Saturday, October 26, 2019

MN.25.07.1996. Not Atlanta

While the rest of the media was focussing on the Olympic Games in Atlanta, we ran an "Olympics Free" Programme...well almost. Problems for journalists in Atlanta with reporters being refused access to events. Lou Josephs discusses Macromedia and ActiveX technology. We link up with Christian Voice in Zambia and ask why it decided to broadcast only in English. Incidentally, as of 2019, the station is still on the air

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN,26.09.1996 Receiver Survey

Richard Richter announces the new name for US surrogate broadcasting to Asia: Radio Free Asia They keep quiet about the transmitter sites and the frequencies. We dip into your letters including insights from Japan. AsiaSat is going to have difficulty getting listening in Japan.  We launch a challenge for listeners to find an MPEG-2 satellite receiver in their city – no-one could find one. Apart from the news that Ireland is returning to shortwave for sports commentaries, most of this edition is devoted to calling up shortwave receiver dealers to get a feel of how things are changing.

The Internet is having an impact on the level of shortwave listening, at least in the USA.  Bob Grove in Brasstown North Carolina explains that the hobby of shortwave listening is in trouble. Fred Osterman of Universal Shortwave, though, was more optimistic, pointing to the softness in the US economy. John Day runs a shop in Australia. The Kenwood R-5000 receivers are popular there. Hans Doeven in the North of the Netherlands says his sales market is shifting towards the maritime market. Lowe Electronics says the German market is soft. They are promoting their HF-150 in Asia. Richard Robinson from EEB in Vienna, Virginia says the high-end portables are doing well.  

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.10.10.1996 Grand Antenna Show

Complete schedule of RNW in English in advanced of the winter transmission season.  Interesting to see how extensive the schedule was in 1996. Also, there is an extensive explanation by Jonathan Marks giving tips on how to build an antenna in your garden. It updates a publication that Radio Netherlands published in the 1970’s. Perhaps you remember - Give your antenna some air? There is a curious sign-off from voice over champion Jim Cutler.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.22.08.1996. New Season

An interesting catch-up show as we re-convene for a new season of Media Network. Diana Janssen is back from Asia and has some concerns about how the pace of change is leading to discussions of censorship. Andy Sennitt explains about challenges in Belarus. WorldSpace seems to be expanding. Karl Miosga of WRN explains a plan to carry their network overnight on SAFM. Alok Das Gupta has a new edition of his South-Asia listening guide. ORF KurzwellenPanorama (photo of editor Wolf Harranth) and MN celebrate 15 years of collaboration. Lou Josephs has been testing Shockwave from Macromedia. NOS has abandoned plans to produce a regional TV magazine

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.20.06.1996. Channel Africa

Plenty of radio news in this edition of the programme. We talk to Flame Nieuwenhuizen about the future finances of Channel Africa. The station has been saved and moved to become part of the SABC. Radio ABC Denmark is to start up in 7570 kHz using 150 kW via Kaliningrad. The Voice of Tibet has started up from studios in Oslo, Norway. It goes out via the Seychelles. They are on 15445 kHz at 1145. They claim to have funding from private investors. Victor Goonetilleke reports the station is coming from FEBA in Seychelles. We review the Sony ICFSW600 receiver which has 9 SW bands on it. Jelle Boonstra reports a new series about Jingles on Dutch domestic radio.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.01.08.1996. Pacific Island Stations

This edition focused on the future of digital satellite television. We started with an Interview with Scott Zimmer of Echostar about the growing direct satellite television service. They have just launched the DISH network. They also plan data services including educational programmes. All this was the forerunner of what was the set-top box. But the price? Between 1000 and 2000 US dollars. 30% of US households have purchased PC’s of one type or another. There is controversy as to whether these systems will ever be two-way. We linked up with Arthur Cushen to find out about the sale of stations in New Zealand. There is also accusations of censorship and financial problems for stations on the Pacific islands. We talk about the new ATS909 receiver from Sangean. 9590 kHz has some interference problems from Channel Africa. Leo Kohl explains they had to go off the air in Bonaire for a few hours because freak weather threatened to push sand into the heat exchanges. Radio Australia’s Carnavon transmitters.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN 04.07.1996 DAB Gender

This edition starts with feedback from the answer line. DAB Radio E. As July 1st sees the daily email news service begins. NOS Gender Portrayal department is shutting down after 5 years which confirm rather traditional views about the way women are portrayed in Dutch media. Only 10% of the interviewed experts on the radio are women. We announce the 750 anniversary contest results. We gave away 50 CD anniversary. Arthur Cushen reports that there has been a lot of snow in Invercargill, New Zealand. He has been hearing a lot of Caribbean and Columbian stations on mediumwave. There is a new Nigerian clandestine via Meyerton, South Africa. 

