ARRL

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KF6UEB, Nov 9, 2002.

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  1. AC7UX

    AC7UX Ham Member QRZ Page

    merry Christmas Mr. Hare and a happy new year to you and to all.
     
  2. N0PU

    N0PU QRZ Member QRZ Page

    RFI:

    Please be careful what kind of hole you dig for yourself here...
    And please realize that I believe ARRL could be a leader in the Communications field if it wanted to...

    1. Your $120 dues to IEEE are tax deductable if you are paying for them and at no cost if the ARRL is paying, as they should be, since it appears to be part of your job.

    2. QST could be delivered to every single licenced Amateur Radio Operator in the US with a slight change in business plan.

    A. I receive 10 or 12 magazines with quality articles which I am sure you would recognize ( ie: Electronics Design, EE Times ) absolutely free each week/month simply because I am in the electronics consulting business and advertisers pay "by the reader" as they do with QST and every other mag on the shelves. These folks do not publish these rags for their health...they make big bucks doing it.

    B. QST used to be recognized by even non-hams as one of the leaders in technology (ie: the SSB push in the 50's that you so well documented in the Jan 2003 issue) and it could again take that position if the editorial staff would loosen the purse strings and start paying decently for articles. I don't think the overall Ham population realizes how many Hams are involved in leading edge technology in communications. IMHO these leaders in this industry won't bother to write about it for QST because of the low pay.

    C. To tie this together, if QST were delivered free to every Ham, reader numbers would go up and advertising revenue would go up. This would allow you to attract more quality technical articles and allow you to quit pandering to the appliance operators. ( When was the last time a major Semi-conductor company advertised in QST??) With the increase in technical articles, the ARRL would again look like the leader it should be and you could start using the ARRL Lab for innovative design and the testing of new ideas.

    As I have watched the questions here on QRZ.COM I see many new Hams trying to get a handle on the technical aspects of Amateur Radio and from the private e-mails I get I know that many are trying to grow and are having a hard time finding the cost effective references they need. ( I recommend the ARRL Handbook as the technical bible - )

    I also believe my suggestions above would help bring some of the non-active Hams back into activity and do much to extend the knowledge base desireable in our Service.

    I hope you take this as a constructive rather than destructive comment for that is how it is intended.
     
  3. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (N0PU @ Dec. 24 2002,13:55)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I hope you take this as a constructive rather than destructive comment for that is how it is intended.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I have seen two &quot;outside the box&quot; ideas in the posts here, and I took them both as constructive. Dennis Motsenbacher is the HQ Manager in charge of memberhip, pubs sales and advertising. I am printing both posts and sending them to him. He actually appreciates outside-the-box thinking, btw.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Please be careful what kind of hole you dig for yourself here...[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I am not an expert in the delicate balance between advertising and membership revenues, so I am speculating as much as the next guy. My participation here is personal insofar as I do not post on QRZ.com at the behest of my boss. In some cases, I have spoken for my role within ARRL, on RFI matters, or the runnings of the ARRL Lab. In most cases, I am bantering ideas with other hams, just like everybody else here. I think it is generally clear from context which is which.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">And please realize that I believe ARRL could be a leader in the Communications field if it wanted to...[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    IMHO, ARRL's primary role should be to be a leader in the &quot;amateur radio&quot; field. It is important that ARRL be in touch with the realities of the communications field, and there is always room to do that better, its primary role is to support those things of interest to most hams.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">1. Your $120 dues to IEEE are tax deductable if you are paying for them and at no cost if the ARRL is paying, as they should be, since it appears to be part of your job.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    Yes, one of the two is true. :) ARRL pays my IEEE dues, but HQ staff and officers pay their own ARRL dues. I could probably justify my ARRL dues as a tax deduction, too, because it is membership in a society directly related to my employment. :)

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
     
  4. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">2. QST could be delivered to every single licenced Amateur Radio Operator in the US with a slight change in business plan.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    As I say what I am about to say, keep in mind I am forwarding this idea to Dennis. You should also communicate this to your ARRL Division Director, but I will let you do that, or not, on your own. :)

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">A. I receive 10 or 12 magazines with quality articles which I am sure you would recognize ( ie: Electronics Design, EE Times ) absolutely free each week/month simply because I am in the electronics consulting business and advertisers pay &quot;by the reader&quot; as they do with QST and every other mag on the shelves. These folks do not publish these rags for their health...they make big bucks doing it.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    Yes, they do. I have looked at their ad rates; they are pretty steep.

