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On The Air magazine

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by W0IS, Jan 15, 2020.

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  1. W4NNF

    W4NNF XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Works fine here, and as for your reservations,
    Are you a member? If not, why are you clutching your pearls? ;)
    N3AWS likes this.
  2. W0IS

    W0IS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Oh, I know that, and you know that. But for most members (including myself) the main benefit (and about 75% of the value, IMHO) is the magazine. If I did talk a new ham into joining, I think I would recommend that they get QST and read OTA online. IMHO, OTA would have more of an impact (and probably make more money) by making the magazine available for a lot lower price.
  3. KP4SX

    KP4SX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I thought the intent of a new 'simpler' publication was to help attract newbies and hold their interest. If a pre-requisite to seeing it is joining the League and subscribing to the old Boomer publication is required maybe they need to take better aim at their target.
    ND6M and G3ZPF like this.
  4. WF4W

    WF4W Ham Member QRZ Page

    haha... so stereotypical...

    The publication is spot on. How many new hams have you heard on the repeater excited about just getting their license but frustrated b/c their POS Bao Fang can't hold the repeater if they move their head too much? New hams need to buy a good HT and build an appropriate antenna to make it WORK. It also has an article on building a HF dipole and outlines all the various things a new Tech can do with their license including using their HF privileges. I think we can all agree that these are all basics that a new ham should know. . .how can anyone think that's 'lame'?

    I think any club could use these publications as a 'syllabus' for classes for new hams - not only will it provide good knowledge delivered in a non-technical way but it would provide fellowship for a group of people in the same stage of the hobby.
    K8PG likes this.
  5. NN4RH

    NN4RH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    It's targeted at new licensees, not the general public.

    There's the magazine, a monthly podcast, and a blog that all work together. It seems to me like a good idea.

    I believe this is intended to address the problem of folks getting interested in ham radio enough to get a license ... but then because they don't know what to do or feel disconnected from the main body of the hobby, stall out and never upgrade (or more to the point, never join ARRL) and many never get on the air.

    It makes sense to me to address that stagnation problem first, rather than trying to pull more people in and just exaccerbating the problem. Once they address the newby problems, then it makes more sense to pull in more new people. It's almost like someone (CEO Michel?) actually thought things through and is building a long term solution, versus the usual trite mantra of "recruit young hams" without knowing what you're going to do with them once you have them.

    I don't know what they have in mind for promoting/marketing amateur radio to the outside world. I agree this probably isn't it, by itself.
    N2EY and WF4W like this.
  6. K8BZ

    K8BZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    As I said in an earlier post, I was quite pleased with the content of the first issue of On the Air. I still think they could split the content of the bi-monthly issue and put half in each issue of QST and then QST would have near the content that it had 20 years ago and they could kill two birds with one stone.

    I also agree with Don:
    It probably will not contribute much at all to recruiting the unlicensed population into ham radio. BUT, for the small percentage that do get into the hobby, and the smaller percentage that do become ARRL members, it has the potential to introduce them to the vast array of of ham radio activities and interests at a technical level and rate that they are more capable of absorbing, thus moving them beyond the PTT button on their BaoFeng.

    When I first became a Novice in 1971 the ARRL had a small paper back publication that they gave away. I believe it was called "Operating an Amateur Radio Station". It's been a while but I believe it was only 50 pages or so, but it described CW and SSB operating procedures, had a table of pro-signs, phonetic alphabet, and gave a good introduction into traffic handling and had lots of other basic information. In my first few months I wore the ink off those pages and together with on the air experience it got me started on the right foot and I built up my experience from there with other info from Handbooks of the same period and other ARRL pubs. You see, I had no Elmer. My own Novice station was the first ham radio station I ever laid eyes on. The ARRL license manual, Handbook, Operating an Amateur Radio Station and the Heathkit catalog had everything to do with me getting in to ham radio.

    The latest edition of the Handbook that I have now is the 2014 Centennial edition. If you want to give a potential ham a reason to avoid the hobby like the plague, give them a current edition Handbook. I had quite a collection of Handbooks at one time. The editions from the mid 60's through the late 70's all had dog eared covers with worn pages and separating spines. They were bought at swap meets and many had the calls of the ham's hands that they passed through on the inside cover. Most of the Handbooks I see at swaps from the late 90's on appear to be in pristine condition as if they have never been used. It says something to be about how useful the owners found their contents to be.

    Somehow the hams that were league members and their elected officials had the broad base of operational experience and interest to collectively know what the new ham and non-ham needed most. And were able to provide it through means available at the time that no longer exist. That was before lobbyists, CEO's, corporate mindsets dominated league thinking and policy. It was a time when active, involved hams who loved the hobby more directly determined, through their elected directors, how best to promote it, nurture it and help it sustain.

    I consider the creation of On the Air magazine a small step in the right direction. The benefits of that alone will be hard to quantify. But I can see it generating a spark of interest in the mind of new hams that has the potential grow. Now if they would just divide the content and put it in a special section of QST monthly I would sing their parses. Something I haven't done in quite a while.
    K5EMG likes this.
  7. KY5U

    KY5U Subscriber QRZ Page

    Answer Below....

    The "new" publication is an advertisement vehicle to get more ad revenue. It's all about money, not amateurs. A compromise would be to give OTA to new hams 1-year free, then offer them a deal on ARRL membership after the year.
  8. KP4SX

    KP4SX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Makes sense.
  9. W4NNF

    W4NNF XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    As soon as I saw the title of the thread, I was curious as to how the publication of On the Air would be spun by some of those here to show THE ARRL IS EVIL. :rolleyes:
    KC0KEK, WJ4U, K8PG and 1 other person like this.
  10. NN4RH

    NN4RH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'm sure if we look hard enough, we can find something insidious in the new magazine.

    Oh yes. Here we are. The magazine mentions Winlink ! If that isn't proof that the ARRL is evil, then I don't know what is! :rolleyes:
    WJ4U, N3AWS and W4NNF like this.

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