eHam

eHam Forums => Elmers => Topic started by: K2NCC on May 26, 2009, 10:01:36 PM



Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 26, 2009, 10:01:36 PM
Amateur Radio – Four Years Later

I’ve been an amateur radio operator for four years now. Before that, I worked in radio communications in the Army. Although I can certainly appreciate what ham radio operators offer to the world, I’ve yet to understand why they value it beyond what they really have to offer.

Things I’ve noticed:

Hams tend to be self-gratifying. I mean, just look at the titles behind the callsign. You have to wonder if they’re some Doctor-of-something. Folks, if you’re more focused on what value you offer to the community, then you’re missing the point!

Next, the useless and senseless “nets” that this hobby encourages. Geeze, can we do something beside collect a list of check-ins? Really. What’s the point after five or 10 loops? The only saving-grace this hobby has is “in case of emergency.” Worse than a dead fire-extinguisher or alien-abduction insurance, this hobby has based it’s value entirely upon “What if?”

I put a solid six to eight hours every day into this hobby. Not for the socialization aspects, which this post is surely to hinder, but the love of the technology. Much like my day-job, amateur radio offers a never-ending supply of learning. But in the midst of this information overload, I find a fair share of ham radio “Nazis” who think they are god’s gift to the hobby.

People… get over yourselves!

Who cares how many people you’ve helped, or even how many lives you have improved. You should do that every day, regardless. One soldier in Iraq has give more in a day that you can offer in a life-time. A true Hero is one who saves a life. At best, you’ve helped someone else do so.

The ARRL, ARES, and probably most ham-clubs, spend their time gathering names and passing useless messages. Do I really need to know that my license is about to expire or “Happy Birthday”? Any sensible person should have a clue about “clutter” before you waste the air-time with your dribble.

By now, I’m sure I’ve pissed-off enough folks to consider many bridges burned, but honestly, why should I care? All you offer is another form to fill out, another useless worked-all-States award, or maybe I've offend a list of hams who believe what you do. What value to YOU offer?

Honestly, aren’t most of you limited to net check-ins and club meetings at your local restaurant? When’s the last time you actually made a difference in someone’s life? And is it so majestic that you feel you need some sort of recognition? Does the word “Altruistic” mean anything to you?

Okay, granted, I’m being a bit harsh and cynical. Much like what people need, in this country in particular, is the proverbial “slap on the face” in order to wake up to the potential you have, versus the limited services you offer. Really. As Janet Jackson would sing, “What have you done for me lately?”

So, get off yer high-horse and do something. Recruit new hams. Get your lazy azz from behind the mic or computer and dig some ditches. Write your representatives to amend cell-phone bills to exclude amateur radio… Save a Life.

I’d rather motivate a 1000 people to activate than be somebody to love. If you don’t agree with me, that’s fine. But what are you going to do about it?


f, k2ncc


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N4CR on May 26, 2009, 11:27:21 PM
Looks like your safety vent just opened. Might want to check the pressure in there...


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KB6YH on May 26, 2009, 11:56:55 PM
Dude! Maybe we should make you our leader since you got it all figured out. I've gone on two medical missions in Honduras I can't take too much credit because I was the second radio operator. Our medical teams from International Health Service of Minnesota (ihsofmn.org) saw and helped over 10,000 poor people in remote villages with medical care, dental care and distribution of reading glasses. I did dirty jobs cleaning toilets, burning medical waste and lived in relatively primitive conditions. I loved it! On the first mission me and the main radio guy fixed a school's electrical system that had been out for 6 months. Can you imagine teaching kids in dark rooms. This was the only electrical system in about 12 miles. No home has running water or electricity or any kind of butane, propane or natural gas. Other teams gave people there first water pumps. Some lives were saved and many lives were vastly improved. I found out about this opportunity from another ham. On the missions the hams provide emergency and internet communications via radios with actual antennas. One of our radio guy programmed the Red Cross (Cruz Roja's) VHF radios for them. Incidentally all participants paid their own airfare and living expenses out of their own pocket. I got no tax deduction so each trip cost about $2000 to me personally and I only paid $200 for my best radio in my home station. I still donate money to Honduran Kids even though i don't have much income. Some of the hams have gone on several missions. They have no religious affiliation. I do see some of the problems you pointed out, but there are lots of ham "goodguys" out there.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 12:20:03 AM
>>> I can't take too much credit...

Yet you do, since you've seen fit to brag about it.

>>> I did dirty jobs...

And you are an exception to the "rule."  You've actually done something to help save or improve someone's life.  In my book, you, my friend, are a honest Hero.

>>> I loved it!

