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Shortwave is dramatic, exciting and vital

A Shortwave Coalition is most certainly needed

You are on-target with your call for a coalition that can develop a voice loud enough to be heard over the technobabble that says the world is swiftly moving to computers for all communication.

This, of course, is not true. One doesn't have to look far beyond his or her office or home window to see that far less than any kind of majority of the world's population is now interconnected via the Internet, or soon will be. To abandon those who not soon will be "wired," nor will have the money to spend on such a luxury is narrow sighted.

To assume that an Internet will always be connected and that satellites will always be working is to put your reliance on a very vulnerable form of communications. And, without all the wires and the satellites, where will this new wave in communications be? And, when? Just at a time when the communicators are seeking to reach as many of their target audience as possible? It is folly to take this action at this time.

On the surface, one can make a case for the BBC, RCI and others who seek to turn off the expenses involved in international broadcasting. Times are changing. Budgets are being micro-managed. And, perhaps a very big factor, special interests are certainly pushing to make what is working obsolete in order to sell new technologies and create new monopolies. A coalition is an idea whose time is right.

A coalition of knowledgeable people, energetic people, individuals and entities with resources and contacts, is most certainly needed if international broadcasting via short wave radio is to live and thrive into this new century.

The person who listens to short wave in Kenya, Kazakhstan, Kentucky or Kent, may be striving to hear beyond propaganda, to form his or her own opinions on what is going on in the world, who is telling the truth and who is not. These are the people who make up the majority of the world's population. They will not soon, perhaps never, be able to afford computers, even telephones. They should be served with a form of communication they can afford and understand.

Someone must reach the inner sanctums and decision makers on their behalf. It appears obvious that is not being done now, for reasons and agendas one can only wonder about.

Vern Modeland, Arkansas, USA

Shortwave is a vital link in global  communications

I could go on for hours about my enjoyment of shortwave broadcasts.

For one thing, shortwave listening does not keep me living in the past. It does the opposite, through shortwave I have access to what is happening now, and I have an exciting means of getting that news.

Shortwave listening is for me a vital link in the vast "network" of global communications that we enjoy today. I can tune the shortwave bands at will, and when I've heard a program of interest I can run over to the computer to instantly comment on that program to the broadcaster!

I don't view the broadcast media as competing technologies (although unfortunately they are given that "spin" by whichever medium seems to feel a need to show its superiority); I see them as complementary, and the example I just gave should illustrate that.

Shortwave is as dramatic, as exciting and I argue as vital as it ever was. Although viewed by many as a "hobby", it is so much more than that. Shortwave both informs and entertains, two equally important qualities that only increase their allure for me over the years.

Without shortwave broadcasting something immeasurably intriguing would be lost. I love computers, but it's unthinkable to imagine that internet broadcasting would be portrayed as a replacement for it.

Chuck Ermatinger St. Louis, Missouri, USA

Shortwave will NEVER be a dinosaur

I have 6-8 different shortwave receivers (Not bragging) but I just enjoy listening to what's going on in the rest of the world. The USA is a fine place but the TV is lousy except for channels such as History, Discovery etc.

I watch very little TV so I really enjoy tuning in a station around the world and listening. I still have that right to decide what I watch/listen to, rather than what the papers or networks want to me to listen to or read.

Shortwave will NEVER be a dinosaur. The internet servers a purpose but can not and will not replace "Shortwave Listening"!!

Ken Foshee, Alabama, USA

Yes it's time for an international Shortwave Coalition


I do INDEED think it's time for an international sw coalition.

Snap decisions are being made by power brokers who do not have the facts, or are ignoring them. A reliable medium is being cast aside without a hearing. The few are trying to herd the many into a particular direction, without taking into account all of the ramifications.

Even the oft quoted complaint about how shortwave is so "scratchy" etc. seems to be only uttered by station executives (like those at BBC and VOA), not by the listeners themselves.

So, is time for something like this. Sadly, it may be past time. Events move at lightening speed, and we see for instance that R. Austria has already lost it's funding after 2001.

Tim Manwell, Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA

What do you think? Is shortwave a dinosaur?
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Editorial: Isn't it time for an International Shortwave Coalition?