IAMA current DJ on a listener supported radio station. Radio isn't dead, you're just listening to Clear Channel!
May 25th 2017 by OddMonsterPDX • 43 Questions • 143 Points
My short bio: Due to contractual agreements and non-disclosure I must be vague, but I'm verified confidentially. I worked for Clear Channel Communications for nearly a decade in a prime market as the host of my own show. I interviewed several celebrities and went to nearly any event you can think of There is a lot to radio that isn't as it appears. My Proof: confidentially confirmed. EDIT: Alright folks I need to go. I'll check back later and try to hit the questions I've missed. Thanks for all the questions. EDIT: Thank you everyone for participating. For those of you who are interested in my new career I may do an AMA at your request, but I'm undecided as of now. Thanks again, but it's time for this to end. See you on Reddit
Xbox hopeful here. Even if Lawbreakers doesn't make it to the xbox one what are your thoughts on Scorpio, Impressed? Lacking?
Bonus Question, what was your thoughts on Rod/The Coalition's take on Gears and do you know the strife of forever 83%'ers
Holy crap! I get to ask this question to the writer/director of Love Actually! I've wanted to ask this for years!
Do you think the scene where Mark holds up signs professing his love to the wife of his best friend was a good idea? And if so, how can you defend that?
Did you receive some job offerings from governments?
What's the worst technical detail of the A320 in your opinion? What would you improve in that plane?
One of the major radio stations in my area is known for something called the "War of the Roses" where they (allegedly) help their listeners do things like catch cheating spouses by calling them and pretending to be a florist and asking the person who they'd like to send a dozen free red roses to, and then they put the significant other on the line and drama ensues. What's the real story behind those types of things?
Portland is very lucky to have a bunch of listener supported stations, so when I'm in the car and out of range of Freeform Portland, I listen to XRAY, KBOO and my absolute favorite KISN, which is a low power oldies station started by DJs from the original Portland oldies station that Clear Channel bought and turned into crap. Punk rock as fuck.
MS is getting their shit together. They're putting it in a backpack or in a shit museum and getting it alllll together. Scorpio is promising. MS bet on Kinect too hard last round. Don't rule out an Xbox version, btw.
Enjoyed G4, played through it with Lauren. Curious how much of my ideas will stick as they continue with the series... :)
I feel stranger about it as the years go by. In the little remake we've made - I just decided to use the scene as an intro to the little film - rather than something happening to the real characters.
No. They probably took one look at all the shitposting and memes in my twitter feed and were like "naaaah".
It uses bleed air, or air drawn from the engines, for air conditioning/pressurisation.
I occasionally get a whiff of JET A1 fuel when we're starting the engines.
I'd prefer an electric air bleed system like the 787 has.
I'm not going to say they are all fake, but they are fake. I have acted as a cheater or the cheated in several of these for jocks across the country. You have to regulate what's said so much that unless sit was all entirely pre recorded a jock wouldn't have the time to set all that up and edit the material. It is much easier to have someone who knows how radio works and what type of responses will pull in listeners to do it for you.
Have you ever seen anything strange or unusual while flying at altitude?
How much of a typical daily broadcast is automated and how much is manual? I imagine a computer could eternally string together sections of music and ads pulled from designated libraries, so what stuff does a DJ actually do nowadays?
Flying over Portugal at night. Hundreds of flashing white lights, spanning miles and miles. It was like being in a stadium with thousands of camera flashes going off. I was completely transfixed, the other guy was completely not bothered.
Turns out Portugal has lots of wind turbines, the tops of which have a flashing white light on them.
Every Monday we would have a meeting and go over the playlist FOR THE WEEK! The jock looks at a computer screen with the audio wave length and just talks over the ending of one song going in to the intro to the next. Everything is pre-set on that Monday. The "all request all night" and "total request hour" is bullshit. When you call and request a song you are only getting on air if you happened to request a song that was already set to play meaning if you call in at 5:15 and request the panda song and it's set to play already at 5:45 then you think they played it for you but if you call in and request a song that isn't going to play like weird al yankovich (who I love) Amish Paradise then they are never playing it.
What do you do when you're cruising on a longer flight?
Are you allowed to listen to music when the plane's on autopilot?
like weird al yankovich (who I love)
A real fan would know it's Yankovic without an H.
j/k thanks for the AMA
Talk to the other Pilot. Some guys have a newspaper.
I'll use my phones autocorrect as an excuse. Lol. My bad. I can sing that whole song by heart if that builds my Yank cred.
When did the radio station start? Were you involved from the beginning?
Not Cliff or a BKP member but when I visit Raleigh I make a point to visit the Raleigh Beer Garden and The Station.
Cliff turned me on to both and they are fantastic.
Depends on the radio station. The one I worked at tried to minimize pre recorded voice, and have us live as much as we can.
It started as a few people brainstorming in October of 2014. I joined up a couple of months later (I think in February?). I was brought in by one of the original people who was a friend who said "Hey, you want to help start a radio station?" So, I wasn't one of the very first people, but I think I was in the first dozen.
We fundraised for about a year and a half and finally went on the air in April of 2016, and have been going strong since then!
EDIT: Corrected the date.