Okay, you're a glutton for punishment, but I can't fault you for what you've done.  My comments are geared towards the other 98% who have done little more than pass a net message.

>>> Can you imagine...

I can only imagine.  Your participation and contribution to the community and the hobby is representative of what I mean.  Get out there and do something or shut up!  Good job sir!

>>> I do see some of the problems you pointed out...

Honestly, that's my only point.  Do what you Will.  It's a hobby, afterall, and your claim-to-fame should be limited to your actual usefulness.  Again, you are an exception to the general practices of this hobby; Let's work on quantity versus QUALITY.   I have no argument with anyone that's done what you have.  Honestly, I applaude your Work and wish others would follow your example.

f, kn2cc


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KB6YH on May 27, 2009, 12:47:41 AM
In regards to the 10,000 people seen that is for one year.They have been doing it for over 30 years. I am sorry about tooting my own horn. I did little on the radio there, but the main guys did.  The nurses, dentists, doctors,pharmacist, translators and helpers all were wonderful. I did the best I could do for a guy my age. We had participants from about 16  to 80 years plus.Look up "helping honduras kids" and you will get some idea what some other groups are doing.

I often check in on "useless" nets. I think they link people together and make a lot more sense to are retired and want to have outside contacts. My club which I stopped going too had good leaders that did a lot of work helping in the community.

I listen to hams for hours every week. Some are definitely obnoxious, racist, and childish. Thankfully, most are gentlemen and very helpful to newcomers.. Your plea for improvement is well taken. I don't think you will be hated for your comments. keep on keeping on! 73 Bill    


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KW6LA on May 27, 2009, 01:26:51 AM
Try telling a Golfer , Its only a hobby and he full of himself !


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 02:11:43 AM
I did six under-par at Torrey Pines once.  'Course that was on the video game Tiger Woods 2006!  Hey, at least golf doesn't pretend to be the last vestibules of survival!

Sock-it-to-me!

f, k2ncc


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KA5N on May 27, 2009, 02:12:23 AM
One expression I like comes from "2" land:
Take a hike!

Allen


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 02:27:12 AM
That's all fine and dandy Allen, but do you really have something to say, or just here to post senseless replies?

f


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: AC5UP on May 27, 2009, 03:20:10 AM
One soldier in Iraq has give more in a day that you can offer in a life-time.
_________________________________

Considering the Bush administration ginned up the invasion of a sovereign nation based on phony intel, outright lies, and a deep desire to control the second largest proven reserves of oil in the world........ I wouldn't be too sure about that.

But don't let that stop you from judging people whom you have no idea what they've done in their lifetime based on what you've heard on your radio. It wasn't too long ago we had a series of nominees for US Attorney General who couldn't define what torture is, but, aside from that were fully qualified to select and prosecute "evildoers".

Why should you be any different?


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: G8UBJ on May 27, 2009, 03:35:10 AM
Yes its just a hobby, and my business is just a business.
If I don't care about the business nobody else will.
If we don't support the hobby it could disappear.
Its good to be up yourself about some things.
It means I have a job and money..
Its a great hobby but its doesn't have to have more purpose than providing pleasure.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W9JAB on May 27, 2009, 03:57:00 AM
 
In the words of that great philosopher....Homer Simpson:
"All hobbies suck. But if you keep at it, you
might find that in the end, you've managed to
kill some precious time."


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K3GM on May 27, 2009, 04:15:46 AM
Hey Frank....it's ironic that your call letters are also the initials for Net Control Center!  :) ...and you chose the call!


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N2EY on May 27, 2009, 09:57:04 AM
Frank,

A couple of observations from ham of 42 years...

Amateur radio isn't the military, nor a business, nor primarily a service-to-the-community thing. It's basically a volunteer pastime. Its main value is that it's fun, and that with the fun we do some education and community-service stuff.

Becoming a ham involves simply passing the required tests (which have always been rather basic) and getting a license. Staying a ham involves following some basic FCC rules and not much more. Almost everything else is up to the individual amateur; one can only get kicked out for a pretty serious violation.

On top of that, there's an enormous variety of activities in amateur radio, yet no requirement than any particular ham do any of them. It's all self-selected - and self-financed.

Take those nets you don't like. Most are simply harmless social gatherings, no more and no less. If you don't like 'em, move on, there's lots more to do.

If you love the technology, there's an enormous variety of it to mess with. More important, there's nobody to tell you what you can and cannot do with the technology except a few simple FCC rules.

But at the same time, you run into all sorts of folks with rather odd misconceptions about how radio works. That's a given in a situation where there's no mandatory retesting or qualifications.

