The original scan for this article is at: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83030214/1903-08-27/ed-1/seq-2.
New-York Tribune, August 27, 1903, page 2:
RIVALS IN WIRELESS WAR.
More Charges of Interference with One Another's Service.
War has been declared between the three wireless telegraphy companies of this city--the Marconi, De Forest and International companies. All have been employed by news associations and papers to send bulletins direct from the international yacht race course. During the yacht race on Tuesday there were few bulletins from any of them after the first leg of the race had been sailed.
The messages were started from the tugs all right, but before they had reached the shore melted in air. At the Marconi land station most of the messages got through with only one or two words missing. The greater part, however, were fragments of "The Wreck of the Hesperus," and detached letters of the alphabet, that were being sent by a rival firm that had promised to put the other two firms out of business.
Melville E. Stone, general manager of The Associated Press, said yesterday, concerning their failure to get complete messages from the wireless telegraphy company:
Things worked so smoothly during the first two races that we supposed that the problem of reporting these races accurately and speedily had been solved once and for all. But after the freakish behavior of the electric currents yesterday we are as far in the dark as before. The whole affair seems to me to be simply a contest between competing wireless companies. When one company finds itself unable to transmit its news, from unfavorable atmospheric conditions or some other cause, it does its best to impair the most successful work of its competitor. We will give the service another trial to-morrow, to see if we can get the messages through without interruptions.
Whether or not the interruptions in the messages were caused by imperfect weather conditions or from a mischievous desire to cause trouble on the part of one of the companies, it is hard to tell. It would seem to be a little of both. Each company virtually accuses the others of trying to hinder its work. They also promise that there will be little trouble to-morrow with their service. It was said at two of the offices that one company that failed to get some desired contracts went to various newspaper offices and desired to be bought off from interfering with the service already obtained. Failing in this, it is said, it made threats that the other two wireless companies would experience much difficulty in getting a message through. That two of then did have much trouble is now a matter of record.
Mr. Bently, vice-president of the Marconi Wireless Telegraphy Company of America, issued a statement last night, saying in part:
The reason for the falling off in efficiency is this. While we have been able, by means of our improved apparatus, to cut out six of the seven competing stations, one high power land station has been able to disturb us. The proprietors of the high power station switched in more power yesterday, and from 9 o'clock in the morning, until 5 o'clock in the evening incessantly kept the station key rattling out "A B C, A B C, A B C," except when varying this monotonous programme with meaningless phrases. On Thursday and Saturday of last week the erudition of the operator was more clearly disclosed by obscene expressions; his morality had somewhat improved yesterday. On Saturday we received from the troublesome high power station a considerable part of "The Wreck of the Hesperus."
During the races the Chetolah, with our apparatus aboard, was for the greater part of the time in hailing distance of the three boats carrying apparatus of the other companies. This we were prepared for, since the president of one of the companies had threatened to "put us out of business." This we knew he could not do with any apparatus he could put on a vessel. The threat of the individual referred to, made to a third person, can be verified by affidavit when required. Could we install a station with greater power on the Chetolah, we know of no station which could interfere with us.