Thanks for your support. You do know I co-own those, right? :)
Whenever we break out through the cloud ceiling and climb away, or conversely when we're in the descent and reach the layer and cloud surf for a bit before dropping through...I can't help but grin. Surfing those clouds at 300 knots is so cool.
The jock is usually live but talking over a playlist, but even then a lot of jocks just pre-record their whole show.
Will there ever be a point in time where the braking right after touchdown doesn't scare the hell out of me?
Is it true, that person on air (moderator or DJ) don't have any control over the playlist? Even requests from an audience are pre-recorded?
I'd recommend watching some cockpit landing footage on youtube so you can get a look at what's going on during the landing roll, it might help with any concerns you have.
Yes. It is all pre-set a week in advance. I hated the music that I played (all the poppy top 40 garbage) so I would occasionally play a request if it was a song I liked. To do that was a pain because when you insert a song it adjusts the entire playlist by 3 to 5 minutes depending on the length of the song. If you don't have the song already on the playlists then you have to manually input it from a Disc which means you have to pause the playlist and play the song live which is a super pain, but I still did it.
Could you suggest some good Twitter accounts to follow?
Like that one where the exaggerated yoke movements at slow speed make the pilot look like he is calmly wrestling a cobra on PCP? Yeah, that'll help.
Dear God, he actually jockeyed a disc!
I went to Ethiopia in 1985 - there was a famine there and I saw how little bits of money we give DO go directly to save people's lives by giving them food and medicine. So I started Red Nose Day - and I still believe that if you buy a red nose at Walgreens, you can save a kid's life. And one dollar buys $10 of food for hungry American kids!!!
look through the list of people i follow on twitter and pick out the ones you think are best.
Lol yeah they are actually a Disc/gassed. It's a CD in a cassette like deck and you put it in to the system.
Cheers. My dad was a captain on the A320 back in the day for Northwest. How did you get into flying? Former military or civilian trained?
And another thing. Why radios playing the same songs again and again? For example, interpret has dozens of songs and radio station plays just two over and over.
Oh...oh...we were. You were cool, dude. You handed my boyfriend an extra beta key. Not me though. So, I see how it is. XD
If I could ask a follow up...we had a lot of leavers. I'm not aware of anything in place for leavers, will there be penalties for that? No one likes a leaver, even in a blow-out.
Do you think pilot should be able to show kids the inside of the cockpit? Because that is my all time great memory of flying and wish they would bring it back.
I worked in a small/medium market radio newsroom for close to 9 years. You aren't kidding. I was amazed when I first entered the industry at how much radio wasn't live.
Anyway, where do you feel FM/AM radio is going? Since I left, I notice less and less emphasis on local content, which is all FM/AM radio has to offer that other sources don't. If they aren't offering the only thing that sets them apart, how do these station remain open? I can get music anywhere and I set the playlist, which I can't do with traditional radio.
Portland is the best city on (near) the coast between Seattle and San Francisco, and people who have made good tech money move here because it's cheaper, pricing out many of the existing residents. Portland used to be an inexpensive town, but now we have a homelessness crisis.
Def considering that. Quitting is lame.
Unfortunately we can't do it in the cruise anymore.
I love doing it on the ground.
If we're delayed we like getting all the kids up in a row to come talk to us, their parents love it too as it keeps they busy.
This was just starting to be a problem when i left the business. Car dealerships were taking note of what station the cars coming in were set to and found that a large majority either had satellite or their phones connected. That reduced the advertisement sales price eventually. We used to have conference calls on how to keep free radio relevant and our Production Manager said we would soon be equivalent to newspapers.
Hey! Thanks for doing this. I'm an instrument pilot myself working on a commercial license. Sometimes after a long day of training I feel like I never want to get in a plane again. What did you do throughout training to keep pushing yourself through?
Join us over at /r/flying if you haven't already.
Did you interview anyone you wanted to punch in the face? And if so,Who?
I know the feeling chief.
I would be so down when I messed a lesson up. Pilots are predominately Type A personalities (So I'm told!) and we are ambitious, time pressured, tenancy for high blood pressure. We don't like messing stuff up. So when we inevitably do it sucks and we get annoyed with ourselves and hate flying.
There was a great bit of advice from PM/EMPANNAGE a few years ago on /r/flying to a student about hating flying and planes when you had a bad day. It happens to everyone.
Don't compare yourself to other people. We're all learning.
You just have to keep going. When the examiner said I'd passed the CPL the first thing I said to him was "Really?! Are you serious!!?" without any kind of mental filter being able to stop me. The relief is amazing.
And it's a feeling you'll be enjoying really soon. Just keep going and give that little bit more.
EVERYONE OF THE AMERICAN IDOL FUCKS. Edit: thanks for the Gold. Cherry popped.
- what is your favourite mechanic from any game (that you haven't been involved with)? Bonus points if you can tell me a game mechanic that was good but could have used a bit more (and what you would have done to improve it).
p.s. big fan of the games you've been involved with over the years :-)
How did you get into flying commercially? Did you start in military or privately? And if the latter, how much does that cost? Thank you!
The judges or contestants? Just curious.
I'm a rabid Timbers and Thorns fan, although I must confess I'm not really into basketball.
I've always enjoyed lockpicking on consoles with two thumbsticks - finding the sweet spot with the vibration. Something so oddly enjoyable about that. Not sure how to improve it, haha. And THANKS!
