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What country is Star Ray TV located in?:
This question is a means of preventing automated form submissions by spambots.
   

 Topic review - Now Magazine's take on Star Ray TV 
Author Message

Reply with quote Post Posted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:47 am
Re: Reply to Dennis
Jan Pachul wrote:
Hi Dennis,

The management running CHCH must be amateurs, people who have half a brain would realize you pick the frequency with the least amount of interference at your location. They also would know you don't pick a fight with the largest religious broadcaster in the USA. They have the ability sue the CRTC, Industry Canada, and CHCH to hell and back and then some. For a clue look up the history of religious broadcasting and the FCC.


I am very pleased to see that the entertainment industry is still your premier passion. Pay me a visit on Face Book.
Thomas McCarr

Reply with quote Post Posted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:56 pm
Reply to Dennis
Hi Dennis,

The management running CHCH must be amateurs, people who have half a brain would realize you pick the frequency with the least amount of interference at your location. They also would know you don't pick a fight with the largest religious broadcaster in the USA. They have the ability sue the CRTC, Industry Canada, and CHCH to hell and back and then some. For a clue look up the history of religious broadcasting and the FCC.

Reply with quote Post Posted: Sat Jun 23, 2012 1:21 am
Re: Now Magazine's take on Star Ray TV
Just to say that CHCH will indeed be switching to UHF 15RF this summer 2012

Reply with quote Post Posted: Fri Apr 20, 2012 11:00 am
Re: Now Magazine's take on Star Ray TV
This wanker Ben Spurrious is clueless. Freetoronto.tv has step by step instructions on how to pickup free over the air television in Toronto. If OTA broadcasting is so obsolete, how come freetoronto.tv is Alexa ranked at 2,262,666 and is Star Ray's number one site?

I looked up Star Ray's public tracker extremetracking.com The article by Spurrious has a pathetic 18 referrers to Star Ray TV's homepage. Freetoronto.tv has 4,268!!! Spurrious with Facebook and Twitter links to his story drives 18 people to srtv.on.ca?

Ben Spurrious has a good excuse for writing such a crappy story about Star Ray TV. He can't think because he is too busy dealing with the pain of a Mac computer stuck up his ass!

Reply with quote Post Posted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:18 am
Re: Now Magazine's take on Star Ray TV
I'd like to thank Ben Spurr and Now magazine for publishing a story on Star Ray TV. The pictures are awesome! I would like to comment and expand upon the points made in this article:
Quote:
Before Napster fought the record labels and MegaUpload took on the major studios, one Toronto man battled corporate giants to create an alternative to mainstream media. Jan Pachul is one of the original pirate broadcasters.

Yes we have been opposing corporate control of media for quite awhile.
Quote:
For 15 years, Pachul has run Star Ray TV, a rogue antenna-only TV station in the city’s east end.

The rogue organization is the CRTC not us. We've been live on the Internet since 2001 in addition to UHF broadcasting.
Quote:
In an age when anyone with a Youtube account can instantly deliver content to billions of people around the world, Star Ray TV is an anachronism – from an era recent enough to be fresh in many memories, but that the Internet has swiftly rendered obsolete.

How has the Internet rendered television obsolete? What nobody subscribes to Rogers Cable or Bell Expressview? What a laugh! Ben YOU are the anachronism not Star Ray TV. Content still matters, Youtube has millions of channels with nothing on! Here in Canada the major ISPs have made sure you don't replace regular TV with the Internet by imposing UBB billing. Try watching 10 hours of TV a day on the Internet and see what your bill is!
Quote:
From a storefront at Main St. and Gerrard Ave., Pachul labours 11 hours a day (with time allotted for an afternoon nap) to broadcast community programming on UHF channel 15. His signal is weak (it covers a spotty 20-km radius) and only reaches people with the knowledge and inclination to set their TV to receive UHF signals.

Yes I'm here every day including holidays. I do like afternoon naps. The signal is weak, low power is what it is. Picking up OTA broadcasts requires some effort but it is not as difficult as receiving satellite. With proper equipment Star Ray delivers a very watchable signal.
Quote:
There’s no doubt he’d get through to more people on the web, but he won’t abandon TV. Why? Because, he says, the internet sucks.

This statement is crazy. Star Ray TV has been live on the Internet since 2001. We know from experience that at any given time we have more viewers within 2 blocks of the station on UHF than worldwide on the Internet. OTA viewing hours are increasing, why would I abandon a growing business?

