the functioning of the brain. And he looks at how the findings of neuroscience might radically transform our understanding of the classroom, the courtroom and the cabinet office. With a potentially new understanding of how the mind works will we seek to teach, punish and rule people differently? The series continues on Tuesday 22 and 29 November, 4pm. 

On Monday 7 November at 8pm, Hugh Levinson tells the story of the lobotomy craze of the Forties and Fifties in The Lobotomists. Hugh asks what the procedure's popularity said about society’s idea of mental health and about the nature of the scientific method itself. 

On Tuesday 8 November at 9pm, Radio 4’s psychologist Claudia Hammond makes it her mission to slay common myths about the brain and its workings in Mind Myths; everything from the fallacy that we use only 10 per cent of our brains to the idea that listening to Mozart makes children smarter. 

This season follows Radio 4’s bold commitment to science with a new science strand – The Life Scientific With Jim Al-Khalili – starting on Tuesday 11 October at 9am, and which gets inside the mind of leading neuroscientist, Colin Blakemore, on 8 November 2011. 

A new website, The Science Explorer will offer a rich archive of Radio 4 programmes that explore the lives, the work and the inspiration of scientists featured in this autumn's science programming and the new science strand The Life Scientific. The archive will include episodes from series such as In Our Time, Material World, Desert Island Discs and The Reith Lectures. 

Scientists to be featured include Sir Paul Nurse, Steven Pinker and Prof Jocelyn Bell Burnell, Prof John Sulston, Dr Geoff Bunn, Matthew Taylor and Prof Robert Winston

Programmes from the brain season and The Life Scientific will be available via the Science Explorer site to listen again or to download as podcasts. Listeners will also be able find out more about the scientists, their big ideas and their work, starting with Prof Jim Al-Khalili on Monday, 3 October. The Science Explorer can be found at bbc.co.uk/radio4. 

(Source: BBC Radio 4 Publicity)

ABU General Assembly registration tops 400

More than 400 people from 42 countries have registered for the ABU General Assembly and associated meetings, which will take place in New Delhi on 2-8 November. 

India's national broadcasting corporation, Prasar Bharati - which oversees the national broadcasters, Doordarshan and All India Radio - will host the meetings, which will look at a wide range of issues. 

It's the first time the annual meetings are being held in India since 1990.

Apart from the General Assembly on 7-8 November, the meetings include the Technical and Programme Committee meetings, the Sports Group meeting, the Administrative Council meeting and the ABU/FES Seminar for developing countries.

Among the key topics for discussion are how broadcasters are gearing up for new TV and radio services, the lessons learned from the coverage of Japan's earthquake and tsunami on 11 March, and the role of media in national development.

A highlight of the General Assembly will be the Special Topic Session on the second day, which will look at "Media Development and Media for Development". 

The presentation of the annual ABU Prizes will take place at a gala night on 7 November, hosted by Prasar Bharati. 

For more information please see www.abu.org.my/aburegistration2011/

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

EBU's David Wood to be honoured

The ABU is to honour David Wood, the Deputy Director, Technology and Development, European Broadcasting Union (EBU), with a Distinguished Service Award. 

The award will be presented to him at the ABU Technical Committee meeting in New Delhi on 3 November during the ABU's annual meetings. 

In addition to his EBU position, Mr Wood is Chair of the ITU-R Working Party 6C, which has produced standards and recommendations for digital television and HDTV. He also chairs the European High Definition Forum.

He is the author of over 100 technical papers, articles and book chapters covering digital television, quality evaluation, broadcasting strategies, digital radio and 3DTV.   

Meanwhile, the winners of the ABU Broadcast Engineering Excellence Award 2011, sponsored by Sony, and the ABU Engineering Industry Excellence Award 2011 have been selected.

Their names will be announced during the opening session of the Technical Committee Meeting on 3 November when they will be presented with plaques.

They will receive their awards on the ABU Prizes Night in New Delhi on 7 November.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

Singapore broadcast veteran Ananda Perera dies

Ananda Perera, the former director of News at then-Singapore Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) has died, ChannelNews Asia reports.

Mr Perera was 72. He was also the Chairman of the ABU News Group from 1990 to 1992.

Singapore's MediaCorp has extended its deepest sympathy to the family, describing Mr Perera as a broadcasting veteran, a respected mentor and colleague.

Mr Perera started his broadcasting career in the 1960s. He rose through the ranks to become director of News in 1982-83, a position he held until he was transferred to the Public Affairs Division in 1992-93.

He left SBC in 1995 to pursue other interests.

His son, Sanjay, said Mr Perera had been in hospital since May and died on Wednesday afternoon. It is understood he was suffering from cancer.

Mr Perera leaves behind his wife, a son and two daughters.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

The Asian Pitch announces 3 winners

MediaCorp-Singapore, NHK-Japan and KBS-Korea have selected three projects to commission after a successful run of their regional pitching event, The Asian Pitch. 

The winning directors, this year from India, South Korea and Malaysia, have signed the contract with the three organisations, and will receive full funding for their documentary productions. 

Production will start soon and the completed programmes will be available internationally next summer.

The Asian Pitch is an initiative through which the three public broadcasters give independent directors who live and work in Asia an opportunity to tell original stories about the region. 

Now in its fifth year, it's aimed at creating new HD documentaries and finding new talent in Asia. Previous documentaries, Supermen of Malegaon, For the Love of Shakespeare, Farmer's Struggle and Listen to the Mountain Sages, have all received international recognition for creative and production excellence.

About 100 proposals were submitted between January and April 2011 from countries including China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. 

Ten of the entries were short-listed, and the directors were flown to Singapore to pitch their stories to a panel of executive producers from NHK, MediaCorp and KBS on 21-22 July 2011.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

VOA Reporter Gets Rare Glimpse of Life in North Korea

Voice of America journalist Sungwon Baik, who just completed a rare reporting assignment to North Korea, says officials there appeared to be conveying a message that they want to improve strained relations with the United States.

