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Old May 26th, 2014, 04:39 PM   #16
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Re: Wireless lav set for international use?

John - since the old Radio Agency retired the fleet of vehicles with rotating roof racks, the only services that have enforceable action available are the official 'Protected Services'. Arqiva, and JFMG before them have no powers of confiscation, and could only do this with a Police Officer's assistance, when evidence exists that a criminal action has taken place. Unlicensed operation of a legally possessable device is a civil matter and confiscation can not even be sanctioned by a court. Repeat TV license offenders can not have their TV sets confiscated. The only penalty is, as you say, a fine, which comes later. Radio equipment used by pirate radio stations can be confiscated because an off the shelf license for a radio broadcaster is not available, making the equipment itself illegal. Radio microphones should not be used without a license of course, but the often cited £5000 fine and/or 6 months imprisonment has never been applied to illegal use of radio microphones. A troublesome individual who repeatedly broadcast music illegally from a rooftop in Camden received a suspended sentence, an ASBO and a 3 month curfew - the fine was £1200. He got his equipment seized.

I think the illegal operation needs some perspective here. Running 500W from a rooftop, wiping out local radio reception, interfering with TV services people have paid for, is rather different from a 50mW pack in somebodies pocket - that struggles to get from the transmitter to the receiver in many cases.

The authorities will not act for you, even if you are licensed - it's a non-protected service. If they really wanted to make a few quid they could have prosecuted all the people who wrote in and complained they had been turned down for the surrender money because they didn't have a license.

I'm not saying, of course that people should operate without a license, but that the authorities themselves are not interested in policing it, so all this talk of fines and prison is a little futile.

The real problem with just switching on and operating is interference from much more powerful legitimate band users, and that is a proper problem.

I always laughed that Sennheiser and others never included a license application form in the box of the radio equipment they sold. Trantec did for a while, but none of my Sennheisers did! I wonder how many people just used the scan function and blasted away? Most I suspect.
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Old May 27th, 2014, 05:12 AM   #17
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Re: Wireless lav set for international use?

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Originally Posted by Paul R Johnson View Post
John - since the old Radio Agency retired the fleet of vehicles with rotating roof racks, the only services that have enforceable action available are the official 'Protected Services'. Arqiva, and JFMG before them have no powers of confiscation, and could only do this with a Police Officer's assistance, when evidence exists that a criminal action has taken place. Unlicensed operation of a legally possessable device is a civil matter and confiscation can not even be sanctioned by a court. Repeat TV license offenders can not have their TV sets confiscated. The only penalty is, as you say, a fine, which comes later. Radio equipment used by pirate radio stations can be confiscated because an off the shelf license for a radio broadcaster is not available, making the equipment itself illegal. Radio microphones should not be used without a license of course, but the often cited £5000 fine and/or 6 months imprisonment has never been applied to illegal use of radio microphones. A troublesome individual who repeatedly broadcast music illegally from a rooftop in Camden received a suspended sentence, an ASBO and a 3 month curfew - the fine was £1200. He got his equipment seized.

I think the illegal operation needs some perspective here. Running 500W from a rooftop, wiping out local radio reception, interfering with TV services people have paid for, is rather different from a 50mW pack in somebodies pocket - that struggles to get from the transmitter to the receiver in many cases.

The authorities will not act for you, even if you are licensed - it's a non-protected service. If they really wanted to make a few quid they could have prosecuted all the people who wrote in and complained they had been turned down for the surrender money because they didn't have a license.

I'm not saying, of course that people should operate without a license, but that the authorities themselves are not interested in policing it, so all this talk of fines and prison is a little futile.

The real problem with just switching on and operating is interference from much more powerful legitimate band users, and that is a proper problem.

I always laughed that Sennheiser and others never included a license application form in the box of the radio equipment they sold. Trantec did for a while, but none of my Sennheisers did! I wonder how many people just used the scan function and blasted away? Most I suspect.
Sennheiser never included a licence because the equipment was delivered direct from the central warehouse in Germany.

Trantec were a UK based company and it was much easier for them.

Sennheiser UK used to include all the licence information and contact details on the price lists and, I think, also had it on the website.

Oh - and it *is* policed. I have heard of inspectors turning up at a theatre and asking to see the radiomic. licences. The visiting band, who did not have one but were using legal frequencies, were instructed to get a licence and prove it by sending a copy within 14 days. A manufacturer's rep. was at the theatre at the time and witness all this.

Also - as a lot of TV channels have now been sold off for the European-wide wireless broadband, you are likely to find these being policed more in the future.

Because so many users wre illegally operating without a licence, the UK almost lost most of the frequencies for radiomics as the Government thought they were not being used and therefore not required. It took a lot of hard work by BEIRG to convince them otherwise.

At least the illegal users did not get any compensation like the legal users did.

I'm sorry, but your posts do seem to be encouraging illegal use of radiomics.
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Old May 27th, 2014, 03:42 PM   #18
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Re: Wireless lav set for international use?

No John, that's just your view. I pay for my licenses, and my hire kit is always supplied with permits. JFMG, and presumably now Arqiva do check venues where they know kit will be used - and I've had the job of photocopying all the paperwork and sending it to them when they do these spot checks. However - my point is that they do not have the resources to be the frequency police in an investigative sense. Checking multiple usage in bigger venues where equipment lis commonly used is one thing - finding somebody with a camera and a pack or two is pretty hit and miss, as I'm sure you'll agree. I do not condone using kit without a license, but I do understand it.

For what it's worth, at one venue I know well, there is a license in force just in case a visitor brings in an unlicensed set - however, the number of people still using frequencies in 69, plus the other non-UK brands brought into the country makes policing very difficult. If somebody has a radio system working on a non-UK band, do I tell them they cannot use it, or do I ignore it. Easy - I ignore it!

As for Sennheiser having the details on the website? The guy who goes into the local music shop and buys a system has no idea. If a UK band version is imported into the UK, then was it so hard for them to put something in the box? If they wanted to be responsible manufacturers they would have done - but if nobody really puts any emphasis on licensing, blaming the consumer is a bit pointless.
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