English-Language Stations Dealing with Mexican Elections - Page 3
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Thread: English-Language Stations Dealing with Mexican Elections

  1. #21
    We sometimes complain about the lax compliance of FCC laws in the U.S. But with a Mexican legal ID from Fybush that goes by in about 1 1/2 seconds, that is clearly not following the rules. Or simply saying Z 90 for the 90.3 XHITZ legal ID.

    Even though Raymie says the national anthem should be played at midnight and 6 a.m., most English language stations are doing it at midnight and 5 a.m. I assume that 91X is doing it on the air but covering it with commercials on the internet stream.

    Do TV stations have to also do it? I know XETV 6 used to run both the Mexican and American national anthems at 5 a.m., not sure if they did it at midnight.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zMP3HUk_I8&t=12s

    And who knew Mexico requires someone to always be at the transmitter? I guess that keeps some engineers employed. I wonder if one person can take care of all the stations broadcasting from a site or do you need one person per station?

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg. View Post
    Do TV stations have to also do it? I know XETV 6 used to run both the Mexican and American national anthems at 5 a.m., not sure if they did it at midnight.
    After switching to HD, XETV stopped running the Star Spangled Banner and started using a slightly more uptempo version of the Hymno Nacional at midnight and 5 AM.

    But with a Mexican legal ID from Fybush that goes by in about 1 1/2 seconds, that is clearly not following the rules. Or simply saying Z 90 for the 90.3 XHITZ legal ID.
    Honestly, I think pushing the limits of the rules on Z90 today is about as best of a tribute that you could pay to the late Victor Diaz.

    If you want to hear how everyone else has been doing IDs in the market, Scott Fybush's tophour.com has airchecks.
    Last edited by johndavis; 07-12-2018 at 07:15 AM.
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  3. #23
    I checked You Tube and sure enough, someone recorded El Himno Nacional getting played on 91X, XETRA-FM, in 2016. Go to around the 5:05 point on this recording, as an announcer explains that 91X is a radio station operated in the U.S. but has its transmitter and license in Mexico. We will resume normal programming in just a few minutes.

    Then a children's vocal version of El Himno Nacional plays. This segment doesn't get heard on the audio streaming, just some commercials.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFOYzcW2psU

    As soon as the children stop singing, or maybe even a split second before, the announcer comes on to tell us "We now resume regular programming." So the anthem took around 1 minute and 35 seconds.
    Last edited by Gregg.; 07-17-2018 at 08:34 PM.

  4. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by johndavis View Post
    Honestly, I think pushing the limits of the rules on Z90 today is about as best of a tribute that you could pay to the late Victor Diaz. If you want to hear how everyone else has been doing IDs in the market, Scott Fybush's tophour.com has airchecks.
    They don't need to. The LFTR (passed in 2014) doesn't include any requirement to ID, whereas its predecessor, the LFRTV, did. They're not breaking any rules whatsoever.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gregg. View Post
    We sometimes complain about the lax compliance of FCC laws in the U.S. But with a Mexican legal ID from Fybush that goes by in about 1 1/2 seconds, that is clearly not following the rules. Or simply saying Z 90 for the 90.3 XHITZ legal ID.

    Even though Raymie says the national anthem should be played at midnight and 6 a.m., most English language stations are doing it at midnight and 5 a.m. I assume that 91X is doing it on the air but covering it with commercials on the internet stream.

    Do TV stations have to also do it? I know XETV 6 used to run both the Mexican and American national anthems at 5 a.m., not sure if they did it at midnight.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zMP3HUk_I8&t=12s

    And who knew Mexico requires someone to always be at the transmitter? I guess that keeps some engineers employed. I wonder if one person can take care of all the stations broadcasting from a site or do you need one person per station?
    Yes, TV stations do it too! This is the old Himno tape from the RTC: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3Bxnic7B4E

    As to the timing, I imagine 5am is a result of the station groups wanting to not bother morning listeners, of which there are more at 6am in a US market than in Mexico.

