Thursday, 3 November 2011

Why there are a lot of free radios in the Netherlands?

I asked OP Mister X: "Why there are so a lot of  free radios in the Netherlands?". Here is his answer to my question. I decided to share with answer to everyone who is interested in free radio.

"That is a very interesting question and I will try to explain that to you.
The estimation is that there are 800 pirate stations active!
There are a lot of pirate radio stations in the Netherlands but the most are only active on 3 m FM and the government did start a special campaign to get rid of them.
The result is that there are hardly one man stations left on FM and there are now groups of pirates together for one station. These stations use high power transmitters like 10 - 15 KiloWatts. The penalties for these station are also very high and are ˆ 2500 for the first raid. (That's why the groups are 10 - 20 persons)
There is a economic reason for the government want the FM pirates of air. Official stations paid a lot of money to get a permit for frequencies.

Another group of pirates are on MW and SW.
This is the oldest group. Pirate radio started on MW in the 60 and 70's at the same time as the offshore radio stations like Veronica, Noordzee, Caroline.
There are still a lot of those old pirates, who wants to make radio with old Dutch and German songs and a lot of polkas.
This is music that is not played on the official radio stations.
I think we are very free people and we do not like government regulations and it is big fun to play your own records and get reactions on that.
You never know who is listening and where the signal is received. 
We see lately that some FM pirates move to MW because of the high penalties on FM. But the penalties on MW and SW are the same as on FM!
Because MW and SW is not of interest anymore by the Government are little stations now raided on MW or SW or there must be serious complains about interference on other frequencies like rescue or ships.
I like the spirit of AM pirates very much. The most of them are builders, they build there own equipment and they want to help others.
building is still difficult for me but I will try this winter to build my own SW transmitter with parts that are laying around here.

The most pirates are in the North and East part of the Netherlands. In the areas where the people speak a Dutch dialect. These are farmers people and they are very different from the Western city people like in Amsterdam.

Maybe a nice site with a lot of photos of Dutch FM and some MW pirates is this site on internet:
Search for example for Relmus MW, and you see their equipment. Also interesting is the button witch is called "oude zenders" (a lot of photos of old transmitters).

OK, that's for now".

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