A home remortgage and a significant percentage of my hairline.
Contestants. They just acted like they were famous and made demands and were snotty. Even the losers of the show when they did the idol tours.
Any advice for someone looking to avoid being doxxed? Asking for a friend.
I heard a interview of Kelly Clarkson on a radio station a few months and she really sounded genuinely nice. Did you interviewed her?
Ha - if only we all knew that, we'd all be there...
Simply put: if you want to be truly never found you can't share any personal stuff about you online, you need total separation of your real life and online identity (including avoiding any use of your real name and address for online services, including billing). Honestly it's not fun and not worth it unless you've actually got something to hide.
Initially I lost out on many job offers because I wasn't comfortable publicly linking my online identity to my real one.
Allegedly a lot.
Aviation is a tiny industry and everyone knows each other. I have to be careful with my magnum dong.
I didn't but another jock did and yeah she was nice.
What's the best airline food you've eaten so far and what's the worst?
What's your favorite part of the job?
Emirates in economy. Morrocan Tagine chicken or something. Holy shit was delicious.
I had an egg salad sandwich once that I suspect dissolved most of my tastebuds. It was like eating vinegar from Brian Blessed's fupa.
The women. Seriously the notoriety was awesome. I did tv commercials too and I couldn't go anywhere without getting recognized and signing autographs. I felt like a tool doing it, but I also felt like I was in the top of the world. Girls everywhere, until they found out I lived in an apartment and drove a honda.
What percentage of the time is the plane on autopilot? Is it different for trans-oceanic flights?
Why does the new radio station in my area play only 9 or 10 songs, basically on repeat, all day long, with a few random ones sprinkled in?
Autopilot is a bad name for it.
What autopilot does it more like cruise control in a car.
It doesn't make decisions. It's not sentient. We give it information and it does what it's told.
Fly this heading, climbing at this rate in feet per minute, to this altitude, at this speed. Feed that information in, and then we monitor it to make sure it is doing what it is told. It doesn't always.
Unless they are complicated and thus busy and thus it would be a dick move by putting more pressure on the other Pilot who is monitoring me, I like to hand fly the departures and arrivals so for me, maybe from 5000ft at departure - 3000ft at the other end.
So the station I worked for was a CHR (contemporary hit radio) top 40 station. So songs are broken down in to categories by ClearChannel. Gold is a song that has been around for years and is still relevant, ie. Baby got back, California love, etc. Then there are the top 5 - 7 songs on the top 40 charts. Those play EVERY hour. Then the next 5 they play EVERY other and So on and so forth.
My Top 40 station plays that one Aerosmith song from one of those comet movies a few years ago exactly once a day at seemingly random times. I wonder if that's contractually obligated.
In terms of what, weather, my performance, delays, failures?
It may be a song the programming director loves or shares with his spouse as "their" song and he does it for them. A lot of jocks do this.
What changes would you like to UK press regulation? Is there anything that could outlaw the privacy intrusions that you have suffered while still enabling a free press and genuine investigative journalism?
Actually, weirdly - I love The Girl in the Cafe, which I wrote and David Yates directed - who has since done the Harry Potter films. Check it out...
Ideally make people's houses/friends/family off limits until they've been charged (and found guilty of) a serious crime.
Hopefully you get to this. I love Red Nose Day. Ever since you got David Tennant involved against Lauren Cooper. Know there is a major Omaze contest going on right now but have you ever thought of doing a special skit that brings back all of the Doctors and will be available if a certain amount of fans start fundraisers? I think it would destroy with how massive Whovians are in the US.
What have you learned from malware about programming that general programmers would do well to learn from?
That must really scary. What do you do in a situation like that? Is it a case of pointing the nose down and gaining speed to generate lift or is there more to it?
A lot of stations know you probably only listen to the radio going to work and going home.
They don't have to pay someone to DJ if they can just have automation play a ton of music all day long.
Not bad! (listening now)
It was a case of just keep going until I got past the ridgeline in particular that was generating lots of mechanical turbulence and rotor zones.
Probably lost about 500ft over about two minutes then I got out of it and could climb again.
They don't, but someone has to fill the dead air and introduce songs and talk about what's going on in the are and promote businesses. All of that is factored in to sales.
What languages can you code in?
What is your opinion on certifications in IT and do you think it's necessary? Do you have any?
Regarding post 9/11 security on flights, do you and your co-pilot feel 100% safe when flying?
No one is getting through that door.
In terms of airport security...the UK is probably a world leader. The Department for Transport take these things incredibly deadly seriously.
Could they do more without restricting even more of our liberties? I don't know.
It does make me laugh though that I'M FLYING THE AIRCRAFT and have access to the crash axe etc...but I can't be trusted to bring a Yoghurt through security for breakfast.
When I listen to radio and I catch it, yes it does aggregate me. It also aggregates me when the jock uses filler words or doesn't have a music bed he/she is talking over dead space or just has no flow with lots of pauses. I rarely listen to radio anymore.
When do you feel terrestrial radio started going downhill?
I remember growing up, the radio was pretty much the only option. Using a boombox and recording a song off a radio, song after song, hoping DJ Jackass and the Morning Zoo didn't add a fart or barfing noise at the end of the song is how I made my first playlist.
