ARRL

Contact April 2011

Media

April 2011

Vol 9, No 4

April 2011

 

IN THIS EDITION:

 

Looking for Field Day Info?

HR-607

Did you know?  Writing tip

Following Twitter feeds yet

a News’ News Release

College Amateur Radio Club information

The Great Central US Shakeout

Who takes PR-101 ?

The Last Word

 

 

 

Looking for Field Day Information?

 

http://www.arrl.org/files/file/Field-Day/2011/2011_FD_PR_info.pdf

 

Also, don’t forget that you can oder FD posters to put around town at

http://www.arrl.org/shop/Field-Day-Supplies/

 

 

HR-607

 

Obviously one of the major activities here at ARRL HQ in the past weeks is the opposition to HR 607 as it is currently written.  While we have no argument with giving the “D-block” frequencies (some of the old UHF TV frequencies not being used) to emergency responders, we DO have strong objections to another part of the bill, section 207, where it proposes taking away our use of 420-440 MHz and selling it off to the highest bidder for commercial use.  NPSTC, APCO and others involved in emergency responses have agreed with ARRL that section 207 of the bill needs to be changed.

 

ARRL has created a video about HR-607.  You can see it at http://www.arrl.org/hr-607  and at the bottom of the page is a low resolution .wmv file you can download if desired.  The full, high resolution files are available by sending me an email – but note that they are just over 1 gigabyte in size.  You’ll be downloading for a while :-)

 

...And it has also been posted at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tsW5AjS65U0

 

Major thanks go to Al Petrunti, KA1TCH, who volunteered to work with us in creation of the video.

 

Meanwhile, Richard Haltermon, KD4PYR, created a website that makes it very easy to develop a letter for your Congressional representative regarding HR-607.  This is as easy as it gets folks!  Just enter your callsign and it does the rest.  It was given a major test at the North Carolina hamfest and SM Bill Morine, N2COP, writes:

“...we used http://www.kd4pyr.net/hamletter.htm  to generate HR607 letters this past weekend at the Charlotte Hamfest, and it worked wonderfully.”

 

Please get this info out to clubs and groups. 

http://www.kd4pyr.net/hamletter.htm  

 

Send the signed letters to:
                                 John Chwat
                                 Chwat & Co.
                                 625 Slaters Lane
                                 Suite 103
                                 Alexandria, VA 22314

 

Why send them to Chwat & Co.?  - Because since the anthrax mail scare of 2001, all mail to Congress goes through security checks that can delay it for weeks.  But John will see that it gets hand delivered in time.

 

 

Did you know?


Most people understand frequencies (1 in 10) better than percentages (10%). So try to report numbers in ratios rather than percentages.


 

Following Twitter feeds yet? 

 

http://www.twitter.com/reporterconxn is a place to follow.  Reporters needing “experts” to provide information for various stories post requests there – and you might be able to help them. 

 

Also sign up for http://www.twitter.com/ARRL_PR  to get major breaking PR info from ARRL HQ.

 

 

 

What does News’ News Release look like? 

Well, here’s one sent from the very people you would love to attract with your release!  It is not often that news leaders send out their own releases, but when they do it’s worthy to note how they do it.  It’s 470 words on one page.  Unfortunately the variations in computer browsers make it impossible for me to guarantee all the formatting will stay the same, but it will be close.  Note the main elements needed in a release and how they worked them.

Media

Download

Take a look and see how the news people themselves write press releases for other news people!

 

Tap in to College Amateur Radio Club information

 

We all wonder about the 16-26 year old demographic sector and their view of Amateur Radio.  While ham radio has never been a “mainstream” activity, technically-minded students are not nearly as rare as some folks would claim and they still are very interested in the opportunities for experimentation that Amateur Radio holds.  To see what they are up to in the 21st century, take a look at the College Amateur Radio Club’s Website and Facebook pages.  Hosted by Brenton and Bryce Salmi, KB1LQD and LB1LQC, it has student members from many schools and it looks like they are doing very well.

 

http://www.facebook.com/collegearc

http://www.collegearc.com/

 

 

 

The Great Central US Shakeout

 

This is a major drill happening throughout the central states simulating an earthquake scenario.  While rare, the last time this region had an earthquake (in the 1800’s) it was a whopper, and they did not have the buildings of populations we do now.

 

IL, IN, MO, KY, TN. OK, MS. AL, GA, and SC ARES units are asked to join in and register their participation.  Check with your SEC or SM to see what they have planned.  You can see who has already signed up at http://www.shakeout.org/centralus/communication/ .

 

The drill is set for April 28th – except for Indiana who will play the game April 19.  (Then again, until recently Indiana also had some unusual time zones too, so I guess this just fits for them :-)

 

Register now for the 2011 ShakeOut on April 28 at 10:15 a.m.!

Participate in the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut to practice how to protect yourself during earthquakes, and to get prepared.

Learn how to participate at http://www.shakeout.org/centralus/

 

There will be many organizations participating in this event and this is an excellent opportunity to call on other groups and work together in gaining media coverage as a coordinated group. 

 

 

 

Who Takes PR-101?

 

Some of the best PIOs in the country have taken the PR-101 course.  Even the professionals know that they don’t know everything and are always looking for new ideas and ways to increase their skills.  How about you? 

 

PR-101 is not available as a free download at http://www.arrl.org/pr-courses

 

Here are some of the folks who have taken it and are already using it. 

