Thursday, February 08, 2007

Early spring cleaning at LTR

So, as you're looking through the amazing collection o' links here at LTR, you may be noticing a few things that are different. Well, there are some changes.

First off, in acknowledgement of the growth of non-commercial community radio, stations that fall under that banner are now being given their own section. Therefore, radio stations are divided into two categories: Commercial liberal talk and progressive/alternative/community-oriented non-commercial community stations (got all that?). The commercial stations consist of the typical Air America/JRN affiliates, as well as African-American talk stations (which tend to lean to the left anyway) and even stations that mix it up a bit. For most stations that are listed here, the general requirement is at least two liberal talk shows on the schedule, but that rule is rather flexible, and there are a few exceptions, such as that little station in Canton, IL that carries two hours of Randi Rhodes live every afternoon (just found that one today!).

For non-commercial stations, you'll find mostly community-oriented stations, in addition to the five stations owned and operated by Pacifica Radio. Many of these non-coms air syndicated shows such as Democracy Now or Free Speech Radio News. Quite a few carry their own local progressive programming. And most air music-oriented shows, which I won't hold against them, since some of the music programming is quite good and a welcome break from all this liberal talk stuff. Also included are low-power FM (LPFM) stations airing this type of programming. Those are denoted with a (LP) after their call letters. And there's one pirate station on the list, Free Radio Santa Cruz. Normally, a pirate station would not be listed here, due to the temporary (and downright illegal) nature of many of them. But FRSC has been around forever, they cater heavily to the community, have a strong web presence and even produce a few good shows. And the people of the Santa Cruz area have gotten quite nasty whenever the FCC attempts to shut them down (similar to the situation in Nevada that saw Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid get involved). Now, LTR doesn't condone illegal broadcasting, but FRSC exists, and is noteworthy enough for inclusion. Also keep in mind that quite a few of these stations operate translators and/or simulcasts on other frequencies in neighboring areas. Only the main signal is listed here. If you see a particular station on the list just outside your area of listening, click on it and see if they have a stick near you.

What about NPR/PRI stations? In order to maintain sanity, those have been left off. There are simply way too many of them, and I'm just not enough of a masochist to even try and list them. Besides, the big public radio networks do a pretty good job of keeping track of affiliates, so you can always check out their site.

Aside from the station listings, I've expanded the listing of online broadcasters. In doing this, I moved away from the cute little chicklet graphics, and decided to list them instead (as traffic has increased drastically, I decided to whittle down some of the graphics a bit, in order to speed up load times). And there's quite a few new ones added to the list, including radioActive SanDiego, which carries a variety of music and talk programs, A-Infos and Progressive Podcast Network, which are more a collection of podcasts than anything else (and good ones at that!). Also added are TalkRadioX (sent to me by the webmaster) and something called "The Journey," which positions itself as Christian radio without all the right-wing nonsense and guilt-mongering. They air Pacifica programming too. Seeing as this fills a pretty unique niche (and they're progressive), it has been added here.

If you have any suggestions, or stations/broadcasters I've missed, don't hesitate to drop a line to LTR. It's still a work in progress, so if you don't see your favorite station listed, you likely will in the future.


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