Morse Code Eliminated by FCC

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by AA7BQ, Dec 16, 2006.

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  1. N0NCO

    N0NCO Ham Member QRZ Page


    Point taken. I thought that you were implying that those who are waiting for the new rules to take effect before upgrading won't bother to learn the code on their own. My mistake....

    Of course....copying the CWID of beacons & repeaters can easily be done with software, as well. In my opinion, a far more compelling reason to learn code is simply this: Personal interest.

    In my opinion, using software to copy and/or send code is every bit as legitimate a method as copying and/or sending by hand. It is not cheating - any more than using an electric starter to start your car - in lieu of hand-cranking it - is cheating. Similarly, using software to solve complex mathematical equations is every bit as legitimate as using a slide-rule - and using software is much more efficient, as well.


    Joel - N0NCO
  2. N7YA

    N7YA Ham Member QRZ Page

    Actually, I believe 73 is just a "slang/swing" version of "ZUT", which was a professional termination of a message...later turned into a sort of "adios" as you already know.

    I use CW almost exclusively, I passed 20 wpm and my extra...but the fact remains, im still a regular guy with a hobby nobody cares about but me and other hams. Getting all re-wired over the changes that happen in the hobby will shorten your life....I wont treat any fellow ham with disrespect without warrant. It just wont make any difference in the long run, except make you look like an outdated jerk. SSB didnt kill ham radio, the first restructuring didnt kill it, THIS wont kill may change it, but ham radio will continue in one or another form. you should decide if its still what you want to be a part of instead of getting yourself stressed to an unhealthy level. This goes for both sides...I mean, do whatever you want, say whatever you want, but if you care at all about the future of the hobby you will think about what you say and do first. otherwise, instead of merely complaining about it, you will be contributing to the decline, dont do it.  This is directed to those on both sides who are letting emotion get the better of them on a subject that is FAR from threatening to life and liberty.

    As far as the second part of the quote regarding resentment. It doesnt make sense to be resentful towards a mode, but this is what stigma creates...this thing has grown to a point that CW itself has become a being to love or hate. getting back to basics, if you couldnt pass code before i understand that there ARE people with certain learning disabilities, there are also a lot of folks that just dont care for the mode and werent interested in using HF or CW to begin with...only wanting to run the sats or build repeater systems, etc.  so staying a tech is just fine with them, they have reached THEIR goal. I am sure there are a couple of folks who waited for code to go away to pass, but i just dont see how a large number of people, even a small number of people, would actually DO just sounds silly, and a bit over-emotional on the part of the angry OT's who lump ALL NCT's into this catagory. I also dont see a resentment on the part of NCT's towards an operating mode enough to "protest" or "sit-in" against the MAN! Again, this doesnt make much sense either.

    I really dont think we will get an exodus of CBers or "boxtop tickets" flooding the waves with "10-4 goodbuddy"...this mob mentality 'could-happen' scenario is far fetched at best. most skip-shooting CBers will stay put on CB, THEY will be the ones not having to work hard to get a ticket to shoot skip, they do it anyway and thats how it is, nobody polices them (like hams generally do with eachother), they can choose their own 'call' without waiting or fees or anyone telling them they cant have a certain handle. To them, ham radio is too snooty and too much work...and this CW debate is a joke to the CBers.

    This is for everyone who has a strong opinion on this...If you, personally, can find a way to just relax, calm down and roll with the will find new enjoyment in the hobby, or a renewed love for the modes and old gear you have been using for years. Im not spreading a flowerchild/hippy message here, just one of basic unity and enjoyment of our will keep us alive. division, anger and insult will kill us.

    If you are a cool, hardworking NCT with a good attitude and a healthy respect for the tradition and history of the hobby in addition to a desire to create or learn new modes, in other words, if you are a good day soon, you WILL be accepted and understood by most and thats all that matters.

    If you are a cool, open-minded and experienced OT, with a working knowledge of traditional ham modes, willing to elmer and welcomes new hams and lets the bad ones weed themselves will be remembered fondly and the good newbies will come to you for help, just the same way i remembered the good and bad hams of my youth.

    Think about what you REALLY want from this hobby, what you want it to do for you, and what you are willing to do to preserve it. No hippy peace-love stuff, just a ham who wants to see new hams come in to the hobby, if they are good hams with a genuine interest in the hobby i sincerely welcome them. they dont have to be just like me, just not a bad ham, thats all i ask. Thanks.

    73...Adam, N7YA
  3. AE7XQ

    AE7XQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have been avoiding this thread lately. I sincerely hope that the FCC changes thier mind about this, especially after all the posts I've read from those who simply want the automatic upgrade to general/extra without taking the code test. I'd rather take the code test a dozen times until I pass it. Right now I am tied up with school and restoring a 1935 Patterson PR-10 AllWave Receiver (wish I had the Pre-Selector unit too). I will probably see if I can't find the time and money to make at least one more attempt at the code test before the FCC does make this foolish rule change. Regardless, once I have fixed this new rig, I am going to listen in to the 30M and CW segments of 40M and try my hand at copying live code so that I can eventually start using it. Quite frankly, I will never use Echolink, packet, or psk-31, and yet I am given a written test on it? Seems like a double standard to me (refuse to test on a mode you won't use yet force everyone else to test on modes they won't use either). Seems to me that in losing code testing, amateur radio lost.
  4. K4JF

    K4JF Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I think maybe we should change our name to the "modern" version: "Amateur Wireless Service".
  5. WA4KCN