Baik was granted access to North Korea earlier this month, after receiving an unprecedented written invitation by North Korean officials, to cover the 17th International Taekwon-Do World Championships in Pyongyang from September 6th through the 12th.

North Korean officials at the event said on a number of occasions that they were familiar with VOA broadcasts and that the news programs are well recognized. “The first time I thought they were just trying to be polite to me,” Baik said, “but then it was like 6 or 7 times a day they would say that VOA is very important and you can come back.”

In addition to his reporting on the taekwon-do championships, Baik was allowed to walk around Pyongyang and ride the subway, but always accompanied by an official. He describes the city as vibrant and busy with activity.

Baik, whose reports aired live on the VOA Korean Service during the taekwon-do competition, interviewed a North Korean member of the International Olympic Committee, Chang Ung, who expressed hope the event would be a turning point in relations with the United States and could pave the way for future cultural and sports exchanges.

For more information about this release or to arrange an interview with Sungwon Baik, contact Kyle King in Washington at kking@voanews.com. Visit www.voanews.com for more information in English or in any of our language services.

Radio Free Asia Commemorates 15 Years of ‘Bringing Free Press to Closed Societies’

Radio Free Asia (RFA) today commemorated the 15th anniversary of its first broadcast on this date in 1996. RFA President Libby Liu stressed RFA’s critical role of “bringing free press to closed societies” through its nine language services that provide accurate, objective news and information for people living in six Asian countries that restrict free speech and media freedoms.

“Since our first broadcast 15 years ago, Radio Free Asia has risen from a small band of broadcasters to become an award-winning global media organization operating in some of the world’s most challenging media environments,” Liu said. “Built on a rock-solid foundation of objective journalism, RFA prides itself on bringing free press to closed societies through our dedicated, professional team of reporters.” Read More

(Source : Broadcasting Board of Governors)

China National Radio visits EBU to discuss future cooperation

Raina Konstantinova and Ingrid Deltenre welcome China National Radio to the EBU
The European Broadcasting Union today welcomed a top-level delegation from China National Radio (CNR), who had come to learn more about the EBU and discuss future cooperation possibilities. 

The six-strong group was welcomed by EBU Director General Ingrid Deltenre, Director of Radio Raina Konstantinova and other senior figures from the EBU Radio Department.

During his visit CNR Deputy Director General Zhao Zizhong expressed his organization's wish to become an associate member of the EBU. He said the EBU's European experience and know-how would be helpful to the development of radio in China, and to the Chinese media landscape as a whole.

In particular, the CNR delegates were interested to learn more about the EBU's approaches to management, marketing and programme exchange.

Real Radio reporter runs for wounded troops

Award-winning GMG Radio journalist Katie Collins is taking part in a marathon in Liverpool to raise money for the wounded soldiers as part of the group’s Help for Heroes appeal.

She’ll be joined along the route next month by injured troops from the North West who’ve been helped by the charity.

Katie – who was named Reporter of the Year at this year’s IRN Awards – has reported from Afghanistan and also accompanied a team of severely wounded troops and Prince Harry as they trained for their trek to the North Pole earlier this year.

The 28 year old says she couldn’t even run a mile four months ago but has been in training for the marathon on Sunday 9th October where she’ll be joined by five soldiers who have suffered serious injuries in Iraq or Afghanistan and also by the parents of two local soldiers, Terry Webster and Tom Sephton, who lost their lives in Afghanistan.

Real and Smooth Radio’s Help for Heroes Day – this year on 14th October – has raised more than £500,000 for the charity in the last two years.

Katie says her experience during a reporting trip to Afghanistan has spurred her on to tackle the challenge. “Seeing the rows of heavily bandaged troops with catastrophic injuries waiting to be flown home at Camp Bastion is an image that will stay with me forever,” she said. “I’ve since met many of these remarkable guys and am inspired by their determination to get on with their lives. Taking part in the marathon will be a personal challenge and I’ve been training hard but I know that I will be spurred on by the soldiers and parents that will join me along the route.”

Support Katie’s marathon run here.

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

More northern commissions for BBC radio

The BBC has announced a second year of its ‘Creative Kicker’ funding to commission work for 5 Live from independent producers in the North of England.

The £60,000 pot – an 50% increase from last year – will also be used for one-off commissions for other network stations Radios 1, 2, 3 and 4.

The investment comes from BBC North to support the indie sector in the North West, North East and Yorkshire. Peter Salmon, Director of BBC North, said: “Our initial investment helped to create new and long-term relationships with radio indies across the North of England which resulted in some original and moving radio programmes. I am confident that our new investment will strengthen these relationships and result in even more exciting and thought-provoking programmes for our listeners.”

Last year’s Creative Kicker fund paid for seven programmes on 5 Live which aired between last October and this summer. They included a drama about Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ goal, a topical sports comedy show and documentaries about issues ranging from the lack of black football managers in Britain to the stories of lottery winners. Last year’s seven commissions went to Made in Manchester, Savvy Productions, Input Media North, Pearl Works Prodcutions, Soundscape Productions, Jo Meek and Blakeway North.

Speaking to an audience of northern independent producers, Jonathan Wall, Deputy Controller, BBC Radio 5 Live, said: “I was really impressed with the creativity and quality of the commissions that northern indies came up with for 5 Live in the last round and I’m delighted to see the other national radio networks on board. There’s a big pool of talent here and the commissioning fund can tap into and realise that on air.”

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

Matthew Littleford takes on role of Global BBC iPlayer General Manager

Matthew Littleford has taken on the role of General Manager of the pilot for the global BBC iPlayer.  Littleford joined BBC Worldwide in April 2011 as Creative Director for the commercial and international video on demand service that launched in 11 Western European countries in July this year and today, 29th Sept launches in Australia.

