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Loophole for iPlayer closes today

iPlayer screen
iPlayer loophole closes today

From today, anyone watching BBC programmes only on iPlayer will be required to buy a TV licence to view the content.

Previously a licence was only needed to watch live broadcasts, so catch-up content was technically exempt from the £145.50 annual fee.

But due to a change in the law, a licence will be needed to download or watch BBC programmes on demand.

Those who already have a TV licence will not be affected.

The change comes after the government said it wanted to modernise the current system, so those watching catch-up TV do not get “a free ride”.

The new rules apply to all devices used to access iPlayer – including laptops, smartphones, tablets, TV streaming devices and games consoles, as well as through third-party services such as Sky, Virgin or BT.  However, a TV licence will still not be needed for watching other on demand services, such as ITV Player, All4, My5 or Netflix.

 

 

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Midlands Radio Station Sudden Close

Oak 107 FM

A radio station broadcasting to West Leicestershire and Nuneaton closed suddenly and without warning immediately after their 6pm news bulletin on Thursday 28th July.  You can here the final 3 minutes of the broadcast here.

The closure of Oak 107 was posted on the station’s Facebook page by breakfast co-host Mark Rowley who made up Mark and Twiggy from the breakfast show.

The station was sold last year to ATR Media as a merger of both Oak FM and Fosseway.

Presenter Mark Rowley said in an emotion post of Facebook:

Breakfast co-host Mark Rowley

Oak FM was sold by Quidem 12 months ago to ATR Media for an undisclosed sum. It was made up of two previous stations – Fosseway Radio and the original Oak FM. It relaunched in 2014 after a weekend of playing Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody non-stop.

Key 103 Competition inbreach of OFcom rules

Key 103 Manchester

Manchester radio station Key 103 fell foul of the regulator recently after complaints about their ‘Heartless Hotline’ competition.

The breakfast show competition involved a member of the public making a case as to why they should receive a particular prize that they have chosen. The station telephone lines were then opened for 30 seconds, and any listener who wished could phone in and steal the prize for themselves.  If no listener calls in, the person who requested the prize and gave their reason- gets it.

Ofcom received a complaint from a listener who described the treatment of the competition entrant on 27 April as “disgusting”. Separately we received two complaints about the 29 April competition from listeners who considered the competition had not been conducted fairly.

 

The competition went as follows:

The Heartless Hotline competition was introduced by the breakfast show presenters, Mike Toolan (“MT”) and Brooke Vincent (“BV”).

MT: Today’s person facing the Heartless Hotline is Sarah from Eccles. Sarah?
Sarah: Hello.
BV: Hi. You alright?
Sarah: I’m alright. A bit nervous.
MT: You’ve contacted us to try and win your dream prize. Tell everybody what it is.
Sarah: It’s £2,000 to cover divorce costs including a court order

MT: …Tell us the story. You were married – when did it all go wrong?
Sarah: It was just over two years ago and I discovered my husband was cheating on me with somebody he worked with. A couple of weeks after that literally, my dad died unexpectedly. It has been an awful – I can’t tell you what it’s been like the last two years [voice breaks]…sorry I’m a bit upset.
BV: Oh, don’t be upset.
Sarah: [voice wavering] I don’t have any luxuries. I have enough to cover the bills but really if I could get divorced I could also get a court order that would mean that my children’s father would have to help with the housing costs ‘cos I just don’t think, of moving house right now, they could cope with it. It’s just been heart-breaking.
MT: So your ex-husband, well I guess he’s still your husband at the minute until you can get divorced. He’s not helping you pay the bills? Sarah: He’s given me a little bit of basic maintenance but it’s not enough to be able to keep us in the house where we live.
BV: Is that for the kids as well? It’s for everything?
Sarah: Yeah. [voice wavering] You know, for me to lose my support network and for them to lose their friends and possibly have to move schools. I just don’t think they could cope with it.
MT: So you want a sort of court order that will allow you stay in the house
you are in.
Sarah: Yeah, you can obtain a court order which means that he would have to help with housing costs – he would have to contribute a little bit more in order to keep a roof over our heads.
MT: He should be doing it anyway.
BV: He’s in our ‘Bad Dads’ Club’.
MT: […] So you’re paying all the bills. You want to stay in the family home.
You need £2,000.

