LW for a minimum of two years

Chair of the Oireachtas Communications Committee, Hildegarde Naughton, has welcomed RTE’s decision to undertake significant remedial works on transmission equipment and the guarantee that the longwave 252 service will continue for at least the next two years.
Deputy Naughton said: “The maintenance of long-wave radio for the Irish diaspora is a significant concern to the Committee.” Read the full story here.


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A wide section of the Irish community listens to RTE Radio 1 on longwave in Britain – people of all ages listen in their cars, sports fans hear GAA matches, and for many older emigrants, it is a treasured link with home. There are no adequate alternatives for many people: RTE advises listening online or via satellite, but these are not accessible to everyone. Listeners in Britain (and Northern Ireland) will not be able to use DAB, which RTE is also pushing as an alternative, as that signal is only available in urban parts of Ireland.

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The broadcasters would appear to be manipulating the public so as to force us onto DAB and away from Longwave and FM.

The BBC upset a large audience of its listeners recently by restricting a critical part of a dramatic episode to DAB only (RADIO4 Extra) This enraged the large audience of “The Archers” and ended in a vast number of complaints to the “Feedback” programme. Feedback interviewed some of the management figures involved in the decision to restrict coverage. They gave very unsatisfactory answers. The broadcasters seem determined to act against the licence payers’ wishes. Public broadcasters such as BBC and RTE are paid from the public purse and should take into account our preferences and not force us into costly or inconvenient ways of listening. The episode of feedback of 12 JULY where this subject of the manipulation can be downloaded here:

RTE is switching off Radio 1 periodically and giving reasons such as “maintenance” and “lights replacement”. When asked they say there were “few complaints” at the suspension of service. In the UK medium wave stations are switched off for periods and the number of listener complaints used as “evidence” that the service is not required. What is surprising is that these shutdowns happen in holiday periods and other times when people have other things on their mind. Is this merely coincidental? This method of evaluation is not a good basis for decision making.

A truly independent survey would have to be funded and instructed NOT by the broadcaster but by a wholly independent body with no connection to broadcasting or the state.