October 19, 2014

Pirate Fines Are Often Tough to Collect, Or, "Askin' ain't Gettin' "




While the following article initially appeared several years ago in 'Radio World', an organ of the licensed broadcast industry, it is still a very good source of information for pirate radio station operators who are concerned with the possible vs. likely consequences of being caught running a pirate radio station by the FCC.

It should be noted that standard operating procedure for the F.C.C. currently is to issue a warning to the offending operator on a first offense, usually a "Notice of Unlicensed Operation" warning the operator to "cease and desist" operating the unlicensed station  (such as was received by The Crystal Ship back in 2011).   It is usually only after the op has been caught in continued unlicensed operations after at least one warning, that the FCC will  attempt issuing a fine to the offending station, called a "Notice of Apparant Liability".

As the following article will explain, these fine notices against pirate radio operators often aren't worth the paper they are printed on... (thus, "Askin' ain't Gettin' " ~ John Poet)



Pirate Fines Are Often Tough to Collect  
by Randy J. Stine
on 11.17.2011

WASHINGTON — While the FCC Enforcement Bureau tally of fines against “pirate” operators has grown steadily this year, it is hard to know how many of those fines will ever be collected.

In fact, broadcast industry people familiar with commission practices believe the FCC likely fails to collect a majority of pirate fines.

Once the commission starts to go after an alleged illegal operator, things get complicated. It’s not easy to collect money from what often turn out to be fly-by-night operations. And in tight economic times, when federal agencies face budget constraints, authorities must decide how far to go to collect a relative pittance.

One problem lies in the fact that the FCC needs an outside agency help to get an enforcement action to stick, observers said. The commission can assess fines on an unlicensed broadcaster, but it must engage the services of the United States Department of Justice to file a civil claim for the judgment rendered, according to the Communications Act of 1934.

Read More Here:
http://www.radioworld.com/article/pirate-fines-are-often-tough-to-collect/24837





March 10, 2013

TCS Shortwave Relay Stations Rock Listeners from Newfoundland to Hawaii in Saturday Night TCS Marathon!


'In the Court of the Crimson King' Album cover

By John Poet

In an unprecedented night of  back-to-back relays of multiple TCS shows, listeners from Newfoundland to Hawaii and uncounted points between were pummeled with Rock 'n Roll in two different programs from The Crystal Ship, broadcasted on the TCS Shortwave Relay Network.  The shows went on for over three hours.

It began around 0115 UTC on March 10th (local Saturday night), on 6930 kHz USB, with an unidentified relay station keying up with Judas Priest's "Breakin the law", after which began the airing of  "The Crystal Ship's Rock 'n Roll Art Show", ( here and here).  This show was heard over wide areas with fairly strong signals.  Among listeners' comments on the signal quality were "S9, but a really fat S9 - really sounding great" and "Killer signal in MO. seriously ...a really great sounding signal".

Cover art from 'Yes'


December 24, 2012

The Week Before The Congressional Christmas...................... And The Day After Mine

 

 

Congressional “Twas The Night Before Christmas”

"Twas the week before Christmas and those sly little elves,
Our congressmen, labored to better themselves.
They cared not a whit what the public might think
"Let them eat cake," some said with a wink.


And putting their thumbs to the tip of their nose,
they waved as they shouted "Anything goes!"
They scoffed at the thought that we might object,
to a tax cut for the wealthy of a posh percent.


They've got prerequisites-franking, per diem, and more --
bargain-priced haircuts and gyms (three or four!)
Paid speaking engagements and meals on the cuff,
celebrity status -- (they've sure got it tough!),


Yet they claim they're in touch with the man on the street,
as John Q. Public struggles to make both ends meet.
If all workers decided what they were due,
they'd be getting those fat paychecks too!


But while we take cutbacks or raises quite small,
and one out of 20 has no job at all,
our millionaire Congress decides on the budget
land trimming Medicare and Medicaid will do it, they say.


In this season for giving, our Congress is taking.
We've had it with them and our backs are breaking.
With hard times, disasters, and layoffs on our dockets,
we bit the bullet and they fill their pockets!


Oh jobless, oh homeless, oh desperate and needy -
dare anyone say our Congress is greedy?
If in this feeling I'm not alone,
take up your pen or pick up your phone.


As dry leaves before the wild hurricane fly,
let the road of your anger mount to the sky.
Indignant, outraged, appalled and beset
let your congressman know that you won't forget!
When election times comes -- and certain it will --
you're voting him out for passing that bill.


More rapid than eagles, their elections assured
they toasted each other and laughed at the herd.
And I heard them exclaim with adjournment at hand,
"Merry Christmas to us, and the public be damned!


December 9, 2012

Tax The Rich... an animated fairy tale; and the Ghost of Reagan Joins Forces with Obama!

 
 

(Narrated by Ed Asner)


Dr. Seuss lied.  The Grinch's heart is actually getting smaller all the time.

Even President Ronald Reagan thought that the rich shouldn't get away with paying lower tax rates than blue-collar workers...




If he were President today and said that, my guess is he'd get primaried by the TeaBaggers...

(Yeah, I know what I just called them)



November 7, 2012

TCS Shortwave Relay Network Halts Romney's Momentum, Spurs Millions to Polls, Saves Obama's Bacon and Changes Course of History With Their 'Stop Romney Express'!



(We also caught the winning touch-down for Notre Dame, but I didn't have room for that in the headline...)

