I recently got back into Amateur Radio after being away from the hobby for 40+ years. I have been licensed now for a little over a year-and-a-half. It am still amazed how things have changed, and the wealth of information that is available over the internet. When I got my General Class ticket in January, 2010, I picked up an old Kenwood TS-530S off of eBay. The rig worked o.k. but needed work, which with the use of internet sources I did my self (the days of a local Elmer seem to be lost to me). I found a wealth of information on various site that other Ham's had put up, email back and forth with other hams, and I also join a Yahoo Group for the radio, and got my rig restored. I got my Extra Class in June of 2010, and this pattern continued. As I continued to upgrade and build my station. I collected info and joined groups for newly aquired rigs, for antennas I built/bought, amplifiers, logging programs, etc. I recently aquired a Kenwood TS-590S, my first rig that is actually still being sold and has not been discontinued. This was also a major state-of-the art step for me with most of my past rigs being from the 70's, 80's and early 90's. So to follow my usual pattern and I searched for all the info I could find on the TS-590, which as one might expect the newer something is the less info posted on the web. So I went to one of my usual sources and found the Yahoo Group for the Kenwood TS-590S. I submitted my request for membership, including a statement that I was a new TS-590S owner and want to get the most from my new rig, and share what I learn about the rig with other. Once you join a group you have to wait for the moderator to accept your request. Well this morning I received my reply. My request for membership in the group was DENIED, there was no explanation and the "decision is final."
This decision is not going to change my life, I am not going to sell off my TS-590, but this seems to be consistent with a trend I see in Ham Radio. As I have progress toward newer gear, etc., I have seen less willingness by other hams to help fellow hams. I think the concept of community, fellowship, and old hams helping new is something the hobby is losing. The is sad to me, because when I was first a ham in the late 60's the one thing I remember most is the local ham community, the older hams helping me and me helping them when I could. Back then when someone's equipment was broken, or not working right it was not just "their problem," but all of ours, and we would all pitch in and help where we could. Today, it seems that the community has changed to every ham for themselves, and that the concept of the Ham community is slowly being lost. This of course is just my opinion, from my position, and my view that I wanted to express. Comments are welcome. Jerry W5JDF