Sarah: I do work, I work in healthcare. I help look after children and adults with additional needs. It’s not that I don’t work but I just need a little bit more help in order to cover the mortgage…and that would do it really. I have been to see a couple of solicitors so I know what’s involved and I know the exact cost and that [the £2,000 prize] would cover the
paperwork for the divorce and the solicitor’s fees.
MT: So you need £2,000?
Sarah: Yes.

MT: We’ve got it for you.
Sarah: Right [nervous laughter].
MT: I’ve been through a divorce myself, I know exactly what you’re going through and it’s just horrible.
Sarah: It’s awful.
MT: Okay. 30 seconds. We’re going to open up the Heartless Hotline on Key 103. Really good luck Sarah in Eccles. Let’s hope no one calls. Let’s hope people allow you to take this £2,000.
Sarah: Please Manchester. I need this more than anything.
MT: How old are your children?
Sarah: Nine and seven now.
MT: Nine and seven. Aww. Are they okay?
Sarah: They’re okay. They’ve took it hard but they’re okay.
MT: Okay. 30 seconds. [Telephone number given]. It’s up to you if you want to call and steal this cash. It’s on your conscience. The Key 103 Heartless Hotline is now open.

[A ticking clock was heard, followed two seconds later by the sound of a phone
ringing.]

MT: We’ve got a call in already.
Sarah: Oh no.
MT: Hello? Key 103’s Heartless Hotline. Who’s this?
Caller: Hiya. It’s Leigh.
MT: Leigh? Why are you calling us?
Leigh: I want to steal the money.
BV: [gasp] Do you Leigh?
Sarah: Oh no.
Leigh: [laughing]
BV: What you want to steal it for, what do you want?
Leigh: Well I would like a holiday.
BV: But Leigh!
Sarah: This is my children’s future!
Leigh: I know but I’ve got children of my own and I could do with a holiday for us.
Sarah: You could do with a holiday? I could do with keeping a roof over my children’s heads. How could you?
Leigh: Sorry?
Sarah: [Sounding close to tears] I want to keep a roof over my children’s heads and you just want a holiday? Are you serious?
Leigh: I am serious. I’m sorry about this, but yes.
Sarah: You’re not sorry. How could you?
Leigh: Well that’s the name of the game!
BV: I don’t know what to say.
MT: […] Leigh, do you not think this is a bit out of order? Do you not think she’s been through enough and she deserves a chance to fight for the right to keep her kids in the same house?
Leigh: Well…yes, we’ve all got a story to tell and I just need the money myself so I just thought I would ring up.
MT: Okay.
Leigh: Sorry, I didn’t know her situation.
Sarah: Just for a holiday.
Leigh: I just want a holiday. Long overdue.
MT: Alright. Leigh, you’ve won your holiday.
Leigh: Oh thank you! [laughing].
MT: Okay. Bye.
Leigh: Thanks a lot. Bye bye!

MT: Sarah. I don’t know what to say.
Sarah: Okay well, she won it fair enough I suppose.
MT: Stay on the line, we’ll have a chat in a minute.

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After a music track was played the presenters discussed what had happened and
read out messages from listeners. These included:

MT: Sarah Elliot has texted… ‘Words fail me. What a cow!’
BV: I’ve got some on Twitter…we’ve got Jamie who’s put “nearly in tears at Key 103 Heartless Hotline”. I’ve got Tracy Elliot who’s put “what a vindictive, disgusting woman. Sickening”. Nicholas put “to be fair with this Heartless Hotline, you can’t blame people who are stealing. It’s the name of the game” and that’s true but – it’s just hard as these are people’s lives that we are trying to also help but other people are stealing from, so it’s not good.

