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(The Verge)   Can (crack) (snap) we (hiss) save (crack) AM radio? (hiss)   (theverge.com) divider line 132
    More: Interesting, National Association of Broadcasters, Porter County  
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4335 clicks; posted to Main » on 13 Feb 2014 at 6:11 PM (35 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



132 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-02-13 04:58:02 PM  
dnrtfa:  What's the point?
 
2014-02-13 05:04:14 PM  
Okay, now I read the article and other than nostalgia, and emergency broadcasts he didn't really explain why we need to save AM.

What I thought was interesting about it was that one of the suggestions to save AM was to give all of the stations an FM re-translator.   You expect people to listen to AM on FM when they wouldn't listen to AM on AM?

The biggest thing that is killing radio is Clear Channel and the other conglomerates that just coalesce everything down to 10-20 songs per genre station and that's all they play.
 
2014-02-13 05:04:33 PM  

BizarreMan: dnrtfa:  What's the point?


They list a few reasons, but a better plan would be to just kill it and auction off the spectrum for wireless broadband.

If their stance is that AM radio is cheaper to operate and thus leads to a more diverse broadcast voice, internet radio is cheaper still.

Let's put out enough spectrum that truly unlimited LTE becomes an affordable reality for everyone.
 
2014-02-13 05:04:47 PM  
I'm a hipster, I only listen to longwave.  And not the standard frequencies either, 209KHz out of Mongolia.  It's pretty obscure, you've probably never heard of it.
 
2014-02-13 05:05:16 PM  
Seeing as how AM radio is all talk radio and mostly right wing and sports "experts", I don't have any use for it.  I wonder how may of Rush L's listeners are AM. I put Sirius in my truck 8 years ago and haven't even listened to any commercial stations since.  There are so many options open for people who want to hear music that AM isn't a choice, and if you don't like continuous commercials, FM isn't either.
 
2014-02-13 05:17:14 PM  
It still puts a smile on my face when I can pick up my hometown radio station (KMOX 1120 in St. Louis) in my car from over a thousand miles away.  Only at night or early morning, but still I think it is pretty cool.
 
2014-02-13 05:20:13 PM  
AM Radio is safely in the hands of insane mouth-frothing right wingers. It doesn't need saving, it needs quarantine.
 
2014-02-13 05:44:25 PM  

unlikely: AM Radio is safely in the hands of insane mouth-frothing right wingers. It doesn't need saving, it needs quarantine.


Came to say basically this.
 
2014-02-13 05:50:27 PM  
Any time I hear the sound of AM radio I think of listening to college sports as a kid.
 
2014-02-13 05:50:27 PM  

BizarreMan: Clear Channel


That once meant something good.  At night you could listen to "clear channels" everywhere in the nation.  WLS, WSB, and many others were the only ones allowed to broadcast after dark on those frequencies. They often played music you couldn't get locally.  Yeah I'm old, but I remember when preachers once burned R&R records.  When I was stationed in Germany we constantly listened to the pirate radio to hear what we wanted.  Same thing with Texas Radio.
 
2014-02-13 06:13:12 PM  
Yes.

/I like AM radio, too.
 
2014-02-13 06:14:46 PM  
sounds like a bunch of beer cans being opened.
 
2014-02-13 06:17:39 PM  
Radio, someone still loves youuuuuuuuuuuu
 
2014-02-13 06:18:43 PM  
I want my country back!
 
2014-02-13 06:19:09 PM  
Back in the day before Rush and his tribe took over, I liked AM. Local talk was pretty decent.

As mentioned, it's now only right wing echo chamber and sports talk. Yawn.

Now I only use my car "stereo" to listen to MP3's, usually eAudiobooks. That and NPR.
 
2014-02-13 06:22:03 PM  

Infobahn: I want my country back!


I want my western back!
 
2014-02-13 06:23:04 PM  
I like pop
I like soul
I like rock
but I never liked disco..:)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjg39XRkjVc&feature=kp
 
2014-02-13 06:25:46 PM  

unlikely: AM Radio is safely in the hands of insane mouth-frothing right wingers. It doesn't need saving, it needs quarantine.


One of the AM stations here simu-broadcasts the morning TV news, so I listen to that on the way to work instead of the "WILD AND WACKY MORNING ZOO CRUE!!" crap that seems to be on every single FM station.  Easy enough to switch it back to FM for the drive home.

Plus, around 10PM AM radio here has that "Ground Zero" show.  If anyone ever really wore a tinfoil hat on his head, it had to be that guy.
 