The Internet does suck in Canada. Some viewers have told me that they have Star Ray TV on a lot, 10 hours a day or more. If you watch Star Ray 10 hours a day on the Internet you would consume 1080 GB of bandwidth monthly. How much does your ISP want for 1080 GB per month? Keep in mind that our OTA picture is about 20% sharper than our Internet broadcast. IPTV (Internet TV) is very viable in countries that have advanced internet infrastructure but alas Canada is an Internet backwater due to CRTC corruption.
Quote:
“The internet is vastly overrated. Nobody cares about you on the internet,” he tells me one afternoon in his studio, surrounded by banks of screens and dials of random purpose.

True, see above. The Internet requires a lot of prerequisites from the user: a computer, a paid Internet connection, and the ability to use a computer. Free OTA TV only requires a TV set and a coat hanger for an antenna to participate. As an added bonus, you cannot be hacked nor spied upon while watching OTA television.
Quote:
Star Ray’s mascot, an aging German shepherd named Shadow the Wonder Dog, sits at his side.

Shadow will be 12 years old on May 24, 2012.
Quote:
With UHF, he reasons, he only has to compete with 30 other broadcasters, as opposed to millions of people on the internet. Running a TV station has a certain prestige Youtube never will.

Running a TV station that people will watch is a lot harder than posting a garbage video on Youtube.
Quote:
“I wouldn’t call us on the leading edge of technology,” he jokes. “More like the bleeding edge.”

This refers to Star Ray's continual experimentation and adoption of technology before it has been perfected, hence the "bleeding edge."
Quote:
The smartphones and iPads that most media outlets are gearing their content towards these days Pachul describes as "distraction toys." Facebook is "a fad, and a lousy one as far as I'm concerned."

These devices keep you from focusing on stuff that matters. Facebook is a poor substitute for face to face contact with humans. More than that Facebook is a front for government spying and data mining. If you have your own website, what do you need Facebook for?
Quote:
Pachul’s distrust of more modern technologies extends beyond the web. He doesn’t own a cell phone because he doesn’t want to have his brain fried. When I show him my Android, he takes a device off the wall to measure the radiation its spewing. The machine’s needle jumps disconcertingly when he holds its wand to the top of my phone. It barely moves when he holds it up to the TV screens that he spends most of the day with inches from his face.

Ben's Android RF output knocked the meter's needle off scale, The control room monitors barely measure any output above background radiation. I'm about 3 feet away from the monitors, people put cell phones right next to their brains. Absolutely, I don't want my brain fried.
Quote:
Pachul, 57, is funny, often vulgar, and quick to emit a high pitched giggle, especially when scoffing at my ignorance of broadcast logistics. His passion for television goes back forty years when, at 15, he started working at a cable station in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, where his father moved from Toronto for an engineering job. He did odd tasks around the studio, and in 1971 began hosting a teenage dance show called WJ Pachul’s Freak-In.

I do have a sense of humour and an unusual laugh. As far as being vulgar, I know that Eye and Now magazines like printing vernacular, so I deliver. I've always thought that there is something magical about broadcasting. The teenage dance show was the first show that I produced and hosted.
Quote:
He explains how Star Ray TV ended up broadcasting illegally.

Based on our history with the CRTC calling Star Ray TV "illegal" is a stretch. Even the CRTC doesn't call us illegal; they refer to us as "an unlicensed station operating in the Toronto area."
Quote:
“The whole idea was to get people on the air who normally wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting on the air,” he says of the channel’s early days. “That was the original intent.”

The Star Ray Mission Statement says: "Our station was developed with an explicit aim to make more inclusive and diverse what is represented in broadcast media." This is what we've been doing all along.
Quote:
When the channel launched in 1997, Pachul obtained an experimental broadcast licence from Industry Canada. After it expired he fought a protracted, unresolved battle with the CRTC. The commission, which he accuses of being controlled by big broadcasters, denied his request for a low-power licence in 2000. He fought the decision, arguing that Star Ray TV was a community station that provided programming not otherwise available in Toronto.
After some procedural wrangling, the commission sent him a cease and desist order in 2001, and for the next six years, Star Ray TV was basically a radio station with pictures; Pachul aired still images with sound, which technically didn't violate CRTC rules. But after a second licence application was turned down as incomplete (Pachul is adamant he was denied due process), he decided to go pirate, and began broadcasting moving images again in 2007.