    And yes, Mexican facilities are still staffed. There is a full tour of the XHRM-XHITZ site here (it's in English, don't worry). They discuss the staffing requirement.

    When the new public broadcaster OPMA (now known as the SPR) built its transmitter network, it included living quarters for the duty engineers. You can see a bit of the kitchen and dining room at the Monterrey transmitter here: https://youtu.be/EDeDkB8LJYQ?t=172

    Quote Originally Posted by powers View Post
    I worked on-air weekends and fill-in at Z-90 for a few months in 1989 when they were a Rock 40 format ("California's Rock and Roll Hits"). We worked out of the Mexico studio on the hill and parked under the FM tower for 3 stations. Laws may have been a bit different back then. We had a cool Legal ID that only ran at the bottom of the hour. The opening part of the jingle just said "Noventa Punto Tres, Baja California, Mexico" and then the Z-90 jingle that kind of sounded like alternative rock. I knew we weren't running the legal call letters at all - I think today they still only say "Zeta Noventa." Our top of the hour was a big "From high atop Mount Success, 100,000 watts of music power" into a power jingle - no legal ID whatsoever. On Sunday nights either leading into "La Hora Nacional" or coming out of it (I can't remember now) we had a different ID that said "Broadcasting from high atop Mount Success, we're California's X-H-T-Z" then a power jingle that faded out.

    We did the microphone up to the portable AM radio for the National Hour - I was told that we did it that way on purpose so people would think we were off the air for maintenance and that some weak Spanish signal was coming through on the same frequency. We only played the Mexican National Anthem ONCE per day, around 4:30 AM (or 4) preceded by a 30-second Spanish disclaimer that correctly identified the call letters as XHITZ, our location and power - probably the ONLY time we were doing it the legally correct way.

    Although I don't remember any silly-style election ads we had to play, we were required to play the Mexican Tourism Board ads a couple of times an hour - ours differed slightly from the ones that 91X were doing. They would focus on a visual description of some Mexican resort area and a tagline - "Mexico - why go anywhere else?" or maybe it was "Adventure Awaits You in Mexico" or a combination of the two.

    A couple of times a year we got word when the President was going to do his address and we had to basically switch over to it for anywhere from 3 to 7 hours those days, meaning the jock just had to sit there and wait until it was over.
    The Califórmula tower! It was home to XHITZ, XHKY (now XHOCL) and XHLTN. XHITZ has since moved (see above), XHOCL I believe is still up there (surprised it hasn't moved to the MVS Radio facilities), and XHLTN is there for sure. There's something else there now, too — the Imagen Televisión transmitter for Tijuana, with callsign XHCTTI-TDT.

    The LFRTV said legal IDs should be every 30 minutes and include the callsign and the locality from which the station broadcasts:

    Artículo 76.- En toda transmisión de prueba o ajuste que se lleve a cabo por las estaciones, así como durante el desarrollo de los programas y en lapsos no mayores de 30 minutos, deberán expresarse en español las letras nominales que caracterizan a la estación, seguidas del nombre de la localidad en que esté instalada.
    So "XHITZ-FM, Tijuana, Baja California" is fine, but I know just saying "Baja California" would not be, as that's not a locality. Most Mexicans still do ID at 30-minute intervals. I know XEPE does not (it doesn't _have_ to, see above), probably because of the way ESPN Radio's clock hour is designed.

    PSAs can promote Mexican goods and services (and they still do have ones to encourage internal tourism), but only generically (think a "buy Mexican" campaign). You didn't have to deal with elections because the electoral advertising regime back then looked nothing like this (though Baja California did have gubernatorial elections in '89), not that it really mattered.

