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Pirate Radio in Uruguay

Radio FEUU

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The following item originated with Horacio A. Nigro, in Montevideo, Uruguay and appeared in Relampago DX Number 79. It is copyrighted 1996 by Takayuki Inoue Nozaki and is placed here with his permission.

PIRATE ACTIVITY 103.5 Radio FEUU, Montevideo; During the first quarter of December 1995, Radio FEUU, operated by the Federacion de Estudiantes Universitarios del Uruguay, was transmitting on the frequency of 103.5MHz FM with an output of 1W. The station began the operations on December 4, 1995 from the Architecture Faculty and its antenna was installed atop the building roof. It was located a few blocks from the DNC administrative offices in the Montevidean "Parque Rod" quarter. At first, this tiny outlet was tunable around the seven blocks and had a minimum of audience. When the station was equipped with another 25W transmitter, they gained a wide coverage and thus more publicity. It was bold letter news on several daily papers and periodicals. This social group of pressure has found its way to get positive results from the government and parliament on the budget aspects of university education.

Radio FEUU declared itself the rebel radio - not pirate nor clandestine station - of students fighting for dignified budget of university education. The station has converted the contact point of teachers as well as students. Initially all staff officiated as announcers, news-reporters, technicians, at the rebel station to broadcast 12 hour programs. During its operation, the station has provided music, recitation of poems, debate forums on the air, mainly about the educational budget, and the importance of Free Radio Stations as an alternative to formal broadcasting station (the same phenomena as in Buenos Aires, Argentina). They also used cellular telephones and gave its number on the air, as king for audience participation (HAN personally could participate in one occassion). Afterwards, reportedly there were about 100 persons working at Radio FEUU and the transmission was scheduled at 0900-0200 local time (i.e. 1200-0500 U TC). Moreover, they got helpful assistance from other long time based free radio activities (including "El Puente" on 103.5MHz, in Barrio "La Teja", Montevideo. It used the former transmitter of Radio FEUU.)

While having been on the air, Radio FEUU changed its studio from the Architecture Faculty to a lady's lavatory of the Chemical Faculty, then into the "Ciencias Sociales" (Social Science) building, in order to continue its transmission without interruption and to evade the DNC inspection. Finally on December 20, 1995, they decided to pause the broadcasting operation. The summer period of vacation in Uruguay has started and will end in March, so the station may resume the transmission, trying to press the government for the need of an alternative voice to social movements (syndicates, student's organizations, etc) in the radio spectrum, thus avoiding intermediates on its diffusion needs.

The confiscation of equipments at another radio station "El Puente" by DNC authorities and the ending of the parliamentary discussions with no positive results to students interests were decisive factors to Radio FEUU auto-shut down. But there will be renewed action in the future....

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This website is maintained by Don Moore,
Association of North American Radio Clubs
DXer of the Year for 1995
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