You can stream us on the web at www.freeformportland.org. I use TuneIn with an Amazon Echo on my stereo, and the app also works on phones pretty well.
I was a freshman in college (a LOOOONG time ago) looking for something to do to fit in and I saw the college radio station was looking for volunteers, so I went to a meeting and got involved. College radio is a great resource for students, and for people who live in their broadcast ranges because they usually have pretty great music.
If you ever move into town, or want to make the commute, we're always looking for more volunteers!
The A320 is 30 years old. Hundreds of millions of flight hours. God knows how many thousands of pages of computer/electronics certification requirements it had to meet when it was designed.
The computers behind the scenes sometimes do play up and crap out. Not all the time. Not exceedingly rarely. I'll probably see something small and insignificant crap out in 1 in 30 flights?
Sometimes it fixes itself and the caution message disappears after a few seconds. Sometimes it requires us to do the full failure management procedure and get the QRH (quick reference handbook) out to see which circuit breaker needs to be reset. Other times it's a case of spending hours in the cruise looking in the complicated tech manuals for system architecture drawings and descriptions and trying to figure out what the hell a particular obscure caution message actually means.
But the crucial thing is, there are back up systems and computers. There's no single point of failure. It is so so safe and so well designed.
I remember recording songs off the radio and recording songs off MTV on my tape recorder. Lol. When iPods and napster/sharebear, and satellite radio came out, we saw a decline in sales and callers.
Do an AMA on being a federal agent.
As somebody who has gotten out of the music business and has always thought I would find that kind of work immensely satisfying/suited to me ---
How in the world did that career transition take place???
Back in basic training I had an instructor who would eat apples with his headset still on, the microphone of which was 'fully manually squelched' i.e. it was hot-miced, so I heard everything.
Trying to fly the aircraft properly while listening to what sounded like Orcs feasting on the flesh of the innocent took a lot of self discipline.
I was riding on a plane and the guy next to me was a Fed. We talked about it for a while he told me to shoot him my info. I did he sent me a packet I filled it out got accepted and that's that.
Was the instructor intentionally eating an apple in order to create a tense atmosphere as part of your training? Or did he just happen to have an apple with him that day?
How are DJs able to keep talking right up to the point that lyrics in the song start? Is it practice, a visual thing you can see, or just listening to it while talking? Or some other thing?
You see two wave lengths on the screen and a moving line that shows where your at in the song. You see when to start talking and when to stop before you start talking over the words to the song
Is it true that the pilot and the copilot eat different meals before their flight? And is their something you will not eat because it gives you the swoons?
How much consumer information is being gathered from radio listeners by apps like I Heart Radio?
Can't eat the same meal for food poisoning mitigation.
Me personally? I can't stand deep fried batter, like you'd get on fish in a fish and chip shop in the UK. It gives me a headache.
So the companies buy this data and that's one way they determine what songs are hits, what older songs are gold, but other than that, not too much.
Why the cat? Why Sunglasses? Heard the U.K. Is rainy and dark - where is your ideal travel spot & why no direct flights -?
If you weren't a pilot, what would you want to be doing with your life?
That sounds dangerous, do radio hosts ever mess with the questions? For example you have a recording of lady ga ga saying "yes I do" has there ever been a case where the radio asks a different question, "like do have 3 nipples" or something really bad?
It's from a meme I found quite funny: http://content.iwastesomuchtime.com/482012014934iwsmt.jpeg
Travel spots: I've only been to Vegas and Lyon, so definitely Vegas.
No direct flight: because I live in the middle of nowhere and only have non major airports.
If do this with callers on my topic for the day. If I asked a question and they didn't give the response I wanted I'd ask something else which would generate a response that fit the previous question then edit it around.
Windows XP has been blamed for leaving NHS computers vulnerable to WannaCry. Is the simple answer correct: that if they were running more modern OSes (eg Win7 or Win10) then they would have been unaffected?
Are you flying right now? And if so, how's the wifi?
Ok maybe this is outside of your knowledge, but there's a radio station in Seattle where the morning hosts do a thing called "2nd date update" where they call a girl while a guy she went out with is on the line, and ask her to describe their first date, and explain why she won't return his calls or go on a second date. Some of these seem very scripted with events that seem impossible to have actually occurred and over-the-top interactions between the guy and girl ... They make us think it's legit but I swear half the time it's made up... Legit?
According to multiple analysts I've spoken the malware actually fails on XP (haven't had time to check myself yet), so that would suggest unpatched newer systems were to blame.
No. My airline doesn't have it :(
A lot of people don't realise that the antennae and stuff that have to be installed on the fuselage to accommodate passenger wifi and SATCOM phone calls and stuff have an aerodynamic drag penalty. Airliners with on-board wifi burn more fuel. Drag penalty plus the weight of the equipment installed inside the aircraft.
The smallest thing can cause a drag increase. We have a document called a CDL or configuration deviation list that specifies the drag and fuel penalty that we have to take into account should there be small components like rubber seals and stuff that are damaged or missing off the aircraft surface. It's surprising how much of an effect a small component actually has.
I talked about this already but I did the exact same thing for another station. I was the guy who didn't call back and my script was because she was ugly. Needless to say, it got a lot of discussion brought on to the show.