We did kiss the CRTC's ass for a period of time thinking that we had a chance of getting a licence with our second application. Then new CRTC bullshit began with the CRTC engaging in what I term "shameless bald faced fraud." Denial of due process is one of the things that happened, but it goes much deeper than that. This Forum has the full details of the CRTC's fraudulent activity.
Quote:
"I got fucked all the way down the line," he says.

This statement sums up Star Ray's involvement with the CRTC quite well.
Quote:
“We generally don’t like to use the word ‘pirate’ because we did everything we could to be a legal station. But we use that term occasionally because it has a certain amount of romance to it.”

Pirates don't make licence applications. The only reason we don't have a licence is CRTC corruption. We've certainly proved we can reliably run a TV station. We've even outlasted SunTV!
Quote:
Since he resumed broadcasting, Pachul hasn't had any further trouble with the authorities. A CRTC spokesperson says the commission is not aware that Star Ray TV is still operating without a licence, and because the CRTC never received a complaint after the cease and decist ruling, no one's followed up.

The CRTC has a basic problem busting us: fraud and breech of trust by CRTC employees were involved in our last dealings with the CRTC. If the CRTC goes after us, they may finally have to answer for their white collar crimes. In 2007 we had a story in the Globe and Mail announcing our resumption of programming. The CRTC knows about us but I don't think they want to open Pandora's Box.
Quote:
At any given hour, anyone lucky enough to pick up Star Ray is likely to see a mix of public-access shows, old movies, and images that stretch the definition of television programming. He sells air time ($100 per hour, $200 per hour during prime time), mostly to religious groups. Recently he had a group of South Etobicoke residents on to talk about their opposition to a crematorium opening up in the area. Another organization used studio time on to advocate for greener technology.

People find it surprising how much stuff we have on the air. Yes religious groups have been some of the biggest supporters of Star Ray TV. The show about the crematorium wasn't recent, it was done in 2002. We've had several "green" shows over the years.
Quote:
But much of airtime is taken up by movies, either ones Pachul considers classics or local productions, which he’ll air no matter how bad they are.

The movies are only an overnight thing. Prime time is 100% local and Canadian content. Same with mornings after the movies. We do give preference to Canadian productions.
Quote:
A shelf in his studio is full of VHS titles he’ll eventually get around to transferring for TV; Female Trouble, Dance Girl Dance, Bride of the Monster, Deadly Spawn.

A curious pick of movies from a few hundred titles lying around.
Quote:
For stretches of the day, he airs a “community marquis” of local announcements. Sometimes the only images are the text of quotes from Mahatma Gandhi and John F. Kennedy.

You mean marquee, a "marquis" is some kind of French nobleman.
Quote:
Recently he reluctantly started up an internet channel, but even that is not available to Mac users or anyone using anything other than outdated versions of Internet Explorer.

What is this shit? Star Ray TV is a pioneer in Internet broadcasting. We started video on demand in 1999 and live Internet broadcasting in 2001. Tobroadcast.com, our Internet broadcasting domain has been active since 2004. TVants, our webcast platform is standalone software, it does not use a browser in any way. The installation of our software is automated, anyone with a Windows computer can easily watch Star Ray in less than 3 minutes!

Star Ray TV was never "reluctant" in embracing any new technology, in fact I looked upon the Internet as a replacement for our lack of cable coverage. Internet TV or IPTV was the great hope that never materialized.

We also embed our broadcast video on the home page of tobroadcast.com This website uses our TVants Direct-X plug-in to run which is natively supported in all versions of Windows Internet Explorer including the latest releases. The VOD (video on demand) uses a Windows Media plug-in that is supported by all browers and operating systems. Yes Mac users are unable to watch our live broadcast. Macs at last count are 6.38% of our website hits, so it's no great loss.
Quote:
Pachul can’t be sure how many people watch Star Ray, but by using the Moses Znaimer method (take the number of people who write you letters, multiply that by 1000), he estimates he has 20,000 to 50,000 monthly viewers, or roughly a 15 per cent audience share.

Actually this 1000 to 1 ratio refers to any contact with the public including emails and phone calls. For every person that contacts the station in some way, 1000 don't. I was including people responding to our websites which is a substantial number. Our number one domain freetoronto.tv has a worldwide Alexa traffic ranking of 2,262,666.

The 15% is what I believe the Toronto audience share of OTA broadcasting is, not the share of Star Ray TV.
Quote:
He reckons that Shadow the Wonder Dog, who appears frequently on air, is “probably the most famous dog in Canada by now.”