    WA4KCN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I hear you. That is a fair rebuttal and is persuasive. A couple of counter points. If I understand you correctly to summarize you are saying in part that technology changes that one completely versed in modern technology yet not so versed in older technology should still be considered a technician. Is that a fair summary? If it is I agree with you. A technician working for Icom repairing a 7800 dosen't need to understand Marconi's coherer to be called a technician. You are aware of the role Morse has played in radio I'm sure. I made the proposition that if one hasen't the skill to copy Morse code (old mode) it is hard to conceive how he could be considered a "radio operator." My belief is these are two seperate propositions all together because Morse is a unique radio language not a technology. The most distinct and yet basic of radio languages. Yes, there are other more modern radio languages that require essential equipment to decipher. But Morse is the unique language of radio to the human ear and if one can't speak and understand the language of radio how can one be considered a radio operator. It is a radio language that is special - unlike all others.  Most have argued the language will thrive after the new ruling takes effect. I hope so. This position is my opinion and not a commentary on the R&O abolishing the test. The FCC and many others think it is time to eliminate the code test. It just may also be time to change the name of the amateur radio service to a more modern name.

  6. W7HW

    W7HW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Get used to it folks, the FCC has made a ruling. We can discuss that ruling forever.....Dosen't change a thing. With no incentives for class licenseing, make it one license title. Do the best we can to assure GOOD radio operations. The only winners here after this ruling are the sellers of equipment.

    The next rule change will be beyond your fears. Live with what we have until that one comes down.

    Everyone has an opinion, just throwing this one in for whatever it may worth....think positive!! Welcome new operators and guide them into clean operators.

    "nuff sed" 73 W7HW Duane Silverton, OR [​IMG]
  7. PE1RDW

    PE1RDW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm sorry to break it to you Russ but morse code never has been unique to radio, it wasn't even decoded by the tones in the old days but rather by paper tapes and keyclicks by the advanced operators of the wired line.
    I'm always laughing when someone calls it a language, it's a alphabet not a language, the language is the abriviations and q-codes etc. and they can and are used in keyboard modes aswel.

    The argument that you can't use the CW portions without knowing morsecode is false because they are defined as CW/digital portions, as of 15 december US hams can even send narowband (<500hz) fax/sstv in those bands.
  8. N0NCO

    N0NCO Ham Member QRZ Page


    Thanks for the compliment. You summed up my point quite well. As for your thoughts on what the definition of Radio Operator should be, I see your point, but I find myself with this dilemma:

    No argument - there was a time when a working knowledge of Morse code was essential, if not the very essence of being a Radio Operator. Is it still essential? Maybe, maybe not. I agree that Morse is a unique communications technique, however I'm not so sure that it's an essential skill one must posses in order to be recognized as a Radio Operator today. In the general scheme of things, most essential radio traffic nowadays is handled via other techniques.

    One could make the argument that the ability to troubleshoot digital interfaces is a more essential skill for a modern Radio Operator. After all - in an emergency, which is the more likely thing that a modern Radio Operator would have to deal with - having to use code, or having to quickly solve an issue with a computer-assisted radio link? Even the Maritime Mobile Service made that choice a while back, and they were one of the last commercial services where a code key could be found.

    Maybe a better analogy would be my pilot reference: Pilots are no longer required to show proficiency in spin recovery. Not that a pilot won't ever get into a spin - it's just not required for the license anymore. However, they are still considered pilots, nonetheless. Of course, the reasoning behind the decision was one of safety & liability - too many student pilots & instructors getting killed while practicing spin recovery - which is admittedly far removed from the reasoning behind the FCC's decision to eliminate the testing of Morse proficiency. However, I still believe the comparison is a logical one from the perspective of what constitutes a Radio Operator.

    As far as the code goes, yes - I am fully aware of the role Morse code has played in Amateur Radio - both from a technical perspective, and also from the fraternal "rite of passage" perspective. I share your hopes that there will always be enough interest in code to keep it alive.

    I strongly believe that it is important to understand where we came from in order to fully appreciate where we are today, and to intelligently plan for the future.

    As for changing the name, I'm reminded of the classic line from Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet: "What's in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other word would smell as sweet."

    Regardless of the name - I will still garner great enjoyment from communicating with others via Ham radio - of this I am sure!

    It's great that we can discuss this in a logical, non-emotional manner. I appreciate your professionalism, Russ.

    I hope to work you on the bands someday!

    Cheers & 73!

    Joel - N0NCO
  9. WA4KCN

    WA4KCN Ham Member QRZ Page

    You should get your dictionary out and look up the word language then you will understand why you are mistaken. Like many words language has more than one meaning. Did you know that Algebra is a language. It's a non verbal means of communicating ideas. Do a little more research. It's no wonder you are confused. And to say that morse is not the language of radio ignores history. We speak English in our country. It is the language of our country. I guess you think therefore we were the first to use the English language. I know you are just trying to be funny. You cant be serious. The fact that this does not make for a good argument to retain the code test is not my point. I guess the one analogy you could make to support your position is that you dont have to speak English in order to be an American - or do you?

  10. PE1RDW

    PE1RDW Ham Member QRZ Page

    No mention of an alphabatic code being discribed as a language.
    Mathamatical language falls indeed under 1. as a systematic means of comunication. trying to put morse code under that fails because it is just a set of symbols without underlaying systematics, the same as the latin alphabet.

    morse code was the first transmition mode used on radio but radio was not the first medium used for morse code, that is a part of history you keep ignoring.

    what you call English is just a dialect, but that is besides the point here, what matters is that the language of radio is the use of shorthands and codes, those are not limited to any single mode.
    A better analogy would be if you have to be able to write English to be an American and from the number of US analphabetics I think it is safe to conclude you don't have to be able to write.

    Please research the differense between language and alphabets.

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