Friday, June 29, 2012

Updates… An an experiment!

Before we get to the updates, I want to invite you to view ABMP's new Google+ page.  It's public, so you don't have to be a member of anything Google-related to view.  But if you are a member, you can follow ABMP and get occasional updates and interact with me.  Give it a try!  I'm moving updates to that platform for a while to see if it's easier to handle than Blogger.  If not, I'll come back here.

On to the updates…

In Mobile, Clear Channel has acquired another translator, W258AY, on 99.5 MHz. They received a CP to up power to 250 watts and broadcast from the tower in Prichard which currently houses WASG and WAVH. It's scheduled to rebroadcast News Talk 710 WNTM. It's unknown if this a replacement or addition to W262BL on 100.3 MHz, which would broadcast from the WKRG-TV tower in Spanish Fort.

In other news, W286AQ on 105.1 MHz continues its march far away from its original city of license, Northport. It's now most of the way to Alexander City and has just received a permit for a site just outside the city limits. The parent station remains WHHY-FM Montgomery, but an application pending shows that this will eventually settle in Alex City proper and rebroadcast WBNM 1050, with its classic country format.

The last big translator update comes from Birmingham, where W251BG at 98.1 MHz makes a big jump from Cullman to Tarrant, to rebroadcast WAGG's highly successful gospel format from atop Red Mountain. The new facility will have 250 watts and cover as much of the city as Clear Channel's existing translators do.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Mobile-friendly site updated!

Many of you may not know it, but the Alabama Broadcast Media Page has had a mobile-friendly landing page for quite some time.  Previously, only the index page was friendly to small screens; links went to the regular site and left fitting the tables correctly up to your device.  This doesn't work very well in either smartphone browsers, which fail to break up the tables into small readable columns, or in Opera Mini, which does break up tables to be small-screen friendly but does not show breaks or lines between cells, making all the content run together.

To be more smartphone browser friendly, the mobile site's tables have been stripped of as many superfluous columns as possible and no longer mandate padding around the edges.  To be more friendly to Opera Mini, I've colorized either alternating rows or individual cells to break up content into easier-to-digest chunks.  Doing all this necessitated creating a copy of all the data pages (but not the profile pages, which remain on the main site.)

Although maintaining two different copies of each city and AM/FM/TV/LPFM/LPTV page is not ideal, it's the best solution I can come up with, with the limited tools at my disposal.  I don't have many phones to check my site out with, so if you find your device rendering ABMP funny, let me know and I'll see if I can fix it.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

WEKI/WTKI multicast picks up another translator

The Huntsville-Decatur dual-AM multicast talkers WTKI and WEKI have added another translator in the Decatur area, reports The Birmingham News. WTKI already had a translator on 92.9 MHz in the Huntsville area.  This adds another 250 watt setup on 94.7 MHz, licensed to Moores Mill.

W222BK Pelham on air, rebroadcasting WZNN.

W222BK (92.3 MHz, 10 watts, from a site in the northern part of Pelham in Shelby County) is on air and not relaying the listed WAY-FM signal that had been previously listed on this site.  Instead, it is relaying Cox's WZNN, "97.3 the Zone" with its sports format.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Two new west Alabama FMs get licenses to cover

There are two new west Alabama FMs that recently received their licenses to cover for fulltime broadcasting.  WMWI, Demopolis (88.7 MHz, 100 watts) and WKUA, Moundville (88.5, 5.5 kWV/1 watt H).  WMWI is owned and operated by Miles College and features a variety format targeting African-American tastes; it will also be used as a recruiting tool for the Birmignham-based college and also features an online component to allow people in the Birmingham area to listen.  WKUA is owned by Take Bake The Airwaves Ministries (it's unclear who has taken our airwaves away, ha ha) and features the Revocation Radio Christian rock/urban format that's also found on WKRE in Argo.  The WKUA station's directional antenna helps it cover much of the Tuscaloosa metro area.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Another translator move in Birmingham

W210CA at 89.9 MHz is currently licensed to Birmingham, and has transmitter coordinates in Fultondale, with a 10 watt authorization to relay WAY-FM.  It just received a construction permit to move to Red Mountain at 180 watts.

Normally a translator move like this wouldn't be worth mentioning, but in this case the parent station has been changed to WBHJ, 95-7 Jamz.  Since a commercial station can't use a translator, the only thing I can figure is it's either A) a placeholder for another non-comm feed or B) they've got a plan to move it to the commercial band.  The only commercial band frequency I figure they could move it to (after filing a second and third request to change facilities) would be 100.1 MHz.

This is the latest translator move with "possibilities" in the Birmingham market, after W294BL, which is currently on the air but hard to catch on its first-adjacent perch next to WBPT.  It's currently relaying WBPT, which like WBHJ is a Cox property.

Could Cox be following in Clear Channel's footsteps and utilizing loopholes to get new FM signals on the air?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

New construction permit issued for translator in Valley Head

A rare brand new CP has been issued for a translator in Valley Head, Alabama, near Mentone.  The station, W230BV, will broadcast with 55 watts from a site on the valley floor on 93.9 MHz.  The parent station will be Moody Bible Network's WMBV in Chattanooga.