Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KB7TBT, Sep 21, 2020.
Amateur Radio Newsline headlines for Ham Nation. September 23, 2020.
Thank you all.
Radiosport? LOL. I can't be the only one who thinks contesting has ruined a big part of ham radio. Not that I am totally against it but It dominates the bands now where you cannot have a conversation with another ham without getting run over or regular nets get crowded out. Just tune into intercon or maritime net during contests. Next to impossible without some dude running max power trashing it while parked nearby. Last year I was on when a sailboat was taking on water well off shore. Took twenty minutes for any info to get passed because contesters were parked top and bottom of frequency. They refused to move. Their points were way more important than peoples lives.
They should be using an EPIRB and satellite phone. Relying on ham radio for an emergency situation with a boat (especially offshore) is just plain stupid. Stupid, stupid, stupid.
The reverse can be said too. I'm sure the contesters are tired of the regular nets that dominate the same frequency day after day, taking up space that could be used for the contest. That's the best part with nobody actually owning a frequency, even though the nets frequently seem to think they do. If the nets are getting "crowded out" then they should change frequencies, or simply not have the net for the day. What's good for the goose is good for the gander.
You concern for life is noted. Epirb is a last resort, they were calling for assistance, pumps etc. Still an emergency and I am sure they are thankful for the maritime net that provides a public service. What public service does contesting provide?
It's exactly your attitude that makes sure many could care less about contesting. Do you think the next time the FCC comes for portions of a band they will think twice because of contesters or hams providing public service?
I'm very concerned for life. That's why I suggest actual life-saving devices. Relying on anything less is just absolutely stupid in an emergency situation. If I were in that situation, I would not be fooling around with the maritime net. I would put a mayday call on VHF and out comes the satellite phone and EPIRB.
Again, nobody owns a frequency. The fact that the precious nets are disrupted by nearby contesters is too bad. Amateur radio is there for everybody's enjoyment, not just the net participants.
Obviously you have never sailed. Taking on water is not sinking. Asking for assistance for nearby vessels to render aid does not tie up resources for those who need it. Calling on the maritime net is sound in those waters and many sailors private and commercial monitor it. Checking and and reporting your position is a smart move and calling there first when you need assistance is sound, not stupid.
And though nobody owns a frequency many nets have been around longer than you have and some are critical to render aid and assistance. Most hams respect what these people do and support them and then there is you and those other certain contesters that respect nothing or nobody and give the contester a bad name.
I have sailed all over the world, in absolutely ridiculous conditions. In fact, when I was in college, I used to ferry boats (sail and power) from all over the world to Southern California. But you're right, I have obviously never sailed! LOL!!
So they didn't actually need emergency assistance, thus lives were not at risk, as you said. If peoples' lives are in imminent danger, then it's an emergency, and should be treated as such. In an emergency, you use life-saving devices, not an amateur radio maritime net.
I'm glad we are in agreement. Let's repeat...nobody owns a frequency. If the precious net is being adversely affected by people operating legally and enjoying amateur radio, then move.
In order to ferry boats you need a masters license or the boat will not be insured and that's near coastal. For international open waters the requirements are more rigid. Sure you just picked one up at 7/11 on the way to class.
If you cannot respect established nets because your points are so precious then your not a ham I would want to know. End of discussion
Contesting does contribute to amateur radio. One of the big reasons that ham radio still exists is contesting. People don't pay thousands of dollars for a radio so that they can rag chew. Contesting is also responsible for innovation in equipment. There's nothing that can be done about the power limit, so ham radio manufacturers look at developing better antennas and SDR to give contesters an advantage. If all we had was rag chew and nets, you would watch the ham radio population dwindle very quickly.
On the other hand, contesting IS NOT responsible for the lack of courtesy and respect on the bands during a contest. That also goes for DXing. Mothers not teaching their kids to play nice and the "win no matter what it takes" attitude is to blame for that. The same jerk that blasts his call sign out ten times in a row during a pileup is the guy that calls CQ contest on an active net frequency.