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April 2013

Vol 11 No 4

April 2013

In this issue:

· Field Day PR Webinar coming

· Shooting video for PIOs

· Video Tips from a Pro

· Examples

o Canadian Video Promo

o Hamfest Video Promo

· Why are we hot on video this month?

o Coming Soon

o And –

· April 18th Amateur Radio Day

· Ham Radio and “Last Man Standing”

· Ham Radio at the NAB

· A Smile from Dana

· The Last Word

Special Webinar Coming

Field Day Promo Training – April 24th

The ARRL Public Relations Committee will again be hosting a special webinar for PIOs and others interested in getting the most out of Field Day opportunities. On April 24th at 8pm Eastern time (yes, we will record it for folks who can’t make it then) experts in audio, video, social media and print media will be on tap to present ideas, tips and help for you to get good publicity for your club or group. We’ll review the ARRL’s materials available to you for your use and there’s also a Q&A period at the end for special needs.

Among the topics the PR Committee will cover are:

· Getting inactive hams involved

· Getting VIP's to actually show up

(Elected officials, served agency heads, media)

· Amateur Radio: What it is and how to get started packets

· Leveraging social media to improve attendance

(Facebook, Twitter, etc.)

You can register now for the webinar by going to

It helps us when folks pre-register as that gives us an idea of what to expect. Of course you can just join in too. (There’s no “velvet rope and a bouncer.”) Last time we did this, we had a couple hundred people show up and it was very well received. Mark your calendars now.

PRC Field Day Training

Join us for a Webinar on April 24

Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

Discussion on how to promote Field Day


PRC Field Day Training


Wednesday, April 24, 2013


8:00 PM - 11:00 PM EDT

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

System Requirements
PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server

Mac®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.6 or newer

Mobile attendees
Required: iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phone or Android tablet

April 24th at 8pm Eastern

Shooting Video for PIOs

This article is a terrific resource for the PIO regarding how to make your photos, audio, and video (recorded and live) available to a large audience via YouTube.

Steven Polunsky W5SMP
PIO, Travis County ARES

Video tips from a pro

Bill Pasternak, WA6TIF, writes:

1: Minimum resolution 720p in 16 x 9 aspect ratio
2: Scan rate 30 frames per second – this is pretty much standard
3: Submissions preferred in H-264 / MPEG-4 preferred. (See
4: No VHS, Betamax, Super 8mm or other analog home video format even if converted to digital file format. They all look old and grainy.
5: Video clips shot on Mini DV or other digital tape must be converted to a minimum 720p resolution (1080i preferred) file before submission. No tape submissions accepted as I can’t transfer them.
6: Camera should be mounted on a tripod and all images should be a fixed shot. No pans or zooms.
7: Re-read #6. Stable images are important!

Canadian Video Promo

This video was done by Jim Sutton, VE4SIG, who also has successfully completed the ARRL Public Relations course and maybe the first Canadian to do so.

Hamfest Video Promo

Grumpy Ham tells all about how things used to be: “In my day, hamfests were _______” (Enter your Comments). Bill Laakkonen, N4BKT, not only made the video in under one day, he posted it to three major outlets:

Grumpy Ham on Vimeo, Grumpy on Stuart Hamfest's FaceBook Page and Grumpy on

Bill writes, “I'm sure I could do better but this was done in 24 hours- much of it rendering and uploading.” For a one day project, it looks pretty good and nice to see the sense of humor.

Why are we hot on video this issue?

Coming Soon....

As you know, the ARRL will be celebrating our Centennial in 2014. One part of it will be gathering as many short pairs of video clips as we can get showing radio amateurs in their “normal/work” settings saying “I am ___name___. I like ___activity___ and I am the ARRL” and then another clip of them using or working with radio gear. For example, a shot of a car mechanic in coveralls working over an engine looks at camera and says “I am Henry Smith, N4XCC. I like to talk to strange countries and I am the ARRL” and a paired shot of him at home talking on the radio. Or a lab technician in a white coat, a doctor with a stethoscope, a teacher in a classroom, a cook in a kitchen – you get the idea. We are “that guy down the street” and we are the ARRL.

These clips will be gathered and assembled into one video that we expect will be shown at the national convention. And there’s serious talk of holding a drawing from the names of submitters for many prizes. With Field Day coming up three months, that’s an ideal place for getting both Part A and Part B clips as long as those being video recorded bring with them their "work costume" and the shooter knows how to be a little creative with creating Part A. Part B clips are just a matter of grabbing a shot of the person at one of the Field Day stations -- shooting each from a different angle, etc.

With Field Day coming up three months, that’s an ideal place for getting both Part A and Part B clips as long as those being video recorded bring with them their "work costume" and the shooter knows how to be a little creative with creating Part A. Part B clips are just a matter of grabbing a shot of the person at one of the Field Day stations -- shooting each from a different angle, etc.