Well Shadow has another credit: her image in Now Magazine. I don't know of a living Canadian dog with more credits.
Quote:
He admits that Rogers might dispute his viewership numbers however.

Why would Rogers admit the true OTA viewing figures? The fact remains that OTA broadcasting is gaining shares at the expense of cable and satellite.
Quote:
Running a television station, even a pirate one, costs money, and Pachul works hard to make ends meet. He sells advertising time, but prefers not to if he can avoid it (“advertising pisses off the viewers”). He also takes in some money by repairing electronics in a corner workshop in his studio, and sells equipment he’s stockpiled over the years. He accepts donations, and volunteers.

Yes keeping the station on the air these days is tough. Dedicated community support is what has kept Star Ray going all these years. I have always considered advertising sales a last resort for fund raising. I have refused to run infomericals on several occasions.
Quote:
After fifteen years of fighting to keep his station on air, Pachul is about to face another major challenge. This summer, CHCH is slated to begin broadcasting on channel 15, and the more powerful station will knock Star Ray off the airwaves. Pachul plans to switch over to channel 22 instead, but is worried that he’ll lose viewers. Plus, the sign outside and his van parked out back already say channel 15, and changing them would be “a pain in the ass.”

It's doubtful whether CHCH will be broadcasting on channel 15. So far there is no indication of FCC approval. UHF channels 14 and 15 are already on the air at Grand Island (Buffalo), New York.
Quote:
Still, he has no intention of giving up on his TV station, no matter what the rest of the world gets hooked on.

Ben seems to not heard of ATSC digital television broadcasting. Watching OTA (over-the-air) broadcasting is very popular right now. After all, it's free. In the United States cable and satellite companies lost a 10% share the first year of OTA digital broadcasting. The same phenomenon is happening here.
Quote:
As I leave his studio he tells me a joke. How would you describe kids today? he asks. He grins and twiddles his thumbs in an imitation of playing video games, and then twiddles his thumbs up and down in imitation of masturbation.

In the mime joke, I was imitating texting or sexting not playing video games. The masturbation reference is to "virtual" Internet sex.
Quote:
The implication is clear: today’s teenagers aren’t nearly as cool as the Pennsylvania kids who used to show up to dance on WJ Pachul’s Freak-In in 1971.
“Back then," he says, "we used to dress up like movie stars."

The "dressing up like movie stars" reference is to Disco which happened a few years after the "Freak-in." For the "Freak-in" we were into the hippie look, mostly wearing jeans.

Reply with quote Post Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:00 pm
Now Magazine's take on Star Ray TV
Taken from:
http://www.nowtoronto.com/daily/story.c ... ent=186197

Star Ray TV, Toronto’s unchanging channel

MEET THE MAN BEHIND THE HYPER-HYPER-LOCAL TELEVISION STATION

BY BEN SPURR

Before Napster fought the record labels and MegaUpload took on the major studios, one Toronto man battled corporate giants to create an alternative to mainstream media. Jan Pachul is one of the original pirate broadcasters.

For 15 years, Pachul has run Star Ray TV, a rogue antenna-only TV station in the city’s east end.

In an age when anyone with a Youtube account can instantly deliver content to billions of people around the world, Star Ray TV is an anachronism – from an era recent enough to be fresh in many memories, but that the internet has swiftly rendered obsolete.

From a storefront at Main St. and Gerrard Ave., Pachul labours 11 hours a day (with time allotted for an afternoon nap) to broadcast community programming on UHF channel 15. His signal is weak (it covers a spotty 20-km radius) and only reaches people with the knowledge and inclination to set their TV to receive UHF signals.

There’s no doubt he’d get through to more people on the web, but he won’t abandon TV. Why? Because, he says, the internet sucks.

“The internet is vastly overrated. Nobody cares about you on the internet,” he tells me one afternoon in his studio, surrounded by banks of screens and dials of random purpose. Star Ray’s mascot, an aging German shepherd named Shadow the Wonder Dog, sits at his side.

With UHF, he reasons, he only has to compete with 30 other broadcasters, as opposed to millions of people on the internet. Running a TV station has a certain prestige Youtube never will.

“I wouldn’t call us on the leading edge of technology,” he jokes. “More like the bleeding edge.”

The smartphones and iPads that most media outlets are gearing their content towards these days Pachul describes as "distraction toys." Facebook is "a fad, and a lousy one as far as I'm concerned."

