Petition From a New Ham - Anger & Fighting on the 20m band
I'm a fairly new ham, licensed as a Technician in June of this year and received my General CSCE eleven days go. Since then I've been enjoying my privileges on the HF bands as W4LKR/AG. Overall it's been a positive and fun experience. But I'm also disturbed by some nasty things I've encountered on the airwaves. At first I assumed it to be a rare annoyance but day after day I find the same nonsense around the middle of the General privileges of the 20m band. Undoubtedly others have encountered it too, so my goal here is to become better informed of what is going on and humbly ask others to collectively deal with this is the best way possible.
Between about 14.280 and 14.320 I keep hearing arguments involving name-calling, profanity, and what I will term as creative and metaphorical language describing every filthy thing you can imagine. My first encounter was a guy spewing hatred for the USA and several specific individuals who I gather are also hams given the context of his tirade. I never caught his call sign or location but I gather it was outside the US. During his monologue he claimed to be receiving hate-mail from listeners and began reading the emails on the air. I seriously doubt this was actually happening. His topics were erratic but all fell under the heading of hating everyone and everything. It was shocking really. Psychotic is no exaggeration. It's hard to imagine what could motivate a person to sit behind a mic night after night and spew this nonsense over the airwaves.
My second encounter began during a QSO with what I thought to be a nice guy in Phoenix. We were chatting about the recent flurry of contest activity and I mentioned to him the ugliness I'd recently heard in this same part of the 20m band. He knew exactly who I was talking about and referred me to the VE7KFM.com website. I did visit the site but my impression of it is far from positive. Since then I've found other sites that seem to be answers to it. These people are building entire websites to fight with each other apparently and none of them are worth reading in my humble opinion. But I digress, so during this QSO the same voice I heard two nights prior started spewing again right into our conversation. I was going to suggest we change frequency when, to my dismay, my contact started yelling back with equally profane and ugly language. He proceeded to pour gas on the fire and give this guy exactly what he wanted - a reaction. I left the band and called it a night.
My third encounter happened last night. I was sweeping 20m and found a fight in progress on 14.314. I recognized the voice of my previous QSO in Phoenix. The other voice I could hear was unfamiliar. Both were name-calling and slandering a third ham which I could barely hear but not read. Based on the context I believe the third ham was either VE7KFM or someone associated with the trouble surrounding that website named Donnie. Either way, both voices I could hear were alternating, giving monologues about how inappropriate it is to jam a frequency and citing rules and traditions of ham radio. I was floored by the hypocritical nature of the whole thing. How can you admonish a malicious ham by being malicious to them? What good does it do to give these offenders the very attention they are after? Why on earth would you stoop to the same level?!
Maybe you're reading this and you just realized it's you I'm talking about. Oh, so you insulted someone over the radio? Wow, that must have taken guts.
While I'm surprised and disappointed to see this behavior on the airwaves, I'm inclined to believe it's being perpetuated by a very thin sliver of licensed hams in the world. I don't have much experience to back that up so call it optimism at this point. I sincerely hope that I don't keep meeting hams who use poor judgement and stoop to the level of name-calling and profanity directed at those who started it. The best thing we can do, in the spirit of self-regulation and common decency, is to ignore this nonsense and NOT REACT in-kind. They want attention. Please don't give it.
-----> I. Drink. Your. Milkshake!
Welcome to ham radio.
If you upgrade your license you can operate down to 14.150 and put a dial lock on your tuning dial so it won't tune above 14.250 or so, and you'll be all set.
A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.
-- George Bernard Shaw
Perhaps try 40 or 15m? Maybe digital modes or CW?
There is a whole world out there, grasshopper!
First of all, congratulations on getting your ticket and upgrade! Sorry that your earliest ham experiences have been to encounter some of ham radio's worst. The people you hear on those frequencies have, unfortunately, been with us for quite a while, and do not represent the amateur radio community as a whole. The FCC is quite aware of it, but since some of the participants are outside of FCC jurisdiction there is not much that can be done about those folks. My advice is to avoid the area around 14.313 and listen for more normal QSOs. Try some of the other bands, especially the WARC bands, and I think you'll find a whole different class of ham. Don't let the idiots get you down!
this thread won't last very long, but,........ just for your knowledge, that website is NOT owned/operated/controlled by KFM.
Originally Posted by W4LKR
there are many american licenses that fit your description of your "contact", IMO ALL of them (on both sides of the issue) need to lose their tickets.
Oh wow, I never get an IB4TL on .313 threads.
There are idiots on the internet, there are idiots on ham radio, and there are idiots in real life. Close the window, spin the dial, and walk away from them. They feed on attention, hatred, and each other. Don't give them attention.
Andy - The Ham Formerly Known As W2AJW (2008-2013) and KB0WJO (1996-2008).
Avoid the area around 14.313 MHz in general. It's pretty well known across the community what happens there.
I think most hams are good guys, but we're all human, we're all prone to get heated now and again.
I think a very good example is just the other day, I was in a very pleasant QSO with a Canadian ham for a good 20 minutes when a ham in Florida moved in 2kHz above. I turned on the second receiver, tuned him in, waited for him to finish calling CQ, switched to split mode so I could call him and still hear my original QSO..
Here's where I messed up:
When he finished calling I said "We're down 2kc from you, would you please move up, this is N0AMT." (I didn't use phonetics - I truly should have)
I then turned off the second receiver to quickly return with the original QSO. (I didn't listen for a response from the ham 2kc above)
Because I didn't listen for a response, I didn't hear that he had my call incorrect (because I didn't give it phonetically) and he thought my call was N0PMT - A technician class licensee
Here's where he messed up:
He then came onto the frequency we were using, and proceeded to chew me out for asking him to move up. How dare I ask him to move up when I'm a technician class licensee and don't even have privileges on 20m. He interrupted our pleasant QSO, and was fairly angry about the situation.
I quickly realized what had happened... I explained that he had the wrong call, I gave it phonetically and told him I was a general class licensee, and he quickly lightened up, and stepped back so that the Canadian station and I could finish our QSO.
The point of this is, we're all human, we're all gonna mess up. I should have given my call phonetically, and awaited response, and he should have listened for our ID to validate the call prior to interrupting our QSO to investigate. We both could have handled it better. I think having a "brush" every now and then is to be expected, just try to be cordial.
In the case of the crap that goes on in the frequency range you described, just stay out of it. You made a good decision by hopping off when the words started getting heated. It's best just to leave them be to fight amongst themselves.
Hello and congrats on earning your license.
You may be a little shocked at the reply here, but let me give you some background. This particular problem has been going on for decades and decades. I have been licensed 16 years and can remember the problem in full swing, even back then.
The "folks" creating this problem get some form of sick pleasure from creating hate and discontent across the globe. I have my personal thoughts, but I will save them for a later date.
Since this problem has been going on for so long, we at QRZ are very aware of what the threads turn into. Anything referencing VE7KFM, 14.275,14.313,KZ8O, K1MAN and a few other choice calls/topics is verboten on the forums.
Because of that, I will lock this thread. If you want to learn more, please Google any of the above numbers or callsigns and you will be inundated with hours and hours of reading. If you have any further questions, please feel free to PM me. I don't typically go so far as to explain this situation, but I understand that you are very new and probably have not been informed.
"Life is just like ridin' broncs, its a battle". Chris ledoux
Long live Steamboat