The Johnny Appleseed of Pirate Radio

From 1993 – 1998, Stephen Dunifer broadcast Free Radio Berkeley, a micro-power radio station, from spots around the East Bay — from up in the Berkeley Hills to the second floor bathroom of a squat in Oakland. After duking it out with the Federal Communications Commission, arguing that forcing radio stations to receive a license before broadcasting violated the right of free speech, Dunifer stopped broadcasting. He started running workshops to teach people how to build their own transmitters in the U.S. and abroad. Reporters Lee Mengistu and Padmini Parthasarathy learn about the pirate radio movement and the renegade stations that bring communities together.


REPORTERS: Lee Mengistu and Padmini Parthasarathy
MUSIC: “Set Your Radio Free,” broadcast on Free Radio Berkeley, archive

Air Date

April 2018