MT: Someone’s put “you need to stop this evil game now. I’m at the point where I’m going to be switching stations”.
BV: I think the thing is, it also depends what the person is asking for because someone could ask for a car and it’d not be that bad. It’s just like, you know, they’ve stole a car, but when it’s that raw and personal, as a divorce, and someone comes on and tells a story, and someone just goes “yeah”. That’s a bit harsh.

The presenters also spoke to a number of callers over the course of the subsequent 30 minutes. The majority expressed their anger with Leigh for stealing the money, although some defended her actions. By way of example, callers’ comments included:

“I am absolutely disgusted with that woman from Wythenshawe that’s just stolen
that prize…words fail me”.

“That was bang out of order…”.

“…we’ve all been through issues and we don’t know what’s gone on in this girl’s
[Leigh’s] life to make her want a holiday. She could have been through anything
and there’s nothing like a holiday to make you feel better and I think we’re all
judging here without knowing what she’s been through…”.

One listener also offered to donate £100 towards Sarah’s cause which one of the
presenters agreed to match.

Ofcom found that Key 103 were in breach of their Rules 2.3 and 2.13 and said “In our opinion, the Licensee should have been more aware before transmission of the potential for offence arising from including Sarah as a contestant in this competition on 27 April 2016”.

New Community Radio Stations for KENT

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Ofcom has today announced that it has awarded six community radio licences for the South East of England.

Applicants awarded a licence

Ofcom has made a licence award to each of the following:

  • 1 Brighton FM (Alias Music and Community Projects CIC), Brighton and Hove
  • Gaydio (Gaydio Brighton Ltd), Brighton and Hove
  • Platform B (Platform B), Brighton and Hove
  • Radio Cabin (Herne Bay’s Radio Cabin), Herne Bay, North East Kent
  • Sheppey FM (Sheppey Matters), Sheerness, Isle of Sheppey
  • Miskin Radio (North Kent College), North West Kent Gateway

Community radio stations are  licensed for a period of five years from the date of their launch. Miskin Radio will be licensed to broadcast on AM, and Sheppey FM will broadcast to the Isle of Sheppey – the 2nd community radio station on the Island although their focus is on the training and development of adults and young people with physical or mental health disabilities in the area.

Ofcom was satisfied that none of the new services would prejudice unduly the economic viability of any local analogue commercial radio service (section 105(3) of the BA 1990).

 

1 Brighton FM
1 Brighton FM will be a service for the general population of Brighton and Hove

1 Brighton FM will be a service for the general population of Brighton and Hove, and will feature a broad range of specialist music and community shows. Ofcom noted the group’s experience of broadcasting via the internet and the experience of individuals involved (such as in business, marketing, music, audio and website production), and was satisfied that it had demonstrated its ability to maintain the service. The group has a strong volunteer base, and partnerships in place with various community groups which participate in programme-making. Ofcom considered that 1 Brighton FM had built on these to propose workable arrangements for access to the station by the target community. It also has accountability proposals that the decision-makers were satisfied would allow volunteers and listeners to influence the direction of the station.

 

Gaydio will broadcast a service for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Brighton and Hove
Gaydio will broadcast a service for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Brighton and Hove

Gaydio will broadcast a service for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Brighton and Hove. Ofcom noted that members of the applicant group have experience from a range of areas including radio broadcasting, journalism, business and management, and that the applicant company is allied with another company broadcasting to the same target community elsewhere in the UK.  Ofcom considered that the service would broaden choice in relation to existing radio services available in the area by super-serving the LGBT community with a service including contemporary dance and pop music alongside a relatively high volume of LGBT-targeted speech content.

 

 

Platform b
Platform B will be a music-led station for young adults (aged 16-25 years old) in Brighton and Hove

Platform B will be a music-led station for young adults (aged 16-25 years old) in Brighton and Hove. Ofcom noted that members of the applicant group have experience of youth work, music, local broadcasting, finance, IT and digital media, which Ofcom considered would help enable Platform B to maintain its proposed service. The applicant will co-opt two people aged under-25 on to its board, and encourage volunteers to become members of the licence-holding company. It proposes a range of opportunities for access to the station, and also of collecting feedback from the target community to inform its decision-making.