As General Manager, Littleford is responsible for editorial and day to day operation, marketing, promotion, product and technology and reports directly to Jana Bennett, President Worldwide Channels and global BBC iPlayer. 

Commented Bennett: "Matthew is the perfect choice to lead the global BBC iPlayer through its next journey as we move into the entertainment schedules of digital audiences around the world.  With his passion for British television and previous experience running commercial and digital networks we are very lucky to have him managing the service during its pilot phase, as it evolves and becomes available in new markets."

Littleford said: "This is a really exciting time for the global BBC iPlayer as we continue to evolve, develop and ensure it is what our international audiences want from us. I'm delighted to be taking on overall responsibility as we move from launch phase into roll-out."

Littleford joined BBC Worldwide this year after three and a half years overseeing the UKTV portfolio of channels, including Dave, Really and Good Food.

The global BBC iPlayer app launched in Western Europe in July 2011, delivering the award-winning programming upon which the BBC's history and heritage is built.  The app is currently available in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, The Republic of Ireland, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland. It launches in Australia on Thursday 29th September 2011. More territories are due to launch later this year.

Subscribers are able to access a rich selection of captivating English language programmes across eight genres: News Specials & Documentaries; Entertainment; Drama; Comedy; Science & Nature; Family & Kids; Music & Culture and Lifestyle.

(Source : BBC Worldwide Press Release)

Australian journalist assaulted during drug raids

A man has assaulted an ABC journalist covering a series of drug raids across south-east Queensland today, ABC News reports. 

The man hit journalist Imogen Brennan and stole the keys to an ABC car at Mount Nathan near Nerang on the Gold Coast.

The news crew had been covering raids that targeted people with links to outlaw motorcycle gangs involved in the supply and production of GHB and methylamphetamine.

A total of 115 police officers exercised about 30 search warrants in simultaneous raids on the Gold Coast and at Logan and Ipswich.

Witnesses at the exclusive Palm Meadows estate reported hearing up to 20 shots around dawn.
"There were flashes and smoke and things like that," one said.

Thirty-four people, including two members of the Finks outlaw motorcycle gang, have been arrested on more than 100 drug-related and other charges.

Police say the operation, codenamed Ice Vulcan, has put a serious dent in a major criminal network.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Watch the 2011 BBG Gold Medal Awards Ceremony Here

"In recognition of exemplary contributions toward the accomplishment of the mission and goals of the Broadcasting Board of Governors."

The BBG Medal Awards Ceremony will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, September 27, 2011, in the Wilbur J. Cohen Auditorium and will be available live and on demand at:

LIVE:

Windows Media Broadband Live Link:

Windows Media Dialup Live Link:

Windows Media Audio Live Link:

ON DEMAND:
Windows Media Broadband On Demand Link:

Windows Media Dialup On Demand Link:

Windows Media Audio On Demand Link:

MP3 Audio On Demand Link:

(Source : Broadcasting Board of Governors)

Radio Wales offers chance to be producer for a day

BBC Radio Wales is offering the opportunity to work alongside presenters Jamie Owen, Louise Elliott and their team to bring a special programme live from Merthyr Tydfil town centre on Friday 14 October. 

The Jamie and Louise programme is offering a unique chance for a member of the community to work as one of the production team, contributing ideas and taking part in one of Radio Wales' most popular radio programmes. Broadcasting live from Merthyr Tydfil, the weekday morning programme is looking for local stories, items and issues, giving local people the opportunity to have their say. What do they think would make an interesting and engaging radio programme?

"We're looking to focus all three hours of the programme on Merthyr for a day, painting a picture of the area in 2011. Working with the guest producer, we have the chance to highlight all sides of the story, presenting a rounded portrayal of what's happening in the town. Our aim is to meet as many people as possible, bringing stories from the heart of the community to audiences across Wales," says Jamie Owen. 

Merthyr has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in the UK, on average children in Merthyr start smoking at the age of nine and last year the Work and Pensions Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith was criticised for claiming that people in Merthyr were unaware they can get on a bus to look for jobs in Cardiff. But does this paint a true picture?

One year on from the Governments Comprehensive Spending Review, numerous BBC Radio Wales programmes will be broadcasting from Merthyr (Friday 14 October to Saturday 15 October) showing what is really going on in the area. Do Merthyr people feel that they get a rough ride from the media? What are the positive things going on? News, sport, daytime, feature and entertainment programmes will all be considering these topics.

The Friday programmes include:
6am-9am – Good Morning Wales from Dowlais Engine House
9am-12pm – Jamie and Louise from Merthyr Town Centre
12pm-2pm – Radio Wales Phone-in from Merthyr College
2pm-5pm – Roy Noble from Merthyr College
5pm-6.30pm – Good Evening Wales from Dowlais Engine House 

Those interested in being a producer for the day can contact the programme by email: jamieandlouise@bbc.co.uk, text 8 10 12, or phone 03700 100 120.

(Source : BBC Press Release)

West Africa Democracy Radio wins innovation award

West Africa Democracy Radio (WADR) based in the Senegalese capital Dakar has received the 2011 Knight-Batten Awards for innovations in journalism administered by J-Lab, a Centre of American University’s School of Communication at the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

Though four other top international media outlets also received prizes alongside WADR at the Washington ceremony, WADR is the only transnational radio station in West Africa which published in French and English online, on air and on social media.

While receiving the award, WADR Station Manager, Peter Kahler said the new tools developed by Sourcefabric have enabled his station to transform its website into a news platform and triple its audience by providing the radio’s content on multiple outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and SoundCloud for deeper reach into the social media.