2014-02-13 06:27:25 PM  
As someone who does play-by-play for high school basketball games on a Clear Channel station ... obviously, I hope it can be saved.  And I'd like to think it can be saved the way I'm working to save it -- with local, relate-able content that enhances events people are involved in.

Also, it can be saved as part of other media.  Stations have to stream, both via mobile apps and regular online channels.

The idea:  The medium itself (AM radio) may die, but at the very least, it should be doing what it can to make sure its content is able to translate to whatever the next media are.
 
2014-02-13 06:27:47 PM  
"I heard it, I heard it, I heard it on the X"


/old enough to have listened to it
//lived in El Paso
 
2014-02-13 06:28:13 PM  
I remember when AM WRKO in Boston played music and there were no FM stations. Now I can't remember the last time I listened to AM.
 
2014-02-13 06:28:27 PM  

unlikely: AM Radio is safely in the hands of insane mouth-frothing right wingers. It doesn't need saving, it needs quarantine.


Ooooh you make an excellent point.
 
2014-02-13 06:32:15 PM  
I wouldn't even save FM.

\satellite
\\oh wait yes I would
\\\keeps the commercials low on satellite
 
2014-02-13 06:35:36 PM  
What use is the AM band really? It's notoriously shiatty to get reception with and a cat can interfere with the signal.
 
2014-02-13 06:36:11 PM  
s30.postimg.org
 
2014-02-13 06:39:30 PM  
You whippersnappers and your "amplitude modulation." I only listen to the pristine nuance provided uniquely by continuous wave.
 
2014-02-13 06:44:05 PM  
nekom

I'm a hipster, I only listen to longwave.  And not the standard frequencies either, 209KHz out of Mongolia.  It's pretty obscure, you've probably never heard of it.

Sorry, bro. That's so 2012. Everyone's so done that.....

*adjusts ultra-longwave receiver*

*smiles smugly*
 
2014-02-13 06:48:47 PM  

Branch Floridian: It still puts a smile on my face when I can pick up my hometown radio station (KMOX 1120 in St. Louis) in my car from over a thousand miles away.  Only at night or early morning, but still I think it is pretty cool.


This so much. AM isn't a line of sight broadcast like FM is.
 
2014-02-13 06:49:23 PM  

styckx: What use is the AM band really? It's notoriously shiatty to get reception with and a cat can interfere with the signal.


Sports
 
2014-02-13 06:52:21 PM  

ladodger34: styckx: What use is the AM band really? It's notoriously shiatty to get reception with and a cat can interfere with the signal.

Sports


Art Bell too. Or whoever does is show now.
 
2014-02-13 06:53:50 PM  

strife: [s30.postimg.org image 211x240]


Fark that rat bastard
 
2014-02-13 06:56:08 PM  
We could probably preserve electric-arc Morse code preserved, too.
 
2014-02-13 07:00:04 PM  
I think it's in the best interested of the public. We have lots of older radios that only pick up AM. Tube style radios are immune to a EMP (Either from a Man Made or Natural). And to really put on your tin foil hat...Crystal Radios.
Don't even require a battery. And a six year old can build one.

thumbs2.ebaystatic.com


Also Digital Signals don't degrade gracefully...they are there are they're not so there's no "Buzzz...Crack" losing just a bit of info occasionally. If the Signal is week YOU GET NOTHING. (Wonka.jpg).
 
2014-02-13 07:01:49 PM  
TuteTibiImperes:...a better plan would be to just kill it and auction off the spectrum for wireless broadband.

Yeah, I can't wait to try WiFi on a 1.6 Mhz carrier. [eyeroll] AM radio isn't broken and doesn't need saving. It is what it is, a lo-fi broadcast medium that serves low budget broadcasters.
 
2014-02-13 07:02:09 PM  
WGN 720 is the only station I listen to. It is not political and I get to hear Bob Sirott and Marianne Murciano. Gary Meyer at 3 pm is also worth listening to especially when Tom Skilling stops by.
 
2014-02-13 07:03:14 PM  

Branch Floridian: It still puts a smile on my face when I can pick up my hometown radio station (KMOX 1120 in St. Louis) in my car from over a thousand miles away.  Only at night or early morning, but still I think it is pretty cool.


I once was able to listen to a Los Angeles Dodgers game on an LA station one night when I was helping out on my uncles farm in Saskatchewan.  I thought that was pretty damn cool
 
2014-02-13 07:03:54 PM  
The 540-1700khz band isn't useful for any type of communication except broadcast radio, so I can't imagine it going anywhere.

Agent Smiths Laugh: unlikely: AM Radio is safely in the hands of insane mouth-frothing right wingers. It doesn't need saving, it needs quarantine.

