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Just blame the sun (and other corrections)

September 13th, 2006 at 11:52am

A few days ago I made a comment about the aging Optus B1 satellite needing to be replaced, and whilst this is still true (Optus D1 is due up later this month), it is not the cause of the Southern Cross Syndication programming faults also mentioned in that article. Instead, it would appear that Southern Cross moved their programming services over to Optus B3 a few months ago.

The constant losses of signal experienced by network stations last week were in fact caused by regular solar activity, which unfortunately does disrupt the signal.

However, I believe that Optus B3 is not transmitting its signal as strongly as Optus B1 did. The reason I believe this is that minor sudden rain showers seem to be able to cause much more disruption than they used to. On the weekend, both 2CC and 2CA lost their network feeds temporarily when a brief rain shower occured at the receiver. Previously, such an intensity of rain would not have been enough to cause that disruption.

In other corrections, I also mentioned on the weekend that 2UE are running pre-recorded news, and managed to play a bulletin which was 24 hours old at 2am on Sunday. This is true, but it was not quite as recent a development as I thought. In the article I mentioned that 2UE followed 3AW’s lead to pre-recorded overnight news, it is now apparent that this is wrong, and 3AW actually followed 2UE’s lead (thank you to the people who alerted me to this error). Regardless of that, it is still a terrible way to run a supposed news leader…and I really don’t know what will happen if and when major international news breaks after midnight.

Once again, the Southern Cross Syndication website is well behind actual events…months on from 2UE’s decision they are still advertising the 2UE NSW news feed as “Live every hour around-the-clock plus half hourly in breakfast”. (Source)

I can only hope that they aren’t trying to use a strange definition of “live”.


Entry Filed under: TV/Radio/Media

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  • 1. Chuck A. Spear  |  September 14th, 2006 at 3:29 am

    Another reason you should listen to any of the ABC stations for your news Samuel. At least there it is live – apart from the seven second delay.

  • 2. Samuel  |  September 14th, 2006 at 3:35 am

    True, but 2CC’s news is live for the vast majority of the day…and I can put up with the pre-recorded midnight-to-dawn news unless they play the wrong bulletin or major news breaks.

    It’s too much trouble to change the dial just for the news, and then turn back at just the right time…the stations aren’t quite in sync and I would either miss some of the programming I’m listening to, or some of the ABC news.

  • 3. Chuck A. Spear  |  September 14th, 2006 at 3:41 am

    News Radio?

  • 4. John B1_B5  |  September 14th, 2006 at 8:29 am

    I have just 3 words for my local ABC station (formerly 2CN ) –
    Boring ! Boring ! Boring !

  • 5. Samuel  |  September 14th, 2006 at 10:32 am

    Well Stuart Bocking demonstrated 2UE\’s new method of handling breaking news only a few minutes after I went offline this morning.

    The breaking news story was the school shooting in Canada, 2UE\’s method of covering it was to continue with the pre-recorded and oddly similar all night top of hour news bulletins (Hugh, please vary the bulletins a tad next time), and have the live programming (ie. Stuart\’s show) provide the updates and cross to Sky News for updates.

    Stuart got through it, but it was very disconcerting not having summaries or updates of the breaking story during the top-of-hour news.

  • 6. Samuel  |  September 14th, 2006 at 8:37 pm

    Well I don’t know what’s going on there…no matter how hard I try, those stray backslashes just won’t go away. I give up…they can stay as they are!

  • 7. Chuck A. Spear  |  September 15th, 2006 at 3:52 am

    If you think the ABC is boring I dare you to…no I can’t bring myself to say it.


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