Mr Kahler expressed gratitude to the organizers of the event and thanked the Open Society Foundation’s Africa Regional Office for its relentless support to the station. He said the organization provided a grant of nearly US$15,000 for the new website project. “Sourcefabric also gave the station a grant of US$10,000 in professional services rendered by its staff to design and build the website as well as train our staff on its operation. WADR is a project of the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) set up to protect and defend the ideals of democratic and open societies by disseminating development information through a network of community radios in the West African sub-region,” he said adding that the station has partnered with 40 community radios in eight West African countries and a chain of correspondents in ten countries in the region.

(Source: Concord Times via Media Network Weblog)

Dutch-based KBC Radio to test on 6095 kHz

Dutch-based KBC Radio has announced the times and frequency of its forthcoming shortwave tests. Its website reports: “In just a few weeks’ time, we’ll begin testing Saturday and Sunday 0900–1600 UTC on 6095 kHz”.

(Source: KBC Radio via Media Network Weblog)

NHK wins Emmy for Chilean mine disaster coverage

NHK's Back from the Brink: Inside the Chilean Mine Disaster has won this year's International Emmy Award for current affairs. The announcement was made at the 32nd News and Documentary Emmy Awards Gala in New York yesterday.  

The Chilean mine disaster trapped 33 miners 700 meters underground in August 2010. The family of one of the miners asked NHK to send a video camera into the mine, resulting in exclusive footage showing the severity of the ordeal. 

The NHK report depicted how the men survived 70 days underground and how the rescue efforts above ground proceeded. Broadcast just 10 days after the miners were rescued, the programme also used detailed interviews with the miners and those involved with their rescue to illustrate the miners' miraculous return from the brink of death. 

Other nominees in the current affairs category were United Nations TV, Discovery Networks Latin America and Germany's infonetwork.

NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) is Japan's sole public broadcaster. Most of NHK's programmes are available internationally through NHK Enterprises, Inc. (http://pf.nhk-ep.co.jp/)

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Audi Enters the Digital Age of Radio

Audi Australia has announced the introduction of Digital Radio Tuner DAB+ functionality into the Audi A6, A7 and A8 model lines.

Digital Radio DAB+ is currently available in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide – servicing more than 60 percent of Australia’s population.

DAB+ affords listeners crystal clear reception and audio quality, with the ability to tune into all existing radio stations plus an array of digital-only stations.

DAB+ also allows users to view slideshows of album art covers, track and artist listings, weather, news and traffic reports – all while listening to their favourite radio station.

Audi A8 4.2 FSI and 4.2 TDI models are equipped as standard with the Digital Radio DAB+ and Digital TV package, with digital radio combined with Digital TV and BOSE Surround Sound system as an optional package on the A8 3.0 TDI for $7,500.

All A6 and A7 models can be ordered with the Digital Radio DAB+ and Digital TV package for $3,130 for A6 models and $3,180 for A7 models.

(Source : theautochannel.com via WorldDMB)

Techcon line-up announced for Festival

This year’s schedule for Techcon has been announced and includes the usual debates on social media, technology and software, with the whole day hosted once again by Orion Media’s David Lloyd.

Plus, if you ever wanted to run your own pirate DAB multiplex, they’ll show you how.

 It kicks off with a look at the difference between Old Media with the Social Media Generation, asking the question: “What are the technical challenges and production opportunities of building interactivity and social media into traditional broadcast radio?”

That’s followed by details of some of the BBC’s latest developments in audio and the results of the technical trial of the DRM+ Digital Radio system carried out earlier this year around Edinburgh.

If you’ve ever wanted to own your own multiplex, the next session will helpfully demonstrate a fully featured DAB/DAB+ multiplexer and transmitter for less than five grand, followed by a few Techno-Bytes and a presentation from Ofcom about pirate radio before lunch.

After the triangle sandwiches, crunchy crisps and mini flapjacks, the topic is Automated Music Reporting where Soundmouse talk about the technology behind their new music fingerprinting service which PRS for Music will use to identify music performances broadcast on radio.

A comedy interlude follows as Jon Holmes provides a little light relief before afternoon sessions about broadcasting during the Olympics, the issues around the interpretation of numbers and extreme engineering with BFBS.

If you miss any of the conference, futurologist James Cridland looks back in his own unique way with the help of an 11 inch MacBook Air.

Radio Academy Chair John Myers then closes the day, no doubt with directions to the nearest bar.

The full schedule can be found here and tickets are still available to purchase.

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

BBC boss warns of “dangerous period” for journalism

Mark Thompson, director general of the BBC, has waded into the row engulfing the Metropolitan police’s attempts to force the guardian to reveal its journalistic sources signify a “dangerous period” for British journalism.

Despite later sropping their legal moves the Met’s decision is being seen as part of a “disturbing trend” which has seen police forces seeking sources and material.

Thompson said: “At the BBC, we receive an ever-growing number of demands for untransmitted news rushes which the police seem to regard as having no more privilege or protection attached to them than CCTV pictures.”

A court order is required for the release of such material.

Thompson also warned that “It would be easy for concern over the appalling invasions of privacy revealed by the phone-hacking scandal to spill over into legislation or regulation which enables wrongdoers to escape journalistic exposure.”
 
(Source : The Drum)

GMG Radio restructures after Rea departure

GMG Radio has announced a number of changes at group programming and news editor level in the wake of Deputy Group Programme Director James Rea’s departure to Global.

Group Production Director Chris Stevens becomes Deputy Group PD, while there are new Brand News Editors for Real Radio and Smooth Radio.

 Rea is leaving the group to become Global Radio’s Group Head of News and LBC Managing Editor. Previously he was Editorial Director at GMG, before being promoted to Deputy Group PD in May

Stevens – who rejoined GMG Radio last summer after spells at Radio 2 and TM Studios in Dallas – will report to Group Programme Director John Simons. We’re told he will continue to oversee all imaging for the group and work alongside the Brand Programme Directors on all aspects of station sound and output. He will also have a special focus on digital content and partnerships.

