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Something is Rotten in the Lion’s Den

February 28, 2011 – 8:50 pm126 Comments
Lion in deep water. Art by Mahewa from fanart.lionking.org

Lion in deep water. Art by Mahewa from fanart.lionking.org

By Malki Rose

For almost a year now, rumours, speculation and all sorts of colourful claims have been made by individuals claiming to represent the true intentions and processes being undertaken by Lion FM.

Lion, although generating bits of pleasing content, is struggling to roar as it should be.

Lion FM, incorporated as Melbourne Jewish Radio (MJR), has been a revolving door of disgruntled volunteers and dedicated contributors. With bright-eyes and full of hope, they approach the den with eager enthusiasm to contribute to a great community initiative. But to the dismay of hundreds, they are met not with the roar of a Lion of strength, the symbol of Jewish pride, but rather they are frightened away by the stampede of an insidious and despotic executive board, followed by a cowardly cabal of yes-men. Many an eager cub has left, disillusioned and despondent.

The initiative, spearheaded by a group of well-meaning individuals almost two years ago, was intended to be a beacon of community growth and unity. While some persisted with this intention, others simply found it to be an opportunity to propagate their own agenda, forgetting why MJR had been established in the first place.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) grants permanent community licenses to stations that can demonstrate that they reflect and represent the needs of the community for which the license is granted. In this case the license was granted as ‘Religious – Jewish’.  Some have sought to creatively interpret this for their own purposes as  “a radio station for religious Jews”.

However, all but one of the individuals who established the station were NOT religious. Additionally, the type of community the station will serve does not speak to the level of orthodoxy, or purport to define the individual political leanings or religious sub-groups within that community. The ACMA guidelines give an example of a “Religious – Buddhist” license which would “ideally welcome involvement in the station by people with an interest in Buddhism, not just adherents of Buddhism”. In other words, the net is widely cast when it comes to defining the group to which the license applies, so long as those claiming an interest have some sort of connection.

In any event, on several occasions, members of the board of Lion FM have sidelined many an Orthodox and non-Orthodox individual, of both right and left wing political persuasions. So the point is moot.

Late last year, following a concerted effort to work with the disjointed board, the former President, Mr Michael Lipschutz, walked out of Lion FM after it became apparent that his efforts were not welcomed by the remaining members and no co-operation or compromise was possible.

In the aftermath of Lipschutz’s departure, the now fractured executive handpicked a new President, Mr John Kraus, whom they expected would lead MJR to a brighter and more financially viable future.

In the following months, Mr Kraus made several concerted efforts to first and foremost rectify and recommend new directions. He proposed some positive steps that the board could take to improve the functionality, governance and image of the station.

Legal experts involved in assessing the structure of MJR and its constitution have noted that governance is the primary issue of urgent concern. At best, it is reckoned that the association is run with its constitution in indefinite suspension or, more realistically, in defiance of its own constitution. Furthermore, there have been numerous allegations of egregious breaches to Corporations law, tax law, and the Broadcasting Services Act. But a recalcitrant executive has displayed a total unwillingness to admit fault or need to change.

In recent months, much hard work has been done by the station manager, Mr Yossi Ashkenazi, to increase marketing, build better facilities and invite several individuals to produce and host programs. But because of intrinsic structural failures, some have waited months to for their shows to be put to air; others have aired immediately and some have yet to be aired, with no indication of when they will be aired, if at all.

In June, MJR’s temporary license will be up for review, and a permanent license for a community radio station will only be granted by ACMA if the station has demonstrated that it can be run in accordance with its guidelines, and serves the community group for which the license was granted. The dual requirements of community representation and active encouragement of all members of the community to be involved are clearly set out in Part 5 of Schedule 2 of the Broadcasting Services Act.

Approximately two weeks ago, ignoring the insistence of MJR’s executive, Mr Kraus took the constructive move of attending a meeting with leaders and members of the Jewish community who have been involved in ongoing efforts with Lion. An optimistic Kraus asserted that it was his most earnest intention to listen to the concerns and perspectives of those in attendance in the hope that he might be able to take these concerns back to the executive and effect some positive change for the benefit of the station and the community.

At the meeting, both SZC President, Sam Tatarka, and JCCV President, John Searle, reflected on the urgency and gravity of the situation, and said that it would be prudent for the recalcitrant members of the executive to initiate immediate changes to avoid having the radio license revoked, as this would be a most unfortunate and disappointing travesty, not only for those who have worked hard to invest in and develop the station, but for the entire Australian Jewish community.

Mr Searle hoped that the executive would be amenable to this advice and that changes could take place with expediency, so that the station could finally begin to flourish. Mr Searle also remarked that if MJR failed to act, then the tragic loss of the license would rest solely on the shoulders of the executive.

Days later, both John Searle and Sam Tatarka, met with the entire executive of Lion FM at the invitation of John Kraus. The purpose of this meeting was to make recommendations to the executive to immediately correct all underlying governance issues, including establishing a structure for community membership, so that fair and proper elections can take place in accordance with the MJR constitution, ACMA guidelines, and relevant legislation.

Unfortunately, the tape that was supposed to be recording minutes of the meeting, as arranged by Lion FM vice president Mr Menachem Khoen, inexplicably failed.

Menachem Kohen, who has provided significant finance for the station, has thus far reasserted his intention to hold firmly onto his floundering reign of the station. He has also voiced a general unwillingness to co-operate with anyone outside of his handpicked executive.

It is understood that the board of Lion FM have claimed that they intend to take legal action against the president that they selected, Mr Kraus, as ‘payback’ for attending the mediation.

No formal structure of community involvement or membership has ever existed in Lion FM, although there have been several failed or misleading attempts to establish a resemblance of such a structure.

But even in the event that a membership structure were to be established, all members would be subject to approval by the executive, and to whatever measures of assessment they choose to employ. Under its current leadership, it seems impossible for governance or a membership structure to be balanced or reflective of the Jewish community.

Contrary to the requirements of the Broadcasting Services Act, the executive have reiterated many times that they are simply not interested in pluralism or representing multiple views.

And if a membership structure were to be established and individuals ‘signed-up’ for membership of Lion FM, what kind of station would this afford them?

At best, it would afford them the unfortunate privilege of becoming members of a station with at least $40,000 in debt, a series of general tax and GST related implications, incurred from failures to undertake transactions between individual board members and the company transparently and at arm’s length, and a host of other technical and ongoing legal concerns, until such time as Lion inevitably drowns.

The executive appear to be demonstrating a total disregard for law, an unwillingness to comply with ACMA guidelines or enter into peaceful dialogue or mediation, and a refusal to rectify faulty and non-existent structures.

It will be a travesty if so much talent, hard work, dedication, and finance all comes to an end, as will be the case in June unless there is significant change. For Lion, there seems no way forward. Two presidents have tried their darndest and sadly diplomacy has failed. The toxicity within appears insurmountable.

Thus far it seems that Lion FM is an opportunity for Jewish unity that some would prefer to see wasted rather than remedied. Soon, the Lion shall roar no longer.

For a previous article on Lion FM, click here.

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126 Comments »

  • It’s been an interesting process applying for a program with the station. I submitted a program proposal in mid-October and despite making a number of approaches to various key station personnel, and receiving a variety of responses, I have not yet had a single response indicating how I can progress my application.

    The part that continues to amaze me is that with the number of empty slots in the program you’d think the station would be clambering for content.

    Michael.

  • Michael says:

    From an outside observer of the Lion FM Fiasco it is pretty clear from the critics and usual suspects it is a case of the left wanting to take over and create yet another outlet for peddling anti- Zionism, Anti- Americanism and advocating for the Muslim community.

  • James Monroe says:

    Malki,
    I hear you talking, but all I hear is blah, blah, blah, complain, complain and more blah.
    I love listening to “The Lion.” It gives me a connection to Judaism.
    Stop wasting so much energy on being so negative. I hope they never give you the microphone, if that’s what you’re after. If they do, you can call it The Moan with Malki program.
    I’m sure all your friends / haters are about to climb aboard the blame and complain train.

  • All hearsay, lies, and slander without a shred of evidence.

    The station is struggling? Of course it is struggling, it is still in the baby stages. It will take a few years to get established. Nothing happens overnight.

    Religious dominance? Bulldust! The majority of shows are totally secular.

    Shows not being aired? Of course! Not all show proposals will be accepted for quality control.

    And who says hundreds of people are clamoring to be on the radio?Many people are much too afraid to go on air, only a small minority will ever try it. And lots of people who think about doing a show give up when they realise the hours of hard work and dedication it takes.

    Legal issues? How could Malki claim to have a grasp on the legalities? Without sources or evidence everything she write here should be take with a grain of salt.Why don’t you leave this for the lawyers to work out? is it because you are so concerned about the future of the station? You are so concerned and that is why instead of working to build it you chose to quit and become someone who throw mud at it?

    So don’t use the board as a scapegoat for all of LionFm’s problems and growing pains. Especially since none of us were privy to attend the meetings or read their minutes, so it is all just empty allegations on Malki’s part.

    Who is feeding Malki this misinformation and for what purpose? This smells like a treife fish.

    People who care about the station are actually making positive contributions through working hard with sweat, dedication, discipline and toil. Those of us who choose to do so are enjoying an extremely positive experience building LionFm. We’re getting trained, we’re learning new things, we;re having fun. And there are some real good programs on and soon to come on, not just rubbish to fill the air.

    Then there are those who choose to stand on the sidelines and stew in their negativity and do nothing but criticise.

  • Malki Rose says:

    I love listening to Lion too James, and so do thousands of others, and for the same reason as you, it’s an ideal way for so many people to connect to their Judaism and find a sense of community.
    Its just such a shame that it is now insolvent and in its final days.

  • James Monroe says:

    Malki,
    Did you help them get the license or you just want to complain now that they’ve got the license what they do with it?
    Your “article” is completely one sided. It seems you have done a lot of research, but no sources to back up your statements. Not one shred of evidence in your whole tirade.
    Seriously, get real. Hard hitting journalism, this certainly is not.
    I will now sum up your article so readers don’t have to be subjected to your thousands of words essay.
    Lion FM Executive = evil and bad
    Malki and other assorted heroes trying to save Lion FM on behalf of the Jewish community = good.
    Thank goodness for people like you Malki; how would humanity continue if not for your keen sense of justice and your firm hand to guide us. Thank you for your completely non biased article. I have no idea what the real story is at Lion FM, but would never base facts on venting like this.

  • Seems as if Malki is hoping for LionFm’s demise, doesn’t it?

  • Malki Rose says:

    Yes, I did help get the license, James. And worked tirelessly for LionFM.

    You obviously haven’t read the article, as it is not one sided. Much effort has been made and great things acheived by many individuals involved in Lion. It is everyone’s hope that this can continue.

    However, the toxicity is predominantly coming from one quadrant, and this quadrant is unwilling to rectify Lion’s problems to make the station viable.

    I do NOT think the Lion FM executive is evil, your melodrama is misplaced. I am not sure why you seem so angry at me for reporting on this matter, nor why it is that you seem unphased about the station you claim to hold dear being about to lose its license? Are you suggesting that you are happy that they are about to lose the license?

    That is extremely unfortunate, because the station is such a potentially vital organ for the Jewish community. It’s upsetting that you don’t feel the same way.

    There is no bias when an organisation is insolvent.

    Seeing as you have no interest or faith in the validity or integrity of my report on this matter feel I will direct you to contact some of the other individuals named in the article such as Mr John Kraus, the current president of Lion FM. You could also contact Mr Amit Rehak the former Station Manager of Lion FM.

    You could also contact the JCCV and the SZC to corroborate details of the meetings, as I’ve described them.

    I am sure they will all be more than happy to corroborate these details.

    I look forward to reading your posts after you’ve spoken to them.

  • All lies. The station is not insolvent at all! And there is no reason to believe it won’t get its permanent license in June either. LionFm is not close to closing its doors, but it seems that some people would like that to happen.

  • Bram Presser says:

    This is not about politics or whinging or being negative. It is a call out to all of those who love the station to get behind a policy of legal compliance and proper corporate governance so that the station can survive past June.

    James, I urge you to do as Malki suggests and speak to those intimately involved, particularly those independent of the dispute like John Searle and Sam Tatarka (both highly regarded barristers in addition to their roles as leaders of peak community bodies). I also urge you to read the Broadcasting Services Act, the Tax Act, The Corporations Act and the Associations Incorporation Act. You will find that the current executive, despite the best efforts of the President, is in breach of all of them.

    I too love Lion, and I want to see it flourish. But community radio stations don’t operate in vacuums. They are subject to strict legal regulation. Failure to comply with all the legal requirements pretty much guarantees that a station will not survive. It’s that simple. If you also love Lion and want to see it survive and flourish, you should get behind the push to make it properly compliant. Otherwise, this entire endeavour will have been a fantastic opportunity squandered!

  • James Monroe says:

    Wow, the righteousness overflows.
    Malki, the fact that you cannot see how one-sided your article is, shows how skewed your opinion is.

    Bram, I will be sure to whip out my well worn copies of the Broadcasting service act, the Tax act, the Corporations act and the Associations act. In fact I think I shall take the day off so that I can consume that wonderful reading material. You are so full of it.
    I was unfortunate enough to catch an episode of your program. It was complete garbage; two middle aged men talking about their opinions. I would suggest you do the public a favor and stop trying to get that program back on air.

    Hopefully someone from the other side will comment here soon so that we can hear both sides to this.

  • Bram Presser says:

    James, there is no point making this personal. I fully acknowledge my interests, unlike others who have sought to involve themselves in this dispute, particularly on this website. Indeed, I don’t pretend that I am not party to one side and, as such, don’t expect you to automatically believe what I say. I am merely suggesting that you do the decent thing and consult the impartial parties – the legislation, and the various heads of the Jewish community who are interested only in a long-term, viable radio station. Why, when there is a call to impartiality and rational decision making do some people fight so hard to avoid so doing? Refusal to consider all sides and, particularly, those sources that do not have a side does a disservice to any contributor’s argument.

    As for my show, I don’t need you to like it. Many did. Others didn’t. That is the beauty of community radio. There will be a diverse range of programs to entertain/inform/etc people from all walks of life. So while you switch off my show, others will tune in and that goes for every other show on the station. As for middle-aged, I think Adam would take exception to that. And me? Well, at the ripe old age of 35 I am reaching for my zimmer frame as I write.

  • Newsmaker says:

    [Eds: this comment has been removed because it was posted from the same internet connection as another commenter on this thread. The commenter has previously been contacted by email at the address provided because of similar behaviour on another thread and has failed to confirm their identity. Therefore, in order to prevent the creation of a false impression of consensus, all comments from Newsmaker are currently being suspended. If the commenter would like to dispute this, they may contact the editors by email.]

  • Yaron says:

    I am just wondering how you can have a community radio station with no one volunteering to be on the air. The grid as it stands is almost empty, but the grid could have been filled several times over with all the people (myself included) who have been alienated.