 

Radio Cabin will be a radio station for the general population of Herne Bay, north east Kent
Radio Cabin will be a radio station for the general population of Herne Bay, north east Kent

Radio Cabin will be a radio station for the general population of Herne Bay, north east Kent. The applicant is a registered charity, formed many years ago, and has gained experience through hospital radio broadcasts in the past, as well as broadcasting via the internet and on temporary FM licences.  In Ofcom’s view, the group’s already established community links would help it to promote social cohesion by involving the target community. Ofcom noted that the applicant group already has a volunteer base, as well as a training team, and is experienced in training volunteers. Training will be available to both individuals and community groups.

 

 

Sheppey FM will be a station for adults and young people with physical or mental health disabilities in Sheerness, Isle of Sheppey
Sheppey FM will be a station for adults and young people with physical or mental health disabilities in Sheerness, Isle of Sheppey

Sheppey FM will be a station for adults and young people with physical or mental health disabilities in Sheerness, Isle of Sheppey. The applicant, Sheppey Matters, is a registered charity with experience of running outreach projects from its base at Sheppey Healthy Living Centre.   Ofcom noted that the applicant works with many partner organisations in the area.  It has experience of delivering training, which is a central part of Sheppey FM’s social gain proposals, as well as other benefits, such as promoting healthy living.

 

Miskin Radio will be a community radio service on the AM (medium wave) band for people living in the Gravesham, Dartford and Bexley areas
Miskin Radio will be for people living in the Gravesham, Dartford and Bexley areas

Miskin Radio will be a community radio service on the AM (medium wave) band for people living in the Gravesham, Dartford and Bexley areas. The applicant is North Kent College, and the station will be run by a separate radio members committee, reporting to the College’s senior leadership team. The service will operate from studios within the college, and Ofcom was satisfied that the service could be maintained. The applicant demonstrated a good level of support for the service, as well as links with local bodies.  Ofcom noted the applicant’s proposals for training, including introductory courses, as well as opportunities to train in different locations across the area.

Saturday Breakfast 28 May 2016

jason mccrossan
Jason on 106.9 SFM 100% Local Radio for Sittingourne

On 106.9 SFM – Jason and the full Saturday breakfast show team return for more light hearted news, music and fun on the bank holiday weekend.

In the first hour – The News Quiz – Jason plays a clip from the news but can you guess the news story behind the audio headline & a bonus point if you can identify the person actually speaking.

In Tranquil Time – the poem is from Oliver Hereford – A tragedy in Rhyme.

After 8 – Feather is back up in the SFM helicopter hiding somewhere in the garden of England – she’ll give you the clues all you have to do is work out the location.

In the final hour it is Pick Of The Number One Pops and Paul from the Sittingbourne & Kemsley Light Railway talks about the bank holiday services running.

New community radio licences awarded

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Ofcom has announced the award of five new community radio licences in south east England covering Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and East Sussex.

The 5 new stations are:

Bexhill FM

Bexhill FM
Who will provide a service for the whole community in Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex.

 

Hailsham FM

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Will be a service for the general population of Hailsham in East Sussex. Speaking via their twitter account the team said “We are hugely excited to announce that we have been awarded a 5 year FM community radio licence by today”

Red Kite Radio

Red Kite Radio

Will be for the people of Haddenham (Buckinghamshire) and Thame (Oxfordshire). Their website announced the winning bid by saying how they “won the five-year licence after convincing the body that this area deserves and can sustain a full time version of its successful Summerfest Radio broadcasts”.  General Manager of Red Kite Radio Pete MacFarlane told Haddenham.net “Summerfest Radio began nearly four years ago and has grown ever since, heavily supporting the beer festival which has grown significantly during the three summers we’ve been on the air”.  It is anticipated that Red Kite Radio will broadcast 24 hours a day with community news updates & information, interviews with community representatives, local people and organisations.