The group’s news teams will now be overseen by two editors – one for Real Radio and one for Smooth Radio. Vicky Etchells – currently News Editor at Real Radio Yorkshire – takes on the Real role, while Christian Spooner, at the moment the Real Radio North West News Editor, becomes Smooth Radio Brand News Editor.

GMG Radio’s Chief Executive Stuart Taylor said: “GMG Radio is constantly evolving as a business and I’m delighted we are able to promote from within and offer new opportunities to Chris, Vicky and Christian. All three are enormously talented and it’s great to now be able to give them the recognition they all deserve.”

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

Capital FM breakfast team join Metro

Metro Radio has poached North East presenters Steve and Karen from 105-106 Capital FM to replace Tony Horne at breakfast.

They’ll make the move in Spring 2012 once their contract at Global Radio ends.

The news was confirmed to RadioToday.co.uk by Bauer, after much speculation on Twitter and the local press.

Metro Radio Programme Director Chris Pegg said: “Steve and Karen are extremely talented, and I have always admired their breakfast show. It’s fantastic that they are joining Metro Radio the station they grew up listening to.

“They really love the North East, having both grown up on Tyneside. Their on air chemistry and ability to deliver a locally relevant, fun based show gives me every confidence that they are the perfect fit for Metro Radio at breakfast. I can’t wait for them to start.”

Brian Moore has been covering the flagship show since Tony Horne left without explanation in July, after six years.

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

Lonely Planet confirmed for November launch on BBC Knowledge

Viewers of BBC Knowledge around the world will begin a new journey of discovery on 1st November with the launch of Lonely Planet branded programming blocks on the channel. The news follows Jana Bennett’s announcement in June of plans to integrate the travel brand into BBC Worldwide’s international channel portfolio. 

The Lonely Planet block on BBC Knowledge will provide a dedicated home to the channel’s most compelling and immersive travel programming, including ‘Free Rein’, specially commissioned by BBC Worldwide Channels from Lonely Planet’s production arm and Freehand. The programme follows screen legends Bryan Brown and Rachel Ward (The Thorn Birds) as they set out on the ultimate adventure across The Kimberley, the Outback’s last frontier. 

Also destined for the new programme block in 2012 is the action-packed series ‘Year of Adventures’, starring Ben Fogle and based on the Lonely Planet book of the same name. Currently filming in Wales, Europe, the USA and Australia, the series is a Lonely Planet TV and BBC Bristol production for BBC Worldwide Channels. 

Jana Bennett, President Worldwide Networks and Global BBC iPlayer, said, “This dedicated home on BBC Knowledge marks a major step in our development of Lonely Planet as a television brand. BBC Worldwide will continue to support its growth through these programming blocks and through specially commissioned Lonely Planet productions. We hope that in time, the brand can evolve into a standalone television channel.”

The new block will roll out across all of BBC Worldwide’s localised BBC Knowledge feeds around the world – Poland, Africa, Italy, the Nordic Region (Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden), Australia, New Zealand and Asia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea). In India, the block will feature on BBC Entertainment, as part of the multi-genre schedule that airs in that market. Read More

(Source : BBC Worldwide Press Release)

World Christian Broadcasting trying to reach every nation in the world

Former World War II combat veteran of Guam and Iwo Jima Lowell Perry died in a plane crash in the Caribbean on March 25, 1977, at age 53, but his dream of setting up shortwave radio stations to teach the Bible around the world did not die with him.

The dream began in Perry's living room in Abilene and grew into World Christian Broadcasting Inc.

Soon after WWII, Perry and his friend Maurice Hall, also a veteran, decided they wanted to spread the gospel to remote areas of the world. Hall had seen what the shortwave radio could do when he assisted in setting up communications for President Franklin Roosevelt at the Yalta Conference in February 1945, and Perry had seen the islands in the Pacific and knew the people relied on radio for their news.

They kept their idea alive, and in 1976, a small group met at Perry's house and World Christian Broadcasting began.

Perry's widow, Earline Perry, said her husband had always been interested in radio and taught radio and television broadcasting at Abilene Christian University. She said Hall had told Lowell if they could use shortwave radio in the war, they could use it for teaching the Bible.

While at ACU, Lowell published an article, saying, "This sleeping giant (shortwave broadcasting) has only begun to stir. If he were sufficiently motivated, he has the power to take the gospel to the entire world within a few years' time. ... (We) need to realize the potential of this electronic giant and avail ourselves of this excellent opportunity." Read More

(Source : reporternews.com via kimandrewelliott.com)

Dutch Music Monday: 26 September

This week on RNW's Dutch Music Monday Top 10 (week beginning 26 September 2011), Glennis Grace drops off the chart after only a week, B-Yentl after two weeks, and Raccoon's No Mercy finally ends it's 16-week run. They're replaced by Di-rect, jumping right to number two, The Voice of Holland at number eight, and Shary-An at number ten.

To get our weekly music picks delivered right into your social media inbox, 'Like' our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter

Click here to listen to this week’s Music Monday Top 10 on Grooveshark!

2. The Chase – Di-rect
The Hague is what Liverpool is in the UK, or Los Angeles in the US: the home of homegrown pop and rock music. It started back in the 1960s with successful recording acts such as the Blue Diamonds and the Golden “Radar Love” Earring, and these days the Hague is still the Netherlands’ number one rock town. Anouk lives there, as does Di-rect, probably the Netherlands’ most successful rock band. “The Chase” is from their forthcoming album.