    We could claim that this is the fault of those that left, but most of those that I spoke to felt there was a toxic atmosphere in the station often starting with the executive and filtering down to all parts of the station. If employee turnover is as high as it is in Lion logic would suggest that a closer look at the management is warranted

  • Ilana Leeds says:

    B’H
    I am so glad that Lion FM continues to preserve its integrity by refusing to bow to the bullying of the power hungry left wing elements that seek to pervert and destroy a functioning democratic voice in the Jewish community. They might then become like Galus Australis and refuse to publish anything that was slightly critcal or disagreeable to their particular viewpoint.
    My comments are under moderation because some certain individuals do not like my views despite those views being in no way a call for hatred or acts of malice against anyone or any particular group.
    I would be very wary of certain individuals who have a very cruel and definite agenda and also quite a foul and vulgar way of expressions. I am sure that Lion FM seeks to have shows that are family orientated and shows that are suitable for all the family to listen to and that such shows are also of interest to others as well without offending anyone.
    Keep up the good work Galus and Shosh I love listening to your shows. By the way, seeing as how Shoshanna Silcove and even myself have been denigrated and treated on this site, it is no wonder people are fighting tooth and nail not to have the station taken over by left wing elements who would stiffle debate and push their own agenda at the expense of democratic freedom.

  • Malki Rose says:

    What democratic freedom Ilana?

    There is no membership structure at Lion FM? There is no corporate governance. How is it functioning? The company is insolvent and in breach of legislation and its own constitution.

    Perhaps read my article properly. You’ll note that I state clearly that both and left AND right wing, non-orthodox AND orthodox have been sidelined by Lion.

    I am not sure where the obsessive insistence that everyone on this site is left wing and anti-zionist comes from.

    In fact there are at least 23 right wing zionists that have walked away from Lion.

    Do you think that the JCCV (the Jewish roof body!) and SZC (which stands for State ZIONIST Council) would have stepped in to recommend that the executive change their ways if it wasn’t a matter of absolute urgency?

    Ilana, we ALL want a radio station for the Jewish community, and there are so many great programs that have aired and have yet to air, but Lion simply will not be granted a permanent license in its current state.

    This has nothing to do with anyone BUT the executive, and the JCCV and the SZC have made this abundantly clear to them.

    As I’ve recommended to “James”, if you are dissatisfied with the current evidence please contact them or Mr Kraus or Mr Rehak.

  • @Ilana – “left wing elements that seek to pervert .. a functioning democratic voice”? Last time I checked, functioning democracies give a voice to the left, the right and everything in between!

  • Michael says:

    Unfortunately David the pushy left which have a monopoly in the media and Blogaspehere have some weird notion that only their views should be listened to it is they that try to intimidate and silence debate usually by name calling.
    This Blog site is a typical example .

  • Aaron says:

    Michael – How? This site in particular, I mean? I don’t understand how you reach your conclusion that “this blog site is a typical example”. Please explain!

  • frosh says:

    Michael,

    Have you, or some of the other commenters you share this accusation with, ever stopped to do even a casual audit of what is published on this website?

    I’d be interested to hear how you construct such recent articles as “Obsessive Compulsive Israel Disorder” as fitting into into your understanding that this site only publishes content fitting into the left-wing world view.

    The nice thing is that many members of the far-left brigade often criticise Galus Australis as being part of the conservative or “right-wing” establishment.

    Finally, knowing the author of this article on Lion FM as I do, I can assure you that she is hardly a left-winger. She is, however, for a higher standard of corporate governance in community institutions. Aren’t you?

  • Why did the JCCV and the SZC step in? To save LionFM? From what? From itself? Because only THEY know how to run Jewish organisations? Because without their experience and expertise LionFM cannot survive? Because they care so much about its future? If they did indeed care so much about its future then why are they acting so destructively? Why don’t they actually volunteer and get some work done, offer up their resources and services and contacts? No, they don’t do that, instead they embark on a smear campaign, using disgruntled ex-volunteers like Malki or other pawns like Amit Rehak. Instead they embark on a campaign of divide and conquer, and try to split the board by attempting to create divisiveness. They attempt this by siding with and backing its president against all the other board members. What gives them the right to get involved with another organisation and expect it to do their bidding?
    There are alot of things the SZVC and the JCCV could be doing if they really cared about the stations’s success, but they aren’t doing any of them. Know why? Cause they really don’t care about the station’s success at all. Not at all! Unless of course it is they who are the ones in charge of it. That is the holy garb they wrap themselves in, the holy garb of coming to the station’s rescue, to cloak their true agenda of wanting to take full control of the station for themselves.

    Catagorically, no one can prove that LionFM has an legal problems with ACMA or the Broadcasting authorities or any government body. Know why? Cause it doesn’t! Catagorically no one can prove that LionFM is insolvent. Know why? Cause it just ‘aint so!

    If the JCCV, the SZV, Malki Rose, Amit Rehak, Bram Presser, and anyone else who feels that LionFM is rotten are really so unhappy with it, then let them go and get their own license and make their own radio station. No one is stopping them. In the meantime, they are so wrong to be doing what they are doing, to be making this power grab, to be working to undermine the station, because they are not working in the interests of the community but out of their own personal self- motivated naked ambition and power lust. Shame on them! Shame! Shame! Shame!

  • James Monroe says:

    Malki, Bram,
    I did some extensive research today. I spoke to many individuals who are part of, as well as many people who are not part of Lion FM.

    I’ll put this plainly:
    There is ZERO EVIDENCE of the station being “now insolvent and in its final days”, “$40,000 in debt”, “a series of general tax and GST related implications” and “a host of other technical and ongoing legal concerns.” I have gotten this information from the people involved at the “coal face” and did some proper research, the research you should have done before publishing this article.

    Frankly, whoever has told you these “facts,” led you down “the garden path.” I feel sorry for you that whoever told you this used you and used your anger to makes you their spokesperson. You really have been fed some bad information. (Think about what fact actually is and ask yourself if you do actually have any fact.)

    Malki, your article is libel. The fact that you are prepared to put your name on such an article amazes me. (Unless your name is not really Malki.) You should really think about a retraction. You simply cannot pass this type of slander over as fact.

    By the way, from what I heard, Amit Rehak was never the station manager either.

  • James Monroe says:

    Sorry, my comment was for Malki only. I was originally going to reply to Bram and Malki, hence the “Malki, Bram,” at the start.

  • frosh says:

    James,

    Who would you believe?

    People who put their real name to their statements, or someone who uses a different fake name with every single thread?

  • James Monroe says:

    Frosh,

    I too judge people on whether they use their real name on the internet.

    You seem like a guy who now knows what an IP Address is and thinks he invented the Internet.

  • Malki Rose says:

    James,

    While I applaud the fact that you sought to consult with others outside of this blog,
    I suspect you have spoken to the wrong person or people, and short of your clear ability to write in english and accuse people of slander, your “revelations” are unhelpful.

    They do not aid the Lion FM cause in any way.

    Assumably you will not disclose with whom you spoke, would that be correct?

    I suggested you speak with the current president, the ex-station manager and the impartial community bodies of the JCCV and the SZC. (Their only bias being that they are pro-Jewish and pro-Zionist, respectively, and therefore serve the Jewish Community interests as a whole.)

    I am not sure that “speaking” to various individuals is sufficient to term it “research”.

    James, you should be very careful about referring to some of the information I have mentioned as “libel” or “Slander”, especially considering there is a significant paper trail of evidence and audio recordings of meeting minutes, remarks, and financial and legal documentation to support the content of my article.

    There is also much documentation from the executive which attests to Amit Rehak being the Station Manager.

    Once again I would recommend that you seek evidence from, at the very least, the impartial parties.

    Until such time as you are happy to engage in a fair and balanced discussion with transparency I will be unable to respond to your remarks, as this is becoming circuitous and pointless, and sadly detracting from the urgent issue at hand.

  • James Monroe says:

    Malki,

    This will be my last post. You are correct that this has become circuitous.

    You assume incorrectly that I did not speak to the “correct” people. As I said previously, I believe that you are being fed disinformation. You are possibly being manipulated and I think you need to act with more thought and less passion. Perhaps you need to speak to these “correct” people yourself and not rely on second-hand information.

    I am far less involved in this issue then you and am prepared to accept that either party may be at fault. That being said, my initial reaction was that the organisation is young, mistakes will be made and it’s always easy to stand on the sidelines and criticise. Furthermore, I believed that if they got the license, it’s theirs to keep and theirs to lose. If they don’t want you, bow out gracefully. Now, after what I have found out during the course of today, the “facts” that you presented are baseless. Even if there are recordings and financial and legal documentation, you should not be privy to them. You admittedly are not part of the organisation and if these items were provided to you by someone within the organisation, the person who provided them to you could have some serious problems. (To what extent, I don’t know.)

    I have no personal issue with you, I don’t know you, but I believe you are too emotionally involved with this to be “reporting” on the issue. I have no truck not talking about this again and as I said, this will be my last post.

    At this stage the license is probably lost, but the truth is, you and your follow detractors did more damage than most. You played it wrong and everyone lost.

  • larry stillman says:

    I’m not going to add anything to this discussion except for and attempt at humour to lighten up some some the rather fringe accusations being made.

    I find it hilarious that a crucial tape recording failed ( where is the technical competence at a the station? ): “the tape that was supposed to be recording minutes of the meeting, …. inexplicably failed.”

    This episode reminds me of the role of Rosemary Woods. Rosemary who? She played a minor, but significant role in covering up for Richard Milhouse Nixon by accidentally deleting 18 1/2 minutes of incriminating tapes through impossible gymnastics– reaching back for the phone and pressing a tape delete button at the same time–see the famous image here. http://rogerhollander.wordpress.com/2009/01/27/are-the-14-million-found-white-house-emails-the-new-watergate-tapes/. Perhaps there is a similar degree of misconstrued auctoritas going on. Or am I being paranoid as well…

    I admit to knowing one presenter socially, and I think she does a great non-political job. But the rest….governance and adherence to the broadcasting act etc is critical.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Larry,

    Sadly an hilarious and accurate comparison.

    I totally agree, there are several wonderful presenters involved with Lion FM. In fact several months back there were many more. So many wonderful talents, young and old, orthodox and reform, left and right wing, even many somewhere in the middle of all those ridiculous ‘categories’ which often divide the Jewish community, would sit in programming meetings together and agree to disagree and work creatively together to build a community station. For a while there it was looking like a great opportunity to unite and build a cohesive whole out of what is ordinarily fractured.

    But if its not legal, structured, democratic or functional, then sadly all those wonderful assets will be lost.

    Silly ‘Rosemary’.

  • Kovi Rose says:

    Having spent the past week out of the country, i was beginning to feel out of the Jewish Community loop.
    Having spent the past 20 minutes reading this piece and the both legitimate and absurd comments on it, i feel like i’m right back in it.
    To begin with i was in israel for most of 2010, at when i arrived there Lion Fm was taking its first steps, and by the time i returned to Australia the station appeared to be in total chaos.
    Malki, i want to applaud your efforts to bring this issue to the attention of the wider Jewish Community. Lion has the potential of being a vital organ and useful tool of the community, it would truly be wantonly wasteful for us to not act immediately in order save it.
    Bram, you too were doing a great job at Lion, and i think you and Adam make a dynamite combination.
    Ilana, i feel like you have a lot to add intellectually but are entirely wrong to assume that Galus “refuse[s] to publish anything that was slightly critcal or disagreeable to their particular viewpoint”. The beauty of Galus is that it is designed as an entirely pluralistic and non-politcal entity, just look at the multitude of different writers that publish pieces for it.
    James Monroe, i feel that perhaps you picked the wrong site to mindlessly bicker upon. Galus Australis is a respectable site and does not deserve people like you coming in and arguing for the sake of arguing. Find a new hobby?

    P.S: Silly Rosemary

  • If you Malki, are going to go online and write slander against people who are working tirelessly and are giving of themselves selflessly to LionFm on behalf of the community, then I believe you become fair game to be exposed as well.

    Malki, you present yourself as altruistic in motive, as someone who worked tirelessly for the radio, as a dedicated idealist with principles. You portray yourself(and your supporters) as having the correct vision for the radio, as being extremely competent and capable and possessed with the experience and ability to build the radio station–all qualities that you assert your opponents lack. You publicly malign and slander the board members (and their supporters) as incompetents who have nefarious intentions. I also attended some of those early meetings. The black and white good guys vs bad guys portrait you paint is far from what I saw. I saw that you Malki, while indeed a tireless worker for the radio in those days, could be stubborn, hard to get along with, tempestuous, and arrogant. I recall several conversations you had with me outside the meetings in which you expressed your frustrations, screaming and cussing about your regret about ‘working with Jews’ whom you saw as difficult because they would not always fall in line with how you wanted things to be. You wanted to shape the radio in your image and really did not show a whole lot of tolerance for those who had a different outlook. You felt that you deserved to be a person of authority because you worked hard for it and truth be told you often feel you know better. And your inability to work well with some of the other volunteers resulted in you resigning from LionFM. That was your decision which you are obviously still stewing in anger over and regret. Instead of staying and working our your differences with others you chose to bail out. Now you are lashing out and blaming others because you see you may have made a mistake in resigning.

    Your assertion that the board’s actions cause 23 volunteers to walk away from the radio is inaccurate. As I recall it, not all of those volunteers were so dedicated to begin with. A good number of those people came to the meetings, got all fired up about making radio shows, and then when it came to buckling down and doing the nitty gritty hard work they suddenly lost interest and found they had other important things to do. Some of those people were also not exactly individuals who had the the type of tempermants needed to work well in a community organisations. And others among those who left the radio were riled up against the board by agitators, you among them, who wanted to win a power struggle and have control and force the board’s hand on several key issues. When they saw the board remained united and would not bend to their pressure, they simply gave up and left.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Kovi,
    It’s actually kind of interesting that your year away gives you that perspective of this as an an unfortunate Corleone-esque ‘rise and fall’ of what was meant to be a great and proud community entity.

    K’she’amar….

    “Yavesh Ka’cheresh kochi…..Ki savavuni kelavim, adat mere’im, hi’kifuni, k’ARI yadai v’raglai”.

    Poor “Michael C”.

  • michael says:

    Malki , slightly obsessed with this issue ?

    Perhaps you can put up the funds and have all your supporters start your own radio program ?

  • Malki Rose says:

    Thanks Michael,
    I’ll put it to my evil cabal of left-wing jihadists and see if we can come up with a suitable red, white and black arm bands to match our pink propaganda tutus.

  • michael says:

    [Eds: Inane and irrelevant comment about an individual who has no relation to this article removed.]

  • Newsmaker says:

    [Eds: this comment has been removed because it was posted from the same internet connection as another commenter on this thread. The commenter has previously been contacted by email at the address provided because of similar behaviour on another thread and has failed to confirm their identity. Therefore, in order to prevent the creation of a false impression of consensus, all comments from Newsmaker are currently being suspended. If the commenter would like to dispute this, they may contact the editors by email.]

