August 27, 2008

File Under: How to take your weak AM signal to a FM translator

Cumulus Radio uses the FCC rules to rename "The Touch" and bring R&B and Classic Soul to Central Pennsylvania. Meanwhile they change formats on their AM station. Can they do that?

In Harrisburg, PA, Cumulus Radio received permission to simulcast the urban AC “The Touch” (1400 AM WTCY) on a FM translator at 95.3. The twist is that Cumulus has also put The Touch on the HD-2 channel on another station they owned WINK 104.1 and began marketing it as “The Touch 95.3.”

Next they have changed formats on 1400 AM to sports. It is now known as ESPN 1400 WHGB. The FM translator is NOW getting it's signal from the 104.1 HD-2 signal. Is that legal in the eyes of the FCC? Does an HD-2 station qualify as a "broadcast station"? They are allowing it informally.

Many lowly-populated/spread-out areas in the U.S., like Durham, NC's Foxy107/104 for example, uses a FM translator to broadcast their station on two frequencies. The FCC translator rules require translators to re-broadcast another FM or AM station.

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