Feds shut down Pirate radio station operated by 13 year old

pirate_radioIndustry Canada this week shut down a pirate radio station that had been operating in Ottawa for most of October and November.

The station, which operated on the FM dial at the 91.9 frequency, was operated by a thirteen year old teenager whose father was once a mayoral candidate in Ottawa.

Listeners in Ottawa tell Digital Home the radio station was broadcasting primarily on weekends on a number of frequencies including 91.9, 92.7, 99.9 and 106.5 FM. Programming consisted primarily of contemporary hit radio songs along with teenage banter.

In addition to broadcasting illegally, the young teen also set up a website where users could request songs and a twitter account where he would notify users which frequency he would be broadcasting on.

The teen told Digital Home yesterday that his transmitter was shut down Monday after he was visited by three members of Industry Canada.

It’s unclear at this time whether the teen acted alone; however, unconfirmed reports suggest the transmitter was atop a local business.

Calls to Industry Canada by Digital Home for additional information have not been returned.

Comment below or discuss in Digital Home’s Canadian Radio forum.


10 Responses to “Feds shut down Pirate radio station operated by 13 year old”
  1. RuralOTown says:

    The station is now back on the air as of 2:30pm today. I am out of town for a few days but I was informed by a rep from a licensed radio station in Ottawa. The visit from Industry Canada did not scare him.

  2. Phillip says:

    At least he’s not playing the same AC/DC and U2 songs every 5 minutes. Ottawa radio sucks. Kudos to you kid for taking it upon yourself to show these stations how it should be done.

  3. Thomas says:

    And if a few hundred kids decide they want to run their own radio stations, you effectively destroy the radio spectrum.

    Throw the kids old man in jail and teach the kid how to do things properly.

  4. Phillip says:

    By no means do I condone what the kid is doing. I mean, not only is he now on the hook when Industry Canada comes back, what about the Copyright Infringement? I willing to bet he’s just streaming all the illegal MP3s he’s downloaded off Limewire. If not, even if he legitimately owns a personal copy of every track he’s playing, I doubt he owns a license to broadcast them over the airwaves. They went soft on him with the simple cease and desist. Now that Pop and Son have all but thumbed their nose and resumed, IC is probably getting ready to swing the big hammer.

    • larry says:

      Nice knee-jerk reaction, dude. The kid dropped $25k from his inheritance on the transmitter, odds are he can afford a few CDs.

      He also said he focuses on the music he likes… music that formed memory patterns in his brain and become part of our common culture. That’s why copyright is so ugly and insidious, no company can own our memories and culture, but they try! Besides, neither IC nor any other government official can touch him under copyright unless they are enforcing a court order, because it’s not a criminal offense.

      CHUM dropped the dime on him because they don’t like the competition. The kid said he didn’t know about the license issue and is willing to apply. If he’s not interfering with a licensed station, I say let him broadcast while his license application is being processed.

      • liquidthunder says:

        Um, actually, if he is broadcasting songs over the air without paying the appropriate bodies royalties for using their music, then he’s facing a potentially very costly lawsuit. So yes, they can touch him under copyright, as he would be in violation of the Copyright Act. 😛

      • liquidthunder says:

        As for your claim that CHUM doesn’t like the competition, that is 100% patently false. That is just some baloney you cooked up to try to justify the illegal activities that the kid is committing. The bottom line is that the kid continues to broadcast now despite being made aware of the license issue, and it has been shown he is interfering with the signals of other LICENSED broadcasters. To me, he is showing total and utter disregard for the rule of law, and quite frankly, he deserves to have the book thrown at him.

        • Ry says:

          Really? Throw the book at a 13 year old? How far do you think they will get? Juvinille court will laugh at them. I can’t believe some of the posts here. I am sure that everyone here that disagrees with this kids actions has never in their life broken the law. No tresspassing, no loitering, nothing… right?

          Give your heads a shake. Maybe this will be a sign to IC that things need to change and they should allow more broadcasters, especially the younger generation. We obviously cater to the largest population in this city (baby boomers), so why is this so troubling for people.

          If he is actually interfering with other braodcasters, fine. Shut him down, or at least tell him not to use a particular frequency.

          There was a report on this kid on CBC:Ottawa a few days a go. I was watching with my wife and we both agreed that it was good that someone was taking the responsability to play what they want. Also, in the interview the kid said that he had found out about licencing and has filled out the proper paperwork, but was waiting for the GOV to get off their a$$es to do something with it…

          I think people get too uptight about “breaking the law”. I am sure everyone has broken at least one law in their lifetime, so relax and let the young entrepreneur do his thing.

  5. Chrisradioanimal says:

    What a great mix of music. I hope if he gets raided he will at least continue as an internet radio station. Long live free radio!!!