Late October 2012:  It seemed as if the Romney-Ryan ticket was headed for victory in the 2012 Presidential election.  Numerous national polls had them out front.  Democrats were demoralized.  Republicans were energized.  Right-wing AM Talk-Radio hosts were salivating.

And at that moment, The Left's Super-Secret Weapon was unleashed:

The Crystal Ship's 'Stop Romney Express' program on the TCS Shortwave Relay Network!

Through our vast network of North American pirate radio relay stations, The Crystal Ship's "Stop Romney Express" program was aired several times from late October through early November, being logged by nearly a dozen listeners from coast-to-coast.  Content of the program variously  parodied, lampooned, ridiculed and kicked the crap out of the billionaire plutocrat, Republican Presidential Nominee Willard Mitt Romney.

And then, President Obama's fortunes changed, and he cruised to a convincing re-election victory!




Could the conclusion be any more obvious?

Through the heroic pirate broadcasters comprising the TCS Shortwave Relay Network, 
The Poet and the Radical turned the tide of the election! 

( You're Welcome, America! )

Now, we are not claiming that it was by virtue of a dozen listeners hearing our program that the course of history was changed.  Oh, no!

What we are proclaiming is,  by virtue of the programming carried on our  coast-to-coast RF signals, coursing through the bodies of millions of Democratic voters who otherwise would not have shown up at the polls, and unbeknownst to them (since RF is invisible), the great power of our RF signals imprinted the submliminal message on the subconscious of millions:

"No matter what else happens, I must get myself to the polls on election day, and vote for the re-election of President Obama!"

And so they did.

(Really, you don't need to thank us, America--
Saving our future is just a 'thing we like to do' !)

Special-Edition eQSL for reception reports
on the 'Stop Romney Express' show

October 24, 2012

Shortwave Listeners report reception of TCS Shortwave Relay Network from coast-to-coast in North America, and from Europe

By John Poet

Since the transformation of the pirate radio station 'The Crystal Ship', into a program broadcast by other widespread pirate radio operators known as the 'TCS Shortwave Relay Network', our coverage of the North American continent has greatly increased.  Listeners in the western United States and western Canada are now able to receive TCS Shortwave at much better signals than we were ever able to achieve when we were broadcasting from Michigan.  Part of that is due to the wide use of SSB transmissions, which are able to provide a better signal-to-noise ratio than AM.

We received many reception reports for our recent show "That Awful Seventies Station", received on a wide range of frequencies from 6.925 up to 18 mHz, and from listeners located from New York to Oregon to Italy. (I was surprised at the number of listeners able to hear the 18 mHz transmission.)  We replied with our TCS Shortwave Relay Network eQSL, in use since late 2011, shown below:



Following are a few of the reception reports recently received.  Names have been omitted:

July 31, 2012

'Pat Murphy' Linked By I.P. Address To "BobSmith" Snitch Emails Sent To Canadian Radio Authorites and Yellowknife Ham Radio Club! Email Screenshots. JTA Joins "Proven Liars" Club


"I was one of the last people to agree
 that Richard Nixon was a crook."
~John T. Arthur on the Free Radio Cafe, 8/02/2011


Pirate Radio News & Commentary
By John Poet

 Most of our readers are probably familiar with the narrative published by Radio Paranoia of how 'Commander Bunny' aka Pat Murphy, posing as "Bob Smith",  purportedly filed a complaint with Canadian radio authorities, as well as an amateur radio club, the Yellowknife Amateur Radio Society (YARS), in his attempt to get Doc John of Radio Yellowknife/Northern Relay Service, busted-- thus eliminating the only other active pirate radio relay service back in early 2011:
"House of Games: "Bob Smith" con's piracy"
(See also "How Commander Bunny & His Gang of FRN Sock-Puppets Started the Pirate Radio War of 2011: With Covert Attacks Against Radio Yellowknife, Then FRN Flaming and Mass-Emailed Lies & Propoganda Against the Northern Relay Service")


After 'C.Bunny' made yet another of his numerous blog attacks against sundry pirate radio personalities purporting to "out" their personal information, this time Doc John's (in a post he soon deleted as he often does), an enterprising pirate DXer made a renewed attempt to obtain a copy of that Email which was sent to the Yellowknife Club a year-and-a-half ago.  This time he succeeded, "karma" having taken a hand in it, and the details have been duly reported on the Radio Paranoia blog:
Fink Noise: Connection Confirmed Between Pat Murphy and Snitching on "Rival" Pirate Radio Operator      and     Fink Noise Part 2: The "Bob Smith" email

((BTW-  Has anyone else noticed the eery similarity between the  text of the "BobSmith" emails to Canadian authorities, and the fake emails attempting to frame Artie Bigley for TCS bust  posted by CB last year?))



As one might imagine, there has been much thrashing and nashing of teeth from The Bunny Camp... with JTA aka John T. Arthur, operator of the Belfast mail drop, taking the lead in launching various counterattacks aimed at me which seemed to be more in the character of C.Bunny/Pat Murphy than the JTA we used to know, and inevitably making the FRN website and the Belfast, New York maildrop appear to be even more unsafe for non-Bunny-allied pirate radio operators or just plain DXers than one may have previously thought (if that were possible):
 JTA Puts Final Nail in FRN Coffin


JTA, along with the Bunny, seem to believe that I am responsible for writing the Radio Paranoia blog which has deviled them so.  All I can say is, I can only wish that I was half as clever, or half as effective as the writer behind it, in putting the Bunny and his Mafia in their proper place-- but thank you so much for that unintended compliment!