    Also, are Americans that averse to five-letter callsigns? Especially given that XHTZ-FM is also a station (it's in Xalapa, Veracruz, on the opposite side of the country), I've always hated the way SD media mangles the callsigns to get them to four letters.
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  5. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Raymie View Post
    They don't need to. The LFTR (passed in 2014) doesn't include any requirement to ID, whereas its predecessor, the LFRTV, did. They're not breaking any rules whatsoever.



    Yes, TV stations do it too! This is the old Himno tape from the RTC: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3Bxnic7B4E

    As to the timing, I imagine 5am is a result of the station groups wanting to not bother morning listeners, of which there are more at 6am in a US market than in Mexico.

    And yes, Mexican facilities are still staffed. There is a full tour of the XHRM-XHITZ site here (it's in English, don't worry). They discuss the staffing requirement.

    When the new public broadcaster OPMA (now known as the SPR) built its transmitter network, it included living quarters for the duty engineers. You can see a bit of the kitchen and dining room at the Monterrey transmitter here: https://youtu.be/EDeDkB8LJYQ?t=172



    The Califórmula tower! It was home to XHITZ, XHKY (now XHOCL) and XHLTN. XHITZ has since moved (see above), XHOCL I believe is still up there (surprised it hasn't moved to the MVS Radio facilities), and XHLTN is there for sure. There's something else there now, too — the Imagen Televisión transmitter for Tijuana, with callsign XHCTTI-TDT.

    The LFRTV said legal IDs should be every 30 minutes and include the callsign and the locality from which the station broadcasts:



    So "XHITZ-FM, Tijuana, Baja California" is fine, but I know just saying "Baja California" would not be, as that's not a locality. Most Mexicans still do ID at 30-minute intervals. I know XEPE does not (it doesn't _have_ to, see above), probably because of the way ESPN Radio's clock hour is designed.

    PSAs can promote Mexican goods and services (and they still do have ones to encourage internal tourism), but only generically (think a "buy Mexican" campaign). You didn't have to deal with elections because the electoral advertising regime back then looked nothing like this (though Baja California did have gubernatorial elections in '89), not that it really mattered.

    Also, are Americans that averse to five-letter callsigns? Especially given that XHTZ-FM is also a station (it's in Xalapa, Veracruz, on the opposite side of the country), I've always hated the way SD media mangles the callsigns to get them to four letters.
    Why was Z90 transmitter moved over to the XHRM tower, and are they still using 93,000watts highly directional pattern.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raymie View Post
    Also, are Americans that averse to five-letter callsigns? Especially given that XHTZ-FM is also a station (it's in Xalapa, Veracruz, on the opposite side of the country), I've always hated the way SD media mangles the callsigns to get them to four letters.
    There is a rather obscure reason for the 4-letter obsession... the Arbitron software, through the early part of this century, was written with fixed length fields and stored as a string. So call letter might have been located from characters 32 to 35 in the long string of station data, and would be accessed with a substring function as, for example, substr(32,4) meaning the calls would be the 4 characters starting at position 32.

    So they could not expand the calls to accommodate the longer calls. They had a different place in the string to indicate AM, FM and later, streams.

    This fixed character structure came from the old CDC mainframes originally used for the survey. It was not until the revolt of the Spanish language broadcasters who wanted language enumeration that Arbitron rewrote the software to accommodate new fields and variable length data structures. They had been unable to distinguish between Spanish and English dominant Hispanics until then because they had not fields to store the data!

    By the time Nielsen did its several year project in Mexico City, they had fixed this and the 5 and 6 letter calls were listed correctly.
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  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raymie View Post

    As to the timing, I imagine 5am is a result of the station groups wanting to not bother morning listeners, of which there are more at 6am in a US market than in Mexico.
    That's a great point you bring up. In Latin America (except PR) morning drive and PM drive are not peak listening times. That is because so few people have cars that most use public transport, and don't listen to the radio (or listen to the driver's radio, but not with awareness to register in ratings).

    Similarly, a much lower percent of radio listening takes place in New York City in drive times, as, again, public transportation is used.
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