Witney Radio

Witney Radio

Will serve the community of Witney and surrounding villages in Oxfordshire.  The station tweeted their thanks to Ofcom via their twitter account and said “Proves all the hard work does pay off in the end and the community benefits are huge!”

 

Wycombe Sound

Wycombe Sound

Is for people aged 35 and over in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.  The station’s Managing Director Chris Phillips released a statement via their website stating “We’re all absolutely delighted. After completing three successful pop-up broadcasts we’re looking forward to putting the service onto a permanent footing. There’s so much going on in this town, we want to share all the good news coming from our community.”

Wycombe Sound will broadcast a mix of local interest interviews and features, together with local news and phone ins. There will be lots of great music too, plus specialist programmes and outside broadcasts.

Community Radio

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Community radio services are provided on a not-for-profit basis, focusing on the delivery of specific social benefits to a particular geographical community or a community of interest.

 

10 years of community radio

Community radio, which offers thousands of volunteers the chance to get involved in broadcasting across the UK, is ten years old.

The last decade has seen the number of community radio stations increase from just a handful to more than 230 stations, each reflecting the local needs and interests of its audience.

In March, Ofcom announced its intention to simplify the way community radio stations record their Key Commitments. This revised approach reduces the administrative burden for licensees, and provides these stations greater flexibility to serve their target communities and deliver valuable social benefits.

A Real Friend At the Hospital Bedside

 

Pete Harvey | Hospital Radio Exeter
Pete Harvey | Hospital Radio Exeter

New research has, for the first time, shown the true impact of Hospital Radio on a patient’s well-being.

It shows stations offer a unique service, giving patients a sense of belonging and helping their psychosocial health, from relieving boredom and loneliness to being a calming influence at what can be – for many – a difficult time, in a strange environment.

Patients, staff and volunteers from over a hundred hospitals, across the UK, were questioned and all suggested the service was a useful aid in helping a patient’s over-all recovery.

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NHS staff told the researchers that Hospital Radio can help ease anxiety during treatment, helping people relax and giving them something else to focus on, rather than the treatment itself.

Grant McNaughton, chairman of the Hospital Broadcasting Association (HBA)
Grant McNaughton, chairman of  HBA

Grant McNaughton, chairman of the Hospital Broadcasting Association (HBA) said: “A lot has changed in the 90 years since the first Hospital Radio station started broadcasting, and patients now have access to a whole range of different entertainment systems – including their own devices which can now store and play their own choice of films, TV programmes and music.

Despite that, Hospital Radio continues to play a strong role and, as the research proves, can make a real difference for that patient feeling isolated and away from their loved ones for a period of time.”

The report was commissioned amid fears some hospital radio stations were being closed down, as part of cost-saving measures within the NHS. Two years ago one station in Guildford was forced off air when the Hospital Trust revealed it wanted to make space available for a Marks and Spencer Store within the hospital.

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday Breakfast with flirting expert Jean Smith 06 February 2016

SFM Breakfast.jpg

On 106.9 SFM’s Saturday Breakfast show for the 6th February – we have the usual features including Who is the voice? in the first hour.

In Tranquil Time our poem is by John Masefield – Sea Fever READ BY: Gill Fraser Lee

THE chat-up line, “I like your dress but it would look better on my bedroom floor” has been named the worst of all by women. Jason is joined by flirting expert Jean Smith to discuss the art of flirting.

Play Your Celebrity Cards Right with Dickie Smallbone & Feather Barkweasle returns and we have our final Celebrity Big Brother Update brought to us by MC Jezza Fellows.

Pick of The Number One’s Pops returns where the songs we play were number one on this day.

Brits name the radio DJ they’d most like to spend a Valentine’s break with

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After years of listening to their dulcet tones and charismatic banter, many people start to feel like they really know their favourite radio DJ – in fact, some people even dream of jetting away with them.