  • Kovi to Malki says:

    haha…
    “don’t be stupid be a smarty, come and join the pink tutu party”

  • frosh says:

    Michael,

    I’m still waiting for you to address my question…

  • Atoz says:

    I am happy that there are some who wishing to walk on the gay side with their pink tutus.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Atoz,
    Hehehe, perhaps
    Pink often reflects an assortment of embracing and positive things predominantly love, lightheartedness, grace and kindness.
    I suppose my point was that the painting of those of us who desire inclusivity and integrity as being evil, hateful and fascist is entirely incongruous.

    But I suppose that both readers and time will decide for itself.

    Kovi, watch out! “MK” may sue you for that remark! ;-P

  • Malki Rose says:

    Zeddy Lawrence has also reported on this issue in the AJN.

    It’s interesting to note that he has sought comment from Mr Khoen as well as Mr Kraus, and Mr Searle.

    It is clear that Mr Khoen’s executive are all stepping away. (If it wasn’t already)

  • Eds: Unsubstantial, bigoted, and generally offensive comment removed.

  • michael says:

    If You read the AJN article it appears Khoen repeated my question a few days ago to all those that have gone out of their way to bring the radio station down..

    ”Why didn,t those people set up a community radio station, and if they want one now, why don’t they apply to set up their own station..

    I guess this is directed at Malki, Frosh, Bram and other ”comraades” who share their own worldy view.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Michael,

    I totally agree that if there are a group of individuals who would like to set up a radio station for a different purpose than that of an already established one, they should of course do so.

    What you don’t seem to understand is that every single person who came on board Lion to work with and for it, wanted to do so because they agreed with the Lion FM (MJR) objectives and goals, as laid out in their own constitution. (I would be happy to email you a copy of the constitution, so you can see for yourself.)

    Lion FM was set up to represent, reflect and encourage involvement from the entire Victorian Jewish community.

    They have not done this. The primary reason for this is because in the year that they have been running they have not established any method for allowing membership.

    Even the President of the JCCV Mr John Searle was refused membership.

    There are only 10 Members of Lion FM, including the new President Mr John Kraus.

    Accordingly they are in breach of the Broadcasting Services Legislation, ACMA guidelines and their own constitution.

    5 of the members of the executive have already publicly and privately stated that they recognise this fact. 1 member of the executive stated that he was stepping down, and the board refused to accept his resignation. This week 2 more members of the board have stated that they are considering stepping down as well.

    It is extremely important to understand that NOBODY wants this sort of dysfunctionality to occur in a community organisation. We all became involved because we were passionate about the Jewish Community and about being an integral part of such a wonderful initiative.

    To date, the remaining board members believe, and have stated, that they did not set up the station for the ENTIRE Jewish community. But for another purpose, to be an opposing voice to Left wing and anti-Israel sentiment.

    While they are entitled to set up a radio station for this purpose (and it is as valid a purpose as any other), they are not entitled by law to obtain a community license if it will not serve THE WHOLE community.

    There is an integral difference between a COMMERCIAL and COMMUNITY license.

    In other words Michael…

    THIS IS THE BOTTOM LINE

    It is not the 160 producers, hosts, writers, engineers, teachers, rabbis, community leaders and individuals that walked away from Lion who are required to “go and get their own license”.. but rather it is Mr Khoen who, if he wanted to utilise the medium of radio to give a voice to a single view, was required to purchase a COMMERCIAL license. THEN he would be entitled to use that license for whatever he had purchased it for… and nobody would have a right to comment on that.

    Sadly for the whole Jewish community, the community license was sought under false pretenses. We all had every reason to believe that every single Yid was welcome at Lion FM. Especially when told that its motto was to be “many tribes, one voice” and then “the voice of the Melbourne Jewish Community”.

    You need to recognise that if so very many people, both orthodox and reform, right wing and left wing, leaders of the community and even members of its own board are WALKING AWAY and that many TOTALLY IMPARTIAL parties, such as the JCCV and the State Zionist Council are urging Mr Khoen to make changes, and even this fails…… that something is extremely wrong.

    NOBODY wanted this to fail! Nobody!
    Everybody wants a Jewish Community Radio Station that we can all be proud of!

  • I just saw this Lion FM event on Facebook, posted by Midnight Mike:

    RE: Open Membership, Full board spill and election to be called

    The only way forward my friends is this, we open membership immediately (NOT in SIX months time) any person who signs the membership form agreeing to the constitution and pays the membership fee ($36) becomes a member …with full voting rights.

    The Executive is spilled ALL board position are now considered vacant (that is all 13 of them) the station goes into election mode so to speak and open a fair election are then called.

    We would need some help with running this election but no one who will be re-standing can be involved outside maybe the Secretary who would properly have to have some ad-ministerial role. As for the finer points of the election process I would leave this up to the Secretary.

    The people will get to have their say and the democratic process that we all do agree on is the only way forward, otherwise we are no better than that Colonel in Libya.

    Let us end this endless quarrelling, let democracy do its work and
    move forward and let the people genuinely decide.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Michael,
    This is not quite accurate.
    I know that this is what Midnite Mike would like (I spoke with him at great length about it), as would most everyone, but the process for membership is a little more complicated than that.

    Membership is not just a matter of signing a form and paying the fee.. and then being accepted.

    Each applicant needs to be ‘recommended’ by another member of the station.
    These recommendations are then put before the board and the board has to assess each of these nomination and then vote on whether or not they feel that the person should be granted membership.

    The executive CANNOT be spilled without first having sufficient membership.

  • Malki Rose says:

    actually each application requires TWO recommedations.

  • Silver Becher says:

    Malki Rose was never forced or encouraged by anyone to leave Lion. Malki resigned of her own accord. If today she decides to return, no one will stop her. All she has to do is sign the volunteer agreement and like anyone else she can be part of the station.
    The same is true of Bram Presser. Mr. Presser agreed while he was in Israel this past summer that when he returned to Australia that he would sign the volunteer agreement. He then reneged on his agreement and never signed it. The rule is that anyone who wants to be a volunteer must sign it. Bram Presser wrote in emails (can be proven)to the board that he would sign when he returned and he did not stick to this. No one kept him from being a volunteer or having a radio show. Like the same with Malki, if he signs it he can have a show. Bram and Malki are not a part of Lion by choice.

    Malki is spending her time ranting and raving about how she disagrees with how Lion is being run but she is not even a part of it, so why is she spending all her time freaking out over an organisation she left? It would be like if I, who is not a member of ShalomTV, would be spending my days ranting and raving about how I am so upset about the board at Shalom TV. What would it have to do with me? Isn’t it a bit odd that someone would spend their time ranting about how an organisation should be run when they are not even in that organisation?

    Malki can make up anything she wants and spread it all over the internet, it doesn’t make it true.Why should anyone belive her? And why should anyone believe the article in the Australian Jewish News when the very next day John Searle was interviewed on Lion and said he loves Lion!

    Why would John Krauz, the President of Lion go to the press and sling mud at his own organisation? Why would a President of any organisation who has any integrity run around to other communal leaders divulging confidential information and making his organisation look bad? Isn’t this a betrayal? Any President who feels so little respect for the other members of the board should just quietly resign. It seems as if John Krauz wants to hurt the organisation. If he wanted to help it he would give it good public relations and good press coverage to raise money. There is much about all this that really smells.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Yes Silver Becher,

    Like you, who repeatedly visits this site and under an array of pseudonyms (although we all know who you are) makes personal attacks at individuals.

    I see what you are suggesting.

    If a woman is badly beaten by an abusive husband, she should not report it or take action. Instead, you suggest, she should quietly lie down and take it.

    What you are doing is akin to the abusive husband insisting that it is NOT HE but rather his wife who has destroyed the marriage and torn about the family because she spoke up.

    This is called bullying.

  • eli says:

    I am little confused! maybe its because it’s 1.45 am.
    How is it possible to have a large and wide ranging membership if the only way you can be a member is to nominated by 2 other members and then you have to be accepted by the other members.

    This sounds very archaic not to mention cumbersome and designed to be exclusive. Masonic lodges work on the same principle. It’s used to ensure that the membership is a homogeneous group.

    Is this specific to Lion or all community stations?

  • Eli,

    The Lion FM membership application process looks like it has been designed to keep people out instead of bring them in. It is not especially friendly, welcoming or inclusive. Have a look at the membership application form here.

    I haven’t yet seen another community radio station here in Melbourne with a similar membership application process, although they may exist. Feel free to check them out.

    I do know however that JOY, the one radio station I was a member of for many years, has a very simple and transparent membership application process. Have a look at their membership application page and form by comparison. Barely a mention of the constitution and no prerequisites or bureaucratic hurdles to overcome. Even the station’s constitution places no constraints on the membership.

    One of the keys to a successful community radio station is a strong and healthy membership base.

    Michael.

  • Silver Becher says:

    Now let me get this straight Malki Rose. You take it upon yourself to go on the rampage publicly against LionFm, an organisation which, out of your own choice, you have no part in, and go all over the net decimating and destroying the reputation of board members, who are toiling and giving of their time and resources to the station, and yet you claim that YOU are the victim? Who exactly is the abused one here? Are the board members defaming you as you are defaming them? The board did not throw you out, you resigned. You never attack people? Really? What do you call this article? This article is a fierce attack on people. The board never defamed you, even though they would be fully justified to. Don’t try and play the “I am the persecuted innocent victim card” because it no one believes it but you.

    Malki Rose, Bram Presser and their group are a small minority. The majority of the Jewish community are supporters of LionFm and are pro-Israel and are very happy with the way the station is being run. This is clear from the amount of well wishers contacting the station and showing their support.

    There is the famous story of King Solomon, the wisest King of Israel, about the two women who both claimed a baby was theirs. King Solomon ordered the baby brought before him where he then said the solution would be to cut the baby in half. The authentic mother cried out in agony at that suggestion, but the pretend mother was happy to see the baby destroyed. If she could’t have the baby then she would rather it be dead. The same is true here of these loud but small band of malcontents who would rather destroy the radio because they can’t have it. They will not succeed though. The silent majority of the Jewish community is not behind them.

  • Malki Rose says:

    It’s unfortunate for the community that you see it that way.

  • Ilana Leeds says:

    B”H

    Just had a sqizzie at the application form for LionFM. Be b*ggered if I can see what Michael Barnett finds so objectionable about it. It looks perfectly kosher to me and others who have viewed it.

    It is true some people more than others can be very obsessive and possessive about what they feel they should own. Also those who follow a fringe lifestyle should not endeavour to steamroll everyone into accepting that they are the ‘norm’ and we are the ‘odd ones out’.
    I mean all things could be acceptable and all means of gathering information kosher if we did not set some sort of boundaries on what is acceptable on the airways and on TV and in print. Galus for example has a very active censorship crew.

  • michael says:

    Unfortunately Silver Becher those on the left have more time up their sleeves to push their own agenda.
    It appears the left have won in the case of Lion FM and will eventually get their way and ad yet another anti- Israel voice to the over crowded Anti -Zionist market place Of course all this will be done in the name of free speech we all know free speech means you are able vilify Jews , Israelis , Zionists and the Jewish community all you want but not Arabs or Muslims as that goes under the heading Racism ,islamaphobia and intolerance which is their clever way of shutting down debate.

    We have also see the left take over the Alma Rd Muslim prayer room debate , once again all the vocal Muslim support group like the anti Lion FM actvisst all from the left/ far left side of politics.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Ilana,
    There are only 3 rather glaring problems with the current application which make the status of ‘Open Membership’ disingenuous.

    1) To become a member, you have to have 2 current members recommend you as appropriate. Considering there are only 13 members of the ‘association’, how is it possible that they can be in a position to recommend every individual that applies? There are how many Jews in Australia that those 13 don’t know at all???

    2) The application includes the extra measure of not only requiring 2 people to recommend them, but also that once recommended, the application must then be presented to the board for them to discuss and vote on whether they should be admitted. They may set aside applications of those they deem to be ‘problematic’ for further discussion. The entire process is intended to take up to 60 days.

    3) The function of the application structure and process is designed to allow ‘stacking’.

    Michael,
    Who on earth are these “lefties” you keep referring to??? Are you unable to read english clearly? The head of the ZIONIST Council of Victoria, Mr Sam Tatarka, has been refused membership.
    Tell me please Michael who the anti-Zionist is?

  • @Malki – your “glaring problems” 1 & 2 are the standard way members join an incorporated association, according to the model rules. Once members join and are approved, they in turn can nominate others to join, …

  • David,

    Whilst I am not an expert on constitutions, I have been involved with a number of incorporated associations and I have seen that an incorporated association’s constitution may vary significantly from that described in the Model Rules that you present as “standard”.

    As I have shown, the membership process for community radio station JOY 94.9 does not require two people to nominate a prospective member. Examples of other Melbourne-based community radio stations and/or incorporated associations that have a membership application that does not require two people to nominate the prospective member include: AGMC Inc, 3PBS, 3ZZZ and Southern FM.

    Given those successful (in terms of actually having operated for a number of years and/or gained a full-time broadcast license) organisations that have simple membership application processes, why would an aspiring radio station want to adopt a “standard” membership model that makes it near impossible for anyone in or aligned with the Jewish community to become members?

    Michael.

  • Malki Rose says:

    In a functional association, for sure.

    Note the calibre of individual being refused membership. JCCV President, John Searle, ECAJ Dr Danny Lamm, and ZCV Sam Tatarka.

    1 & 2 are only viable if the organ is functioning with sufficient adherence to its other model rules.

    There is a bit of a case of ‘pick and choose’ at the moment.

  • Silver Becher says:

    My mother always told me not to take anything anyone says on face value but to do my own due diligence. I did my research and this is what I found out:

    1) Malki and her supporters have their own (protest) radio station meetings. Only about maybe ten people attend. Only about three to five people tops write against LionFm on blogs. This means they have very little support in the community. The majority of the community is happy with LionFM and it’s rapidly growing. This makes it hardly a dysfunctional association.

    2) John Searle, John Krauz, Danny Lam and Sam Tatarka were never denied membership. I think they are all big boys and don’t need Malki Rose to speak for them. Anyway, I did my research, asked around, and found out the whole story. A few months ago the board actually voted to defer the memberships of JS, JK, DL, and ST until a later date. This decision was to defer their memberships until the membership process was open to the entire public. The opening of memberships happened just this week. This decision was totally legal and fair. No one could argue differently.

    3) There is nothing discriminatory or illegal about the membership process or policy. This is an extremely common way of offering memberships. Many communal organisations use this membership policy model and it is totally within the bounds of the station’s constitution and the law. The fact that Malki and Bram and Michael Barnett and the seven other people at those (protest) radio meetings don’t like it is irrelevant. No one is forcing them to join. It is their free choice to not join as it is completely democratic.

    4) John Searle, Sam Tatarka and Danny Lam are not in agreement with John Krauz on several crucial issues including John Krauz’s divisive moves against the other LionFm board members.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Silver Becher,

    You do your mother’s advice little justice. Your source is too invested to give you accurate information. Perhaps the impartial sources I mentioned 50 posts ago would be worth speaking to, evidently you’ve not bothered seeking objective information.