8. 1000 Voices – The Voice of Holland
It’s one of the biggest TV hits worldwide this year: The Voice. Yes, it’s another talent show, but with a twist. And like other TV classics like Big Brother and The Phone, it originated here in the Netherlands. The second season started this weekend and to celebrate, the celebrity judges got together to record this single. They are Marco Borsato, Nick & Simon, Angela Groothuizen and Roel van Velzen.

10. Try my love again – Shary-An
Shary-An is one of many talents to emerge from last season’s The Voice of Holland. She didn’t win, but she already had two hits on the Dutch singles chart, and ‘Try my love again’ is the third. A soulful disc with a great ‘60s feel to it – proving that yes, The Voice of Holland really did give us a couple of great new talented artists.

1 (1) Kijk me na – Keizer & de Munnik (5 wks)
2 (-) The chase – Di-Rect (1 wk)
3 (4) Was je maar hier – Bløf (4 wks)
4 (2) Sterker nu dan ooit – Nick & Thomas (5 wks)
5 (5) Save me – Anouk (2 wks)
6 (3) Fool for you – Krystl (8 wks)
7 (7) Let me rule the world – B-Yentl (6 wks)
8 (-) 1000 Voices - The Voice of Holland (1 wk)
9 (8) Took a hit – Racoon (5 wks)
10 (-) Try my love again – Shary-An (1 wk)
Click here to listen to this week’s Music Monday Top 10 on Grooveshark!

(Source : Radio Netherlands Worldwide)

Friday, September 23, 2011

EBU visits Moldovan Member

Moldovan Finance Minister Mr Negruta meeting with EBU's Claudio Cappon and David Lewis
EBU Vice-President Claudio Cappon held talks in Chisinau on Friday with the Moldovan Prime Minister and Finance Minister on the future of the EBU's Member, Teleradio Moldova.

TRM has been a beneficiary of the EBU's Special Assistance Project over the past 18 months. Mr Cappon's predecessor as Vice-President, Boris Bergant, assisted TRM in developing Strategic Guidelines for 2010-2015, which served as background to a newly-published study of three restructuring options. TRM was also a recipient of programmes made available by fellow EBU Members through the so-called Solidarity Programme Package. Read More

(Source : European Broadcasting Union) 

Atlantic Bird™ 7 set for 24 September launch

Eutelsat Communications  has announced that its Atlantic Bird™ 7 satellite is set for launch on Saturday 24 September. The satellite will be delivered into orbit by a Zenit-3SL rocket operated by Sea Launch AG from the ocean-based Odyssey Launch Platform in international waters of the Pacific Ocean. Lift-off is planned for 20:18 UTC, at the opening of a 74-minute launch window.

Built for Eutelsat by Astrium, the 4.6 tonne Atlantic Bird™ 7 satellite will replace Atlantic Bird™ 4A at 7 degrees West and deliver additional capacity for further expansion of services. Up to 50 Ku-band transponders will be connected to two beams giving superior coverage of the Middle East, North Africa and North-West Africa for digital broadcasting services.

A live video transmission of the launch will be available in High Definition from Eutelsat’s Hot Bird™ position at 13 degrees East for viewers in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East (downlink frequency 12149 MHz, vertical polarisation, Symbol rate: 27.500 Mbaud).

A webcast will also be available via www.eutelsat.com and www.sea-launch.com. The launch transmission is scheduled to begin approximately 15 minutes before lift-off.

(Source: Eutelsat via Media Network Weblog)

Nigeria Broadcasting Corporation may be scrapped

The Nigerian Minister for Communications Technology, Mrs Omobola Johnson, has said the Federal Government may scrap the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) or simply streamline its activities with those of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

She said: “Stakeholders’ calls reverberate the need to merge the two agencies for appropriate utilisation of the digital dividends that will result from the migration of broadcasting from analogue to digital by 2015. The freed-up frequencies could be licensed to telecom operators to provide services, especially to drive broadband penetration.”

She added that NCC may soon become the regulator of all other agencies, including the Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT), the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), and the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), among others.

(Source: The Nation via Media Network Weblog)

BBC Worldwide appoints Ted Lai as EVP for Asia

BBC Worldwide, the main commercial arm and a wholly owned subsidiary of the BBC, today announces that Ted Lai is to join as Executive Vice-President (EVP) for Asia with effect from 1 December 2011. 

This is the final appointment in a line-up of three newly appointed regional EVPs, with Fred Medina appointed for Latin America and Joerg Bachmaier for EMEA earlier this month, as BBC Worldwide focuses increasingly on international revenue opportunities. All three EVPs will be responsible for BBC Worldwide’s strategic development in their regions, driving future growth through new brand, product and service initiatives. 

Lai will be based in Hong Kong and will report to Steve Macallister, President & Managing Director Worldwide Sales & Distribution and the Managing Director responsible for Asia on BBC Worldwide’s Executive Committee. He will work closely with existing members of BBC Worldwide’s management team in the region.

Lai joins BBC Worldwide after more than a decade at Time Warner, where he was most recently Senior Vice President of Warner Bros. International TV. In this role, he launched and managed the WarnerTV channel and Warner-branded subscription and ad-supported video-on-demand businesses across the Asia region, as well as the TV distribution and format licensing/local TV production businesses in China and Korea.

Prior to joining Time Warner, Lai was a business development and product management executive in the digital media industry, working at several high-profile companies, including idealab’s FreePC from inception to merger and IPO. He also developed strategic plans for theme parks and location-based entertainment centres for the Walt Disney Company. Lai earned his MBA at Harvard Business School and Masters and Bachelors Degrees in Engineering at Stanford University.

Steve Macallister, BBC Worldwide President & MD Worldwide Sales & Distribution and Asia, said: "Having lived and worked in the region for many years, Ted has in-depth knowledge of the vibrant and rapidly evolving Asian media market. We are delighted to have someone of his expertise and breadth of experience joining us as we extend our business and brands further in Asia. We see a huge opportunity for BBC Worldwide in the region.”

