Monday, December 3, 2007

Rochester Station Says IBOC Interferes

In what is thought to be the first AM nighttime IBOC interference complaint filed with the FCC, Radio Livingston Ltd., licensee of WYSL in Upstate New York, claims that adjacent-channel IBOC noise from WBZ in Boston is interfering with its daytime and nighttime signals.

Observers are interested in the outcome of this case, which presents a face-off between a small standalone AM owner vocally opposed to IBOC on one side of the complaint, against a group-owned, big-market station owned by IBOC pioneer CBS Radio on the other.

Central to this case is whether the alleged interference is within WYSL’s protected contour; the station says it is. CBS-owned WBZ isn’t commenting publicly on the case.

The FCC said in its IBOC authorization text this year that interference cases would be handled case-by-case. A commission spokesman told RW then that mitigation in such cases could include the agency telling a station to lower the power level in one or both of digital sidebands, or even turning off the nighttime AM IBOC altogether.