    These magazines do make some effort to &quot;qualify&quot; their readership, to ensure that their advertisers will derive enough real benefit from the advertising to justify it. Every year, I gotta' fill out that card and send it in, or they will drop my free subscription.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">B. QST used to be recognized by even non-hams as one of the leaders in technology (ie: the SSB push in the 50's that you so well documented in the Jan 2003 issue)... [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    Believe it or not, I believe that more non-subscribers complain that QST is too technical for their present interest in ham radio than complain that it is not technical enough. I am, btw, compiling a single URL that will contain the links to all 600+ technical articles that are links from the ARRL TIS web page and will put that up in my &quot;work&quot; area on the ARRL web page. Most of the articles are in the public, rather than members-only part of the page, btw. ALL of those that are targeted toward helping new hams become active, all that are &quot;safety&quot; related, all the RFI articles and all the articles to promote &quot;high-tech&quot; technology, such as spread spectrum, are public. It will be interesting to see any comments that folks have about the overall scope of the articles.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE"> and it could again take that position if the editorial staff would loosen the purse strings and start paying decently for articles. [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    BTW, I also agree that the page rate ($65 per published page) is not enough. I write &quot;RFI&quot; and related articles &quot;on the clock,&quot; but if were to write an article at home in an area not related to my job -- my half-size J pole project, for example -- I could be paid as a contract author. I don't mind writing it, and might even donate my 3 pages back to ARRL or to AMSAT or such, but I never manage to get around to writing it up. At some point, a higher page rate would get my attention. :)

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I don't think the overall Ham population realizes how many Hams are involved in leading edge technology in communications. IMHO these leaders in this industry won't bother to write about it for QST because of the low pay. [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I am not sure we could afford to give some of these guys what they would want. But I am not sure they would be paid more anywhere else. When I wrote a 3-page article for Communications Technology, they paid nothing other than the fame and glory and professional feather in my cap. They did get only right of first publication, though. I don't know which of other professional magazines these guys could write for pay more than a stipend for articles. If you have any information, let me know. If I can get 3 months pay for writing a single article, I can raise some money for the ARRL Lab Test Equipment fund pretty easily! :)

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">C. To tie this together, if QST were delivered free to every Ham, reader numbers would go up and advertising revenue would go up. [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    One of the things that ARRL has to regularly prove to advertisers to continue to get their business is that the readers of QST are active hams and buy stuff. That is proved with some of our formal surveys and with the fact that these hams actually buy stuff. Sending QST to every ham would print a lot of magazines that are going to inactive hams who would not buy stuff, so the long-term impact on advertisers would not be as dramatic as you think. I also know of advertisers who advertise in CQ but not QST (QST page rates are higher). That initial jump is pretty steep for startup companies, so ARRL would soon reach saturation.

    And, of course, we have to ask how much of the additional ad revenue would be offset by the loss of dues revenues from the existing membership, most of whom would not pay for what everybody else is getting for free.

    I will add, btw, that if any non-members want a sample QST to look at, send me an email to w1rfi@arrl.org and I will send one out. Also, take a look at the ARRL TIS web pages at http://www.arrl.org/tis.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">This would allow you to attract more quality technical articles and allow you to quit pandering to the appliance operators.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I am not sure that most hams want more technical technical articles. &quot;Quality&quot; might mean more articles intended to help new hams learn more about radio and electronics. In the past couple of years, what subject have not been covered and what kind of articles do you think would cover them? And I am not sure the &quot;high-tech&quot; guys are the ones to write them. :)

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">As I have watched the questions here on QRZ.COM I see many new Hams trying to get a handle on the technical aspects of Amateur Radio and from the private e-mails I get I know that many are trying to grow and are having a hard time finding the cost effective references they need. ( I recommend the ARRL Handbook as the technical bible - )[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I am not sure that the ARRL Handbook is the ideal first book to teach new hams electronics and radio. In the name of &quot;technical excellence,&quot; it has become a bit daunting for many new hams, from what I have been told.