"The ARRL, ARES, and probably most ham-clubs, spend their time gathering names and passing useless messages. Do I really need to know that my license is about to expire or “Happy Birthday”? Any sensible person should have a clue about “clutter” before you waste the air-time with your dribble."

One ham's drivel is another's info. You'd be surprised how easy it is to miss the renewal window of a 10 year license.

If you think the messages or the contests and awards are worthless, don't participate. Lots of other fun things to do on the air.

"What value to YOU offer?"

A friendly conversation, technical help in various areas, experience and know-how in some aspects of Amateur Radio. Isn't that enough?
 
"Honestly, aren’t most of you limited to net check-ins and club meetings at your local restaurant?"

Not me.

"When’s the last time you actually made a difference in someone’s life?"

That depends on what you consider "making a difference" to be. Ask any parent what it takes to raise a child and how much difference good parenting makes, for just one example.

Frank, the big thing about hams is that they're all volunteers who can walk away whenever they want. You can harangue them all you want but that's not going to motivate them to do things your way, because you're not their boss, commander, etc.

73 de Jim, N2EY


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: WE1X on May 27, 2009, 11:38:40 AM
Frank, Frank, Frank.

The spirit of what you're telling us rings true. However, how you're communicating it ... well ... is a wee bit condescending and counter productive. Yes, undoubtedly more of us should be doing more for the community, especially during times like these. However, what this has to do with ham radio is beyond me. I would also suggest you consider that some folks do volunteer and try to make a difference in someone's life, but they do so quietly with little fanfare and self-promotion.  I for one volunteer several Sundays a month at a homeless shelter preparing and serving breakfasts. I do major fundraising events for several domestic and foreign institutions, donate blood, help with litter cleanup along major roadways, etc.  All while running my own business and enjoying ham radio. I take it for granted these are contributions I should make ... in the scheme of things I'm a very fortunate guy and while not wealthy, I do believe that "to those much has been given, much is expected."

Now with that said and your original post, Frank allow me to ask you a simple question: What have you done to make a difference?

Harry


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: WA3SKN on May 27, 2009, 11:48:28 AM
And your question is...???
Another post that should be in the "Speak Out" forum.

-Mike.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 12:08:18 PM
On Wed, May 27, 2009 at 11:38 AM, Harry wrote:

>>>The spirit of what you're telling us rings true. However, how you're communicating it ... well ... is a wee bit condescending and counter productive.

I'll buy that.  I've never been one for sugar-coating to make my pills easier to swallow.


>>> Yes, undoubtedly more of us should be doing more for the community, especially during times like these.

I don't doubt the value that many individuals and groups bring to the hobby and the community.  The point has always been about some of the uselessness that stands right along with those values.

As my original question eluded, "What's the point?"  I also asked for what you've done to better the hobby, thus your next question deserves a response.
 
>>> Now with that said and your original post, Frank allow me to ask you a simple question: What have you done to make a difference?

To avoid the very toot-your-own-horn approach I've condemned, I'll send it to you vs the forum.

Just got back.  Nope, can't do that either.  Another person with no email on QRZ.com and I'm not inclined at the moment to hope I'm lucky w/a GOOGLE search.

So, I'm in a quandary.  Should I play my own brag-tape or not answer the question?

(a few minutes later)

-I gather several hams every month to play radio.  Actually operate, not sit in some greasy-spoon and talk about it.

-I meet 100s of people every month and constantly promote the hobby through my business.  In my short time I've helped and inspired dozens of candidates to get a ticket.

-I feed almost a hundred people a day an audio stream over the Internet, providing 24/7 copy of our local repeaters.

-I provide beta testing and support for several amateur radio programs.

-I've spent hours putting together videos for YOUTUBE so other hams can learn to identify various digital modes.

-I'm a CERT volunteer, ready and willing to serve in an emergency when called upon.  I've also done my fair share of passing emergency traffic and volunteering amateur radio services on-site at several events.

-Although I'm a "new" ham, I have more hours operating a radio in the past four years than most hams I've met will do in a lifetime.  Doubtful if it helps directly, but I share what I learn and have expanded the options for many.

-I go to people's homes for free and help them setup their rigs, antennas, ground systems, etc.

Geeze, I could go on, but my head's getting bigger with every syllable!

But this isn't a contest of who's done more.  Just as long as you're doing SOMETHING THAT MATTERS!

f


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KK7GB on May 27, 2009, 12:15:57 PM
Typicl response from a kool-aid drinker! The fact that Clinton, Gore, Kerry and the rest of the Dims stated that the facts leading up to our invasion were true escaped you.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 12:20:16 PM
I think you may have posted to the wrong forum Glenn.