Last Name

First

Call

Abbott

Andrew

K7ADA

Abraham

Ron

KC5IMJ

Allen

George

N1NBQ

Bagdas

Tomas

NU2I

Bagdasarian

Douglas

W4DBM

Bigley

John

N7UR

Borgman

Dana

KA1WPM

Burchfield

Jon

KJ2N

Bybee

William

KI6OBV

Carline

Michael

KD5ZCA

Carpenter

Forrest

KF5FLU

Connolly

Joseph

KG4CWS

Cox

Glenn

ke4bmy

Duram

James

K8COP

Dutkewych

Alexander

N2PIG

Dutkewych

Debra

K2PIG

Eaton

Lawrence

NT2B

Fanning

Joe

N6RRJ

Fontenot

Jody

KB5RXZ

Franklin

Geof

KE4IGD

Gadus

Joe

KD5KTX

Gadus

Joseph

KE5BVQ

Garvin

Larry

KB1QQM

George

Robert

KB8QYJ

Gillis

Ben

K5TBN

Goldy

Richard

K5GOL

Goran

John

K1JJS

Grayson

Stephen

KE5BPL

Hall

Melissa L

W4RXG

Harpham

Allen

KBØASQ

Harris

Bruce

N4PDX

Hoettels

Janice

KA9VVQ

Holstein

Jeff

K8JMH

Hutchison

Harvey

NK0S

Jacobs

Jack

WD4OIN

Jensen

Kenneth

KI4RUI

Johnson

Kathryn

KA0BDL

Johnson

James

KI4TAT

Klein

Stanley

W0CHF

Koechel

Martin

K9AMG

Krupa

Joe

N1ESB

LoCicero

John

K4TUG

Mahaney

Kirk

N5WKM

Manshack

Michael

AD5OG

Mayernik

Anthony

K7AKM

McBride

Bennett

KE5VDC

McCraw

Gordon

WX7EM

McDonald

Jim

KB9LEI

McGlothin

Daniel

KB3MUN

Morine

Bill

N2COP

Mullet

Pat

KC8RTW

O'Dell

Kevin

N0IRW

O'Shea

Tim

KY7Y

Palmer

Walt

W4ALT

Partridge

Del

W5QQ

Pitts

Allen

W1AGP

Pituch

Steven

W2MY

Polunsky

Steven

W5SMP

Pope

Jim

N5JCP

Rabold

John

KS6M

Redoutey

Robert

N5KF

Reid

Robert

N0BHC

Roberts

Paul

K5HHM

Ross

Randy

KI4ZJI

Roth

Gary

KE7IAT

Samuelson

Harry

KB9ZR

Sanders

Steve

KE7JSS

Santana-Díaz

Ángel Luis

WP3GW

Schulz

Michael

W9MJS

Schuylar

Crist

KE5VIP

Stewart

Terry

N4EWW

Stohrer

Peter A

K1PJS

Summers

Peter A

KL2GY

Taylor

Mark D.

N8MDT

Urich

Mike

KA5CVH

Valega

James L

WB5LSH

Vines

Dennis

K5GBT

Weathersby

Ann

KE5TEZ

Wells

Emily

KC8RAL

Wentzel

Dave

KD4ITI

Wilcox

Martin

W9OV

Woodward

Raymond

K3VSA

Zawrotny

Stanley

K4SBZ

 

 

 

The Last Word

 

Sit back and take a deep breath, this may not exactly be all Amateur Radio related information.  It’s just me personally, but I think it is important.

 

In the past, there have been many examples of Amateur Radio operators getting messages out to the world from some very dangerous places.  Most of us can remember the tale of the “Last Voice out of Kuwait” in the 1990’s.  Almost as long as there have been hams, they have used their skills in getting messages out, in both disasters and around government blackouts of news and situational reports.

 

To say “the world is changing” is a trite understatement.  But technology is changing, not people.  There are still some really nasty people out there – always have been.  So the role of the ham operator in letting the world know what is happening remains needed, but different only in the implementation and means. 

 

This is why I took unusual interest in an article this past month in the magazine The Economist.  The March 17th issue had an article titled “Signaling Dissent” and you can see it at http://www.economist.com/node/18386151.   The critical line is in paragraph six.

 

Conventional radio of this sort cannot, unfortunately, transmit video or web pages. But a group called Access, based in New York, is trying to overcome that. To help democracy movements in the Middle East and North Africa get online, it is equipping a network of ham-radio operators with special modems that convert digital computer data into analogue radio signals that their equipment can cope with. These signals are then broadcast from operator to operator until they reach a network member in an area where the internet functions. This operator reconverts the signal into computer-readable data and then e-mails or posts the information online.

 

Hmmm...  Turning digital data stream into analog so it can be relayed out with very basic radios, then back into digital where it can be seen or heard.  Neat trick! 

 

It took a bit of work to find out who “Access” was.  (Never try to Google the word “access” without being ready for a gazillion options.)  William Hatfield, W3QX, happily provided me the answer and it’s obvious from their website, www.accessnow.org , that this is a ham-heavy group.  They also have a lot of other really good and useful ideas on their website. 

 

I know there are folks who believe in a conspiracy theory that our government will one day pull the Internet and communications plug on us all in some way.  I don’t subscribe to that.  But I definitely do champion maintaining the ability of an individual to freely communicate without dependence on the whims of Mother Nature or of politics.  That is critical in any disaster, natural or artificial.  And if the work of Access and groups like it allows people to talk, reason, understand and work things out instead of shooting at each other or being mere serfs, then “good on ya!”  It’s one of the best roles for ham radio know-how that I can think of.

 

- Allen  w1agp