Pachul’s distrust of more modern technologies extends beyond the web. He doesn’t own a cell phone because he doesn’t want to have his brain fried. When I show him my Android, he takes a device off the wall to measure the radiation its spewing. The machine’s needle jumps disconcertingly when he holds its wand to the top of my phone. It barely moves when he holds it up to the TV screens that he spends most of the day with inches from his face.

Pachul, 57, is funny, often vulgar, and quick to emit a high pitched giggle, especially when scoffing at my ignorance of broadcast logistics. His passion for television goes back forty years when, at 15, he started working at a cable station in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, where his father moved from Toronto for an engineering job. He did odd tasks around the studio, and in 1971 began hosting a teenage dance show called WJ Pachul’s Freak-In.

He explains how Star Ray TV ended up broadcasting illegally.

“The whole idea was to get people on the air who normally wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting on the air,” he says of the channel’s early days. “That was the original intent.”

When the channel launched in 1997, Pachul obtained an experimental broadcast licence from Industry Canada. After it expired he fought a protracted, unresolved battle with the CRTC. The commission, which he accuses of being controlled by big broadcasters, denied his request for a low-power licence in 2000. He fought the decision, arguing that Star Ray TV was a community station that provided programming not otherwise available in Toronto.

After some procedural wrangling, the commission sent him a cease and desist order in 2001, and for the next six years, Star Ray TV was basically a radio station with pictures; Pachul aired still images with sound, which technically didn't violate CRTC rules. But after a second licence application was turned down as incomplete (Pachul is adamant he was denied due process), he decided to go pirate, and began broadcasting moving images again in 2007.

"I got fucked all the way down the line," he says.

“We generally don’t like to use the word ‘pirate’ because we did everything we could to be a legal station. But we use that term occasionally because it has a certain amount of romance to it.”

Since he resumed broadcasting, Pachul hasn't had any further trouble with the authorities. A CRTC spokesperson says the commission is not aware that Star Ray TV is still operating without a licence, and because the CRTC never received a complaint after the cease and decist ruling, no one's followed up.

At any given hour, anyone lucky enough to pick up Star Ray is likely to see a mix of public-access shows, old movies, and images that stretch the definition of television programming. He sells air time ($100 per hour, $200 per hour during prime time), mostly to religious groups. Recently he had a group of South Etobicoke residents on to talk about their opposition to a crematorium opening up in the area. Another organization used studio time on to advocate for greener technology.

But much of airtime is taken up by movies, either ones Pachul considers classics or local productions, which he’ll air no matter how bad they are. A shelf in his studio is full of VHS titles he’ll eventually get around to transferring for TV; Female Trouble, Dance Girl Dance, Bride of the Monster, Deadly Spawn.

For stretches of the day, he airs a “community marquis” of local announcements. Sometimes the only images are the text of quotes from Mahatma Gandhi and John F. Kennedy.

Recently he reluctantly started up an internet channel, but even that is not available to Mac users or anyone using anything other than outdated versions of Internet Explorer.

Pachul can’t be sure how many people watch Star Ray, but by using the Moses Znaimer method (take the number of people who write you letters, multiply that by 1000), he estimates he has 20,000 to 50,000 monthly viewers, or roughly a 15 per cent audience share.

He reckons that Shadow the Wonder Dog, who appears frequently on air, is “probably the most famous dog in Canada by now.”

He admits that Rogers might dispute his viewership numbers however.

Running a television station, even a pirate one, costs money, and Pachul works hard to make ends meet. He sells advertising time, but prefers not to if he can avoid it (“advertising pisses off the viewers”). He also takes in some money by repairing electronics in a corner workshop in his studio, and sells equipment he’s stockpiled over the years. He accepts donations, and volunteers.

After fifteen years of fighting to keep his station on air, Pachul is about to face another major challenge. This summer, CHCH is slated to begin broadcasting on channel 15, and the more powerful station will knock Star Ray off the airwaves. Pachul plans to switch over to channel 22 instead, but is worried that he’ll lose viewers. Plus, the sign outside and his van parked out back already say channel 15, and changing them would be “a pain in the ass.”

Still, he has no intention of giving up on his TV station, no matter what the rest of the world gets hooked on.

As I leave his studio he tells me a joke. How would you describe kids today? he asks. He grins and twiddles his thumbs in an imitation of playing video games, and then twiddles his thumbs up and down in imitation of masturbation.

The implication is clear: today’s teenagers aren’t nearly as cool as the Pennsylvania kids who used to show up to dance on WJ Pachul’s Freak-In in 1971.

“Back then," he says, "we used to dress up like movie stars."

@nowtorontonews


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