    You actually have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. And it is frankly hilarious.

    Not to mention your ‘elders of Zion’ approach towards those who take issue with the stations running.

    Your attack on me demonstrates why so many others are silent. As whomever has the courage to speak becomes the shot messenger.

    Perhaps this bullying approach works on others, but sadly for you, your bullying flacidly fails with me.

    I would love, no, am aching to hear your justification for why 3 very sudden applications were brought to last weeks meeting, voted on and passed successfully without any need for deferment.

    In your infinite wisdom of the events, care to explain why these individuals were brought on as members without hesitation, while the leaders of the Jewish community were refused or ‘deferred’.

    And how it is that those 3 ‘special cases’ were submitted and accepted a week before application for membership was even opened to the Jewish community.

    All this in the context of the board’s insistence that all membership applications will require 60 days to process.

    Perhaps the audio recording of the meeting should be placed online so that the community can make up their own minds on what transpired.

    I shan’t engage with you further Silver Becher, primarily because you aren’t listening, and we are going around in circles and ultimately because I don’t have discussions with people who haven’t the decency to introduce themselves, but who are happy to hurl ‘bold’ subjective statements from behind the shield of cowardly anonymity.

    Although assumably futile, I wish you hatzlacha in your success for truth.

  • eli says:

    It would seem logical to have a membership system that is relevant to the type of “association” that is being formulated. As I stated in an earlier post, the existing format works well in say a model such as a Masonic Lodge, where this kind of membership is the norm.

    The premise is the existing members wish to have “like minds” or a specific type of member. However associations of this kind tend to have small groups since the criteria for joining is very specific.

    A community radio station depends on a broad base for support and therefore a complicated or limited membership process only limits the growth and strength of its membership and ultimately its supporter base.

    It is incumbent on a community radio station to ensure that its members represent the broadest possible spectrum of interested parties. The members will therefore decide the final character of the station based on whom they vote to have manage it.

    It may be that the final composition of a board is not what the original organising committee may have envisioned. However this is the nature and strength of a pluralistic,democratic community.

    To have it any other way would diminish the value of the station as a communal voice.

    The founders of most democratic countries also had to live with the fact that in the end the people would decide who would govern them.

    The original organisers should be proud of the work they have done in bringing this wonderful resource to the advantage of the community. However like most public endeavours they do not own it and should graciously give sway to the greater good, as much as it may pain them to do so.

    Most importantly they should remain actively engaged and not retreat simply because the result may not be quite the vision they had.

  • Malki Rose says:

    Eli,
    You summed it up perfectly.

    The initiative is fantastic and should be applauded, encouraged and nurtured.

    But a ‘community license’ simply must reflect the community.

    MJR is currently NOT functioning as a community entity. They can shout otherwise from any platform both online and otherwise, but all the shouting and insistence in the world will not make it so.

    There is only one reflection of it being ‘backed by the community’.

    Genuine open membership to the entire Jewish Community is the only way that MJR can truly call themselves the ‘voice of the Jewish people’.

    Ours is a strong Jewish community which simply will not settle for anything less than that.

  • Asher Wolf says:

    Actually I suspect it’s somewhat easier to become a member of a Masonic Lodge than to actually become a member of Lion FM right now.

    Which brings me to my point: does Lion FM’s management wish to run a radio station or a small, close-knit circle of insiders like a cult?

    The entire saga of how Lion FM went sour is a fable of all that sucks about vicious community politics – and how it disables the Jewish community from publicly expressing a vibrant, diverse voice.

  • In the ACMA document “Temporary community broadcasting licence guidelines” under Section 3 “Who can apply for a temporary licence – Organisational Structure” it says:

    An applicant for a temporary licence should be a not-for-profit, locally-based, representative organisation. It should have clearly defined purposes and transparent, non-discriminatory membership rules.

    The current membership application form requires the applicant to be personally known to two existing members. To my understanding that prerequisite discriminates against people who don’t know two existing members.

    In the ACMA document Community Broadcasting Participation Guidelines under Section 5.3 “WHY IS MEMBERSHIP IMPORTANT? – What is open membership?” it says:

    What is open membership?
    Membership is open if:
     it is automatic on lodgement of a membership application form and payment of the membership fee; or
     a licensee can only refuse membership applications on the basis of specific, transparent and reasonable criteria, and there are adequate grievance or review mechanisms for rejected applicants

    It goes on to say:

    If membership of a service is overly restricted, then the licensee may not comply with the community participation requirement. This is discussed under: Can licensees have restrictions on membership?

    The ACMA‘s strong preference is for community radio broadcasting services to have open membership policies in order to encourage community participation.

    and further under “How should licensees deal with membership applications?”:

    Licensees should have clear and open procedures to ensure they follow up membership queries, process applications for membership, consider applications in a reasonable period of time, and notify applicants of the outcome of their application.

    Licensees which have rules permitting rejection of membership applications should have appropriate safeguards in place, including:  clear and reasonable criteria for rejection of membership applications; and  a requirement to give rejected applicants reasons for the decision and information
    on review or appeal options. For example, a right of reply to a membership committee and/or right to appeal the rejection at a general meeting.

    Under Section 5.4 “CAN LICENSEES HAVE RESTRICTIONS ON MEMBERSHIP?” it starts off by saying:

    The community participation requirement means that participation in a service should be open to all within the licensee‘s defined community interest.

    If restrictions on membership are unreasonable, then the licensee may not comply with the community participation requirement.

    It finishes up with:

    Licensees with membership restrictions should apply them in a way that is non-discriminatory, according to the relevant State or Federal laws—community broadcasters should not exclude any member of the communities they serve from membership. For example, a service with an ethnic community interest would have open membership for all ethnic groups in its licence area and not restrict membership to a particular ethnic or cultural group. Similarly, a service with a religious – Christian community interest would have open membership for adherents of all denominations of Christianity in its licence area and not restrict membership to adherents of a particular denomination of the Christian faith.

    To my understanding the current Lion FM membership application process is neither open nor in the spirit of community broadcasting, as described by these ACMA documents.

    Michael.

  • tom says:

    I don’t think I have yet met a single person who listens to Lion.
    I tried but gave up after struggling to find it on my home radio

  • Nadav says:

    Sorry to drag this on, but 3 fairly obvious points must be made.
    1. Malki, I hope that you are very confident in your sources and evidence, because by my rough count, you have opened yourself up to probably a dozen libel suits on your allegations of illegality alone. I believe that you would bear the onus of proving that Lion FM has breached each and every one of the laws that you claim it has, or face a potential damages claim. Same regarding the comments made about individuals.
    2. The potential for both Lashon hara and motzi shem ra operating in this discussion is very troubling. Almost regardless as to the facts, this piece is a purposive, rather than news-based, discussion of an issue, with an obvious agenda. The Jewish approach to issues has never been solely about a ‘right to know’ and i would think that this piece brings a number of people into disrepute on these grounds.
    3. If you do believe that this is a necessary- and for the right reasons- point of discussion, please keep it up to date and note that the process for elections has already been called. The responsibility for what you post doesn’t end with the initial posting.

  • Marky says:

    “The potential for both Lashon hara and motzi shem ra”

    I am not taking sides as I have no involvement. However, some of the comments have gone further than potential.

  • larry stillman says:

    Dragging religious law, or verballing with implications of religious breaches into a clearly civil matter to very clear delegated administrative law regulations is completely and utterly out of place.

    The plain English intent of the ACMA rules and guidelines is absolutely clear, and if it ended up in the appropriate civil tribunal, I bet you a bottle of Aldi champagne who would win…

  • Malki Rose says:

    Nadav,

    I am glad you have finally figured out the clear agenda.
    As if it hadn’t been already made clear for well over a year both in letters to the board directly, and in this piece.
    To open up the station to be truly reflective of the Jewish Community.

    Please read the article again. There is nothing libelous in it. I have also not made allegations. I have only referred to allegations. To the contrary, the article states unequivocally that individuals such as Yossi Ashkenazi have invested much time and energy in making the station viable and as functional as possible.

    I know that there are a handful of board members (and their families) who feel that any honest discussion on this is damaging to MJR. But as I’ve already pointed out, this has more to do with the board of MJR’s failure than whether or not I, or any other individual discuss them.

    Please read all the comments. You will see that the issue is being kept up to date wherever possible.

    You are completely correct, the article and the discussion is for the purpose of involving the community in what is supposed to be ‘their’ station. So if you believe that there is something that I or others have missed, I strongly urge you to add it.

  • My Sources Tell Me says:

    My sources tell me that the membership set up was originally created by Michael Lipshotz who resigned and not by the current executives.

    My sources tell me that 160 producers, hosts, writers, engineers, teachers, rabbis, community leaders and individuals did not walk away from Lionfm.

    My sources tell me that the meetings were well attended and that most of the people who came to the meetings did not continue volunteering.

    My sources tell me this happened for a variety of reasons and that this is common in all Jewish organisations when they start. Heaps of people come to meetings and like the idea and then later on the real volunteers are the ones who stick to it and stay and do the work.

    My sources tell me that some people’s radio program proposals were rejected because they were not up to the level the radio deserves.

    My sources tell me some radio programs were not started because some people dropped out.

    My sources tell me that some people could not arrange a time when a technician would be available so the program was never made.

    My sources tell me the executive are behaving responsibly by screening programs carefully and by having control over membership. The free and open membership Malki wants could mean that the Jewish pro Israel tone of Lionfm would be gone.

    My sources tell me that experts in the area of building community organisations know that there has to be a balance between open democracy and anarchy and the executive are striking that balance very well.

    My sources tell me that if Malki Rose and Bram Presser were in charge there would be little democracy just anarchy heaps of complaining.

    My sources tell me there are no legal problems with Lionfm and no debts and no insolvency and these are unsubstantiated falsehoods.

    My sources tell me that Malki Rose’s stated position’s of John Searle, Danny Lam and Sam tatarkah’s positions are unsubstantiated by those above mentioned parties and not to be taken as truth.

    My sources tell me that no one was banished from Lionfm.

    My sources tell me that the station is growing nicely at a steady pace and that the community response is favourable and supportive.

    Go to wwwlionfm.org.au and instead of being critical become a member and offer your help. This is the only way to get what you want on the station, to make sure every Jewish person gets a voice.

  • Malki Rose says:

    And whom exactly are your “sources”? Once again, you shan’t be including that little morsel of information, shall you?

    Malki Rose and Bram Presser have ZERO interest in being ‘in charge’. We are just two people, of many, who would like the station to be representative of the community.

    Plenty of ‘pro Israel’ content was blocked.

    I am the one who was running programming and have on my hard drive the 160 volunteer, producer & host details of their programs and level of involvement.

    Your source is either forgetting this, or is not very bright.

    Searle and Tatarka’s positions are entirely substantiated. The information I have quoted above is based on my presence in the meeting, sitting directly next to them both.

    I would not have quoted either of them if they were not true.

    Unlike yours, my sources are real.

    Some of what you’ve written is highly hypocritical, and not only violates the constitution of MJR (which you’ve obviously not read) but suggests that you therefore have not consulted with either a member of the board nor an impartial individual.

    You’ve painted the board as very exclusive, elitist and bureaucratic. They may not appreciate that.

    I don’t think you’ve been reading the earlier comments. Perhaps do so before commenting further.

  • Silver Becher says:

    What is really rotten?
    Malki, you say that you are passionate and care about the radio and that is the reason why you spend your time being consumed with and writing all about what you see as the all the wrongs of the radio board. You have not given us any proof of your claims. You have no real sources either. You only offer us your strong opinions and then say you have a data base from a whole year or more ago. Your data base proves nothing. We all can read and understand the constitution. There are dedicated people at the radio who carry on working for the benefit of the community. There are people spending their time and money to build this station and what are you doing to help them? Not a single thing. You are actually doing everything you can to foil their plans. Why would anyone who cares about seeing Jewish community radio succeed take every opportunity they can to cause the public to lose confidence in it like you do? Why would anyone who cares about seeing the radio succeed discourage people from supporting it like you have been trying to do?
    If you sat next to Lam, Searle, Tatarka, and heard what they said then why do they keep a very far distance from you by being totally silent and not agreeing or confirming your claims? I find that curious. It means what you write about the radio has no credibility with them or they would have supported you when your article was put on GA.
    Without a court of law making a proper legal opinion you cannot make the claim the constitution is being breached. Here is the constitution Malki> http://lionfm.org.au/mission.pdf it is on the website for all to see. This is transparency. Your ‘sources’ are opaque without verification. Why should anyone take your word for it?
    If you did bother to read the constituton you would notice the Lion Fm executive board does have the right to expel anyone from the station and so far they have not. Notice also that there is no requirement to record meetings on a tape, only that there be minutes. Nowhere does it say that these minutes have to be made public. Who are you to demand things that the constitution does not require? Who are you to make charges against the radio for being in breach when you are neither a member or a volunteer?
    Malki, what on earth do you want? If you want the radio to change and become better then why don’t you jump in and make your contribution?
    Malki, you are doing nothing constructive. You are working hard to damage an organisation. People who care about an organisation do not condemn it to the world and spread rubbish about. You are not a builder. You are a divider and a destroyer. Your motivation is clear. Your agenda, above all, is to prove yourself to be right at the expense of the organisation. Your actions are reprehensible and are not in the interests of the Jewish community whom you do not represent. I resent you setting yourself up as spokeswoman and representative of the community. You speak for and represent no one. Something is rotten alright, but it isn’t the Lion’s Den from whence the stench wafts.

  • rachsd says:

    Silver Becher asks Malki: “What is really rotten?”

    Well, Malki has already said what she thinks is rotten a number of times on this thread, and Mr. Becher (I assume that Silver is a male name), you have also told us why you disagree with Malki a number of times.

    I don’t know about everyone else, but I don’t think I can stomach hearing this same conversation again.

  • leedsiy says:

    B’H
    Because Malki seems to be missing something important here. I guess that is why the conversation is repetitive. ????

  • leedsiy says:

    B’H
    Discrimination is all relative in this case.

    “The current membership application form requires the applicant to be personally known to two existing members. To my understanding that prerequisite discriminates against people who don’t know two existing members.”
    So that means people who want to be a member need to find two existing members to befriend and buy lunches at Nogga or Daneli’s for, do a bit of a rectal crawl which may not be so difficult for some who have had a bit of practice from time to time.
    That membership criteria sounds very fair. What on earth are you worried about? Next you will be saying they discriminate against cockroaches because they use Mortein on them and don’t allow them the run of the kitchen.

  • Midnight Mike says:

    RE: Open Membership, Full board spill and election to be called

    The only way forward my friends is this, we open membership immediately (NOT in SIX months time) any person who signs the membership form agreeing to the constitution and pays the membership fee ($36) becomes a member with full voting rights.

    The Executive is spilled ALL board positions are now considered vacant (that is all 13 of them) the station goes into election mode so to speak and open a fair elections are then called.