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

Sunday, September 29, 2019

MN.08.08.1996 Early Fake News

We are recording this edition of the programme in advance because of Diana’s upcoming Asian trip. Andrew Rodgers reports that he heard us on the Astra satellite mucking around in the studio 1 preparing jingles with Jim Cutler. We explain what happened. Lou Josephs has launched a new newsletter from Washington DC. He discusses what we would call Fake News today and how cookies can spy on your Internet activity. Profile of the new Radio France Internationale with Eric Baptiste.  6000 jobs to go at Philips in their audio/video divisions as part of Operation Centurion. CDI and DCC were disasters

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.17.10.1996.BFBS Germany

Ginger da Silva announces that Radio Netherlands will switch from 1440 kHz via Luxembourg to 1512 via Radio Vlaanderen International.  SKY Channel is now turning a profit. It will cost 200 million pounds for Sky to go digital. Lou Josephs gives the secret site for the FCC search. RTB will not be starting a shortwave service. Diana Janssen is off to Chile to attend a major media conference in Santiago. We review a designer-driven shortwave receiver. P-2000 is a new travel portable from Grundig Europe. There is a new book out about the BFBS in Germany. The author is Alan Grace and we spoke with him. It started in North Africa in Algiers. There was even a forces station in Iceland.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.14.11.1996 Language AI Stasi

Professor John Campbell answered questions about the future of artificial intelligence and language recognition. It is hard to believe this was recorded in 1995! Campbell, as usual, was spot on. Listening to certain radio stations like Radio RSA in India can get you in trouble. Wolf Harranth of ORF’s Kurzwellen Panorama has been looking at the extent of monitoring of DXers by the Stasi in Eastern Germany. We have since visited the Stasi HQ in Berlin - the museum is highly recommended.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

Friday, September 27, 2019

MN.13.11.1997. BVN

BVN and the future of Television: Lodewijk Bouwens (in photo) explains that Wereldomroep TV will get a permanent status as from January 1st 1998. Mike Bird reports on large geomagnetic storm, the 4th largest since records began. Radio New Zealand has been reporting some very bad weather in the Pacific, especially in the Cook Islands. Tahiti seems to have gone off the air, 15167 kHz is silent. BBC has stopped recordings of its news bulletins in New Zealand. Media Network visits NEWSWORLD for newsmakers. There was clearly a crisis of confidence amongst professionals. 24hr news channels not thought to be viable. The late Allister Sparks was quite outspoken, saying it was a first world broadcaster conference. . Chris Cramer from CNN claimed only CNN and BBC were serious about international news.  Coping with sudden spikes in demand when news breaks is a challenge. 400-500 people can watch at the same time with online video. RTE has hired shortwave time to broadcast commentary on the World Cup. Julian Isherwood has a programme online from Copenhagen.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.28.09.1995 Victor

This was a general news programme with an indepth interview with Victor Goonetilleke who was visiting The Netherlands. European winter time has started. People using electronic mail more and more. InfoDutch promo. News from WRTH editorial office. In-depth Interview with Victor Goonetilleke.

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

MN.12.10.1995 Frits Thors

Hilversum 3 opening with song by Herman van Veen.  Jonathan’s annoying tie. Anniversaries. Hilversum 3 and Nederland resumes broadcasts to the Dutch East Indies. Interview with Frits Thors. 30 years since the creation of Hilversum 3. We find out more about the Trondheim student radio in Norway. Answerline number has changed. Tim Hendel enjoyed the wind-up clockwork radio. Arthur Cushen has news from the Pacific. Review of new 1996 edition of Passport to World Band Radio. We also talk to Craig Sigenthaler of KIWA electronics. Photo of Frits Thors via Polygoon Hollands Nieuws - Cut from File:WEEKNUMMER461-HRE00013A19.ogv / Nederlands Instituut voor Beeld en Geluid / NOS Nederlands Instituut voor Beeld en Geluid / NOS, CC BY-SA 3.0,

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault


This edition of Media Network was salvaged from a cassette and a few seconds before Chris Greenway you will hear that a bit is missing. Radio Netherlands using is a transmitter near Kalingrad, Russia for a European reception. At the time it was one of the world's most powerful transmission sites on MW. There was a problem with interference to RNW on 6020 from Moscow. We cross to Chris Greenway for news about Radio Moscow. Major expansion of Radio France International of 430 million francs over 4 years. There were two projects one in Djibouti which was abandoned. We also hear about plans for the Internet broadcasting System. They will put up to 2 hours of audio on the Internet. We also spoke with Carl Malamud who put up various data (like all US patents). Philips will put a couple of million into the development of DAB radios. We review the AOR 3030, made by a scanner manufacturer. Willem Bos has been putting it through its paces. Here is a link to a catalogue

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault

Monday, August 12, 2019

MN.12.08.2019. A visit with Dan Robinson Episode 1

This is the first in a new series of Media Network special video safaris, investigating the long slow fadeout of shortwave international broadcasting. Today's guest is Dan Robinson. We talk at length about the magic of shortwave receivers, international broadcasting and his 34 year career at the Voice of America.

Since Libsyn is an audio podcast network, please watch this episode on vimeo using this link. 


I remember filling in US visa forms in the plane and using the zipcode 20547 when asked for a hotel address. 330 Independence Avenue was easy to remember and I had heard it mentioned so many times on the air.

This is an in-depth video, and designed to ensure that important stories about international broadcasting are preserved. We may make a more popular, shorter version at a later stage. But for the moment, I am grabbing the stories long form while I can. Suggestions welcome to a special e-mail address:

This episode is hosted on the Media Network vintage vault