Ted Lai said: "I am thrilled to be joining BBC Worldwide, a world-class organisation with a broad range of award-winning brands and talent that are becoming increasingly popular in Asia. From the China Showcase sales event and local productions of Dancing with the Stars and Top Gear, to the fast-growing BBC channels across the region, the company has already achieved a level of success across Asia. My intent is to substantially build on this by working closely with all BBC Worldwide teams to identify new opportunities to bring BBC Worldwide’s breadth of quality content and brands across all platforms to the billions of consumers throughout Asia."
 
(Source : BBC Worldwide Press Release)

5 Live Investigates reveals cannabis a new money earner for squeezed middle classes

5 Live Investigates has revealed a shocking new money-earner for the squeezed middle classes – renting out the spare room to cannabis farmers. 

Adrian Goldberg will review the story on 23 September on BBC Radio 5 Live Breakfast. The full report will air on Sunday 25 September from 9pm in 5 Live Investigates.

The investigation has revealed that cannabis farming is becoming a suburban phenomenon with the underground illegal activity spreading across the suburbs, as drugs farmers rent out single rooms rather than whole houses in order to avoid detection by thermal-image detecting police helicopters.

Adrian hears first-hand from three different people involved in this new style of cannabis farming: a professional woman from a leafy village in the North West of England who is growing cannabis in her spare room, a drug dealer from the West Midlands who has a number of middle-class professionals letting their spare rooms to him and a family man who has turned his spare room into a cannabis farm.

Adrian also speaks to DCI Martin Hurcomb from West Midlands Police about the changing nature of cannabis farming and what the authorities are doing about it.

5 Live Investigates can be heard on BBC Radio 5 Live between 9.00pm and 10.00pm, Sunday 25 September.

Notes to Editors

Please credit 5 Live Investigates on BBC Radio 5 Live

(Source : BBC Press Release)

Talking set-top box released in Australia

The Australian government has announced the first Australian release of talking set-top boxes to help people who are vision impaired make the switch to digital-only television, The Australian reports. 

Talking set-top boxes are designed to help the blind or vision impaired to navigate electronic programme guides, onscreen menus and settings of their television.

Text-to-speech technology is used to describe programmes, menu items and menu layouts, and includes capabilities to change the style of the speech and a ‘key learn' mode for the remote.

"This kind of technology has been developed in other countries, however, no talking set-top box was available in the Australian market until now," the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Stephen Conroy, said.

The set top boxes were recently trialled as part of the Household Assistance Scheme rollout in regional Victoria.

"The talking set-top box trial was designed to test this innovative technology with vision impaired Victorians," said Mr Conroy.

The Household Assistance Scheme provides free help for pensioners to switch to digital TV. So far 50,000 eligible households nationally have been fitted under the scheme.

(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

ABU Prizes nominees announced

The finalists for the ABU Prizes have been announced and competition for the awards promises to be stiff this year. 

This year's competition drew an increased number of submissions, according to Director of ABU Programming Takeshi Doki.

"There had been a decrease in the number of entries for several years," said Mr Doki. "This year, I'm happy to report that there were 141 entries for the TV categories and 73 submissions for radio - this represents a 20 percent increase in the number of entries, over last year's."  

There are eight TV categories and seven radio categories, such as documentary, drama, entertainment, children's programming and news. The TV and radio segments each have a special jury prize to honour outstanding programmes.

Given the number of natural disasters which occurred last year and this year, it's no surprise that reports on these calamities dominated the TV and radio news categories.

"The nominated programmes are of very high quality. I believe they would be very successful in the international TV content market," said Mr Doki. He added that this year's radio finalists used natural sound very effectively.

Winners of this year's ABU Prizes will be announced during the awards ceremony on 7 November in New Delhi.

Mr Doki expressed confidence that ABU Prizes would continue to spur ABU members and Asia-Pacific content producers to strive for excellence in informing and entertaining their audiences.

Click here  for details on the ABU Prizes finalists and jurors.  

(Source: Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

BBC Radio 1 most popular among in-car pets

BBC Radio 1 is the most popular station among pet owners wanting to keep their cat or dog happy in the car – closely followed by Radio 2 and 5 Live.

That’s according to a survey by confused.com and The Dogs Trust who also found Adele, Madonna and Lady Gaga are the artists owners said are most likely to entertain their animal.

The fairly non-scientific poll is based on researchers asking 2,000 drivers about their experiences of taking their pet in the car. Other findings include 12% of dog owners saying they allow their animal to stick their head out of the window while moving, despite veterinary advice that it’s not safe.

Gareth Kloet, Head of Car Insurance at Confused.com says: “Road trips should be as fun for our pets as they can be for us, and keeping our pets happy in the back is also going to reduce distraction for us as drivers, making our journeys safer for us and our animals.”

And yes, we know this isn’t strictly the kind of radio industry story we’d normally cover. But following John Myers’ recent blog post about pet-related promotions pulling in the listeners, we thought we’d get in on the action! Woof!

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

EBU Finance Assembly opens in Beirut

The 17th Ordinary Session of the EBU Finance Assembly is taking place in Beirut at the kind invitation of Télé-Liban on 22 and 23 September.

Thirty-five countries are participating in the meeting which was opened this morning by the Minister of Information, Mr H.E. Walid El Daouk. The first day focused on a Finance workshop run by CIMA London on the topic of ‘Capital Expenditure’.

On the second day, two very important topics will be discussed:  ‘The new market situation in Radio & Television’, and ‘Audit relationships?'. EBU matters will also be covered and new EBU CFAO Wallace Macmillan will be presented to the delegates. On 1 October Mr Macmillan will take over full responsibility from current EBU CFAO Julian Ekiert, who will be retiring at the end of September 2011 after 18 years with the EBU.