    We would need some help with running this election but no one who will be re-standing can be involved outside maybe the Secretary who would properly have to have some ad-ministerial role. As for the finer points of the election process I would leave this up to the Secretary.

    The people will get to have their say and the democratic process that we all do agree on is the only way forward, otherwise we are no better than that Colonel in Libya.

    Let us end this endless quarrelling, let democracy do its work and
    move forward and let the people genuinely decide.

    (This is from the Facebook Event Page)

  • Silver Becher says:

    Some new developments with the radio station may indicate who really wants the radio to succeed and who is trying to destroy it.
    Those on this blog who have asserted that they are working in the best interests of the success of the radio are in fact working towards the opposite.

    It has come to my attention, by one of the people involved, that a dozen individuals that call themselves ‘volunteers’, among them are Malki Rose, Bram Presser, Amit Rehak, and Robert Bonchik, have sent a letter of complaint to the ACMA. The ACMA, in case you didn’t know, is the organisation that has the power to issue or to deny the radio its license. Supposedly this letter asks the ACMA to withhold the license from the Jewish community. If in fact they have sent such a letter, then it becomes unequivocally clear what I have suspected all along, and that is, that these individuals are not interested in establishing a radio station for the community. On the contrary, these individuals are determined to destroy any opportunity for Jewish radio to become an enduring reality for this community.

    I hope that the board of the radio station will stand strong against this pernicious attempt to undermine the radio’s chance to secure a license. I am writing this as a real volunteer, among dozens of other real volunteers, who is are working day and night for the success of the station, and also for the thousands of community members who appreciate our good work and want to see this project succeed.

  • Malki Rose says:

    The letter does not ask the ACMA to withhold the license from the Jewish Community.

    You ‘silver becher’, who hasn’t the decency to state your name, have obviously not seen the letter, and are making up rubbish.

    The letter states exactly the issues described in my article, in Bram’s article, in Zeddy Lawrence’s AJN article and this entire thread.

    I’ve already stated a zillion times that everyone, including the individuals you keeping painting as ‘pernicious’, wants very very much for the Jewish community to be the proud
    bearer of a wonderfully inclusive and representative Jewish radio station with a full license.

    Now please go and take your anti-psychotics before your brain explodes.

  • Silver Becher says:

    Thank you Malki Rose for proving my point!
    Malki Rose admits that this letter of complaint was indeed sent by her and her cohorts to ACMA. Why would anyone who wants to see the radio succeed in getting its license write a letter of complaint to the organisation responsible for issuing the license? It is obvious to anyone with half a brain that if one is dedicated to making sure community radio becomes an enduring reality, then one does not go to ACMA and tell them that they believe there are problems, that the radio station does not represent the Jewish community, that the board is going against the law and its constitution etc. This is only done by people who want nothing more than to make trouble. Thankfully there are only a small minority of complainers that are always looking for the negative side of things and the large majority of the Jewish cmmunity is supportive and wants to make positive contributions to build the station. This is the reason why Malki Rose, Bram Presser, Amit Rehak, Robert Bonchik and the eight other people who signed the letter of complaint are not to be taken seriously when they claim they are dedicated to the radio’s success, ther actions say otherwise

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    To everyone who has commented on this blog, I have read what you have written and feel compelled to make a few points.
    Please note this is the first time I have become involved in this site. G-d willing, it will also be my last as it may well change nothing and those who want to argue pontlessly will possibly continue to do so and those who want to seek the truth, will find they will agree with what has already been said.
    I find it interesting that a great number of the comments that have been left were either by people who have not left their real names or by poeple who were NOT involved in the running of the station, the numerous meetings and workbees that were held, in the countless meetings that were held or were those who did all the work for numerous functions.
    Sadly, there have been many comments made purely on hearsay. Now many of us who collectively contributed thousands of hours who were not only victims of much of the bulyying that took place but still have letters, emails and recordings of this bullying. Slander is only slander if it is not already public knowledge and in almost each of the instances of bullying and unconstitutional behaviour by many of those on the exec, there were multiple witnesses.
    The fact that many of us stepped back is NOT because we no longer wished to be involved with the station but because we were NOT prepared to sign our names to unconstitutional documents, be threatened with lawsuits if we spoke of any of our experiences at the hands of the executive or if in any way, we discussed what was currently transpiring at the station regardless that our intentions were to KEEP the station on air. The demands made on us are just UNHEARD of in community radio. When we told this to the exec, it was not surprising that they did not know this for none of them had any experience nor training in radio. What was regretable was that they would not believe us nor listen when others tried to reason with them. That the vice president of the staion cannot even agree with its two presidents to teh point of being at loggerheads, this cannot indicate a healthy nor democratrically run, executive council.
    It is curious that almost ALL of the volunteers who’ve felt compelled to step back until things are run with integrity in an environment that actively discourages bullying, have themselves, many years of experiecne in media and with other community radio stations. In my 8 years in radio, I have NEVER encountered what I faced in one evening with the executive. This goes for many of the other volunteers who have been patiently waiting on the sidelines to return to work in a respectful and inclusive envrionment. The only volunteers who walked away to NOT return to the station were the ones who said that were mortified by what they had experienced and that they would rather volunteer for a Jewish organization in which they were appreciated and in which people behaved kindly to each other. One of the volunteers joked: “I am not being paid enough to be yelled at like this.”
    Though it is good to have forums in which poeple get to openly voice their opinions, I am saddened that many of the comments that have been left have been made from a place of sheer (albeit possibly innocent) ignorance. I would thus repectfully request that those who were NOT in attendance at the meetings in question, who have not personally had hateful messages left on their answering machines, their facebook pages, in their email boxes or been yelled in meetings,or have dealt directly with the lawyers and radio reps regarding the unethical demands placed on volunteers, reserve their comments until they have REALLY and objectively attempted to find the truth of the situation.
    It is all too easy to yell abuse at others or to call people names but this niether increases peace, works towards resolution or improves the chances of Lion FM’s being granted a permanent license which may I add, has been the aim of ALL involved. I have worked alongside people of all different political views, of all different religious commitments and of all different personality types but I have not encountered a single person who sought the demise of the station chas ve shalom. I have though worked alongside numerous others who after having volunteered huge numbers of hours of work, been accused of trying to sabotage the station, be “like holocaust denyers”, be anti-zionist, or as I was once eloquently yelled at “who the hell do you think you are? You’re not even frum!”
    For any who doubt the truth of the above, you will find it hard to do so after listeniing to the recordings.
    Rather than anyone making personal attacks at Malki or Bram or anyone else in here who is genuinely trying to objectively present the facts, name resources with which people can check these facts and refer people to speak to credible heads of the community who put in countless hours of time and much money to benefit Melbourne’s Jewry.
    If I understand correctly, the Galus site was created for discussion; not mere bickering or slander or am I wrong?
    It is my sincere wish that if a person feels they have something constructive they wish to add, that they have the integrity to write their names in full but that if they were not in attendance at the meetings in which so much vitriol was thrown, if they have not themselves spent countless hours dealing with lawyers and speaking to those who’ve dealt with ACMA for many years and if they have not had much experience on which to rely, they check with genuine sources or speak to those who were present or listen to recordings of the aforementioned meetings before they join in the fray.
    Whether I agree with a person’s opinion or not, if it is voiced respectfully and with the aim of helping Lion FM, then that seems to me to be constructive.
    Those of us who genuinely wish Lion FM longevity and that it be a true voice for various groups within the community, have NOT left the station because we lost interest. Many of us have continued to work behind the scenes but as I said before, were forced to stand back until we could with good conscience operate under the governance of the station.
    To those who say that Malki and Bram have been very vocal yet little has been heard from others, I take my hat off to the two of them for perservering in the public forum, in an attempt to “set the story straight”. There are many of us who do not have the desire nor the fabric to enter into acrimonious dialogue and so abstain unless it serves a constructive purpose or unless it cannot be avoided. I for one fall into that category. Many of us prefer to put in the hours but to do so quietly. Do you want to hear me say “yes, all that Bram and Malki have said is true.”? Yes, I will, as will so many other volunteers who were heavily involved at the station at the time.
    May we all focus on the fact that we ALL want LION FM to succeed and that it will only succeed if it follows the rules of ACMA, is NOT insolvent, it treats its volunteers with respect and works within the aims of community radio. Those who talk a great deal in here……may you put your energy into assisting with the running of LION FM and not add fuel to the fire when you do NOT know the full story and nor have you invested time, money and energy into making it a success.
    In answer to one person’s belittling comment re Amit, please note that without Amit who loaded all the music for so many months and who went into the city and up to the tower, on an often daily basis to load the programs we made, incurring all the costs himself, LION FM would not be on air today.
    To anyone who complains about the length of the comments in here including this one, or the frequency with which some poeple write, might I suggest you simply stop reading. That is always an option but please, PLEASE can people avoid personal attacks or gratuitous bickering. It solves nothing. G-d bless.

  • Silver Becher says:

    Jackie’s comments say ‘Jackie’ before them and mine say ‘Silver Becher” before them:

    Jackie: To everyone who has commented on this blog, I have read what you have written and feel compelled to make a few points.

    Please note this is the first time I have become involved in this site. G-d willing, it will also be my last as it may well change nothing and those who want to argue pontlessly will possibly continue to do so and those who want to seek the truth, will find they will agree with what has already been said.

    I find it interesting that a great number of the comments that have been left were either by people who have not left their real names or by poeple who were NOT involved in the running of the station, the numerous meetings and workbees that were held, in the countless meetings that were held or were those who did all the work for numerous functions.

    Silver Becher: You seem not to make any sense here.
    You say that a number of posters on this site did not leave their names. If that is the case then how do you know they were not involved with the station, not at the meetings etc? You cannot know this sine, as you say, you do not know who they are, they are anonymous.

    Jackie: Sadly, there have been many comments made purely on hearsay.

    Silver Becher: And what are your comments? Aren’t they pure hearsay? Of course they are! You contradict yourself to the point of pure hypocrisy!!!

    Jackie: Now many of us who collectively contributed thousands of hours who were not only victims of much of the bulyying that took place but still have letters, emails and recordings of this bullying. Slander is only slander if it is not already public knowledge and in almost each of the instances of bullying and unconstitutional behaviour by many of those on the exec, there were multiple witnesses.

    Silver Becher: Who are you representing? Who are you speaking for?
    Who appointed you spokeswoman for other unknown people? And if there were real bullying going on, if you all have emails and letters and recordings like you claim, then why didn’t the so called victims take the bullies to court? Why spread it all over the press and the internet? What could that achieve? Could it be because it is all a load of rubbish? I attended quite a few of those meetings and I did not witness any bullying at all. I witnessed arguing, but no bullying so, cut the rubbish.

    Jackie: The fact that many of us stepped back is NOT because we no longer wished to be involved with the station

    Silver Becher: Again, who are you speaking for? Are you a credible spokeswoman? I think not. No one made you a spokeswoman for the volunteers.

    Jackie: but because we were NOT prepared to sign our names to unconstitutional documents,

    Silver Becher: There are no unconstitutional documents! This is a completely unsubstantiated allegation that you cannot prove! Are you a lawyer? No you are not so there is no way for you to credibly make such a statement.

    Jackie: be threatened with lawsuits if we spoke of any of our experiences at the hands of the executive or if in any way,

    Silver Becher: How are you in a position to make such accusations and allegations when you yourself signed a letter of complaint to ACMA which is akin to stabbing the radio station in the back, is the same as committing mesirah, is the same as a total undermining and betrayal of the station? You are lucky the executive is made up of some kind people who have been so tolerant of your group’s destructive actions.

    Jackie: we discussed what was currently transpiring at the station regardless that our intentions were to KEEP the station on air.

    Silver Becher: Who do you think you are kidding? If your intention was to keep the station on the air then you would have never in a million years gone to the press with your hearsay and you would never have complained to ACMA!

    Jackie: The demands made on us are just UNHEARD of in community radio. When we told this to the exec, it was not surprising that they did not know this for none of them had any experience nor training in radio.

    Silver Becher: The executive is made up of successful competent talented people who have run large organisations and businesses. What have your run Jackie? Have you run a organisation or a business? No you have not run anything so your opinions on how they should be running the station are not based on any real experience.

    Jackie: What was regretable was that they would not believe us nor listen when others tried to reason with them. That the vice president of the staion cannot even agree with its two presidents to teh point of being at loggerheads, this cannot indicate a healthy nor democratrically run, executive council.

    Silver Becher: Hey, don’t be such a sticky beak, again this is pure hearsay. You have got to watch that, you keep contradicting and tripping yourself up. You are in no position to judge whom gets along with whom on the executive and besides, that it is none of your business to worry about it, since you were not one of the executives. In fact, as far as I know you are not a volunteer nor are you a member either. You seem to want to be in charge of the radio and tell everyone else what they should be doing, but too bad for you it just isn’t going to happen. You had a role their but that was not enough for you because you obviously feel that you knew better than the people running the station didn’t you? And it obviously hurt your pride that no one else recognised that you could do a better job.

    Jackie: It is curious that almost ALL of the volunteers who’ve felt compelled to step back until things are run with integrity in an environment that actively discourages bullying, have

    Silver Becher: Integrity!???!??? Where is your integrity? is trying to dub the station into ACMA done by you and your people show that you have integrity? No, not at all! You defame the volunteers and the executive, and spread slander, while you preach to everyone else about integrity. Unbelievable!

    Jackie: themselves, many years of experiecne in media and with other community radio stations

    In my 8 years in radio, I have NEVER encountered what I faced in one evening with the executive.

    Silver Becher: Eight years in radio? Where? Under whom? Doing what? Proof is needed here, show us your credentials. If you are such a amazing competent talented professional in radio then why don’t you get a paid job in it and leave the rest of us alone? Why don’t you open your own station and make gazillions of dollars? We’re waiting to see it happen since you claim to know how it should all be done.

    Jackie: This goes for many of the other volunteers who have been patiently waiting on the sidelines to return to work in a respectful and inclusive envrionment. The only volunteers who walked away to NOT return to the station were the ones who said that were mortified by what they had experienced and that they would rather volunteer for a Jewish organization in which they were appreciated and in which people behaved kindly to each other. One of the volunteers joked: “I am not being paid enough to be yelled at like this.”

    Silver Becher: here you go again, hearsay, hearsay, hearsay, and pretending to be the spokesperson! You just can’t seem to stop contradicting yourself, can you?

    Jackie: Though it is good to have forums in which poeple get to openly voice their opinions, I am saddened that many of the comments that have been left have been made from a place of sheer (albeit possibly innocent) ignorance.

    I would thus repectfully request that those who were NOT in attendance at the meetings in question, who have not personally had hateful messages left on their answering machines, their facebook pages, in their email boxes or been yelled in meetings,or have dealt directly with the lawyers and radio reps regarding the unethical demands placed on volunteers, reserve their comments until they have REALLY and objectively attempted to find the truth of the situation.

    Silver Becher: No, Jackie, you have no right at all to request that people refrain from sharing their views. You are not more special than the rest of us. You have no right to control the conversation in the community. Everyone has a right to say their piece. Are you trying to say that you are being objective? That is preposterous!