Politics is down the hall, 2nd door on the far right.

f


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N6NKN on May 27, 2009, 12:20:18 PM
The problem with this hobby is that it has too many angry young/old men!!!

Rick N6NKN


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 12:25:21 PM
I'm not angry Rick, just frustrated.  More so now than when I first started the thread!  My intent wasn't to pizz anyone off, but to stimulate a conversation about a subject many have shown a passion.

But, like talking to a Republican about how wonderful the Prez is or Preaching gospel to an Atheist, (whether I believe either is moot for this point), it ends up being more about people bashing you, versus your opinion.

f


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N6NKN on May 27, 2009, 12:32:17 PM
Frank,

I stand by my statement.

BTW did I say I was describing you???


Rick N6NKN


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W4JPP on May 27, 2009, 12:51:34 PM
Wow..i've been away from the site for a while...what happened to my old favorite elmers section...

It's a hobby for me...I never really thought my hobby would be compared to what others do for a living...

in my short ham life, I have volunteered for a number of natural disasters for communications assistance - that felt rewarding...

got to volunteer at a high security port after 9/11 to coodinate comm's between police/fire/coast guard/gov't employees - because their radios did not talk to one another.

unexpectedly became a net control during wilma...because for some reason all the EOC's had either failed generators or no battery powered tv's to track the storm and provide updates...

during my cancer chemo treatments I rekindled my ham hobby and built some jpoles to kill time in between hugging the toilet...(by the way, the elmers on this site led me thru building my first jpoles - thanks guys)...

next time i'm out fishing, hunting or playing golf, I hope I forget this thread...I may feel guilty that I'm not saving anyone.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W8KQE on May 27, 2009, 01:18:25 PM
Does taking care (full-time, 24/7) of an AUTISTIC brother AND daughter count for something (said sarcastically)?!?!  Talk about 'lightning striking twice' in my case.  Who the hell has time for volunteer or community work given the HUGE demands and stress level this kind of duty requires?!?!  Ham Radio is just a fun 'outlet' for me, when I can find some time.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N8NSN on May 27, 2009, 01:22:23 PM
Hmmm, let me see if I have this correct:

*******************************************************

HOBBY  =  

–noun
1.    an activity or interest pursued for pleasure or relaxation and not as a main occupation
2.    a child's hobbyhorse.
3.    Archaic. a small horse.
4.    to concern oneself excessively with a favorite notion or activity

I believe number one (1) applies to Amateur Radio.

I think Frank is focused on number four (4)

Could this mean that Frank 'is' Frank's hobby?  (wah--hahahaha)

*******************************************************

POMPOUS  =

–adjective
1.    characterized by an ostentatious display of dignity or importance
2.    ostentatiously lofty or high-flown
3.    characterized by pomp, stately splendor, or magnificence

I believe all three (1-3) Apply to Frank in the majority of this "post" and definitely to ALL of his 'You-Tube' Videos. (P-U... Have a mint, Frank)

*******************************************************

Really Frank, you consider your self entirely too much.  Personally, I find you HILARIOUS!  You should do stand up comedy for dysfunctional hams.  They just MIGHT understand and laugh at what you attempt to convey.  

73 to you, Mr. Lucidity, (yes, that was a pun)

James


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: WD8T on May 27, 2009, 01:22:53 PM
Drama Queen.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N2EY on May 27, 2009, 01:33:23 PM
"I'm not angry Rick, just frustrated. More so now than when I first started the thread! My intent wasn't to pizz anyone off, but to stimulate a conversation about a subject many have shown a passion."

OK, Frank, I'll bite:

What's the subject you want a conversation about?

I mean, it looks like you do a lot of good stuff for Amateur Radio. No problem there!

But it's not clear to me exactly what changes you'd like to see. Or how they specifically apply to other hams.

73 de Jim, N2EY


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on May 27, 2009, 04:32:27 PM
I think I'm going to wander off and take my opinions with me since few posts go by without someone insulting me personally.  That's the first place people go when they can't think of anything sensible to offer.

I would much rather have had a conversation, maybe even a debate, but some of you would rather just argue off-point.

Later.

f


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K5END on May 27, 2009, 04:54:57 PM
Frank,

I agree with so much of your post it scares me.

I got licensed 15 months ago after having worked in radio stuff--most of which was above 100 MHz--for a long time.

HF was new to me and I felt like a kid in a new candy store. I didn't have to learn code, but I was doing it anyway--because I wanted to.

Yet, my first, honest, innocent question I was so naive to post on an internet forum was met with so much acrid, arrogant, obtuse, self-aggrandizing, "know-it-all-and-listen-zero" flaming that I was shocked beyond belief. I could not believe it. Maybe it was a full Moon, I don't recall. But the nut cases were out, in force.

