Illegal radio stations mushrooming despite clampdown in Taiwan
By Elizabeth Hsu
Central News Agency
The National Communication Commission (NCC) has recently stepped up clampdown on unlicensed radio stations around the country, but admitted this would only serve to temporarily reduce the number of such stations.
Chen Chuan-ping, director of the NCC Northern Regional Regulatory Department, said Saturday that the crackdown has resulted in halving the number of illegal radio stations in Taiwan to around 50. However, based on past experience, the number would soon bounce back to 100, he added.
Unlicensed radio has existed in Taiwan for years, with many stations being accused of disrupting frequency assignment, airing exaggerated commercials for so-called medical cures and making false claims about a cure-all drug.
According to NCC statistics, the government has cracked down on 330 underground radio stations over the past two years. However, some of them have set up again in other locations, therefore, the number has remained at around 100, NCC officials said.
Chen said it takes two to three weeks to prepare for a raid on an underground radio station. First, the transmitter must be located, then it must be determined what the station is broadcasting, before a search warrant can be sought, he explained. The whole process takes even longer if the station is in a remote area, he said.
Under the Telecommunications Act, persons found operating unlicensed radio stations that cause interference may be subject to fines of up to NT$600,000 (US$18,400) and imprisonment of up to two years.
In a raid, the equipment and devices used by an underground station are also confiscated, Chen said. He added that increased raids on such stations are only part of efforts to root out underground radio broadcasting, and that the measures include assisting illegal operators to become legal.
In order to address this problem, the NCC has decided to open a new bandwidth to accommodate more than 40 private stations.
19 ottobre 2008
Taiwan invasa dai pirati della radio
Taiwan brulicherebbe di stazioni radio pirata che l'authority locale, la National Communication Commission, cerca di combattere a colpa di squestri, multe salate (oltre 18 mila dollari) e prigione fino a due anni. Finora i risultati non sono granché, negli ultimi due anni sono state effettuate 330 operazioni di sequestro ma i pirati continuano a riapparire on air. Oggi sono più di cento. Curiosamente, spiega il Taiwan News Online la programmazione è ricca di improbabili annunci pubblicitai che decantano le straordinarie virtù di strani "farmaci", un po' come avveniva ottantanni fa alle prime stazioni americane, che davano ampio spazio ai Dulcamara più buffi. Ritornando a Taiwan, il giornale precisa che l'authority ha già deciso di assegnare nuove frequenze per almeno una quarantina di emittenti commerciali.