    Jackie: It is all too easy to yell abuse at others or to call people names but this niether increases peace, works towards resolution or improves the chances of Lion FM’s being granted a permanent license which may I add, has been the aim of ALL involved. I have worked alongside people of all different political views, of all different religious commitments and of all different personality types but I have not encountered a single person who sought the demise of the station chas ve shalom. I have though worked alongside numerous others who after having volunteered huge numbers of hours of work, been accused of trying to sabotage the station, be “like holocaust denyers”, be anti-zionist, or as I was once eloquently yelled at “who the hell do you think you are? You’re not even frum!”

    For any who doubt the truth of the above, you will find it hard to do so after listeniing to the recordings.

    Rather than anyone making personal attacks at Malki or Bram or anyone else in here who is genuinely trying to objectively present the facts, name resources with which people can check these facts and refer people to speak to credible heads of the community who put in countless hours of time and much money to benefit Melbourne’s Jewry.

    If I understand correctly, the Galus site was created for discussion; not mere bickering or slander or am I wrong?

    It is my sincere wish that if a person feels they have something constructive they wish to add, that they have the integrity to write their names in full but that if they were not in attendance at the meetings in which so much vitriol was thrown, if they have not themselves spent countless hours dealing with lawyers and speaking to those who’ve dealt with ACMA for many years and if they have not had much experience on which to rely, they check with genuine sources or speak to those who were present or listen to recordings of the aforementioned meetings before they join in the fray.

    Whether I agree with a person’s opinion or not, if it is voiced respectfully and with the aim of helping Lion FM, then that seems to me to be constructive.

    Those of us who genuinely wish Lion FM longevity and that it be a true voice for various groups within the community, have NOT left the station because we lost interest. Many of us have continued to work behind the scenes but as I said before, were forced to stand back until we could with good conscience operate under the governance of the station.

    To those who say that Malki and Bram have been very vocal yet little has been heard from others, I take my hat off to the two of them for perservering in the public forum, in an attempt to “set the story straight”. There are many of us who do not have the desire nor the fabric to enter into acrimonious dialogue and so abstain unless it serves a constructive purpose or unless it cannot be avoided. I for one fall into that category. Many of us prefer to put in the hours but to do so quietly. Do you want to hear me say “yes, all that Bram and Malki have said is true.”? Yes, I will, as will so many other volunteers who were heavily involved at the station at the time.

    Silver Becher: I was one of the volunteers back then Jackie, how many hours did you put in? Five or six in total? Come one, be honest with us!! You sure spent lots of time talking but actions speak louder. There are many more volunteers than your little group who have put in much more work than all of you and your friends who signed the complaint to ACMA yet, they don’t seem to feel the need to trumpet their horns and brag and show off about how much they are working. They just quietly get on with it humbly working for the community while you make a lot of noise and do nothing constructive, while all you do is tear down the executive who are sacrificing their time and resources to make a successful Jewish radio station.

    Jackie: May we all focus on the fact that we ALL want LION FM to succeed and that it will only succeed if it follows the rules of ACMA, is NOT insolvent, it treats its volunteers with respect and works within the aims of community radio. Those who talk a great deal in here……may you put your energy into assisting with the running of LION FM and not add fuel to the fire when you do NOT know the full story and nor have you invested time, money and energy into making it a success.

    In answer to one person’s belittling comment re Amit, please note that without Amit who loaded all the music for so many months and who went into the city and up to the tower, on an often daily basis to load the programs we made, incurring all the costs himself, LION FM would not be on air today.

    To anyone who complains about the length of the comments in here including this one, or the frequency with which some poeple write, might I suggest you simply stop reading. That is always an option but please, PLEASE can people avoid personal attacks or gratuitous bickering. It solves nothing. G-d bless

    Silver Becher: you do not want the radio to succeed, you want to run it and if you cannot then you want to destroy it. This is obvious. How can you urge shalom while all you have done is make division? Your actions are disgraceful!
    Have you ever heard of the word brevity? Look it up!!!

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Silver Becher, I have nothing to hide and thus am able to write as ONE person in MY OWN name as MY OWN gender, in this forum. You too have the option to do this though sadly have chosen to write using a faux and second identity in galus.

    I am well aware of the people who attended the core volunteer meetings and with whom yes, I spent countless days and nights in appointments with lawyers, community heads, arranging functions and at the station. Mooki Greenberg asked Eva,Tali and I to take responsibility for many of the requisite roles at the station. We were not self appointed. That YOU were not involved in these activities in no way means that they did not take place. We have the minutes of all the meetings that were held. We have the lists of all who attended the planning workshops and there was a core group of us…approx 9 in the early days, who at different times met several days and/ or nights each week.

    You were at a few of the public meetings and the one Menachem said you asked to attend, in Glenhuntly road. Do you really feel we could have got 5 lawyers and barristers, 40 volunteers who attended meetings at different times to simultaneously lie? How do you possibly think that we have tape recordings of you and the bullying that went on if it never occurred?

    My only reason for writing in here was to present my experience and voice agreement with Bram, Malki, Amit and on behalf of the many other volunteers who do NOT like the nastiness that has transpired and who like me, have felt it would probably be pointless to join in here and so have abstained. What I wrote was not for your benefit but to fill in others who MAY sincerely wish to know the truth.

    There was a smallish group of core volunteers at the time and it was only THEY who attended the legal appointments, wrote and signed the original letters to the executive and who ran all the orientation evenings, worked on the grids, quality control and spent till 3 am at the Sth Yarra studio. I know all of those 9 people, their views and the work that they each did. If you were one of them, then you would not be saying the things that you are. It is really simple logic. I am sorry if you felt left out but we worked well together as a team and our ability to cooperate in peace and speak respectfully to each other was paramount. We did not invite anyone to work with us unless we felt that they would work peacefully and in fact, several poeple joined us along the way. The anger with which you write and your numerous personal digs might indicate that our NOT inviting you to join the working groups was justified. If you have any personal grievances, that is unfortunate but it in no way alters the truth of what I have written but is a direct result of the aggressive way you treat others.

    None of my comments are hearsay because so many of us were there and have the recordings of what the exec said. Hearsay means that a person is going purely on what they have heard others say.

    You ask why if we were bullied, did we not take the exec members to court. One cannot take a person to court just because they feel bullied. Bullying is neither a civil nor a criminal matter unless certain lines are crossed. It is thus NOT a matter for court. As an intelligent adult, I presume you know this. In addition, we were doing our utmost at that time, to keep things OUT of the public eye. Our aim waas to assist to build a radio station, not to play games of litigation. The core volunteers all had an agreement to do our utmost to keep the matter OUT OF THE PRESS and away from public scruity to avoid any possible damage to Lion FM or making a chillul Hashem. The matter only came to the attention of the AJN when Michael Lipshutz resigned as President; something that could not remain out of the AJN despite our attempts to ask the AJN NOT to publish any details regarding Lion FM. You simply presumed we wanted this matter made public when in fact we did not.

    It only took one person to write to the AJN and that one person was NOT one of us volunteers. Do you seek the truth or to criticize others whether or not this reflects reality?

    Silver Becher, I’ve responded to your points up until now…but I see they all reflect your lack of understanding. The letter HAD to be sent to ACMA after all our attempts at addressing the problems were ignored by the exec and after one person made the matter public. Our letter to ACMA was a final attempt to SAVE the bandwidth for Lion FM and at the risk of boring readers of Galus comatose, again had you full understanding of the situation, the workings of ACMA or been at the legal appointments, you would understand this too.

    I am confident of your identity in which case further discussion with you is unfortunately merely a waste of both of our time. I and the other volunteers you malign are just additions to the multitude on your list, of people to hate as is your wont. Many of us have tried to work with you and discuss matters civilly, to no avail. As you have aggressively contacted me in numerous ways in the past may I respectfully request that you do not start again. This is not an attempt to control you but to avoid your early morning calls, angry FB entries, emails and irate messages left on my home phone and mobile.

    As a final note, if you REALLY believe that my motivation for stating the above is to run the station and control things, you may wish to consider how I would do that given I’ve moved to country Victoria. I will not only NOT be able to have a comedy show with Zeddy Lawrence as planned but will in all likelihood have almost nothing to do with the station once this sad situation has G-d willing, been resolved. My ONLY motive for being involved along with everyone else is to assist LION FM to get a permanent license by our cooperation with ACMA requirements.

    I am sorry you feel as bitter as you do but I sincerely hope this fury dissipates and I wish you joy in all your endeavours.

    May I wish everyone much nachas in their involvement with Lion FM and with hopes for its longevity,

    Jackie Rozenfeld

  • Silver Becher says:

    [Eds: This comment submitted by Silver Becher on behalf of another commenter has been removed because that commenter has been suspended from commenting for attempting to post bigotted epithets directed at individuals.]

  • Oliver Shalom says:

    To Jackie, Malki and the other “sane” contributors to this page, I tip both my kippah and my hat to you for standing up for what you and most others in our community would believe to be fair and just, and in the best interests of the Jewish community as a whole.

    Watching this page grow in length, and watching you both respond calmly and rationally to insults, hatred and brech spewed up by [Eds: name removed] a.k.a. “Silver Becher”, a.k.a. [Eds: insult removed], makes me feel that there is hope for LionFM that professional, responsible and commited people exist and will hopefully be able to contribute and rebuild the good work originally done to create the station.

    If LionFM is currently run by people of Silver Becher’s ilk, then no wonder anyone formally informed ACMA. I suggest you forward S.B.’s posts here to ACMA too, and ask ACMA if her shocking behaviour is acceptable as part of ACMA’s code of conduct for radio presenters using a community license. I say this to S.B. – if you’re so proud of your behaviour and that of the executive, why are you so fearfull of ACMA looking into the runnings of the station? You fight so nasty and aggresively here like you’ve got guilt and something major to hide. If everyting is a bed of roses like you claim, then what have you got to worry about?

    It’s an absolute shanda that SB trolls through this website in one form or another, flamming everyone and anyone, and claims to represent frum women in the community (Hashem help them). Trust me, Ayshes Chayil makes no mention of “fighting with all and sundry in the community”, or being a professional “bridge burner”.

    Let’s hope and pray that LionFM get’s back on the right track.

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    “Let’s hope and pray that LionFM get’s back on the right track”

    Amen!

    Jackie :o)

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Oops…I typed a smiley face but it turned into a different expression…actually…I’m not sure WHAT that expression is supposed to be….lol Astounded? A person about to say something? Someone at the dentist?
    Jackie

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    I need say little in response to Silver Becher’s letter. Unfortunately for her contentions and those of the exec but fortunately for the credibility of our case, us- the core volunteers and the many others who attended the meetings and training run at Eva’s place, including the lawyers whose advice we followed, there are written records of those in attendance. Many times these records are in the handwriting of those present as the sign-in pages were passed around. There are audio recordings of Silver Becher’s phone messages and her typed angry messages to us all presumably remain on face book for anyone to access. Her irate phone messages were only recorded because we’ve come to know her M.O and felt the need to keep a record of her behaviour; suspecting she would increase the trouble she was making for others as shown here and overseas.
    There are also audio recordings of the malicious accusations and bullying of the exec. Goodness me…we even have Menachem retracting his accusations when they were undeniably shown to be ridiculous and he learned I’d been staunchly defending HIM to the other volunteers…alas for my naiveté…lol. This was in the presence of Eva, Tali, Dave, Michael Lipshutz, myself, Yossi, Menachem, Robert, Jessica but not Amit as Menachem had ordered him to not attend. It was also in the presence of the accountant who worked as treasurer for the board whom we have since discovered is MENACHEM’S OWN ACCOUNTANT! Talk about a conflict of interests! He seemed like a level-headed and pleasant fellow which was why we couldn’t understand his not asking Menachem and Michael to stop yelling in our faces and threatening to throw us out of the room unless we dropped our request for mediation. In addition, Silver Becher heard it all HERSELF as she was there, on Menachem’s right.
    Her words’ lack of credibility and her very tone, condemn none but herself.
    For the sake of those who read Galus for information and to be kept abreast of community matters and NOT for gratuitous and acrimonious contention, I will remove myself from this discussion in the hope this sorry discussion will sooner come to an end (sorry, I know I said I’d not write again…mea culpa!). May we all learn to set aside our own agendas and work together for the greatest good of the community.
    Now, more than ever, when we so desperately want Moshiach to be revealed, we need to increase peace and ahavas Yisroel as was taught to Silver Becher and I in seminary.
    May it go on record that I’m confident everyone involved to date on both sides of the fence, has done the best they can with the tools they have. It is just that some folk have emotional needs and wounds that make it hard to be with others in a state of peace or to communicate without defensiveness and aggression but again…even THEY, we are told to believe, are doing the best they can. May we all receive healing for our wounds, perceived or otherwise, for WE ALL have them.
    Off now to feed the chickens…
    Jackie Rozenfeld

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Here I go again….lol… but this time, I am addressing my comments to the mods of this site. Though I really appreciate that the job you must do in here is difficult when trying to be fair to everyone but if you withdrew Silver becher’s comments to protect ME, I was actually pleased to see what she’d written for I felt she demonstrated the true origins of her arguments. I would thus ask, if it was removed simply to save my feelings, could Silver becher’s comments please be returned for all to read. Then hopefully, this discussion can come to an end.
    Either way, many thanks for the effort required to run this site; not an easy nor necessarily an enjoyable task…lol
    G-d bless,
    Jackie

    [Eds: Hi Jackie, We removed the comment because it was apparently posted by Silver Becher on behalf of another commenter who has been suspended. Thus it was a way for that suspended commenter to try to subvert our suspension. We removed the comment in order to uphold our original suspension, which was made because of another comment, which was a bigotted epithet directed at an individual which also contained a rumour about that individual. In upholding the original suspension, we are trying to protect all commenters against becoming the future victims of bigotted epithets and rumours. In short, it wasn’t to protect you specifically so we are going to leave it down, but we do appreciate your sentiments.]

  • More coverage in this week’s AJN on page 4.

    Lawyers in the Lion’s den
    THE rows over the running of
    Melbourne Jewish Radio – Lion
    FM (MJR) spilled into the hands
    of lawyers this week, with the…

    Michael.

  • Since posting my previous message I’ve now read Zeddy Lawrence’s article. The best word that comes to mind to describe the station’s predicament is “messy”, unfortunately.

    Zeddy has also written an editorial entitled “Radio Ga Ga”.

    Michael.

  • Yoss says:

    I find it hilarious that even though the board refused to grant membership to
    leaders of the Jewish community, Menachem Khoen spent all day yesterday canvasing the Lubavitch community for new members.