A contest that just about everyone can take part in.

PIOs are among the more creative folks in our community, and here’s a chance to show off a little. We soon will be having a contest to see who can create the best video public service announcements on the topic of “Ham Radio – new friends made daily.” While the full rules are not finished yet, a few things we know already are:

(a) while we hope you will shoot it in high resolution (MP4 or .mov) formats, we will accept whatever is the best you can do as we don’t want to keep anyone out. So even if it is just with your smart phone – go for it.

(b) it needs to be dead-on 30 seconds black to black.

We will be looking for creativity and your ability in getting the message across that ham radio is fun and interesting.

(c) Submission forms will include full permission for the ARRL to freely use the material as it chooses.

(d) there will be prizes! – good ones!

So dust off that video camera, check out how you can do a good shot and good audio. It won’t be long before we get going on these and will post the official rules and entry forms.

April 18th – Amateur Radio Day

Each year on 18 April, radio amateurs celebrate World Amateur Radio Day. On that day in 1925 the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) was founded. The theme “Amateur Radio: Entering Its Second Century of Disaster Communications” was adopted for the next World Amateur Radio Day, April 18, 2013.

While this may not be a major event here in the US, it is important in many other places and an opportunity for showing the internationality of the Amateur Radio community. In an age where national, tribal and cultural divisions make news, this is a pleasant counterpoise.

Ham Radio on "Last Man Standing" March 15th

Amateur Radio played an important role in the sub plot to Episode 217, "The Fight" featuring “Mandy” using ham radios. Grounded from using her computer and smart phone, she turns to her dad’s ham radio to meet her addiction to communication. Shown are a very modern Icom radio and the latest gear as she talks to hams both locally and also internationally.

John Amodeo, the producer and NN6JA, writes:

After two seasons of “Last Man Standing”, we are finally able to put a small story about ham radio on the air.

For the ham community, it’s important to note that the episode is not written with hams in mind. We’re a family comedy, not a show about ham radio. Like any TV show, the scripts have to address the masses. Our primary goal is that it be funny to our general audience. It’s not the mission of the show to educate the audience about ham radio, just to make them laugh. Hopefully, with hams, not at hams.

No doubt hams will notice inaccuracies and inconsistencies. We hope you’ll enjoy the show anyway. If the episode provokes questions about amateur radio among non-hams we’ll feel that our secondary mission is accomplished.

We hope you’ll do your part. When non-hams see the episode and ask you questions about the hobby, be ready to explain it.

The best line of the whole night was her comparison of Amateur Radio to Twitter. Ham radio was better as you don’t even have to type.

Here was a national primetime program showing a young lady using Amateur Radio and enjoying it immensely. It showed modern gear and abilities. It cast the other hams she spoke with as being polite, helpful and also enjoying the hobby. It really doesn’t get better than that.

Yes, she did not use a callsign but that’s not important. 99.9% of the people who were watching it wouldn’t spot that anyway, just the hams. The millions of others (non hams) got the real message very clearly. Ham Radio is FUN!

Major thanks go to John Amodeo, NN6JA, the producer of "Last Man Standing” who made this possible. You can show your desire to have more ham radio on the show by posting your support for this at .

Amateur Radio at the National Association of Broadcasters Convention

Not only will there be an Amateur Radio booth at the NAB Convention in Las Vegas this month, thanks to the Las Vegas Radio Amateur Club and John Marino, KR1O, the popular special ham reception will again be held. The annual Amateur Radio Operator’s Reception, more affectionately known as the HAM Reception, is a free-of-charge event at the 2013 NAB Show which is open to all attendees. This year’s event will be in Ballroom B of the Las Vegas Hotel & Casino (formerly the Las Vegas Hilton) on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 from 6PM-8PM.

If you are anywhere near Las Vegas – this is the place to be!

A Smile from Dana...

I had a little fun last month at the bank. I had to cash a check against an account from that particular bank, but I didn't have an account there. I was asked to provide two forms of ID: one with a photo and the other without.

The first ID was my driver's license and I used my radio license for the second. I think it was a new experience for the teller. Before long I was answering questions about amateur radio. I don't know if I helped create a future ham, but it was a good way to strike up a conversation!


-- Dana Borgman, KA1WPM

The Last Word

As you can see, there is a lot of action coming up quickly. Video opportunities, Field Day, preparing for the Centennial and a few “secrets” that are still in the works. But, as always, the bottom line is the activity levels of the PIOs out in the world. Without you, nothing really happens.

I hope you will be in on the Field Day webinar April 24th as I know the members of the Public Relations Committee are working hard on their topic areas to make it worthwhile. (They are a good crew!)

I look forward to seeing the folks in Boise, Idaho later this month at their convention.

-Allen w1agp


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