Ooooh you make an excellent point.


Look, guys. Broadcast radio is a business. It has expenses and so it has to earn revenue. Whether you agree with it or not, people listen to this stuff, so the business can sell ads to meet expenses. You don't have to like it but that doesn't change the essential reality of the thing. The programming won't go away until it stops making a profit - if the AM radio band weren't there, the programming would be somewhere else.

And that's the whole problem. Broadcast radio is expensive and it requires a certain critical mass to stay viable. Back when there were only three radio stations in a city that wasn't hard to do, but nowadays everyone expects their entertainment to be customized to their preferences and it's just really hard to find something that appeals to enough people to be viable on a broadcast medium. If the Internet had been invented before broadcast radio, you'd never have heard of radio because it wouldn't have ever reached commercial viability. But now the infrastructure is there, and people are paying their mortgages from the revenues generated by radio, and it's no surprise that they'd like that to continue. Wat do? Local programming is awesome, but it's not free - that's why syndicated talkers came into being in the first place. It's cheaper than local talent.
 
2014-02-13 07:08:23 PM  
I really dig being able to pull in AM signals from all over the place.  Got a (relatively) cheap SW/MW/LW receiver a year or so ago--kinda cool.
 
2014-02-13 07:08:43 PM  
I thought they were reallocating the frequencies into cellular communication?

Either that or more mind control, my recollection is getting fuzzy.
 
2014-02-13 07:08:45 PM  
changeoffaces.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-02-13 07:11:11 PM  

bearded clamorer: strife: [s30.postimg.org image 211x240]

Fark that rat bastard


Couldn't agree more.
 
2014-02-13 07:11:39 PM  
We had a cabin on a river...where the only free signal you could get was AM radio. AM can go lots of miles and doesn't require any special subscriptions.
That the most compelling argument is asking "Why" sell it off?  AM transmission are free to anyone with a coil of wire and couple of crystals. Why should that be stopped?

Who profits from selling off that bandwidth? Moving to a subscription only services for radio is simply putting a vital emergency commutation ability into the hands of corporations that would require selling not only subscriptions but also specialized receivers with built in digital rights management built in.
 
2014-02-13 07:13:40 PM  
i only listen to 8-tracks in my car, AM radio is a dead medium
 
2014-02-13 07:18:52 PM  
Get off my lawn.
s22.postimg.org
 
2014-02-13 07:18:58 PM  
AM just means you didn't click the mode button on your steering wheel the correct number of times.
 
2014-02-13 07:21:20 PM  

Salmon: I thought they were reallocating the frequencies into cellular communication?


Not the AM radio band - the frequency is much too low for cellular or broadband communication.
 
2014-02-13 07:21:28 PM  

oldernell: BizarreMan: Clear Channel

That once meant something good.  At night you could listen to "clear channels" everywhere in the nation.  WLS, WSB, and many others were the only ones allowed to broadcast after dark on those frequencies. They often played music you couldn't get locally.  Yeah I'm old, but I remember when preachers once burned R&R records.  When I was stationed in Germany we constantly listened to the pirate radio to hear what we wanted.  Same thing with Texas Radio.


I once worked at a clear channel AM station that reached 38 states and 4 provinces of Canada after dark.  One time I got a postcard from a guy that was picking us up loud and clear in Iceland.  Crackpot preachers until midnight, then country music for the truckers overnight.  We'd get requests from all over the country.
 
433 [TotalFark]
2014-02-13 07:22:23 PM  

nekom: I'm a hipster, I only listen to longwave.  And not the standard frequencies either, 209KHz out of Mongolia.  It's pretty obscure, you've probably never heard of it.


If you're listening to Mongolia, you are listening to shortwave.

AM may be a dying, er, format, but hobbyists love it.  There are a number of evangelical stations in my area, as well as golden oldies, several country, and several hispanic.  Handful of talk radio, as well.  I'd be disappointed to see it go right away, but perhaps in 20-30 years.

I don't think it would be wise to give it up for wireless; UHF, HAM, VHF and shortwaves could still interfere.  I think.  I am not an expert.
 
2014-02-13 07:23:31 PM  

BizarreMan: dnrtfa:  What's the point?


All sports and news, and most talk radio, in Los Angeles is AM based.
 
433 [TotalFark]
2014-02-13 07:24:01 PM  
Dogpants: I once worked at a clear channel AM station that reached 38 states and 4 provinces of Canada after dark

Holy crap.

Dogpants: One time I got a postcard from a guy that was picking us up loud and clear in Iceland.

HOLY CRAP!
 
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