And one of those a###oles was a well-known (self-important) "elmer" (narcissist) whose call sign everyone on eham would recognize. And he was "full of it" on the technical points to boot.

I was disgusted.

I realized then that this hobby was not populated heavily with fostering, helpful gentlemen.

But I did find a good group in my local club. It's a fantastic group, really.

At some point I realized that some of the internet denizens tend to be pseudo-hams, and categorically different than the ones I heard on the radio.

In 15 months I have NEVER heard anything remotely impolite on the bands (but I have not been on 75 meters much, I will admit.)

Amateur radio offers an almost infinitely diverse choice of technology to use for hobby, but it also offers a diverse choice of activities.

Well, I wish you luck and happiness in your pursuits and I hope the hobby meets in some way the expectations you have a right to pursue.

I've spent too much time on this post, but I did want to respond.

Supper is ready, and after the chicken strips the XYL makes so very well (best I ever had) I gotta go see how noisy 80 meters is and try to improve my code skills.

CUL
73


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W4HV on May 27, 2009, 05:23:30 PM
Hey guys, try intoducing a product to the do nothing crowd and watch them model and defame the product any your character because they never tried it..But they can sit on their keister and model it without your data.. The first post is so reflective of so many on every level its shocking to think about!


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W7ETA on May 27, 2009, 07:13:53 PM
This is the Elmer section.

You want the "Speak Section", where rants and complaints are encouraged:speakoutmaster@eham.net

You can tell other hams how they oughta run their lives to make you happy.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KG6WLS on May 27, 2009, 08:48:34 PM
Guad!!! Don't cha just love the internet?

This is where all the great minds and the umpty ump attitudes come to feast.


Enjoy your computer and get on the radio once in awhile too!!!!

73


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W4HV on May 28, 2009, 12:03:13 PM
A good elmer should be able to warn unsuspecting young hams about the trolls that live here and on the ham bands and under bridges. Survival takes a thick skin, a fast VOX and a dose of understanding. I commend the others here for their candid remarks about their social experience. There is more to being an ham than playing with one of bob's microphones or evaluating feed-line losses. Or checking in to the traffic net with no traffic!The gentlemanly art of ham radio and it's  get it done attitude are being lost. We must not scare off the newcomer for he is our future and like us long-timers he wants to learn and serve. They usually have the energy to do so!. Learning how to handle  people is as valuable a skill as tuning an amplifier..More so in my opinion.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KC8VWM on May 28, 2009, 01:20:38 PM
I don't see the point of this post...

Is this a letter of complaint and personal dissatisfaction after 4 years of operating amateur radio?

..Please take a number. Someone will be with you shortly.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W4HV on May 28, 2009, 02:22:21 PM
I think he means it to help us see ways we could improve ourselves. I for one strive with myself daily to do the best I can, but often I wish I had done better. We as hams have gotten a bit on the lazy side as a whole. There are some outstanding idividual efforts though!..I think the point is that we take service as something to be rewarded rather than it being its own reward.
He also points out that we have a large group of so called experts who honestly sit more as a judgement counsel instead of actually trying to develope fine character and improve the radio art. It is a hobby that has useful application. Its not just a bunch of old has beens sitting around talking about what happened back when they tried something and it did or didn't work. Where is the joy of experimentation and service? Where is the personal accomplishment that matters to society and to ourselves. Where is the personal development that changes people and motivates them to greater thing than reporting your 5 and 9 om..Can you see why that is an elmer skill also!


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N6NKN on May 28, 2009, 02:32:30 PM
W4HV,

They have a name for that. It's called civil service.

Rick N6NKN


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W7ETA on May 28, 2009, 06:15:06 PM
This is The ELMER section.

Stick to the "band plan", a gentlemen's agreement.

You want the S P E A K - O U T section.

That is where you can complain that other hams don't live their lives the way you think they should.

As an example, submit an article about what you went through building a classic two tube xmitter, 6AG7-6L6G in the article section.  Complain about the chirp from classic two tube xmitters in the Speak Out section.  Ask for help eliminating the chirp from classic two tube xmitters here in the ELMER section.

Complain that other hams lack the ability to design and build their own transmitters in the SPEAK OUT section. Blame society the FCC, and ARRL because hams don't live their live they way they should, designing and building transmitter in the SPEAK OUT section.

Bob


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KB3LAZ on May 29, 2009, 12:36:19 AM
Im not quite sure that this fits in the elmers section. As far as my thoughts on the subject, You have them from the other site.