And now a list of the top radio DJs Brits would like to go on holiday with for Valentine’s Day has emerged. In a survey of two thousand people run by Holiday Hypermarket, Radio 1 Breakfast Show’s Nick Grimshaw topped the male presenters we’d most like to be abroad with for Valentine’s, while Emma Bunton of Heart Radio was the favourite female. The fight for the top spot was close run thing though with Nick Grimshaw, (13%) narrowly beating Greg James (12%), also of Radio 1. Radio 2’s Chris Evans came third with 12%.

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Early bird BBC Radio 4 Today’s Programme presenter John Humphrys received 5% of the vote.

 

For the ladies, Bunton’s 18% was closely followed by former Radio 1 presenter Fearne Cotton who gained 17.3% of the votes, then Sara Cox (12%), of Radio 2’s Sounds of the 80s fame. Down at the bottom of the rankings, Jenni Murray and Vanessa Feltz didn’t fare so well, with 3.6% of votes each. The male DJs that voters would least like to go away with were Steve Wright (6%), Jeremy Vine (6%) and John Humphrys (5%).

Holiday Hypermarket representative Ian Crawford commented: “This was a close run thing and we didn’t expect for the margins to be so small. It’s clear that with so many great DJs out there we have lots of favourites. The figures for the ladies were a little higher and more unanimous, so well done Emma and Fearne.”

STOP! Paying for MPs to get Pissed – let’s spend it on the#NHS

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#isupportjuniordoctors

Nothing insenses me more than when a group of experts are bullied into agreeing to something which they know is wrong by a government desparate to make good on a shoddy election promise – on paper rather than practice.

And so today we have a strike by junior doctors who are worried that the terms and conditions they thought they had signed up to when they started their careers – is being ripped up and replaced with a new contract which, in its heart, is about doing more with less, for less.

Having squeezed all the juice from the apple – Mr Hunt and David Cameron are now attempting to squeeze juice from the remaining pips! And it is an utter disgrace.

I have used the NHS alot lately and so understand that it is climbersome, slow and at its best when dealing with life or death emergencies. The rest of us – form an orderly and long queue please.

So, I am all for new ideas and reforms. But they must be sensible and reasoned and funded properly.

Watch Jeremy Hunt squirm as he listens to letters from junior doctors
Watch Jeremy Hunt squirm as he listens to letters from junior doctors

 

This is NOT what we are getting from Jeremy Hunt. His proposals are designed to spread what is currently done over 5 days over 7. Let me tell you – the NHS in some parts is struggling with 5 days – never mind 7.  WE MUST NOT make Doctors pay the price of over funded and bad management of NHS boards.

I am not saying I don’t disagree with the Conservative aspiration of a fully functioning 7 day health system. It is inevitable.

However, where I am very angry with Jermey Hunt is that he is trying to impose this new way of working – without fully resourcing the other bits required to make the new term and conditions feasible and the aspiration achievable.

On the Andrew Marr show on Sunday 7th February Mr Hunt refused to say that Doctors were not responsible for the 11,000 deaths which are supposedly down to the “weekend effect”.

This made me so angry and the reason is – because it is a total LIE. 11,000 people are NOT dying because everyone packs up at 5pm on a Friday evening in the NHS. In fact, it would appear that Wednesay stands accused of being statistically the worst day to be in hospital. Do we avoid getting hit by a Larry on Wednesay the?

The truth is – you find trends in any data which may not accurately reflect the situation – certainly not to allow you to then base a concrete finding upon eg: if we look at those who died on Wednesay – you might find a majortiy white, male, under 6ft, with blonde hair and green eyes. However if you fit that description- and get hit by a car – you are not MORE likely to survive because it’s Tuesday! It will depend on a variety of other factors directly relating to that incident.

But Jeremy Hunt and the Government are trying to skew the statistics to create fear and get the public on their side. That is shameful and unforgivable.

When I think about how much MPs earn and the fact that as well as everything else the tax payer funds them for – just remember – at any point – MPs are getting pissed in the House Of Commons bar – or some other little function and you are subsiding it or paying wholly for it.

Instead of paying for MPs to get pissed – why isn’t that money used to get more Doctors, Nurses and other NHS specialists?

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