    The ARRL TIS web pages have taken many of these &quot;tutorial&quot; articles over the years and put them all together in one place. That may be a good place to point hams that want to read articles to learn subjects. IMHO, there are a lot of articles there that meet this goal. Take a look and tell me what you think. I CAN make changes to those pages, as they are part of my fiefdom at ARRL HQ! :)

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
     
  5. N0PU

    N0PU QRZ Member QRZ Page

    RFI:

    OK, so modify my idea somewhat and make QST available to every licenced ham who will send in a qual card like you and I and thousands of others do... If they don't wanna qualify make the subscription price something ridiculous like $10 an issue...

    On the qual cards ask the right questions and you will have a lot of info to take to your advertisers... I'm talking abot advertisers who traditionally spend big bucks like International Rectifier, Philips, Mini-circuits and Pico. These companies spend big buck in the pro mags maybe if we could design some stuff around their products and we were paid enough to make it worth while, that could attract some of these big timers.

    There are details in my plan that would need to be worked out, but it might be worthwhile to go after some of them.

    I remember the days when Eimac, RCA, GE, and others had full pages in QST. And that makes bucks that can be spent in other places (like the Lab...hehehe)

    I think we would not have to spend so much money on defending our need for spectrum if we were really out there showing the Comm world that we are truely a force and bringing new ideas to the table to be dealt with.

    We, as Hams, were the ones that invented cell phones in the form of phone patch way back in the 60s (maybe 50s, I'd have to look it up)... nobody seems to remember that... it needs to be advertised... There are several other technologies that we have been responsible for and we need to continue to work in that area... particularly with the new people...we don't know which of them is goona get the next bright idea...

    OK, I'll get off my soapbox... I've foamed over enough...
     
  6. AE4FA

    AE4FA Ham Member QRZ Page

    PU:

    Harry, I like it when you foam . . .

    73, Bob
     
  7. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (N0PU @ Dec. 24 2002,18:57)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">OK, so modify my idea somewhat and make QST available to every licenced ham who will send in a qual card like you and I and thousands of others do... If they don't wanna qualify make the subscription price something ridiculous like $10 an issue... [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    That still leaves out the question of the loss of dues revenues. And at that point, is everyone who receives QST for free a &quot;member?&quot; Just like we now have a few folks who say they would like to be members without QST, there are also a few who would like to receive QST without being a member. If my WAGs about 75% of active HF hams and 50% of active VHF-only hams being ARRL members holds true, then QST would increase its circulation about about 35% or so (very quick, approximate mental math), with the accompanying loss of dues-dollars revenues. I presume that only active hams would fill out the qualification card. Would advertisers be willing to make up that difference? I am not sure they would.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">On the qual cards ask the right questions and you will have a lot of info to take to your advertisers... I'm talking abot advertisers who traditionally spend big bucks like International Rectifier, Philips, Mini-circuits and Pico. These companies spend big buck in the pro mags maybe if we could design some stuff around their products and we were paid enough to make it worth while, that could attract some of these big timers.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    This would require a major change in policy -- one that I am not comfortable with -- because right now, by policy, the content of the magazine is not advertiser driven. I am sure there are hams in many of these companies, and their applications engineers would be quite welcome to write ham-project articles. (I don't believe that QST has ever contacted any of them and invited them to write, but I could be wrong).

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">I think we would not have to spend so much money on defending our need for spectrum if we were really out there showing the Comm world that we are truely a force and bringing new ideas to the table to be dealt with.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    That concept plays a major role in the way I do my work. In my dealings with the IEEE C63 committee and other industry contact, with the FCC and every chance I get, I offer some of the real value of the amateur radio community to the issues on the table. To good effect. The ARRL's work in RF safety made a major impression on the IEEE RF-safety standards committee and in the invovled FCC staff, just as a single example.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">We, as Hams, were the ones that invented cell phones in the form of phone patch way back in the 60s (maybe 50s, I'd have to look it up)... nobody seems to remember that... it needs to be advertised... There are several other technologies that we have been responsible for and we need to continue to work in that area... particularly with the new people...we don't know which of them is goona get the next bright idea... [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    ARRL's representative on the FCC Technological Advisory Council, Greg Lapin, N9GL, (a volunteer) has made the same observation that you (and I) have -- the rest of the world does not fully understand the technological contributions that are being made by amateur radio. I think that Greg wrote an Op Ed piece that pointed this out and asked that hams send him information about ongoing contributions. He wants to pull it all together in one place. I am 99% sure that n9gl@arrl.net will work.