    He says NO to everyone who applies (like Searle and Lamm) but is happy to hand out application forms in shul !!!!! Its actually pathetic.

    all this on the same day that he tried to take the president john kraus and the secretary mike fenel to court.

    i hope the lubavitch community and the radio powers that be are not stupid enough to fall for what menachem is trying to do.

    he’s obviously trying to stack the membership with heaps of gullible people who will fall for his rubbish (and believe all the putrid rubbish his hateful little faux-frum, lap-dog spews all over the internet) and then stupidly vote for him. At the same time he is also making sure that people who know him for the bully that he is are not given membership, I know people who applied months and months ago and they werent given membership. He’s obviously scared that if he lets them in that they will vote him out of power.

  • The Jewish news reports Lion FM President John Kraus has resigned.

  • An interesting message just arrived in my email inbox, quite out of the blue.

    Subject: Lion FM – John Kraus, Sam Tatarka and John Searle try and reason with Menachem Khoen one last time.
    Message: Since this meeting
    1) The three leaders of the community have been refused membership, on the grounds that memberships are “not being granted yet”
    2) Three ‘unnamed’ individuals have been made members. (Although one of these people gave Lion FM a large sum of money)
    3) Lion has ‘pretended’ to open membership to the community.
    4) Their new President, John Kraus, has been taken to court, and subsequently resigned.
    5) Mike and Stephen Fennel have sought to hold open elections and spill the board. Menachem Khoen stated that this move was illegal. And this meeting was retracted due to legal action
    6) Menachem Khoen is now actively seeking support from the Jewish community from those in the community who have not heard what is going on and are ignorant of the corruption at the core of this station.
    7) An ultra orthodox, fundamentalist, extreme right-wing woman named Shoshanna Silcove has become the mouthpiece for Lion FM

    Executive meeting 16.2.11.mp3
    Size: 74.45 MB
    Expires: April 07, 2011 09:06 PDT

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Were it not so sad….it would be HILARIOUS! That meeting is comedy gold!!!!!

    As for Michael’s above post- “An interesting message just arrived in my email inbox, quite out of the blue.”

    It would seem that truth prevails…..

    May Hashem protect the ailing lion and deliver him into nurturing hands to restore his health.

    Shabbat shalom,
    Jackie

  • Morry Sztainbok says:

    I have never appreciated community politics, and am battling my natural inclination to stay out of this discussion, but at least some of the things preying on my mind need to be said.

    I am one of those volunteers who chose not to leave Lion, and currently have a program on air, and am probably in a far better position than Malki, or any of the others who did choose to leave, to judge the success, or otherwise, of the daily running of the station.

    Yes, there were, as Malki stated, huge problems with interference from members of the Board, anger and bad-blood, in those early, teething stages. Today we attend a well-functioning, well-fitted complex of two perfect studios, run by a host of volunteers, and get to interact with no members of the board. The hardships Malki speaks of have ceased to be a problem, so there is little point rehashing them, or even continuing to consider them.

    So it seems that we have two distinctly separate issues to consider. The studio, which is ticking like a well-oiled clock, and the parent company, around which much of this controversy hinges.

    One of the major sticking points seems to lie in the use of the word “community”. We use the word to include everyone who is Jewish. ACMA, on the other hand, uses it to describe a common interest in the community. I could, for example, be part of a “bluegrass community” and take out a community radio licence to cater to that community. I would clearly not be expected to include jazz musicians in my station, and if I refused membership to jazz aficionados, it would not be seen as “discriminatory”, because they are simply not part of the defined “community”. Like it or not, the Lion “community”, as defined in the volunteer agreement, is pro-Israeli, and pro-Zionist, and pro-Jewish values, which clearly does not apply to every member of the Jewish community, in fact it, by definition, can include non-Jews.

    MJR and LionFM are not community assets. They are, like Monty, Jewish Care and a bunch of others, companies that service the community, but have their own agendas. Similarly, the broadcast licence belongs to MJR, and not to the Jewish community.

    Which brings me to the letter that was spoken of earlier. Whilst Malki poo-pooed it being brought up, the one thing that she didn’t address was the accusation that it was sent to ACMA for the express purpose of stripping that licence from MJR. Given that this would be the rational natural outcome, what was the motive of sending this letter to ACMA, if not to argue that MJR is not deserving, and to terminate the licence?

    As to the rest of the article, if MJR has transgressed tax laws, we have a body to oversee that in the ATO, and don’t need to concern ourselves any more than we worry whether Jewish Care has breached any tax laws. The same can be said of most of the other accusations.

    Much has been made of restrictive membership. Having been involved in incorporating a couple of bodies, both of which have used the same criterion of two referrals, it seems to be common practice, and a way to ensure that members are indeed an acceptable part of your “community” (in the ACMA sense, not the Jewish one).

    As it is, the station seems to be producing quality programs, and certainly functions well on a daily basis. Volunteers are well-trained, but the station could use more volunteer technicians for recording programs, one of the major limitations on adding new programs to the grid.

    I can only hope that any corporate issues will be resolved quickly … but anybody who drops into the studio today will find no problems or harsh words, only praise.

  • Morry, in regard to who you think the station is for or not for, you might want to read the ACMA guidelines that I posted around that issue. In particular the last paragraph I quoted.

    As you may know, the ACMA are the organisation who will ultimately be making any determination as to whether Lion FM are granted a full-time license, and it will be on their determination as to whether the station has satisfactorily fulfilled the requirements of the license.

    So you may think what you will about what the station can or can’t do, but you really need to know that ACMA make the decisions, and in my experience, they will go through everything with a fine-tooth comb, and little will escape their attention.

  • Normal says:

    Eds: Comment removed. Irrelevant (trolling)

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Morry,
    As always you write rationally and clearly have the sole intention to be impartial and to do good.
    Having said that, there are distinct differences between what you have written and what actually occured based on the assumptions of certain people. I understand why you think what you do but as I told you on the phone some weeks back, what occurred with the letter to ACMA was NOT in order to lose Lion’s license but part of a larger plan to save the Lion’s skin.
    Might I suggest that you listen to the meeting in the above link to hear for yourself how things run when the exec does NOT like someone or when things do not go according to the exec’s wishes?
    Collectively hundreds of hours HAD gone into setting up systems to provide the station with its needs such as technical help, a full grid and full funding but when many of us were subjected to something you thankfully were spared, we were NOT willing to remain under threat of lawsuit, people were NOT willing to donate hundreds of thousands and I quote “whilst Lion has Lipshitz and Kheon at the helm, becuse it will all turn to S—.”
    Morry, you know I adore you but you were NOT at all the meetings in question and I would just ask you to objectively consider that due to your lack of certain information, you may not have the complete picture. You were thankfully absent from the meetings in which we were abused and yelled at, you did not know of our being refused the right to fundraise for the station. You were NOT at the appointments with the lawyers who gave us sound counsel as to how to proceed and you were not at the meetings when we worked with those very experienced with ACMA for over 20 years, who advised us that unless the exec changed their MO, there was no way that ACMA would renew the license.
    As there are other details to which you are not privy and which at present are not public knowledge, I cannot blame you for thinking as you do.
    Is it good that you have been treated well at the station? It is excellent. Is it good that you have received training? This too is fantastic BUT is it good that numbers are being stacked? No. Is it good that the exec is refusing to accept memebrship at will? No. Is it good that it took so long for a station to be set up despite ones being available for use many months prior? No. In fact it was only under our pressure that the current station was set up when it was.
    I have been called anti-zionist and akin to a holocaust denier, that Eva, I and the others all wanted to sabotage Lion because well…I am not quite sure of the reasons given but I think if people look back to the opening event at Spirit Grow and if people recall all the meetings held at Eva’s, the work bees there, the countless hours in the Sth Yarra studios, and all the correspondence that went into getitng the grid almost full, it cannot be said that we were not doing our utmost to help the Lion to grow.
    You are an erudite and politically savvy man Morry but regardless of what you know or do not, were you to be abused, yelled at, had bizarre accusations made about you and received regular and nasty correspoindence…all documented…you would not roll over, sign a form preventing you from discussing the ill state of affairs or risk being sued.
    Do you REALLY think it appropriate to deny membership to John Kraus? to Sam Tatarka? To Danny Lamm? To any of the volunteers who worked so hard, for that matter?
    The reason we all came on board was to have shows. They were all set up and some had even started. According to some at the meeting, none of us did any work. None of us wanted to volunteer and none of us wanted shows. WT..????? Lol
    In the recording of the meeting you will hear said that we cannot be allowed membership as the exec do not know who we are. Really? I did Menachem Khoen’s PR work for Meals on Wheels, speaking with him daily. He spoke with me on a regular basis when I did the preparation and purchasing for the Lion party with Robert, Eva and Tali. Did he REALLY not know us? And soon after in the recording when the exec were asked if they had tried to communicate with us, you will hear them answer that they spent countless hours talking to us. Hm…so do they know uys or don’t they?
    My favourite part in the recording is when someone starts to question whether John Searle, Danny Lamm, Sam Tatarka, Robert Bonstcheck, Eva Migdal, Tali Kellman and the rest of us who requested to become members last Ausgust are in fact Jewish.
    One need only listen to that recording to hear who is who. The phrase “Anough rope” comes to mind.
    Again, it is great that certain aspects of Lion are working well but it is still a long way off being a quality community radio station and having a full grid with sufficient volunteers. We had them ALL before the exec stomped their way through our work. It was the treatment by the exec that DROVE people to wait at the side lines until improvements came and even then, some of us kept working, but behind the scenes.The exec never knew this because THEY never did any of the work involved in running the station or the shows.
    What most matters is that the Jewish community are granted a permanent licence by ACMA so in turn, the execs HAD to be forced to comply with their responsibilities which they had until then, failed to do par excellence! Lol
    Shabbat shalom,
    Jackie Rozenfeld

  • Larry Stillman says:

    To the reformists: you have the patience of saints to deal with such lunacy.

    I am listening to the mp3 alternatively laughing hysterically and cringing in horror.

    It makes some of the invective I have to deal with seem like butterfly wing attacks.

    Good luck.

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Hmmmm…. I for one really LIKE the sound of butterfly wing attacks. What a soft and pretty assault THAT would make! Lol
    Would that all war was confined to such violence!

  • Morry Sztainbok says:

    Jackie, few people are more aware than I am how much effort time and energy you, Tali, Malki, Eva, and a whole slew of other people put into Lion FM. You have no idea how distraught I was at the loss of such an amazing store of raw talent, when you all left.

    I listened to as much of that meeting as I could, and heard a lot of anger on both sides (sad that there were two sides). As I said, I’m not into politics, nor personalities, except in those I number as friends, and, Jackie, you are a very important one in my world, so I hope you take none of this personally, because it certainly isn’t meant that way. I also grew to like the other people involved, even though I only knew most a very short time, and I have no doubt of good intentions.

    If this board does lose this licence, then this board loses the licence. As I’ve said often, it’s not the community’s licence, but belongs to the board … theirs to lose. It would be very sad if it was lost, but, Jackie, you know how fatalistic I am, so, if it’s lost, and if it’s meant to be, somebody else will apply and run with a new licence, if it’s important enough.

    Which brings nme back to the question that I am most curious about, but still remains unanswered, despite being raised so often in this discussion. What was the point of sending that letter to ACMA? I accept that, as you say, it wasn’t an effort to strip MJR of its licence, but given that could be a likely outcome of listing their breaches of various acts, was it even considered? Why send that letter? It’s the only part of all this that I really don’t understand.

  • Larry Stillman says:

    Right wing butterfly attacks of course. The left wings are on my side.

  • Morry Sztainbok says:

    Michael, I believe in goodwill all round, not because I’m a Pollyanna, but because it’s reasonable and rational. Every member of that board is doing what they’re doing because they believe in this station and want to see it succeed. You are posting here for the same reason. As are Malki and Jackie.

    Ultimately I can only repeat what I said to Jackie. ACMA will do what ACMA does. I hope that will be to grant a permanent licence. I am sure that letters of complaint, and community furore will be instrumental in a refusal. If they do refuse, then they refuse (undoubtedly with everyone blaming everyone else in good Jewish tradition), and if it’s lost, and this community can get its act together to the point where we deserve a radio station, then it will happen.

    One of the things that will clearly need to happen is for the Israeli-nonIsraeli rift to heal. If we could have put this together without the energy, support and money that the Israeli community has put in, we would have done so a very long time ago. I don’t believe it will happen without them. And that recorded meeting demonstrates to me just how wide that divide is at the moment. So maybe we’re not ready for a community station till we learn to actually be a community.

    It’s a good station, but as always in recorded Jewish history which goes all the way back to Moses, bickering, which lost us a Temple way back, can undoutedly lose us a station now.

  • Morry,

    The only way Lion will ever become a success as community radio station is for it to act transparently and with integrity and honesty. If there are political agendas, religious agendas or any other sort of agenda, then they will become it’s undoing. The ACMA is not interested in agendas and most likely will not tolerate them.

    The temporary license has been allocated for the use of the entire Jewish community in Melbourne and I would expect all organisations and individuals who comprise the community have access to the radio station, in the spirit of community broadcasting.

    If it transpires that there are impediments to anyone gaining legitimate on-air or off-air access to the station, within the constraints of the licence and the station’s constitution, then it will ultimately come back to bite the station and Lion/MJR will pay a price.

    Michael.

  • Et Cetera says:

    There is some talk that a formal complaint HAS been submitted to the ACMA regarding MJR.

    It is understood the Complaint queried membership and programming policies, community representation and broadcasting related legal matters.

    It is also known that the complaint was signed by a group of individuals.

    Does anybody have any further information on this ?

  • Matt says:

    Does anyone know when the temporary license comes up for review.

  • Insider says:

    @ Matt – The temporary license is until the 13th of June this year.

    @ Et Cetera – The ACMA have received SEVERAL complaint letters. The one you are referring too is most probably the one drafted by a large group of current and ex-volunteers. The ACMA have furnished MJR with a letter detailing the issues said to be at fault. Immediate and urgent onus is now upon MJR to rectify these faults, while also finding a new President. (for the 3rd time!)

  • Et Cetera says:

    @Insider – Maybe people like yourself who are vocal enough to lodge complaints with the ACMA – should make a move to take a position in MJR on the Committee / Executive – to “Put Up or Shut Up” rather than being the reactionary blog contributor in opposition, encouraging even further discent ?

  • Insider says:

    @ Et Cetera – I did not lodge the complaint.

    you just asked if anyone has further information and I answered.