73


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KASSY on June 09, 2009, 12:48:11 PM
Frank, I have to admit I'm not quite sure what your posting was all about, but perhaps I can help.

You wrote: "just look at the titles behind the callsign".  I guess I haven't seen "titles behind callsigns".  I see things like:

73 de name, W1ABC
emailaddress
homeclub
googlepages
cute tagline that's been used for two years

I'd just as soon ditch the taglines and listing of websites; just tell me what frequency on which to find you.

If a person's been elected to office, like Section Manager, then he ought to put it there - not for ego gratification but as a way to say "I'm your section manager, please contact me if you need the kind of services for which I was elected."

Is this what you mean by "titles behind the callsign?"  Please cite an example.

*

The "nets" are not useless.  Have you ever booted a computer?  It goes through a series of self-tests.  All systems require self-tests.  Nets meet regularly to prove that they can.  Particularly on HF, where propagation is a variable, a net meeting the same day every week gets to know the feel of propagation at this point in the solar cycle and this time of year, so if an emergency does occur, they'll all be well-prepared to handle propagation as it exists today.  Sure, there's no real message of import passed on a normal day.  But what IS important is that everybody who checks in gets confirmation that their rig and antenna is working, in an order suitable for making contact with the people they will need in an emergency.

"People… get over yourselves! "  Hate to say it Frank, but your entire posting is a lecture from on high.  Get over yourself first, and be the example to others that you want to see.  You like the technical side of the hobby.  That's great.  Ham radio has a million sides; let others enjoy their sides of the hobby, else you can expect no sympathy from those who are not technical.  Live and let live.

"By now, I’m sure I’ve pissed-off enough folks to consider many bridges burned, but honestly, why should I care? All you offer is another form to fill out, another useless worked-all-States award, or maybe I've offend a list of hams who believe what you do. What value to YOU offer? "

Ask yourself that question.  If you don't like what others are offering, then offer something yourself.  "Why should I care?" Easy.  We're all islands in the sea, connected by the water.  When one of us sinks, the others begin the process.  Humanity 101, Frank.

"Honestly, aren’t most of you limited to net check-ins and club meetings at your local restaurant?"  By no means.  At last count, some 22% of US hams are active, that is there is proof that they make QSOs on the air regularly - they're either in contest logs, or they have confirmations in eQSL, etc.  Only 5% of hams even belong to a club, and only half of those attend.  Sure, there are hams who think that attending club meetings means they're hams - but you only see them at club meetings, so they're of no real concern.

"When’s the last time you actually made a difference in someone’s life? " Daily.  Most of us.

Get this: As I read on a forum not so long ago, when you make a QSO with anybody else, you DID make a difference for that person.  Are you making QSOs for self-gratification?  Or, when you're in QSO, are you making sure the other person enjoys it?  I submit that most digital QSOs are the former - brag tapes are no fun to read.  Most CW and SSB QSOs are the latter...two people truly enjoying each other's company.  Any thinking human grows with each new person met: there's always a new perspective to be learned and that enriches you...if you allow it to do so.

"I’d rather motivate a 1000 people to activate than be somebody to love. If you don’t agree with me, that’s fine. But what are you going to do about it? "

According to the QRZ data, you're in the back yard of a very active club.  Do you participate in their Field Day?  It is the very best way to recruit new hams.  The non-ham sees the excitement and action of FD and you put them behind a mic, and they talk to someone halfway across the country, even briefly and wow, they're hooked!  Do yo do that?  Are you on the staff of your local VEC?  Do you administer exams, teach ham classes?  You didn't mention any of this.

And please, don't get all hung up on the public service aspect of ham radio.  That is NOT the core purpose. It happens to be a hot political potato right now, but that is almost exclusively in the US, and is really a very recent phenomenon.  It is not, by any mreasure, the basis and purpose.  Part 97 describes amateur radio as having  "value...as a voluntary noncommercial communication service, particularly with respect to providing emergency communications."

But - not EXCLUSIVELY to providing emergency communications, and that's only one of FOUR purposes.  

When someone gets on the air and begins passing nonsensical birthday messages, they are learning how to listen carefully through noise.  By doing this, they improve their ability to listen in real life, too.  When someone goes through the effort to put up an HF station, they have to learn a lot - and they are skills that are useful in other parts of life.  The sea of knowledge raises all boats.

Ham radio is about exacting something from it and contributing to it.  No more or less than playing a musical instrument, playing golf, riding a bicycle for entertainment.

Because ham radio is absolutely a team sport, people DO contribute to it simply by getting on the air, no matter what they do on the air.  I am improved when anybody gets on the air as that increases the chances I'll have a QSO - which is what I want on the air.  I am improved when a couch potato attends a ham club meeting, because I LIKE busy and bustling ham club meetings.

