Newbie question: Any benefit to checking in to a net if you have nothing to add?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KE8OTQ, Sep 15, 2020.

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  1. KI5AAI

    KI5AAI XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I am in the camp of "Check in". If you have something to add that is all the better. What it DOES do for you is having people getting use to your voice and call sign.
     
    N6ATF likes this.
  2. KT1F

    KT1F Ham Member QRZ Page

    The cool thing is that you can use boolean logic if you want an excuse to say more words or sound more important.

    If I have traffic, I always say "negative negative traffic". If I don't, it's "negative negative negative traffic".
     
  3. KT1F

    KT1F Ham Member QRZ Page

    What traffic do nets carry these days?

    I often tune around and hear "listening for any traffic" and a few seconds later "nothing heard".

    I always assumed it was a moment of silence kind of thing to remember those operators who are no longer with us.
     
  4. W0AEW

    W0AEW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Dead air?
     
  5. KC3SWL

    KC3SWL XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Jump in with a check in. Help keep the nets active. Help keep the repeaters from getting rusty.You don't have to say much. But it sure makes it easier to make new friends on the air and that might get you interested in a local radio club or area radio association. With new friends on the air, you get to explore new areas of the hobby and have some help along the way.
     
    WN1MB likes this.
  6. WN1MB

    WN1MB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Participation provides practice for those rare "what if" situations and keeps operating skills from getting too rusty. And it's fun.

    I got a phone call a few days ago from a ham delivering formal traffic addressed to me. It was from good friend Jim who I meet up with every year when camping, though this year I wasn't able to get away. There's no cell service where we camp, but Jim is an NTS stalwart, so he sent along a message of their safe arrival and passed along well wishes. The message blocked out the urban traffic noise and transported me to the still of the forest up in the Adirondacks. I needed that message...

    I fondly remember a nighttime campfire gathering a few years ago. Jim was clearly getting antsy, which I didn't quite understand until he stood up and apologized to the rest of us, adding, "It's 2255. Five minutes to net time." And off he went into the camper to fire up the rig. Jim's XYL, also a ham, looked at me, rolled her eyes, and quipped, "That's Jim." heh.

    And you know what? We need more Jims.
     
    W4NNF and W4IOA like this.
  7. N1BCG

    N1BCG Ham Member QRZ Page

    Exactly. Traffic nets are just that, for passing actual messages and prioritizing them by urgency. Instead of taking a long series of check-ins with each station admitting in turn that they have no traffic, an efficient traffic net would begin by asking if there are any stations *with* traffic then sorting them by priority. This is how a nightly 90 minute net could be abbreviated into sixty seconds.

    Bottom line, a "Traffic Net" has a specific purpose and may not be a good name for just any net.
     
  8. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    They like a lot of check ins, To prove that their net is worth something.

    Yes, Most do keep logs, Unless the Net Controller is drunk. :oops:
     
    KU5Q likes this.
  9. K4AGO

    K4AGO Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    2 Meter nets are usually just for practice and getting to know other hams. Notice I said usually. If there is an emergency, it is a different story. If there is no emergency go ahead and join in. Joining in is NOT tieing up a casual net. If there is an emergency, just listen unless you have something important to add.

    Joining in on 2 meter nets helps cure mic fright and teaches neophyte hams correct operating procedures.

    Most nets do keep a log for their own records and purposes. It is not any sort of FCC requirement. But emergency organizations like ARES and SKYWARN keep logs to document training.

    My advice is to join in and have fun, get to know the other hams, practice for emergencies, and put your Tech license to good use.
     
    W4IOA and WN1MB like this.
  10. K4KYV

    K4KYV Premium Subscriber Volunteer Moderator QRZ Page

    Traffic nets, other than perhaps health and welfare messages during a disaster, have pretty much outlived any possible usefulness. Back in the day, when a phone call cross-country cost an hour's or maybe even a half-day's wages and a letter took a week or more to arrive to its destination (although we seem to be getting back to that now), there was a compelling reason to pass along trivial communication by ham radio, although a 3¢ or 5¢ stamp would still sometimes get the message there just as quickly. But now, with the internet, e-mail, cell phones, Skype, Facebook and Face Time, allowing even real-time live video exchanges to the other side of the world with no toll charges, routine ham radio "traffic" no longer serves any useful purpose. Even back then I can remember when hams would accept a piece of traffic, and the only way they could deliver it would be by writing a post card or 1st class letter, or by a local or sometimes a long-distance phone call; it would have arrived more quickly and reliably if the originator had simply posted the letter or made the phone call himself directly without resorting to ham radio in the first place.
     

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