Girish Mahajan (Editor)

France Inter

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InterVenez (InterCome)

Broadcast area

First air date
1 January 1947

AM: 162 kHz (Allouis) Will be discontinued on 31 December 2016 FM: 87.8 MHz (Paris) 91.3 MHz (Marseille) 99.8/101.1 MHz (Lyon) Frequencies

Former callsigns
Club d'Essai (1947) Paris-Inter (1947-1957) France I (1957-1963) RTF Inter (1963)

France Inter is a major French public radio channel and part of Radio France. It is a "generalist" station, aiming to provide a wide national audience with a full service of news and spoken-word programming, both serious and entertaining, liberally punctuated with an eclectic mix of music.


France Inter broadcasts on FM transmitters across France, via the internet, and available in many parts of Western Europe on longwave on 162kHz.

The radio channel France Inter announced during 2016 that the channel would discontinue transmitting on the 162 kHz frequency on 1 January 2017, seeking cost savings of approximately 6 million Euros per year. The transmission of the atomic clock generated time signal will be continued after this date on the 162 kHz frequency as this time signal is critical for over 200,000 devices, which are deployed within French enterprises and state entities, like the French railways SNCF, the electricity distributor ENEDIS, airports, hospitals, municipalities, et cetera.


France Inter was founded in the reorganization of state broadcasting which followed the end of World War II as "Paris-Inter" and charged with being French public radio's generalist (i.e. "full-service") service. The channel was renamed "France I" in 1958, although three years later one of France's most popular radio and television listings magazines was still showing the station's programmes under the heading "Paris-Inter" with "France I" as a subtitle. In 1963 the France I and France II networks were merged to form "RTF Inter", renamed "France Inter" one month later.

The major challenge faced by France Inter at the time of its reorganization in the 1960s was the private "peripheral stations" (in particular, RTL and Europe 1, broadcasting from powerful transmitters outside France) success in capturing the majority of the French radio audience since the war. They had done so by adopting a modern broadcasting style and earning a reputation for greater freedom from government influence.

As well as rapidly modernizing its style to match its competitors, France Inter stressed its freedom from commercial pressures – although it does carry a limited amount of paid-for advertising – and especially presented itself as intelligent radio accessible to a general audience under the slogan Écoutez la différence ("Listen to the difference").


France Inter programmes, a number of which have been important milestones in the history of French radio, include:

  • Le Masque et la Plume, arts reviews from journalist critics (on air since 1955)
  • Le Jeu des 1000 euros, a general-knowledge quiz programme (since 1958)
  • Le fou du roi , culture and entertainment programme (2000-2011)
  • La marche de l'histoire, formerly Deux mille ans d'histoire, an in-depth daily documentary on a specific historical subject (since 1999)
  • Pop Club (1965-2005, i.e. 40 years with the same presenter José Artur)
  • Le téléphone sonne, a current affairs discussion and phone-in programme (since 1978)
  • Là-bas si j'y suis, a reports programme (1989-2014)
  • Le sept neuf, morning news sequence
  • classique avec Dessay, formerly Carrefour De Lodéon, classical music programme (since 1992)
  • References

    France Inter Wikipedia

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