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">OK, I'll get off my soapbox... I've foamed over enough...[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I don't see foaming at all; I see reasoned discourse that is letting us both learn from each other's ideas. Don't stop. :)

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
     
  8. N0PU

    N0PU QRZ Member QRZ Page

    FA: Thanks... BTW, that project we were talking about is coming along... you will see more on that... I promise...

    RFI:

    OK, try this...

    Approach these big guys this way... ARRL is a Charitable Organization... The Industry Leaders can kill two birds with one stone...

    1. The advertising is deductable. They are supporting the Amateur Research end of the Comm industry. Give 'em a plaque or something each year they spend 100K in advertising with you. They love to put that stuff in their reception areas.

    There are ways to do this. I think one way is to give the advertising away if they make a charitable contribution. I'm not up on this kinda law so the details are left to those in the know.

    2. They are gambling that their product may be used in a new design. Just think, if something as neat as Cell Phones is developed ( and it will be - its just a matter of time) and Mini-Circuits is part of the design spec, they stand to make bi-gillions. They stand to make nothing if they aren't represented. And I'm sure Maxim would love to have one of their products used as would any number of others, but few of our people even know some of these companies even exist.

    There is a third bird to be killed there somewhere, I just can't put my finger on it at present.

    Find out by qual card how many hams are working on stuff. How many build kits. How many are in UHF/SHF work. Sure, support the Appliance Operators, but lets support the ones who are in the trenches too. I think these big companies would help if they were approached properly, and through their help the average Joe Ham could be inticed to become more active by cutting his cost to belong. We, as Hams, are not professionals and cannot afford $120 a year dues and many even find the $36 bucks a burden, so ARRL needs to find a way to support us in our endevours through outside support, and this is one way of doing it.

    I know that these things are going to take some re-thinking at the management level, but it is my belief that if Ham Radio is to survive, better yet, is to Thrive, we must bring technology back to Ham Radio and I think getting people to see advertising that has to do with component level electronics is one way to help it along.

    I also believe that we must quit refering to Ham Radio as a hobby. It is much more than that and too many of our new comers think of it in that way, and it is promoted that way by the ARRL. It needs to be promoted more as the Service that it is, and as the Amateur Research branch of Communications; similar to the way Amateur Astronomy is looked at. They have a much higher reading on the 'respect-ometer' than do we or at least I preceive them that way.

    Just a couple thoughts...
     
  9. AE4FA

    AE4FA Ham Member QRZ Page

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE"> Posted: Dec. 26 2002,07[​IMG]0

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    FA: Thanks... BTW, that project we were talking about is coming along... you will see more on that... I promise...[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I'm breathless . . .

    Well, not really. But I am interested to see what develops.

    Wow! I finally figured out how the quote thingie works - and it only took six months.

    Ah, well. So much for my technical expertise . . .

    73, Bob
     
  10. W1RFI

    W1RFI Ham Member QRZ Page

    A few folks have offered comments that QST is not technical and/or that QST should contain more quality articles.  Many of the higher-tech articles appear in QEX magazine.

    To help folks decide for themselves about the content of QST and QEX, I took the time to cut and paste from the ARRL TIS web pages (http://www.arrl.org/tis) all of the QST, QEX and other articles available for download.

    Although some of the articles are members-only, there should be plenty of food for thought for everyone.  And if you print the list, make sure there is plenty of paper in your printer. This LIST is about 50 pages long!  Enjoy!

    http://www.arrl.org/~ehare/TISarticles.html

    73,
    Ed Hare, W1RFI
    ARRL Lab
     
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