(Source : European Broadcasting Union)

DAB ‘not for local stations’ say operators

A number of commercial radio groups who own small-scale local radio licences have told Ofcom they do not want to be forced to move from FM to DAB.

The companies – who represent more than 50 local stations between them – have responded to the regulator’s consultation on coverage planning for DAB.

Stations from the UKRD, Tindle, Celador, Media Sound Holdings and Town & Country Broadcasting groups are included in the collective response – as well as individually-owned stations such as Oldham-based 96.2 The Revolution, Juice 107.2 in Brighton, Original 106 in Aberdeen and Fife’s Kingdom FM.

Spokesman William Rogers – the Chief Executive of UKRD who runs 16 local radio stations – said: “What this consultation shows us is that DAB is a hopelessly inappropriate platform for the existing FM local services to migrate to and it’s time that local commercial radio services were excluded from the present DAB planning process and allowed to continue broadcasting on FM.”

Rogers added that it was clear a growing number of local radio operators do not want DAB as their future platform. “We don’t need, want or support this change,” he said. “Things are tough enough as it is without the Government heaping more costs, uncertainty and damage on the local commercial radio sector. DAB for local commercial radio is inappropriate. It should be dumped.”

In response the Chief Executive of Digital Radio UK, Ford Ennals told RadioToday.co.uk that the stations behind the collective consultation response are those most likely to remain on FM anyway. “Government is working towards the principle of a potential migration of national and large local services to DAB whilst FM is sustained for small local commercial and community stations,” he said. “This is also supported by Ofcom’s coverage planning. Therefore a proportion of the smaller local commercial stations including most of the UKRD stations are likely to stay on FM.” Read More

(Source : Radio Today, UK)

Dutch Radio 1 transmissions on 648 kHz end today

Dutch Public Broadcasting has announced that it will end the use of the mediumwave transmitter on 648 kHz as from today. This transmitter, at Orfordness in the UK and previously used by the BBC World Service, has been used since 4 August for the news and information network Radio 1 following the fires at two main FM transmitting stations in the Netherlands that severely affected FM reception. Now that signals from Lopik, serving the most densely populated part of the country, are back to normal or near-normal, it has been decided to end this emergency service.

The power of the FM transmissions from Lopik is still at 50 percent. There is still no definitive cause of the fire on 15 July, and investigations continue. It is hoped that the transmissions can be back on full power by the end of next week, once the installation of fire-prevention equipment is completed.

There are still problems in parts of the north where - due to the tight beam of the antenna - reception of 648 is weaker anyway, and engineers are still looking at temporary solutions, as it could be up to a year before the tower at Hoogersmilde is back in service.

(Source: NPO/NOS/MediaMagazine.nl via Media Network Weblog)

Desmond Carrington celebrates 30 years of weekly broadcasts on Radio 2

In October this year, legendary broadcaster Desmond Carrington celebrates 30 years of his weekly show, The Music Goes Round, on BBC Radio 2. In a special edition on Friday 7 October from 7-8pm, 85 year old Desmond will be revisiting the playlist from his 1981 debut. 

Bob Shennan, Controller of Radio 2 and Radio 6 Music, said: "Desmond is a fine broadcaster and I am so proud of his incredible heritage on Radio 2. Listening to his show is a highlight for his legions of fans. And at a sprightly 85 years of age, Desmond is one of very few elder statesmen in the radio world today whose experience cannot be surpassed."

When the Radio 2 series, All Time Greats, began on Sunday 4 October 1981, Desmond (already a successful actor and broadcaster) was chosen as its first presenter. He fully expected to be replaced after three months but the series took off and, three decades on, he remains an integral part of the station's weekly schedule.

Desmond's closing words at the end of the very first All Time Greats in 1981 were: "Funnily enough I have felt a little bit today like Roy Plomley must have felt all those years ago when he sat down to do the first programme of Desert Island Discs – you don't know what it's going to lead to!"

Reflecting back today, Desmond says: "Well I certainly didn't think it would lead to 30 years of weekly broadcasts and some 1500 programmes. I'm so very grateful to BBC Radio 2 and to my many listeners who have always been supportive and involved in the vast range of music – which is still going round!". Read More

Source : BBC Press Release)

Fiji's FBC helps save turtle

The Fiji Broadcasting Corporation has been hailed for helping save a turtle in waters off Vatoa Island. 

At an awareness workshop on Vatoa Island, the environmental conservation organisation WWF heard that the turtle had been spared as a result of a radio show on Radio Fiji One and a message on the turtle's satellite tag.

The radio show had reported that the turtle had been satellite tagged in French Polynesia and was travelling towards Fiji.

The turtle was captured by villagers. However, they had heard the radio reports. This, combined with the message reading "Save me, don't eat me", prompted them to release the turtle and leave the tag in place
 
(Source : Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

President of Laos Visits CRI

The President of Laos, Choummaly Saynasone, addresses the ceremony marking the 5th anniversary of CRI Vientiane FM 93.0 - CRI's radio service in Laos on Wednesday morning, September 21, 2011. [Photo: CRI Online]
President Choummaly Saynasone of Laos visited China Radio International on Wednesday to attend a ceremony marking the fifth anniversary of CRI Vientiane FM 93.0 - CRI's radio service in Laos which he and visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao officially launched on November 19, 2006.

Choummaly, who is also the General Secretary of the Lao People's Revolutionary Party, also attended a CRI exhibition on the development of China's overseas broadcasting undertakings that commenced 70 years ago when the broadcaster started operation.

In the company of Wang Gengnian, Director-general of CRI, Choummaly also signed a message to celebrate the 70th birthday of CRI.

Today, CRI has 62 overseas radio services. As the only overseas broadcaster in China, it produces more than 1,200 hours of program in 41 languages every day, which air in more than 60 countries and regions around the world.

(Source : China Radio International)