RM-11828: FCC invites comments on ARRL petition to give Technicians HF phone privileges.

Discussion in 'Amplitude Modulation' started by K4KYV, Mar 15, 2019.

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  1. K7JEM

    K7JEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes, I mainly agree with this. However, phone privileges of some sort should be added, since many people still use phone. And SSB is what techs have now on 10M, so it follows that new privileges would be SSB only. I would not be opposed to dropping the SSB only phone restriction, it does seem a little restrictive. That would open up AM, FM and digital voice techniques for the new HF hams, which would be a good thing IMO.

    The newer proposed changes are more there to provide a retention of licensed hams, as opposed to attracting new hams (although added privileges will certainly not hurt the attraction). Currently, we are doing a pretty good job of getting new people licensed, but activity levels soon fall off. Hopefully, getting new licensees invested in HF operations will keep them active, by providing additional modes and frequencies for different types of QSO's.

    Right now, there is little incentive for a tech to buy a radio that covers HF bands, and put up an HF antenna, unless he wants to work CW only, or wait for a band opening on 10M. This idea will create an incentive to get a radio capable of the new bands, and once that is done, there will be more desire to upgrade to better utilize the additional bands available to general.
  2. WA3VJB

    WA3VJB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Some simple concepts, whether you agree with how they apply, or not.

    If I can get something of value for less expenditure, then the cost of that item has gone down.

    If I can pass a weaker challenge and get something of value, that’s a change from an earlier, more difficult challenge.

    Value and incentive are linked. Outsiders don’t care about who already-passed-what. To them, obtaining value for less effort may provide incentive.

    It would be a weaker test compared with what’s required today for something of value.

    My contention is that RM-11828 offers something that may NOT provide the results. Only we don’t know that, because no one asked prospective licensees what it would take to recruit them to the hobby.

    The petition fails as unsubstantiated.
  3. K7JEM

    K7JEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    But there is no change in the test. It can be neither weaker nor stronger. It is the same. The value received for that test has increased. That doesn't change the difficulty of the test at all, it just means you get more.

    Now, if we changed to 20 questions, you would have a point. Or, if we changed the content of the test to be much easier, then you would have a point. But we are not doing that at all. The value received for taking the test has gone up.

    It is more than recruitment, it is retention after the fact. To me, that is the biggest issue. That is why it is important to see what the comments are, to the FCC website, by all classes of licensed hams, and by outside interested parties as well.
  4. WA5VGO

    WA5VGO Ham Member QRZ Page

    I still don’t get it. All they need to do is pass a simple test that amounts to little more than an open book test. For cripes sake, they have the questions and answers supplied ahead of time! If they aren’t willing to make this simple sacrifice, I’m not convinced the hobby needs them.

    WZ5Q, AC0OB and WA3VJB like this.
  5. WA3VJB

    WA3VJB Ham Member QRZ Page

    A lot of people feel the way I do, that this proposal makes it easier to get on HF via a Technician Class license.

    I can be persistent and come up with comparisons I hope will convince you. Let’s try this one:

    Something has cost $10 in the past.

    Now you can get it for $5.

    Does that motivate you to buy it?

    And then there’s the public relations nightmare of explaining to the $10 customers why they overpaid.

    Until finally, nothing has any value.

    The more suitable effort would convince outsiders why the item is worth $10, which also would keep you from selling at a loss. Marketing research & salesmanship; not seen in RM-11828.

  6. K3XR

    K3XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    My take on the proposal...ARRL membership drive.
  7. K4KYV

    K4KYV Premium Subscriber Volunteer Moderator QRZ Page

    There's no longer any reason for it; it doesn't serve any useful purpose (if it ever did). The ARRL inserted it in their original Novice Enhancement petition because that was right at the tail end of the great 1970s CB boom, and they feared CBers would jump at the chance to take out ham tickets, convert their AM 11m rigs to 10m, and bring CB type behaviour into the ham band. The CB boom is long past, and current interest in CB is almost nil. 11m is like a ghost town now and much of to-day's younger generation probably have never even heard of CB, so the threat of CBers infiltrating the ham band en masse with their converted AM transceivers no longer exists. Plus, to-day's digital transceivers are not as easy to hack into working on 10m as the 1970s-80s xtal controlled and PLL synthesised rigs were. The existing no-AM clause should be stricken from the 10m rules, and if the subject petition makes it into Part 97, AM should be included in any HF Tech phone privileges granted.[/QUOTE]
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2019
    K7JEM likes this.
  8. WA3VJB

    WA3VJB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Possibly. But that was an alleged motive behind dropping the CW test requirement too, and in this petition the ARRL said that failed to bring a sustained level of growth. Didn't they read their own points?

    If it is a membership-building pretext, maybe their rap would go like this at an ARRL table somewhere:

    Outsider, cool dude, walks up: "Hey I want to get on the shortwave HAM bands!"

    ARRL worker: "Welcome, right now you have two choices, a medium test and a hard test. If you wait, there will be an easy, medium and hard test. Which would you prefer?"

    Outsider: To get on HF? well, the EASY test, for sure!

    Lesson: This, kids, is what it means to make a weaker test available to get on HF.

    Lesson 2 (optional):

    Outsider: "Great, you sold ME! Do I have to buy a subscription to the League?"
    ARRL worker: "Well.... we call it the Benefits of Membership..."
    Outsider: "Will the smarter kids make fun of me for taking the easy test?"
    ARRL worker/JEM: "OH, no, just say proudly how you got enhanced benefits! They will be impressed at the value you have obtained!"
  9. K7JEM

    K7JEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Again, the test isn't any easier. There is no easy test, at least no easier or no harder than the test that exists today. This should be obvious, but I guess it's just too difficult to comprehend.

    So, the point is not valid. There is no "easier test to take" if the person waits to get his license. He may have some added benefits that will occur in the future, but he will get those regardless of when he took the test, now, later, or ten years ago.

    And still talking about a CW test? By the way, the amateur test never required a "CW" test, it was always Morse code.
  10. WA3VJB

    WA3VJB Ham Member QRZ Page

    It's quite valid. Either you pass a harder test to get on HF now, or if this petition passes, you have an easier test for your "entry" to HF.
    Your refusing to accept the point does not mean it's wrong.


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