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A Dummy's Guide to Radio Lingo Part 1

If anyone wants to sound like a radio executive, its probably me. Being somewhat of an upstart, it dawned on me that I must know the language of this industry. Here now is my utterly desperate attempt at defining some terms which I use, simplistic my definitions may seem. If you read on...well, you'll know what I'm driving at.

Call Letters - Basically the station's identity. Here in the Philippines, FM stations usually carry the call letters "DW" and the next two letters having been assigned to the said station. With Bay FM, its DWSB, "SB" being "Subic Bay." (Reminds me of my days in amateur radio when my call sign used to be Falcon 95...)

Frequency - It's where you will find the station in your radio dial (duh!).

Stinger - Basically a produced audio file of a radio commercial or ad. This one I have difficulty defining. There are even stingers called floaters. Floaters, I think, are stingers a deejay plays as inserts during song intros for instance.

Music Bed - music a deejay uses as audio backdrop during his spiels.

Disc Jockey - aka Deejay, akaDJ, aka Pilot of the Airwaves (eww!); that dude who plays the music and talks to himself on the microphone while on air (and sometimes off).

Accounts - If you want your station to stay afloat, you need this. These are advertising accounts that pay the salaries of everyone in the station (and in the case of a government station like ours, money that enters the state coffers and can be felt and seen only in financial statements).

Advertising/Commercial Spots - Specific number of air time being sold to advertisers/sponsors. Usually, spots range from 15 seconds, 30 seconds to about a minute.

I guess these are all, for now. Excuse me while I wipe the blood off my nose.

For those who are seriously interested in broadcast terms and definitions, check it out here