Media Network Vintage Vault 2014-2015
Re-live international shortwave radio between 1980-2000 through a radio show that pioneered producing narratives with its listeners. Over 400 complete programmes posted here to enjoy all over again. This is a non-commercial service to media historians done at the initiative of host, Jonathan Marks.
In late September 1998, we broadcast a news edition of the programme at a moment when the revelations about President Clinton were threatening to overload the Internet. Sam Younger stepped down from the BBC World Service and Mark Byford announced some changes to the UK external broadcasting service. We talked to the Internet department at CNN to find out how audio and video downloads were going and Kim Andrew Elliott, Audience Researcher at VOA has some interesting comments to share. And we did a remarkably silly sign-off. What fascinates me is how international broadcasting got stuck in a time warp since then..
Direct download: MN.Sept.1998.Younger.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 8:05 PM
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In this first Media Network of April 1998 , we kick off a brand new summer season of our weekly communications programme by staring into space. Can a company that has created a virtual country in space deliver a worldwide phone system by the end of the 1998? Iridium thought it could. This programme also has news of a new Democracy Radio station announced by the Clinton Administration (which took VOA by surprise) as well as portrait of the Hague music station Arrow Classic Rock and its fight for a commercial licence.
Direct download: MN.02.04.1998Iridium.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 7:47 PM
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I find Northern California to be steeped in fascinating broadcast history. There's the Marconi transmission and receiving centre in Tomales Bay. Check out this link. Then you there is the mission control centre for the This Week in Tech network in Petaluma, with Chief twit Leo Laporte. The photo shows the cottage which I visited in February 2010 and posted this video. But so much for the present... In 1998 Diana Janssen and I visited San Franscisco where we met Brian Cooley who was heading up CNET radio at the time. 11 years later, Brian is still with CNET but doing video. The radio bulletins are over. This show marked Media Network's 17th anniversary since it hit the airwaves in 1981 and to celebrate we decided to visit a radio station that hadn’t got a transmitter but it has got a beautiful view of the San Francisco bay area. There are not many studio windows that look out on the famous island of Alcatraz. This programme formed part of a trip to examine what was happening in Silicon Valley.
Direct download: MN.wk.19.1998.cnet.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 5:47 PM
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In this edition of the show we were messing about in boats. For instance, Light Vessel 18, the former Trinity House lightship was nearly ready for her new role as a floating Radio Station to help celebrate the Royal National Lifeboat Institution's 175th anniversary. Radio Northsea International was planning to be heard over in the area of the English county of Essex and beyond starting on 3rd August 1999 on 190 metres medium wave, that is, 1575 kiloHertz. This revivial was only for the month of August. This programme also updated the story about Quality Radio 1224 kHz and quashed the rumour that AFN was planning to close down its Frankfurt transmitter on AM. I also like the preview of the Funkausstellung 1999 from the late Bob Tomalski. He was brilliant - still sadly missed. And he was spot on in his predictions. The photo is taken in Lemmer, one of the harbours on the Ijsselmeer lake
Direct download: MN.29.07.1999.Boats.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 12:00 AM
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I have always been struck by the connection between radio and transport, especially trains. Many of my friends in broadcasting have an interest in trains - especially steam. So while at a conference in Canada in 1998 I took the tour of the CBC English service in Ottawa, and learned how trains have been important to the start of national radio in that part of North America. It turned out to be important to me too. I went out to the airport to catch the KLM flight back to the Netherlands. I then discovered that there was no plane. It was a bus to Montreal. Where did the bus leave from? The Canadian National railway station opposite my hotel. This show also contains news on the book series about the great manufacturer of portable radios - Zenith.

Direct download: MN.wk.24.1998.cbcottawa.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 7:51 PM
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So who remembers the radio stations that operated from the Forts in the 1960's? They were trying to break the monopoly of the BBC but choosing to use abandoned WWII anti-aircraft defenses built in the North Sea rather than the ships used by Radio Veronica and Caroline. The answer is that plenty of people still remember those broadcast pioneers, as I discovered at the Radioday.nl in the Casa400 hotel in Amsterdam on November 13th 2010. That lead to a request to dig up this show from August 13th 1998 in which we reviewed a new CD about the Forts, containing interviews from those involved. I see those CDs are still around - judging from the displays of offshore memorabilia. This show also included a great opening from Jim Cutler hinting at the crowded shortwave bands. Rocus de Joode was in the frequency coordination meeting in KL. Frederick Noronha submitted a piece about community radio in India. It is a shame that it didn't take off as fast as the commercial FM. The programme ends with the review of the double CD about screaming Lord Sutch and his fort adventures.
Direct download: MN.wk.33.1998.Sutch.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 7:10 PM
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Enjoyed saying hello to several listeners to this podcast. You gave me several useful suggestions about which editions of Media Network they'd like me to upload from the archive. I am always surprised about which editions people remember and to hear how people in Eastern Europe took enormous risks to listen in. The Radioday was held on November 13th at the spanking new Casa400 hotel in Amsterdam. It was packed with passionate people. I think it works because those there realise that offshore radio was a unique era. Many people had enormous fun working on the ships and made friendships that have lasted more than 40 years. There aren't many industries that can attract people to come to a nostalgia day - and I haven't seen as many people smiling about radio in a long time. The next radio day will be November 12th 2011.
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 3:07 PM
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In 1998 we remade a documentary on Tokyo Rose in the light of new recordings and websites that were springing up. This was before Wikipedia of course. I think it interesting to contrast this story about Tokyo Rose (it was more than one person) with that of American actress Mildred Gillars who broadcast from Berlin to North America. I see that she is the subject of a new book by Richard Lucas called 'Axis Sally: The American Voice of Nazi Germany". There are recordings of her in the US Library of Congress. The original programme is also on this website.
Direct download: MN.wk.21.1998.tokyorose2.mp3
Category:Media Network Archives -- posted at: 9:05 AM
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