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    To Et Cetera@Insider – “Maybe people like yourself who are vocal enough to lodge complaints with the ACMA – should make a move to take a position in MJR on the Committee / Executive ”

    Might I respectfully ask how anybody can take a position in MJR on the committee/Executive if the committee and Executive refuse open membership? This refusal is but one of MANY points that we who “dissented” were asking to have examined for it is these such issues that will cause ACMA to refuse a permanent license. But despite requests from lawyers, the JCCV, community leaders, numerous volunteers and even exec members who have since resigned, the current exec refused all requests to comply with ACMA defined procedure.
    You see the only reason open membership has been blocked is because the exec knew that were it to be allowed, they would be voted out for their abject ineptitide, not to mention outlandish homophobia, unwillingness to follow ACMA requirements, total refusal to take advice from those with media and radio experience and total flaunting of ethics and professionalism.
    Do you think it looks good that it seems, Menachem’s own accountant is the accountant for MJR? Helloooo? Does anybody spot the conflict of interests?
    Why do you think they were so afraid of ACMA examining their current state? If all they are doing is kosher as they declare, then they have nothing to fear. Simple!
    I find it of interest that so many of the comments in here are from people who themselves have NOT been involved, either in radio or in the running of Lion FM.
    Though I am not affiliated with Temple but with Chabad, I do NOT feel it right for those of Liberal leanings to be excluded from having their views on Jewish radio. Do you? Nor do I think it right that the members of the exec unilaterally precluded membership based on sexual orientation. Do you? I do not think it is ok for the exec to block membership to anyone they do not like. Do you? I also think it highly corrupt for an exec to stack membership in order to maintain their positions.
    Again, IF the exec truly feel they are doing a good job and running things in a kosher manner, then what do they fear allowing open membership?
    Are you aware that we who paid for membership right in the beginning on forms that said “Membership”, who paid the requisite $18 for membership and who paid for costs with our own money and did months of work as volunteers would, were this to go to court, in all likelihood be deemed to be members and MJR be held in breech fro preventing us from voting? Strangely, none of us has the money to take this matter to court and when we DID explore that option were told that it might take so long to get the matter heard, we may only get a ruling AFTER or close before the time at which ACMA will review the conditional license. We could NOT risk that.
    Had we NOT pushed the matter for the exec to make changes, there would have been NO chance that the license would be renewed.
    I am really not sure WHY anybody feels they are in a position to make comments about something about which they cannot fully know.
    If anyone but ANYONE is unconvinced that the exec conduct themselves in a highly unprofessional and bizarre manner, to the point of hilarity, they need ONLY listen to the above recording. Not a thing more need be said.
    All of those with whom I worked at LionFM were greatly experienced in commonity radio and with ACMA and this type of outlandish conduct thank G-d, is absolutely unheard of at the stations where we work. The exec on the other hand have NO experience whatsoever, yet point blank refuse advise. Were YOU to be a total novice, would YOU refuse all sound counsel?
    I am NOT suggesting that Lion FM invite the PLO to have a show. I am simply saying that it is NOT ok for an exec to exclude Jews from membership on the basis of a whim or for reasons of prejudice or personal bias.
    You see providing you do exactly what Menachem wants you to do and exactly HOW he wants you to do it, he will like you and all will be quiet and well but chas ve shalom, you dare to hold a different view, then all hell breaks lose. Why do you suppose so many keep resigning rather than bow down to Khoen? Do you think it a coincidence BOTH presidents have left? Do you think we all worked tirelessly yet for no reason, gave up our chance to go ahead with the programs we had planned, the almost full grid and all the techie folk willing to help? None of us left or resigned. We simply stepped to the side and have been waiting to return when the exec starts to run or allows the station to be run, equitably, [professionally and constitutionally. We all have enough integrity to not be blackmailed into silence and to sit idly by whilst the Lion is torn asunder.
    A new station MUST have quality control; something that is sorely lacking at present since we stepped aside.
    Are you aware that something as simple as inappropriate language or commetnts are enough to get the station closed down? Have you ever COUNTED how much stuff is let through? Lol
    Seriously, this is an incredibly simple matter.
    Thre is a radio station on a temp license. If it continues to be run as at present, that license will be revoked. This NOT brain surgery. Lol
    The Lion needs treatment. Long live the Lion!
    Shavuah tov.

  • Nifty says:

    It was very sad to listen to the recording of the meeting as posted above. The creation of a Jewish radio station – or more correctly a station representing Jews – is an exciting development in our community.

    I have had no input into the station (sorry Jackie) but did pay the membership fee very soon after the website went up. I was not sure what that entitled me to but was happy to support the station and was prepared to give more money in the future. Despite giving my name, address, email etc I never heard anything since. I subsequently sent another message thru the website and, despite getting an automated reply saying I would be contacted, have not heard back over 4 weeks later.

    After listening to the meeting it is quite apparent that many of the board members just want the community to give money (and to volunteer presumably) and let the board make all the decisions.

    But the most telling point in the recording was when Menachem (who has admittedly given a lot of himself and his money) said that HE would not allow something to happen. This made it glaringly obvious that he and his friends feel have complete contempt for any committee and are just paying lip-service to the concept of boards, membership etc.

    Hopefully this will not be another great idea that withers away because of people’s egos.

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Re Nifty’s comment-“But the most telling point in the recording was when Menachem (who has admittedly given a lot of himself and his money) said that HE would not allow something to happen. This made it glaringly obvious that he and his friends feel have complete contempt for any committee and are just paying lip-service to the concept of boards, membership etc.”

    Would that it were true about Menachem giving a lot of himself and his money! Lol Lion FM was to be HIS toy and HIS mouthpiece for the proliferation of content of which HE approved.
    The last we heard was that the money Menachem kept claiming to have given was not after all a “gift” but in fact a “loan” which is why people have been calling Lion FM insolvent; yet another way in which the exec are themselves the ones who may chas ve shalom, bring about the demise of the station.
    At the time of the great embarrassment and Chillul Hashem with Max Walker, when Kheon offered him 180- a week rental for his fully equipped radio studio instead of the stated 350- I asked khoen person to person, if he’d allow us volunteers to fundraise and he said that he did not think us capable. When I said regardless of his lack of confidence in us, would he please at least ALLOW us to go ahead, he refused. For this reason we could not have Walker’s studio which would have meant Lion would have been up and running months earlier and teh grid filled with so many of teh show that had been in the pipeline when stuff hit the fan.
    As I have also said in the past, there were benefactors who HAD been willing to GIVE funds and not merely a loan like Kheon but were NOT going to donate hundreds of thousands and I quote “whilst Lion has Lipshitz and Kheon at the helm, becuse it will all turn to S—.”
    If heaven forbid the Lion is destroyed, it will be DESPITE the hard work of the “dissenters” and DUE to the blind determination of the exec to maintain total control; not unlike a child who says “this is my ball and if you you do not play the way I THINK we should play, then I will take the ball and leave, even if it means that NOBODY plays”. This could also be a reason that Menachem is now renaming the money he had previously called a donation as “a loan”; much as he told us all last year when we signed up, that our 18- was for membership and when he realised allowing membership might result in his being voted out, he renamed it “subscribership”.
    Do we not remember Orwell’s 1984 in which language was altered to fit the desires of the govt? At lion, we have all been subjected not to Newspeak but Menachemspeak. The minority who have no views other than those with which Menachem agrees, and have been blissfully unaware of the precarious position of the licence, have been able to continue at the station in peace thank G-d. Anyone who has experienced and witnessed the intrinsically diseased aspects of Lion who seek change are at best ignored or worse still, are immediately and almost paranoiedly (is that a word?) declared to be enemy number one.
    “Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive.” Sir Walter Scott.

  • Et Cetera says:

    Jackie – maybe the community will thank you and your fellow noble negativites for assisting in the downfall of LionFM. I Mean why bother being constructive and do your bit to fix what you don’t like when you can sit at the PC and type in endless meaningless dribble and get your groupies to follow blindly – but if this is the way you “help”, trust you get a kick out of it !

  • Insider says:

    @ Et Cetera – why would you bother asking for an update on inside events @ Lion FM on a public blogging forum if only to label the responses from insiders as negativities?
    what kind of information were you wanting actually? or was it just a chance to blame other people for lion’s failure to comply with acma guidelines and victorian legislation?

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Et Cetera,
    Your anonymous digs reflect on nobody but yourself. Our posts were written not for your benefit but for those who sincerely wanted to understand what was going on.
    If you have found my posts tiresome, might I suggest you ignore me? It really is terribly easy to do. Just ask my son….lol
    The nice thing about writing the truth and having documentation to back up all one says, is that one has nothing to fear. I do not have to write behind a pseudonym nor try to win points with nasty digs or sarcasm. In fact, after hearing the damning recording of the last meeting, nothing more need be said. “Enough rope” is the phrase that comes to mind.

  • Et Cetera says:

    Well why not scuttle Lion FM and try again in 40 years ? Then you can all spend your time arguing who WAS right or wrong ! Some people dont know what they have till its gone !

  • Insider says:

    In follow up to the JCCV’s advice, this sunday there will be a meeting to bring the community under a single united banner.

    This means no more yelling, abusiveness or carrying on.

    The purpose of the meeting will be to have an open and constructive discussion on some of the ways we can work together to move this issue forwards to create quality broadcasting output for our community and support one another.

    The details are
    Sunday 26th June 7.30pm
    at Beth Weizmann – 306 Hawthorn Road, South Caulfield 3162

  • Eli says:

    @insider
    I am interested to know who has called this meeting? There is no such advice on the JCCV website. Nor is there any official advice by MJR

    If the last meeting is any guide then I am not sure what another “public meeting” will achieve. There are a number of interested parties to whom at that meeting it was suggested to meet and consider if there was any possibility of co-operation.

    Further public discussion is irrelevant since any licence holders need to be incorporated entities. All it requires is the representatives of those groups to meet. Community members can join and support any one of those groups to provide a voice of their opinions on their behalf.

    The only reason I can see behind such a meeting would be as form of “rally” to see who has the loudest voice.

    Not really a vehicle for constructive discussion. Since the meeting has no specific tabled agenda nor the power to enforce any resolutions that it may come to, then for all intent and purpose it is a waste of time.

    If the JCCV wishes to provide a forum for discussion then its best avenue is to try and facilitate bringing the relevant parties together. Not further grandstanding.

    Given the acrimonious ending to last meeting this writer doesn’t see that kind of love and kindness being shared just yet.

  • Insider says:

    I did not say the advice was published. The advice was a suggestion made by the JCCV at the conclusion of the earlier community meeting. The JCCV suggested that parties interested in helping to drive positive change should hold a meeting under their own auspices where others can come and discuss the kind of things they would like to see happen. (This is no longer the JCCV’s meeting or problem)
    The meeting is not about “loudest opinions” or how to set up a new radio station or reestablish the old one. As you say, anyone can incorporate and seek to obtain a license on their own terms if desired.
    It seems unfair to claim that the meeting will be a waste of time having not yet attended it. If you have no interested in aiding in the discussion presumably nobody will force you to attend.
    There are many interested, rational and optimistic parties, both individuals and organisations who would like the opportunity to have a constructive discussion about possible ways forward.
    The mentally unstable have had their opportunity to yell and behave abusively, to point fingers and basically engage in the same destructive behaviour which lost MJR its license. Unless there is some new ranting they have yet to do (and it is understood that yelling will not be tolerated under any circumstances), I see no reason why these same individuals would show up a second time to behave disruptively with no constructive goal in mind.
    Most likely this meeting will comprise those in the community with experience in radio, film, tv and online media (and community leadership or management) who see that the only way of using these media and broadcasting resources for the Jewish community’s benefit is as a united and communicative whole.

  • Mookey Grinberg says:

    Dear community/LION FM FAMILY I’d like to personally invite you to come to Lion FM’s update meeting. The meeting will take place on Sunday, June 26th 7 PM at Unit 4 / 967 Glenhuntly Road South Caulfield.
    In the meeting we will discuss Lion FM’s past, present and future.
    I hope you can make it.
    On behalf of the board of Lion FM,
    Sincerely, Mookey Grinberg

    It is the time to work together and get lion fm back on air and it is the time to stop with the negativity and look towards the future.

  • Forgive me for thinking that this meeting has been timed to clash with the JBC meeting. Rather than unite the community this looks like an exercise in dividing it.

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Oh Michael! You shock and disappoint me. Who told you it was ok for you to use logic, intelligence and plain common sense? Really and truly….lol
    This is not the first time dirty tricks are being played and sadly it will not be the last. They ought to be hog tied!
    They seriously beggar belief!
    Jackie :o)

  • Eli says:

    @ Michael, It’s interesting that you say it’s a JBC meeting. Have they actually called this meeting or is that an educated guess ;)

    @insider, Its obvious that you did not read what I wrote or chose to ignore it since you repeated much of what I suggested in any case.

    Yes the JCCV encouraged a meeting of the interested parties, meaning the representative groups such as JBC, MJR and one other whose name I cannot recall. To date I don’t have any information that any contact has been made between these parties.

    So who called this meeting? No representative of JBC or the other group have made any official public call as at writing or via any other medium that I am aware. MJR certainly have not since they officially called for a meeting of supporters and interested parties at another venue.

    The first notice for the former meeting was made by “Midnight Mike” on Lions own Facebook page. Since “Midnight Mike” Michael Ferrell or “Insider” seem to be all one and the same it begs the question, at whose behest would one do this? As a board member of MJR, at least as far as I know,why would one advise of a meeting that the board had obviously not sanctioned and on their own website.

    There seems to be a major conflict of interest at the very least and misuse of MJR’s media outlet, since Midnight Mike is the only administrator .Although the sentiment espoused by MM is unity, which is all nice and fluffy, his actions would indicate otherwise.Perhaps MM should make his allegiances clear for everyone and resign from the MJR board if he does not have confidence in it or does not agree with the current boards views.

    If he is trying to play peacemaker and bring all the parties together then a position of neutrality and transparency is paramount. However I might be being kinder than I should be in describing MM as peacemaker, but I will let others judge his actions and make up their own minds

    Make no mistake there are competing groups and ideologies at play.

    All parties must make their positions clear. Unity does not have to mean that everyone agrees on everything, but it will come at the expense of many compromises. Continual cries of unity, rationalism and optimism become clichéd and meaningless when they are used as catch cries rather than firm objectives within a process of mediation.

    Community radio is not owned by the community but gifted to it as a jewel to be treasured. However its’s value diminishes as it is cut to pieces.

    On final a note , calling people mentally unstable is insulting. People who are passionate about an issue become emotional. The only destructive behaviour was when a member of the audience was screamed at and then physically handled by someone who should know better. To date there has been no public or private apology.

  • Eli, I know it as a fact.

  • Jackie Rozenfeld says:

    Being here in the bush, I am regrettably or thankfully…not yet sure which… at a distance to what is transpiring.
    Having said that and with my limited knowledge, it seems no coincidence that Khoen and his clan have called a meeting for a time that prevents people attending both; an unproductive tactic if the aim of the meeting is to sincerely bring about achdus.
    Is it not clear that there are certain elements who do NOT want achdus? They seek to run things as they wish and choose to think that they own the radio station and that their own personal wisehs are paramount? To use their own words “if you don’t like it you can leave” is their motto. And this too was recorded for posterity if anyone doubts the veracity of my words.
    As far as I am concerned, ANY MEETING WHATSOEVER at which certain folk are NOT in attendance, is likely to go more peacefully, more objectively and allow those who are serious about doing good, to get on with their jobs.
    What needs to be done is for word to be put out that there are two meetings and that people need to consciously choose which to attend. Do they wish to attend the contemporary equivalent of a colosseum blood sports event or else attend a meeting to work towards the rescue of a poor ailing lion.
    I am sincerely surprised that the RSPCA is yet to join the fracas.
    Shabbat shalom!

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