HELLO SIR, GOOD WORK WITH THE KILL SWITCH. MY QUESTION IS: 2sec4u should get a pay rise, can you confirm if you agree with this?
Is it at all possible to come up and chill with the pilots mid flight anymore? If so, what's the best way to do it?
What was the biggest shock that people not in the industry might have when learning about this profession?
Yes, we will up your shitposting allowance to 100 shitposts per day.
My biggest shock was how important and "famous" jocks think they are.
Hey, I'm @CryptoCypher on Twitter.
I am currently working on a book that discusses identity security along with operational security. The purpose of this book is to explain the importance of pseudonyms and how to operate a persona "anonymously" online. In this, I will be covering various topics.
With that said, my question is this: would you be willing to get in contact with me to collaborate on my work?
I feel that your experience with UK tabloids as a security researcher would make an excellent example of why people should take the time to lock down their identity security and re-evaluate their OPSEC. Your story could help others realize the importance of locking down their persona.
I don't typically use Reddit, so if you're interested, my Twitter DMs are open.
Why are you always asking me to "confirm RADAR-contact/identified" when checking in if I only answer with "BAW-XXX, Good morning"?
I ask because your initial "Identified/RADAR-contact" is valid, and transferred across ATC-units, until someone explicitly states "Identification/radar lost/terminated"... :-).
Why do radio stations never announce format changes? I've noticed they're very secretive when it comes to firing DJs or changing formats completely. Just turn it on one day and my favorite dj is gone. Or my alternative rock station is now meringue.
Sure, DM me on twitter anytime.
when checking in if I only answer with "BAW-XXX, Good morning"?
Sounds like Nigel being awkward.
Thanks for the all the direct Tos and CPDLC instructions. We love it.
I didn't experience this so I'm not sure. I mean jocks quit or get fired and they would scramble to replace them with whoever they had available for the next day ( that's how I got my own show)
Future plans? If knighted, will you be Sir $real_name or Sir MalwareTech, Lord of Pizza - I feel like asking a 22 year future plans needs a bit of humor -
You planning on doing a display flight in your 320 any time soon?! Think you mean CAP413, I should know, I just read it for lack of anything better to do in the cruise...
Would definitely second the thanks for ATC, although I'd love CPDLC and I can't imagine my fleet's going to get it any time soon!
Did you find your coworkers to have a lot of substance abuse problems?
I worked at a large, non-Clear Channel Top 40 station for a couple of years and nearly everyone had an obvious drinking problem that they'd pretend was just "being cool" and "partying". Obviously if you're paid to be at a bar for an event you're going to have a drink or two but these were full-grown adults getting so drunk they'd piss themselves in their sleep and just kinda shrug it off. It turned me off from the whole industry (among other things), which was a bummer because I do enjoy hosting things with a microphone.
Future plans are just to continue work and travel more. If I got a knighthood I'd definitely prefix all my online names with Sir just for the novelty, but keep my real name as is.
That's the bugger.
Remember 698 from ATPLs? Urgh.
Hopefully one day they will upgrade the dash to have working oleo struts!
Yes. I drank a lot. Never really got in to the drug phase but I saw a jock show up to a live event, mumbling, and staggering, clearly shitfaces and snort a line of coke then grab the mic and start talking. You couldn't tell he was the same person from a few seconds ago. Lots of pill poppers too.
How did you get started in this world? What resources do you recommend if you want to learn more about the technical aspects of your work?
I would like to know the current rules, after the Germanwings Flight 9525 Suicide.
Does your Airline enforce the 2 people cockpit rule? Because i read that "Lufthansa" wont enforce it anymore.
I got started through programming and an interest in the inner workings of malware. To get started in reverse engineering I'd recommend learning assembly and reading some books / blog posts from known reverse engineers (most of what i learned comes from just reading random blog posts and some trial + error).
The thing about the 2 person cockpit rule is you now have a scenario where somebody who may have just recently passed cabin crew training is now present in the flight deck with 1 Pilot.
Becoming an airline Pilot takes years.
Becoming a member of the cabin crew, and with all due respect because they work really hard and are there for your safety, they are really well trained and take it incredibly seriously, takes a few months.
Is this safer than leaving the lone Pilot?
That's the position of some of my colleagues. Are we introducing a less safe environment by allowing the cabin crew member onto the flight deck with one Pilot?
No they are just like wrestling.
How many sinkhole domains did you have to obtain? and Favorite cat?
As a Gate Agent for multiple european airlines here in the US, I have 2 questions.
1) In Europe, are you allowed to board passengers while fuelers are hooked up or no? Each captain i get give me different answers on the legality of it and we differ to them.
2) What was your worst experience with a Pax gate crew?
With very strict procedures. Aircraft doors open. Line of sight with the refueller. Ryanair, I think, make the F/O stand by the nose gear wheel well connected to the interphone with the ground handlers heatset to monitor the fuelling directly.
Not had much go wrong yet. Fingers crossed.
Each night before bed it's real to me.
