Support KWUR in the SU Elections March 6th and 7th! by Robert Ling, III
To students of Washington University:
Hey! You like KWUR? Well it's time for you to prove it! KWUR is staring down the barrel of a gang of expensive projects, so we're appealing directly to the students we are and serve to support us. To support KWUR, please go to su.wustl.edu/vote Tuesday, March 6, 2012, 8:00.am – Wednesday, March.7, 4:00.p.m. and approve KWUR's Block Funding appeal for the 2012-2013 fiscal year.
Details on some of the challenges facing KWUR follow after the break.
A couple of the projects on our immediate horizon:
- Transmitter Repair. WashU's Student Life ran a story Thursday March 1st about our current transmitter woes. You can read up on some of the details here. The short of the long is that we have several components in the attic of Olin Library that enable us to broadcast. Our antenna and fiber-optic systems are find, but the transmitter–which amplifies our signal up to broadcast-strength–is some three decades old and has deteriorated beyond repair. We need to replace the transmitter and hire a consultant to install it and investigate the rest of our stack up there to make sure nothing else is past its useful life.
- Wattage Upgrade. Currently, KWUR is proudly licensed to broadcast at a mighty 10 Watts. For context, St Louis public radio (KWMU 90.7 FM) is licensed for some 100,000 Watts. KWUR has long aspired to upgrade our license and increase our range, but we've been stymied in the past by a "third-adjacency conflict". In short, KWMU specifically expressed concern that upgrading our power would interfere with their own signal. However, the Local Community Radio Act of 2010 expressly states "The Federal Communications Commission shall modify its rules to eliminate third-adjacent minimum distance separation requirements" between low-power FM stations (like KWUR) and full-service FM stations (like KWMU). We have already opened dialog with the Society of Broadcast Engineers to help guide us through the upgrade application process, and they sound confident that we'll be able to secure a Kilowatt license without much trouble. We just need the money to pay the lawyers and consultants, and the FCC itself.
- Station Relocation. In the next few years, WashU Facilities is going to remodel the Ann W Olin Women's Building, where KWUR's studio is currently located. The remodel will effectively eliminate our space, so we're going to be moving house up into an unoccupied space in the Danforth University Center. The move presents a great opportunity for us to take care of several long-standing equipment and operations challenges we have been facing. For instance, we're long-overdue to upgrade our server hardware and software that provides our stream over the Internet. It's also long since KWUR got on board with the digital music revolution and ripped our CDs and vinyl albums onto hard disks acessible from the air studio, which will allow DJs easier access to the full selection of KWUR's extensive music collection.
- KWUR Week Expansion. KWUR Week is KWUR's music festival, now in its 20th year. In the last several years, KWUR has appealed for and secured between twenty and twenty five thousand dollars to throw the event. This year's budget is some twenty two grand for the event that will take place from April 16th-21st (stay tuned here for details as the event draws closer!). In our Block Funding appeal, we're asking for about thirty five thousand dollars to bring in more and bigger acts than ever before.
These are just a few of the reasons we're appealing for Block Funding. If you'd like more detailed information, please contact our Treasurer, Robert Ling, III, at treasurer[at]kwur[dot]com.
So remember! Head over to su.wustl.edu/vote Tuesday, March 6, 2012, 8:00.am – Wednesday, March.7, 4:00.p.m. to support the distinct and special voice KWUR brings to the St. Louis airwaves.
Thanks for your support and love.