Thursday evening, July 27, 2017 a polite man acting on behalf of Industry Canada and the CRTC (the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission) arrived at our station. He gave us his business card and a copy of the Radiocommunication Act, with the sections we’d violated highlighted in bureaucratic yellow. He informed us we’d been served with an in-person and very immediate Cease & Desist, and at 9:45 pm Radio Konton left the FM band.
Radio Konton began operating at 90.5 FM in October of 2016. The first song played by Radio Konton 90.5 FM was “Road of Resistance” by the Japanese phenomenon BABYMETAL. A week or so previous to being unplugged our disc jockey The Disastronaut had celebrated his 100th episode, and in a melancholy turn of events, DJ Deadzone would have celebrated her 100th episode that night.
In a fittingly chaotic, if not surreal twist, the last song playing when we were forced off the air was William Shatner’s cover of “Common People” by Pulp.
As I’ve stated elsewhere, I’m put in mind of something said aboard the Ross Revenge as Radio Caroline was pulled from the airwaves by Dutch authorities in 1989:
“Do you know what it’s like to be free…? The only trouble about freedom is that it scares a lot of people, particularly the people who themselves are not free. And when they see freedom, the only thing they can think of to do is to stamp it out.”
Radio Konton refuses to be stamped out. We will continue to run 24 hours a day, seven days a week online, perhaps even adding one or more streams. And we will continue to run live feeds on our YouTube channel.
And while it was more or less inevitable that They would be coming for us, and while acknowledging we were obviously violating these regulations, let’s consider what your tax dollars have actually accomplished.
Radio Konton had just added two new disc jockeys to our house of selectors, all of whom provided content not normally available on the airwaves in Northern Ontario. We were (and are) attempting to produce a highly unique podcast which would’ve also aired on FM. This in addition to DJ Good Old Music running Konton across the pond in the UK. We were beginning (and hopefully will continue) to invigorate the North Bay arts and music scene. We were attempting to alleviate the doldrums…slightly. We questioned social mores and tested boundaries. And we’d hoped to give those artists who’ve gone unheard a voice. I may even hazard to say we were a positive force.
Clearly, all of this needed to stop.
And yeah, as stated above we broke the rules. And yeah, as stated above it was inevitable. But it seems like a waste of tax dollars to bust us.
Pay attention to the FM band, kids. You never know what you might hear.
Kid Mania (Baron, PoSL)
Radio Konton 90.5 FM