Hello, just a quick question. We now see the figures of the attack, and it's obviously been a huge campaign but maybe not as big as we thought first. Do you think the media coverage has made it look bigger than it actually is and do you think media coverage on those topics actually does more harm than good? I'll be honest here, i'm an infosec journalist, but had the chance to be off work those last two weeks. But i'm genuinely curious about this. But again, thanks for your work, you're doing great stuff.
If you were to introduce one thing to make your job easier, what would it be?
The callers for contests and giveaways: real people or is it John and Mary from sales acting like callers?
I honestly don't know. Our sinkhole only sees the infections we stopped, so I don't think anyone really knows the full scale of how many systems were infected prior to the sinkholing.
I think the media coverage was neutral. On one hand some got the word out that people need to do something, but on the other some made it sound like I'd come up with a miracle cure for ransomware.
That's a good question.
I'm not really sure to be honest.
A 3G connection so we can get weather and loadsheets and stuff on our tablet devices would be great.
Some yes and some no. So you first have to realize that companies spend thousands and thousands of dollars to be associate with big contests so if for whatever reason the station isn't getting enough callers or enough entertaining callers then a friend or salesman or jock (disguising their voice) would call in and act goofy and bring about excitement to spark interest, boost ratings, and please the associated business. I have used and been used by other stations across the country to act as a contestant on a show. Specifically a blind date show and I just stand by they tell me the script and tell me I'm playing an assholes who thinks the date was ugly. The girl was also in on it and So I'm bashing her looks and saying how her picture was bullshit. This caused a whirlwind of callers creating excitement on the show. Guys defending me and girls defending her.
What has been your scariest experience?
Not the OP, but have a friend who worked in radio. Mid-sized market, she says all the callers are real, but you always get the same people calling in all the time and an individual can only win once a month or once every three months or something.
One story she told me, they were taking the 100th caller or something and the same 5 people probably called 10 times each.
I literally didn't leave the house the entire time i was famous
Getting caught in a downdraught on the downwind side of a Mountain in a light aircraft while in basic training. Full power, pitched up 10 degrees and still sinking. Not nice!
Learnt a good lesson that day about route planning and weather hazard avoidance, specifically this -
Happens a lot. I would change their voice in Adobe audition so they would sound like a man if they were female or visa versa or make young people sound older or older younger on these nights
How do you starting learning the malware enough to write simulation bots to interact with it?
If I were to want to follow say, 5 steps I need to know about how it works and communicates, what are those 5 steps?
I'd like to learn more about this process but there is not much available publicly.
If you know of any resources, could you please share them.
Thanks and keep up the good work.
What is your favourite plane to fly?
I've won a bunch of stuff from my local radio station. Money, concert tickets, tickets to shows, lottery tickets. It's very real. Just gotta be quick on the redial.
For the most part malware just uses the same ways to communicate that normal software uses (HTTP wrappers, FTP wrappers, raw sockets), once you're familiar with these and possibly the windows crypto API, you can start looking into how it encrypts/structures the data sent to the C2.
Of the ones I've flown, the A320. I can fly 6 miles above the surface of the Earth at 600mph. Sick.
I'd love to fly a Tornado or Typhoon though.
Not all of its fake, but if you win that much then you are what we call a "long time caller" we love you guys and hook you up every chance we get to keep you coming around.
Do y'all still speed up songs in order to get one more song (or commercial) into the hour?
We did this at the station I worked at in the '90s (was owned by Genesis Broadcasting).
Follow up to that: in my day, we literally sped the rotation of the record (2%, I think). This, of course, slightly affected the pitch.
I suppose today you have the tech to speed up the songs without affecting pitch.
We also cut out parts of songs that didn't fit our format. I remember we tossed the guitar solo out of Simply Irresistible because it didn't fit our top-40/pop format, but was a top-40 song.
Best is definitely the many many selfless people you meet who will insist on always being there to help you and never accept anything in return. Worst is the scriptkiddie groups you will see who cause the same kind of pain serious criminals cause, but do it for "lulz" instead of money. Really makes you lose faith in humanity.
After sinkholing a domain, what's the next steps? Do you run any specific script on the server? By the way, how many domains do you have registered?
What's your take on the United Airline situation? I have heard media coverage and everyone with a Facebook account, but I've not heard directly from a pilot. Why does stuff like that happen?
Whats your take on popular independent stations like KEXP?
Everything is automated so i just enter the domain + malware family name into the commandline and the system registers the domain, points it to the sinkhole, then sets up a tracker (all of this is using a bunch of python scripts I wrote). As for domains I really don't know, but it's over 2,000.
Airlines overbook seats because it's rare for everyone who's booked a ticket to actually show up.
We have to a procedure to recalculate the mass and balance and take off performance of the aircraft when the dispatcher gives us the final loadsheet after the gate closes...because pretty much every flight people don't turn up for whatever reason.
So airlines make more money by overbooking, banking on the statistical probabilities that they'll get away with it.
What happened to Dr Dao was extremely unacceptable. But you must understand that tickets and stuff are issues that have very little to do with the Pilots. On the ground it is the dispatcher and gate agent who run all these things. I read some criticism of the Captain of that flight and I couldn't understand it. Were people expecting him to go back and be a conflict resolution advisor? He would have been sat in the cockpit calculating take off performance and running through various procedures. It's not like he was sat watching down the aisle with Popcorn.
