Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Pop-Up Radio - Radio Manuela on 109 FM

Wandered around the Picnic event in the West of Amsterdam this afternoon. It was rather quiet today - the crowds are coming tomorrow we're told. Attended a presentation on the current state of the Arab blogosphere hosted by Al Jazeera, but they were not taking questions from the audience. That will happen in a workshop tomorrow. In the exhibition hall were two guys playing music and with a big sign saying Radio Manuela. Yes, there were on the air. Did I want a music request or to be interviewed? I said no, I had a question. Were they really on 109 MHz FM? Yes, they said. It is a 400 watt transmitter and covers most of Amsterdam. But don't most radio sets stop their coverage at 108 MHz? Yes. So that means that although they are broadcasting, no-one can actually hear them unless they have a modified FM receiver. Er, yes. I was the first person in a long while to ask them that question. Their "station" is infact a piece of art. They operate it only at events, and then just because they get treated as royalty because they are from the "media". The fact that they are broadcasting (illegally) on a channel no-one can hear is their open secret. Hey, stop fussing about the technology and enjoy the music. As their sign says, Radio Manuela - keeping you young, sexy but not famous.

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