The shine goes off Hawkesbury Gold: aspirant broadcaster tarnished by infighting | radioinfo

The shine goes off Hawkesbury Gold: aspirant broadcaster tarnished by infighting

Tuesday 28 November, 2017

Aspirant Hawkesbury region broadcast group Hawkesbury Gold has been plagued by infighting this week, which spilt over into the public arena via its web and social media platforms today.

Early this morning a message was put on the Hawkesbury Gold website announcing that a range of shows had pulled the plug on their dealings with the aspirant group.

Quinny and Webby’s breakfast show will no longer be heard on the station. Nor will Graham Webb’s Golden Years program, Alan Quinn’s Saturday Night Gold show, and at least two other shows, Ron’s Oldies and Forgotten 45s.

A message in the post said: “We can no longer work with this [management] committee due to absolute incompetence.”

Soon after that message was posted the aspirant station’s facebook page was taken down

Later this afternoon, the station's website was disabled, caused by what seems like the security certificate for the site being removed, resulting in browsers refusing to connect to the site. No audio stream was available either.

The station is due back on air tomorrow at noon under a time sharing arrangement with the other aspirant group, former licence holder Hawkesbury Radio. It is not known if Hawkesbury Gold will be able to take up its broadcast time from tomorrow until Saturday.

radioinfo sought comment from the Hawkesbury Gold committee, but at the time of publication we had received no response.

Regulator ACMA was not able to comment on the situation at the time of writing.

One of the important elements of test broadcast TCBL licences is for aspirant groups to show their capacity to broadcast and also to manage their association in an efficient manner. It is not know whether this current dispute will affect ACMA’s view on the aspirant broadcast group.

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28 November 2017 - 10:38pm
Let's just hope the ACMA takes notice of this and revokes the licence. This station has had lots of dead air plus they pre-record everything. Not community radio as far as I'm concerned.
29 November 2017 - 11:56am
The truth of the matter is that ONE disgruntled person (ex-Committee member) has resigned and left Hawkesbury Gold. He had attempted to bring on board a range of his friends as presenters from outside the Hawkesbury region, some from interstate.
That person was also the subject of a caution issued to Hawkesbury Gold by ACMA last week, due to his inappropriate on-air comments about another local community radio broadcaster. The offender was not prepared to comply with a number of our policies, and chose to leave the station of his own free will.

The ex-Committee member had registered the Station’s Facebook page and website in his personal name, not the Association, hence the disruption to these services. They are currently being restored.

Hawkesbury Gold has faced a significant challenge getting started due to the fact we were given only short notice between receiving a Temporary Community Broadcast Licence and the start date for transmission. However we succeeded in getting from zero (with no equipment or presenters) to broadcasting in just 5 weeks. A further set back was experienced when our transmitter suffered a lightning strike during local storms 10 days ago, resulting in us having to use a borrowed transmitter. New transmission equipment has since been purchased and installed, and is now operational.

Hawkesbury Gold received it’s TCBL after ACMA refused to renew the broadcast licence that has been held by Hawkesbury Radio 2VTR for the past 39 years. It was one of only two licences not renewed by ACMA this year. While both stations now share the same frequency on TCBLs, Hawkesbury Gold’s policy is to refrain from issuing acrimonious comments.

Hawkesbury Gold has made a significant financial investment in an effort to improve the community radio broadcast services and has had a very warm response from its local community, as evidenced by receiving over 100 expressions of interest in membership in the few short weeks of our existence. Presenters are being trained and will be added to the station in the coming months. We intend to become a benchmark for community radio in our region, and resent the scaremongering that appears to be coming from a very narrow section of people with vested interests.

John Bryant Terry Malecki
Secretary Vice President
Hawkesbury Gold
Hawkesbury Valley Community Radio Association, Inc

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