I think it's great. They are the home brew of radio and some great bears come out of home brews. Edit: beers, but bears would make for one hell of a story.
How did you get started - why do you do it? Who are your heroes? Whom do you dislike but have learned from? What investment advice are you getting? What shapes and informs your worldview, and why?
Gotta run looking forward to learning more - thanks for taking the time -
Is being a pilot and knowing how things actually work make it frustrating to watch movies or shows that involve unrealistic plane scenes? For example what did you think of the movie flight with Denzel Washington? Edit: a word
Is there a surefire trick to winning radio contests, where you have to be X caller to win?
Almost all of what I do is simply because I enjoy it and for no other reason. I'm not in this for fame or money, just passion.
I generally don't like the term heroes as it seems to cartoony, but the researchers at ESET and PrevX who published the TDL4 and Rovnix analysis articles are who inspired my interest in reverse engineering and are largely responsible for where i am now.
I don't really dislike anyone if I learn from them, that's an automatic like from me (unless they're truly an asshole, which I don't think I've met anyone who is).
Not getting any investment advice yet (hopefully soon).
My world view is mostly shaped by my own personal experiences. Although I remain open to other people's experiences, ultimately I feel I can't fully understand something until I've experienced it myself.
Be a regular caller all the time. If they know you they will be more likely to just pick you. Other than that the lines jam up instantly. Know the time that they typically run contest and call a minute or two before.
Could you explain to us laymen how you actually went about stopping WannaCry? I have very basic computer knowledge, and am just curious how the process even works.
Im sorry if this is a really stupid quedtion, but Is it a matter of infecting a machine with the malware and then running 'triple-class-A-wizard-hacker'-diagnostic-utility-type-shit that gives you a sense of what the malware is doing? Is there like, an actual script the malware runs that you can look at and figure out how it works? I've always had trouble wrapping my head around how this stuff works as I have only the most basic knowledge of programming and computer systems. It surely can't be as simple as opening up 'virus.exe' and figuring out how it does what it does, right?
Is there some sort of video or documentary that kind of breaks down the process of fixing things like this?
Have you ever encountered any inexplicable unidentified flying objects?
This is a cool AMA. Thanks for sharing.
I DJ weekly on an independent college station.
What metrics did you use to tell how many people were listening at a given time?
Any run-ins with the FCC over something you said/did on-air?
What ultimately will keep FM radio alive? Should it be kept alive?
Thanks for working to take down creeps and criminals. How do you feel about the current perception of law enforcement in regards to force used, and question of its necessity?
Check out my explanation at malwaretech.com
- Nelson ratings. We would go through a book period where they were monitoring it through various methods for a month or so at a time like sweeps week for tv.
- I played some local bands that cursed on air I didn't get in trouble cause it was during safe harbor time (after 10) but my management got a call. I also answered the phone lines with the sound board on and blew both my ear drums and yelled fuck. They let it slide.
- If the internet goes out and satellite radio goes away.
- I think a lot of bad people exist in the world and some of them are cops. People don't understand though the reaction it takes to protect yourself and others. A person can stab you before you can pull your gun and shoot them from a pretty good distance. So when you are faced with the split decisions and the wrong one could mean you are dead, you tend to go with the other choice, sometimes it's wrong.
What operating system do you prefer to work in? (If it's Linux, which distribution?)
Did you see the 2012 movie "Flight"? Any grain of truth in that movie?
How do they shrink you down small enough to fit inside my car stereo?
Windows 10 because I'm a heathen
It made me laugh, particularly the dramatic sound effect of the engines spooling up when it nose dived towards the ground...after we see a shot of Denzel pulling the thrust levers to idle.
The drugs thing. No fucking way.
Ever watch Willy Wonka?
Will the recent explosion of followers change your tweeting habits at all? Will you be posting the same amount of memes?
Do you eat airline food?
It's not that bad. I have my favourites. Moussaka awwww yisssss.
Have you tried it? Works the same.
This may have been asked, and sorry if it was, but what is to stop the makers of this from simply releasing a different one that doesn't check a domain like the first iteration did?
What are some memorable times where your experience as a pilot have come in handy outside a flying environment?
By fake, do you mean that we're meant to think it's live when most of it is "pre-recorded"?
Nothing stops them, that's why I went to great lengths to warn everyone to patch ASAP.
Yes it's set up a week in advance. I elaborate more on it somewhere in this thread.
What do you think about Miria targeting the sinkhole domain? Just skiddies having a giggle, or harbinger of malware collaboration?
My dad wants to know: what happens to compass on the plane when you fly over Ecuador?
Silly question. I know.
How does one get into radio?
I'm constantly being told to do so as I apparently have a nice voice.
Skids, always skids. If it's Mirai it's skids; I only ever saw one sophisticated hacker using Mirai and even then he had heavily customised the code.
We don't use compasses.
Our navigation equipment uses really complicated gyroscopes that have frigging lasers in them (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring_laser_gyroscope)
to detect and display pitch/roll/attitude/heading.
The aircraft corrects for magnetic variation and consequently nothing unusual happens.
The A320 does have an old school compass in it though as a last resort...good question.
The errors compasses are subject to would reverse as they act in the opposite direction in the southern hemisphere.
