The Commons is a weblog for concerned citizens of southeast Iowa and their friends around the world. It was created to encourage grassroots networking and to share information and ideas which have either been suppressed or drowned out in the mainstream media.

"But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place;' some swearing, some crying for a surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left. I am afeard there are few die well that die in a battle; for how can they charitably dispose of any thing, when blood is their argument? Now, if these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the king that led them to it; whom to disobey were against all proportion of subjection." (Henry V, Act V, Scene 4)

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

GOP abuses Emergency Alert System to Air Radio Ad

This is a test of the Emergency Alert System: Vote for Dick Mountjoy!

In an apparent violation of FCC rules, conservative talk radio station KFBK 1530 AM in Sacramento transmitted a paid political advertisement to an unknown number of other stations in the area, using the federal Emergency Alert System (EAS), thus automatically forcing the ad onto the stations' airwaves. This is according to a press release issued today by KDVS-FM, a non-commercial community station in Davis that received and inadvertently aired the transmission.

The advertisement is for Richard "Dick" Mountjoy, the Republican running against incumbent Sen. Dianne Feinstein. Immediately following the Mountjoy ad is a commercial for HMS Capital Loans.

Click below to hear the complete recording of the EAS broadcast, aired Nov. 6 at 10:02 a.m.:

Listen/Download Audio | 2:26 min : 3.51 MB

From the KDVS press release:

* Disaster warning system used to transmit advertisements

EAS (generally characterized by its signature tones and test disclaimer) is designed and exclusively used for rapid communication alerting areas to emergency situations (such as natural disasters). The content of these messages is strictly controlled by federal law for obvious reasons.

* Sacramento conservative talk radio station KFBK transmitted the initial message

KFBK 1530 AM in Sacramento is the Local Primary (LP) station designated to initiate the broadcast of EAS messages in several Northern California counties, including Yolo. This morning, KFBK initiated the required monthly test of EAS but failed to cease broadcasting via EAS upon the standard message of EAS conclusion ("This concludes this test of the Emergency Alert System"). Instead, they forced rebroadcast of the aforementioned advertisements, including the paid political advertisement.

* KFBK blames training error for the transmission

Upon contact by KDVS management, KFBK Operations Manager Alan Eisansom claimed station responsibility for the message broadcast assigning blame to some kind of nonspecific training snafu.


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