I think perhaps you take yourself too seriously, Frank.  You do not have patent ownership of the only knowledgeable way to "contribute".  Just because someone contributes in a way that YOU don't deem to be a contribution, does not mean they didn't contribute.  They contributed, just not to you.

Chill out, dude.  90% of the hams that I meet are outright decent folks.  I'm sure if you cast aside some of your built-in preconceived notions about what "contribution" means and good versus evil, you'll see them all, too.

- k


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on June 09, 2009, 01:55:44 PM
K-

I found myself torn between responding and just walking away, as the bruises I've received have been something I didn't want more of.  Thank you for taking the time to say something with sense and intelligence.

The whole topic turned out to be mult-faceted and full of surprise responses.  Unfortunately, most of those turned out to be insults or personally directed.

If I had to do it over again, I would never have asked and just went on with my own "thing" and changed the channel when another net or discussion about the weather came up.

This hobby, although focuses on communications, is really a loner's game.  How many people are sitting beside and particpate you when you fire up the rig?

>>>I'm not quite sure what your posting was all about....

To invoke some thought and consideration about how elitist the hobby can be.  People seem, in my experience, so concerned about titles, wallpaper, and think their presence in a "no traffic" net is what makes the hobby.  My point was to either find out what your experiences are or trigger some considerations about what you do and how you feel.

Instead, I got an ear-full about what an ass I am and if I don't like it, lump it.

Anyway, poor me.  I'll get over it and will have little impact on what I do.  Certainly shortened my list of friends and comrades though!  Amazing how the masks come off if you screw with someone's belief foundation.


>>> I guess I haven't seen "titles behind callsigns".

I have.  Particularly in ARES and similar types of groups.  I know of several in the clubs that have lines of titles behind their signature, and wear three name badges; Each with another title.  Reminds me of those that have 20 bumper stickers on the car; Really got something to say there, eh?


>>> The "nets" are not useless.  ... But what IS important is that everybody who checks in gets confirmation that their rig and antenna is working...

Really?  I get confirmation of my gear by having QSOs.  There are plenty of other ways to get the same information, nearly instantly.

It's unlikely, particularly on VHF/UHF repeaters, that your conditions will change much from day-to-day.  Do you REALLY need to have a net every day?  Some nets are even more useless than the more common; Like the "Handshakers Net" on IRLP.  Three hours mulling over the same trivia question.  No conversations going on.  No exchanges.  Without the Internet, I wouldn't even know who you are.  Just 60 people giving the same three answers (two of them wrong) a single question.  Makes no sense to me and appears useless in it's purpose.

>>> Ask yourself that question.  If you don't like what others are offering, then offer something yourself.

This isn't about me or what I have to offer or do for the hobby.  I've run down this list elsewhere at someone's request.  I don't doubt my contribution, but I do doubt the contribution of the stick-in-the-mud habits this hobby offers.  Sure, there are individuals that contribute daily and immensely.  But it's those few that really make the group.  We'd survive without ARES, but not without it's participants.  The other 90% of check-ins are just floaters.

>>> Humanity 101, Frank.

I'm not here to insult the individual.  Or the group really.  I am (or rather, was) trying to get some blood boiling and perhaps get some synapses firing.


>>> ... Do you... Do you do.... Are you... ... Do you...

Again, this isn't about me.  Although you wouldn't know if from the quick-fire insults so many have offered.  Granted, I deserve some flak for the tone of my post, but it's intent was to incite some responses to what I think are useless tasks;  Not whether or not I do anything or what kind of person I am.

My friends understood, and a few, like yourself, offered some actual insight and thought-provoking questions.  Forums are not always the best place to fully form a concept like you can in person.  Those that know me know I'm a rabble-rouser and motivator,   Whereas the majority of responders to this thread (and the same on other forums) had nothing of substance to offer.  Some were just plain mean.  You don't know me, so don't make it personal.


>>> ... they are learning how to listen carefully through noise.

Okay, on HF, I get that, thank you.  I hear most of the nets on VHF/UHF.  With dozens of repeaters within earshot, the airwaves seem to be full of them.  HF is an art for sure.  Hitting your local repeater is not.

>>> By doing this, they improve their ability to listen in real life, too.

Wow, I wish that were true.  Look above and you'll see few had anything to say about the content but still feel they had something to say.  They weren't "listening" to what I wrote, but I'm sure they can pick up a callsign on a 20M DX.

>>> The sea of knowledge raises all boats.

Sounds philosophically charming, but I have my doubts about it's accuracy.


>>>> I think perhaps you take yourself too seriously...

