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CD library at college radio station KAOS. Photo: J. Waits

College Radio Watch: Baltimore College Radio LPFMs Lose Out, CMJ’s College Day in Portland, Friends of KUSF Respond to Latest FCC Decision + more news

This week a few college radio groups got some unwelcome news. As I reported yesterday, two college radio stations (online stations WLOY at Loyola University and WJHU at Johns Hopkins University) competing for a new low power FM (LPFM) license in Baltimore learned that they most likely won’t be winning a license. We also got an update from the FCC on some in-limbo filings related to the license sale for the 90.3 FM channel in San Francisco, formerly home to college radio station KUSF-FM.

Friends of KUSF Responds to FCC Decision Regarding Applications for Review

The FCC finally ruled on a couple of Applications for Review in the case of the sale of University of San Francisco’s college radio license for KUSF-FM. The FCC denied the applications for review. In a statement in response to yesterday’s ruling, Friends of KUSF spokesperson Irwin Swirnoff decried the FCC’s decision, saying, “While we’re not surprised at this ruling, it’s still very disappointing and disheartening. We will continue to explore other legal options and continue to fight for true community and independent media in San Francisco.”

Additionally, the Friends of KUSF press release reiterates some of the points made by its Application for Review, stating,

Friends of KUSF had found multiple violations of FCC rules involved in the transfer of the license, including violations of the FCC’s ‘Main Studio Rule,’ a premature transfer of control, the legality of fund-raising on the station prior to approval of the sale, as well as whether CPRN was providing ‘educational’ programming, since all it did was transfer the commercial programming of the former KDFC 102.1 to the non-commercial position on the dial.”

KAOS Tour on Radio Survivor Podcast

In this week’s Radio Survivor Podcast I give a recap of my visit to Evergreen State College station KAOS-FM. I wrote up a report about my visit last week, but on the podcast, I was able to share bits of my audio interview with Training and Operations Manager Morgan Jaffe. My KAOS report starts at about the 17 minute mark of the podcast, but please don’t let that stop you from listening to the entire podcast this week, which features a fascinating interview with podcast producer Julie Sabatier.

IBS Announces College Radio Events in Oregon and Chicago in October

Intercollegiate Broadcasting System (IBS) is hosting a few regional events for student broadcasters. The first event will be held in Corvallis, Oregon on October 10 at KBVR at Oregon State University and will feature sessions (tentative program can be viewed here) on a variety of radio, television and podcasting topics. On October 17, IBS will hold a similar event in Chicago, hosted by Columbia College Chicago. The line-up for the Chicago conference will include guest speakers from a number of Chicago-area media outlets. Read about all four of IBS’ upcoming radio events on the IBS website.

CMJ Launching Regional College Radio Events, Starting with Portland, OR in November

I’d alluded to rumors about this a few weeks back and now I have official confirmation that CMJ is launching a series of regional college radio events, beginning with its first “CMJ College Day on Tour” in Portland, Oregon on November 7. The idea is that CMJ will create regional versions of its CMJ Music Marathon College Day programming. For the Portland event, local college radio stations KPSU (Portland State University) and KDUP (University of Portland) will help curate the event and there will also be a keynote conversation with the band The Thermals. According to a press release issued by CMJ, “Traditionally  held during CMJ Music Marathon, College Day aims to fill a day with great programming and speakers from and related to college and non­commercial radio, allowing both new and experienced voices from the radio world to talk about the issues that matter most to them.”

Community DJs at WMUA Deliver Petition to University’s Chancellor Regarding Oversight of Station

Over the past few months there have been some heated discussions related to changes at University of Massachusetts, Amherst’s college radio station WMUA. After the dismissal of both a DJ and the station’s long-time adviser, questions were raised about the management of the station. This week a group of community DJs delivered a petition to the university’s chancellor, requesting a meeting by October 1st. According to a statement issued by WMUA community members, there’s fear that outspoken community DJs have been punished by current station leadership. The statement reads in part,

With the posting of the Fall Radio Program schedule on August 30th , Community members active in addressing these concerns have had their traditional time slots, where listeners were accustomed to hearing them, moved to the graveyard shift of 4-6a.m., radio’s lowest listenership industry wide. This and many other examples of the current leaders not following the by-laws of the station or respecting its mission wore the community members patients [sic] thin.”

An article in the Daily Hampshire Gazette reports on the delivery of the petition last Friday, stating that,

Community members at the University of Massachusetts radio station are calling on Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy to meet with them by Oct. 1 to resolve what they view as a continuing crisis at WMUA. They say they want to speed up an operational review that has been ongoing since April and to investigate actions of student leaders who they claim used the fall program schedule to retaliate against outspoken critics. Six longtime members of the station who have hosted shows on WMUA went to Subbaswamy’s office at the Whitmore Administration Building on Friday to deliver a petition signed by nearly 30 members, or more than 80 percent of the current community membership.”

Three College Radio Stations Collaborate on Music Showcase in North Carolina

I love hearing about college radio stations coming together and it’s particularly cool when they work together to produce an event. The Technician reports that college radio stations at North Carolina State (WKNC), University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (WXYC), and Duke University (WXDU) decided to throw a day party together during the Hopscotch music festival, featuring 8 music acts on two stages. According to the Technician,

The original idea for a collaborative event came from Duke WXDU general manager, Jack Mercola. For the past four years, WXDU had teamed up with North Carolina label, Three Lobed Records to host shows in King’s Barcade during the festival. This year, when Three Lobed decided to no longer host, Mercola thought to invite other Triangle-area student stations to contribute…Most day parties during Hopscotch are put on by venues or record labels. The college stations ended up booking King’s Barcade, as well as the basement venue in the same building, Neptunes. With two stages to work with, the radio stations were able to cater to different genres with more upbeat and DJ-centered sets downstairs and more rock and band-oriented music upstairs.”

WPRB History Exhibit Opens at Princeton University

I’m really hoping that I can make it out to Princeton, New Jersey to see WPRB’s brand new college radio history exhibit, “WPRB: A Haven for the Creative Impulse,” which opened this week. Celebrating the 75th anniversary of college radio at Princeton, the exhibit is free and open to the public and can be viewed on weekdays (M-F) from 9am to 4:45pm in the Wiess Lounge at the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library, 65 Olden Street, in Princeton, New Jersey through May, 2016. According to a post on the WPRB History website,

…curated by WPRB’s Mike Lupica and Princeton University Archivist Dan Linke, the exhibit is a meatspace version of the kind of materials we’ve been highlighting on this website. On display are vintage photographs, playlists, documents, selections from WPRB’s vinyl record library, vintage broadcast equipment, and much more. There is also an interactive content station that allows visitors to browse audio selections and WPRB-related news clippings from the last 75 years.”

The WPRB History website also includes a slideshow of photos from the exhibit’s opening reception, which looked like a lot of fun.

More College Radio News

Penn State President Interviewed on College Radio Station

(Daily Collegian)

Recapping an interview with the university president on a student-run talk show at college radio station The Lion.

Former Student Radio Station Morphs into Podcasting Studio

(Central Florida Future)

Remains of defunded college radio station Knightcast Radio (see our report from February, 2014) now being used in podcasting studio at University of Central Florida

Aggies Resurrect Radio Theater

(the Utah Statesman)

Although not affiliated with a college radio station, it’s pretty cool to hear about students embracing radio drama at Aggie Radio Theater at Utah State


We cover the culture of college radio every Friday in our College Radio Survivor feature. If you have college radio news to share, please drop us a note at EDITORS at RADIOSURVIVOR dot COM.

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