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Why Ibiquity Is Now iBiquity Again

And other interesting minutiae

Sharp-eyed readers may have noticed we’ve recently changed the way we write the word iBiquity.

A capitalization question arose when the company announced its name eight years ago. When the name was rolled out I gave this a good deal of thought, researched how other publications were handling it at the time and decided to adhere to RW’s style rules, which oblige us to convert oddly capitalized names so that our pages dOn’T eNd up LooKing like ThIS.

Thus, instead of writing iBiquity as the company prefers, for years we have written Ibiquity. (For similar reasons, we convert all-capped company names to the standard format unless the letters constitute an actual acronym.)

However this is a case where RW’s insistence on a style rule is no longer appropriate. We don’t write Ipod and Tivo, we write iPod and TiVo, to cite common examples. Further, researching the matter, I find that RW’s practice on iBiquity does not reflect now-established industry use.

So I’ve changed the policy to follow the style seen in publications including the New York Times. We’ll write iBiquity and, when starting a sentence, IBiquity.

* * *

The company also takes pains in spelling out how to use the trademarked phrase HD Radio. We respect that here as much as possible; for instance we don’t write HD radio or HD-Radio.

I think iBiquity has an uphill fight in trying to enforce some of its rules, such as keeping people from using the term as a noun, as in “I bought an HD Radio.” IBiquity prefers that you say “I bought an HD Radio receiver.” Good luck with that one.

Also, it seems disingenuous to say that the letters HD were not intended to stand for “high definition.” But iBiquity insists “HD Radio” is a brand name for its digital AM and FM radio technology and that “HD” does not stand for either high definition or hybrid digital.

If you are curious, here are a few more examples of the company’s preferred style use.

Don’t use the trademarked phrase as an adjective; thus you may say “Our station broadcasts using HD Radio technology” but iBiquity prefers you not say “Our station broadcasts HD Radio.”

You should not make the trademark possessive, so don’t write “I don’t like HD Radio’s sound,” instead write “I don’t like the sound of HD Radio technology.”

Also, don’t use hyphens, slashes, prefixes or suffixes. So it is HD Radio, not HD-Radio, H/D Radio, HDRadio or other variants.

Such matters probably seem minor for most folks; but for editors on the one hand and companies on the other, these decisions are relevant. Hey, if someone is going to write my name, I’d like to know they respect how I prefer to write it, or at least have a good and consistent reason to change it.

My policy is to follow how companies and people wish to have their names written, when possible within certain style constraints that we’ve created to present a consistent, easy-to-read text.

* * *

I bid adieu to Radio World Associate Editor Kelly Brooks, a friend and colleague who has been a key member of our editorial team for several years. She moves on to become associate managing editor for the American Society of Clinical Oncology. If you have contributed to our Reader’s Forum, Buyer’s Guide or Studio Sessions sections, or if you’ve walked the convention floor at NAB, you may have met or worked with Kelly.

In losing her, I’m fortunate to have the experienced Brett Moss assume the newly created position of gear and technology editor.

He will be responsible for managing Buyer’s Guide content in both the U.S. and international editions of Radio World and the content of RW’s Studio Sessions section, thus putting on the hat of our primary gear guy.

Brett is a former editor at the daily newsletter Talk Daily and was a public affairs radio producer/engineer for Radio America. For most of the past 11 years, he worked on Pro Audio Review, our sister magazine, which grew out of RW’s Studio Sessions section; at PAR he worked his way up to the position of managing editor.

He is managing editor at Radio World International and also contributes to, e-mail newsletters, convention dailies and special projects. Write to him at [email protected].

Our veteran production publication coordinator Karen Lee adds to her duties the role of production editor for Radio World Engineering Extra. She becomes the point person here in our Virginia office for Technical Editor Michael LeClair, who is based in Boston, turning the content he gathers and edits into its final form.

Departing is Marguerite Clark, editor of Radio World International, who was based in Milan; she is taking a position with a public relations firm.

Alicia Zappier, managing editor for Government Video based in New York, will add to her duties the role of contributing editor for Radio World International. She contributes to the news and features section of our publications as well as to and e-mail newsletters.

Editorial Director Carter Ross and I are fortunate to have three talented people on our teams to take on these important roles. Congratulations to Brett, Karen and Alicia.

* * *

Catching up on more people news of the last few months, a hearty kudos to our contributor Cris Alexander, who was named Broadcast Engineer of the Year by the Society of Broadcast Engineers.

As faithful readers know well, Cris is director of engineering for Crawford Broadcasting. He writes the column Engineer’s Corner in Radio World Engineering Extra as well as frequent articles in RW. He’s a member of the national board of SBE and its certification committee and he is certification chair of Chapter 48 in Denver.

When I heard that colleagues were working on a nomination, I wrote to SBE to add my support. I stated that in a profession blessed with many bright lights, Cris goes beyond them. He is a special man — in my eyes, one who exemplifies the best traits that the SBE seeks to honor from among the broadcast engineering profession.

He is a model manager and executive who has worked diligently on behalf of his employer for almost three decades, yet puts more effort into sharing credit and attention with his employees than in celebrating his own accomplishments.

He cares about the broadcast industry and the future of radio engineering in particular, as seen in his work to develop engineer training programs, his work in Radio World and other publications, his Local Oscillator newsletter and his personal approach to his career.

He is a superb representative of the radio engineering profession to the industry’s owners, executives, programmers, sales people, air talent and regulators. It’s no accident that Cris is one of the few engineers to have been featured not only in technical publications but on the cover of a radio business magazine.

Cris is a lifelong learner, a devoted father and a moral man who knows that he works in a competitive business yet nevertheless finds a way always to do the right thing, not just the profitable thing. He really is a credit to broadcast engineering.

Maybe our colleague Tom McGinley puts it best about Cris after the award was announced: “This young man,” Tom told me, “is a class act.”

* * *

We talk here often about perceptions of engineers. Here’s a reminder that we still have work to do.

During a conference of public radio managers awhile back, one person — a man who got into the business because he loved the creative side and has become a general manager — was overheard to say: “I spend my time with engineers now, and they can spend money faster than I can make it. That’s a problem. They buy things that are new, expensive and they break.”

Is that how your management views you? Fair or otherwise, that’s how at least some managers see engineers. What have you done lately to help your own superiors consider you as part of the solution, not part of the problem?