Perhaps.  Or maybe I was taken too seriously.  As many don't know me, or took the time to read my many "contributions" to the Internet, they have nothing but this thread to draw their conclusions.  But, again people, I'm not here to discuss me.  That's like me telling you that your drinking habits are bad for you and and you turn it around and tell me you think I should quit smoking.  Both may be correct, but it wasn't the point.  Some feel it better to re-direct than even think they have an issue to give thought.

Frank.  You do not have patent ownership of the only knowledgeable way to "contribute".  Just because someone contributes in a way that YOU don't deem to be a contribution, does not mean they didn't contribute.  They contributed, just not to you.

>>> 90% of the hams that I meet are outright decent folks.

I agree, most hams are awesome folk.  I think that percentile went down a bit by this point, but doesn't make me love you all any less.

Thanks again K for drudging me from the shadows.  I appreciate the time you've taken to respond.

Vy 73, de Frank K2NCC


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N6NKN on June 09, 2009, 02:11:18 PM
Live and let live Frank. Try it.

Rick N6NKN


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on June 09, 2009, 02:23:17 PM
>>> Live and let live Frank. Try it. Rick N6NKN

Thank you for checking in Rick.

f


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: KASSY on June 09, 2009, 02:37:05 PM
"I'm not here to insult the individual. Or the group really. I am (or rather, was) trying to get some blood boiling and perhaps get some synapses firing. "

But you did Frank.  Your original posting was inflammatory and derided MANY groups.  You blasted out a LOT of bruises, and now you're complaining about the replies bruising you?

If you can't take it, don't dish it out.

Sorry to hear your local ARES is so dysfunctional.  My local AREAS is overburdened with beaurocracy, so I can believe that.

I'm glad to see that you're thinking, but consider this - ANYBODY can complain and usually do.  The ones who stand above the rest solve problems, they don't simply point them out.  Lead the way, Frank.  Your initial posting didn't.

- k


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: K2NCC on June 09, 2009, 03:08:37 PM
>>> Your original posting was inflammatory and derided MANY groups.

Yes, but not once against an individual.  I many not agree with a policy, but it doesn't mean the policy-maker isn't a fine person.  Albeit polarized from my view.

>>> If you can't take it, don't dish it out.

Some comments have been disappointing and mean, but I won't lose any sleep.

Tell me what's wrong with what I post, or what I believe, but you're (not YOU personally; the populace in general) not qualified to say anything about me, as I cannot about you (them.)  We don't know each other well enough.  Therein lies my disappointment with some replies.  Anyway, again, not the point.  What you think of me isn't important.

It's like saying, oh, for example, you work for Intel and I work for AMD.  I might say how much your product sucks, or how I disagree with your company's practices, then you come back with "you are so stupid" or some other nonsense.  

>>> I'm glad to see that you're thinking, but consider this - ANYBODY can complain and usually do. The ones who stand above the rest solve problems, they don't simply point them out.

Another charming, but impractical philosophy.

If someone doesn't tell you that you have a booger on your face, you might not appreciate walking around with it all day.  Doesn't mean I should also wipe it off for you.

>>> Lead the way, Frank. Your initial posting didn't.

Yeah, that's true.  If I had to do it over again, I might have been less confrontational.  I didn't lose anything from this thread, but I'm uncertain to anything I gained either.  Some have agreed, some haven't, but either way, it's still business-as-usual, eh?  I doubt any change will come from it, so it's been a lost cause before it even became one.


f


PS

For those of you that pointed out this is the wrong sub-forum (Elmers), thank you.  My bad.  Some forums have moderators and the ability to move a thread to the right subject heading.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: W7ETA on June 09, 2009, 03:43:53 PM
"For those of you that pointed out this is the wrong sub-forum (Elmers), thank you. My bad."
"..it's still business-as-usual, eh?"

YUP.
Yer outta band and continue to operate outta band.


Title: Amateur Radio – Four Years Later
Post by: N4CR on June 09, 2009, 04:20:35 PM
"Yeah, that's true. If I had to do it over again, I might have been less confrontational. I didn't lose anything from this thread, but I'm uncertain to anything I gained either. Some have agreed, some haven't, but either way, it's still business-as-usual, eh? I doubt any change will come from it, so it's been a lost cause before it even became one."

Your posting was a rant. Rants are usually a lost cause from the beginning, simply because they are one sided.

Go find a young ham and take him or her under your wing. Teach them the finer points. Relay your wisdom. Answer their questions before they even know they are questions. Introduce them to new concepts.

Do that it will never be a lost cause. It will never be business as usual. It will be gain. It will be change.

It's up to you, not everyone else.