Pirate Radio Creation? – Shane Kelly

For whatever reason, in the Alternative Media Handbook, I was most drawn to the concept of pirate radio.  I feel like it is because I am more rebellious in nature than most and the things that people did in order to broadcast their pirate radio stations in history was really cool.  The off-shore pirate radios were the most interesting to me because it was like, “Hey I am over here doing what you want and you can’t cross this line!”  I found this article on howto.wired.com about Pirate Radio stations.  Apparently it is extremely easy to make your own pirate radio station and all that is really required is a somewhat cool idea and a few steps to follow to complete the process.  This type of radio broadcasting is pretty controversial and it always has been which is why finding this article inspired me to write about it.  Something controversial and seemingly difficult is actually extremely easy to do and there are even some simple steps that you can follow.  All you have to do is type in, “Pirate Radio Examples” into google.com and there you have it.  Although it does require some hardware to do all of this.  You do need a microphone and headset and a make-shift studio so it isn’t exactly ‘free’ per say.  According to the article, the main thing to worry about is using your equipment to interfere with any legitimate radio station.  This sounds pretty obvious but the author of this article emphasizes likely because hacking into the airwaves of the public isn’t exactly encouraged.  Here is the article:



  1. This post is really interesting! The fact that a “how to” on pirate radio exists shows how many people want to get their opinions heard. I have to wonder if pirate radio is frowned upon now, especially after reading about how the first pirate radio stations were often raided by police. Do you think that (aside from interfering with other radio stations) any legal problems arise from this?

    1. That’s actually funny that you ask that question because my girlfriend asked me the exact same thing. My response to her was basically this: I am sure that the state wouldn’t be supportive of this lol. Like, I am sure that there are many benefits to being able to do something like but theres no way that the state would encourage anything like this, especially with the word “pirate” in it. But that’s all me, not the article.

  2. I agree that the state probably doesn’t encourage pirate radio. They aren’t fans of any type of pirating. An example of this is if you think of Napster as a type of pirate radio and what happened to them. The same applies for modern day music and movie pirates. The only difference is that in the modern world the state isn’t as proactive at pursuing pirates. Instead that job falls upon giant studios. However, If the state does get involved and finds the pirate, they’ll ruin them.

    1. Keep in mind, Bryan, that when talking about pirated music, e.g., Napster, etc., it’s primarily agents of the economy, not the state, who are most up in arms – record labels and distributors are the ones who stand to lose the most.

  3. I think this is a very interesting topic. I know for sure the state will never agree with pirate radio. Obviously your are more free to be rebellious in a pirate radio, and that is the last thing the government wants. Being able to speak out whatever you want might make the state at least a little afraid. The FCC is the organism that controls radio content, and if you are a pirate radio, the FCC would have no power over your broadcast, which will make the government afraid in case your pirate radio becomes popular.I searched on Google and I even found there are pirate radios dedicated to talk against the state.

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