I was amanager of a store. We did promotions with the station. The jock and I hit it off and always had fun on the air. When we were off air I did silly voices and we were just joking and having fun. He incited me on his show and I did characters on his show then one thing led to another and I had a contract in my face. Then through luck chance and a little skill I got my own show fairly quick. I would say show up to a station and get your foot in by asking to be an intern. Unpaid and they will work the shit out of you, but if you are good they will keep you around and start giving you assignments and gigs.
What's the honest opinion in the radio business on Howard Stern and how much of an impact did his move to satellite radio have (if any)?
I guess it depends how you look at it. For me it seems accidental as I didn't know the domain would stop the malware at the time of registering it, so that part was what I consider an accident.
I'm short haul.
I might do 4 days on, 3 days off.
I'm young and don't have kids yet so I lounge about all day watching Silicon Valley.
It suits me. I'd hate a rigid 9 to 5.
So a lot of jocks hate him because he "ruined radio for the rest of us" a lot of what he did cause rules to change. I love Howard. He is a pioneer of radio. No fucks given with that guy.
I gather you've been learning for 11 years now so for us starting out in infosec reaching that point and level of knowledge can seem hugely intimidating. My question is, for those 11 years how much time were you putting into learning? Was it every night after school? Just at the weekends?
And secondly, you seem to have load of friends in infosec, were you all learning together or was this something you did by yourself for the majority of those years?
During training, how did you feel about flying a plane for the first time ? And what's the hardest thing about flying ?
What does the on-air talent, and I guess more importantly, program directors, think of all the bullshit that people like O&A and Stern talked about when they'd shit-talk terrestrial radio: I'm talking about faked prank calls, prep service bits/talking points, the fake 'war of the roses' and 'busted' and 'the fugitive' bits, etc? Are these things actually considered to be positives for the station/shows, or are they acknowledged to be kind of garbage filler that is just sort of there because it's always been there?
Why do women on morning shows not get to actually ever say anything of substance and instead just laugh and scold the host and the wacky guy? Why is the morning format so standardized, anyway?
Were you ever involved in a 'radio war' with another station? How fake and dumb was it?
For most part odd weekends and when I could get away at school, I didn't start full time studying until i left college (4 years ago).
Flying a light aircraft for the first time?
Exhilarated. Vindicated after spending so long studying and wanting to do it.
There are a lot of unusual pressures and stressors being an Airline Pilot. Fatigue. Having the threat of losing your medical hanging over you until you get closer to the end of your working life and you are financially secure.
Flying in Europe can be difficult. Somewhere very busy like Charles De Gaulle. Mixture of French and English on the radio is terrible for situational awareness. They bring you in high and fast above what your ideal descent profile would actually be. On a bad day it takes a fair amount of mental exertion to stay in the loop. And we have always got to stay in the loop.
Don't get me wrong, it's not dangerous or anything. But on a busy day with poor weather it can be a good mental work out.
First question: Not really. They did their thing we did ours. We have our bullshit fillers too. I'm not sure. We had a female for a long time she was the main on air talent for the morning show. Yeah it was real. They talked shit about one of our guys and our station was way better and bigger than theirs so we went and bought out their best jocks contract and hired him (just to talk shit really) and then I absolutely crushed them in ratings right after. It was epic. Our jocks (i never did) would fight at live remotes and sabatoge eachothers sound equipment. It was an eventful year
At what age did you become interested in cyber security and/or tech? Did you teach yourself a lot of the stuff whilst still at school?
I'm flying for the first time in my life on Wednesday in an A320.
I'm slightly nervous about it... Should I be? :)
Around 11 and yeah I taught myself while I was in school (mostly against my IT teacher's wishes).
It's incredibly reliable. Over engineered. Safe.
New CS grad here. Any advice?
Also, what do you think about all the talk of Russian hackers and how the US is standing against it?
Ok my question - Is it possible for a Commercial Pilot to forget to extend flaps before takeoff? For some reason I'm always worried someone will forget and I'll die! Can someone explain if this is possible ? Warning lights or audible reminder etc?
Look into getting some certs or public research up, will really help boost your profile.
I think the US is doing the best they can against a form of warfare they've never really been on the receiving end of. This type/level of PsyOps is unprecedented IMO.
Flaps are in the checklists several times.
The A320 has a take off configuration warning that is loud and angry as fuck if the flaps and slats aren't set when take off thrust is applied.
Do you fly a specific plane? Or just what happens to be free when you get to work? if specific, whats the flight number, id like to track you on flight tracker :D
Airlines like mine that have large fleets tailor certain aircraft, with certain seating configurations and equipment, to certain routes. It's all quite intricate and clever.
My base has about 30 A320s based here. The one I get allocated to for the day is random but sometimes dependent on the route. I don't know for sure but the aircraft are allocated weeks in advance, it's all done by the operations/rostering department. Really complicated. The software they use to manage it all is really niche and probably cost millions.
For example we fly to Charles De Gaulle and are always busy on that route so it's always an A320 with a denser seating configuration (i.e. more seats)
I'd rather not disclose my Airline sorry :( I'm sure they'd feel the same way haha.
My local airport when I was a kid had a car park right by the boundary fence, right next to the runway threshold. I used to go and watch airliners land when I was about 4. I guess it just stuck with me, I've always wanted to do it.