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Open Letter Mar 12th 2018, 10:12 2 1,258 on 13/3/18

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Open Letter AD8DT on 12/3/18
... to the two or three (unidentified) station operators who QRMed and then totally disrupted the North American Traffic and Awards Net on 3.835 MHz at approximately 0010 UTC on March 11, 2018:

Congratulations on providing the worst possible example of Amateur Radio operating procedures, and leaving a lasting negative impression on the 30 or so station operators participating in the net, some of whom were new and inexperienced operators.

A refresher on FCC regulations and accepted Amateur Radio operating practice seems to be in order, even though you were obviously experienced operators.

1) Standard procedure, before starting a QSO, is to first listen on the frequency you wish to use. Provided you hear nothing, the next step is to ask, on air, if the frequency is in use. If you hear a reply, the proper procedure is to QSY to another frequency and begin the process again. "A net? Not gonna happen here" is NOT an acceptable response to "The frequency is in use.", followed by a station ID. Continuation of your QSO on the same frequency is a violation of FCC Part 97 regulations and acceptable Amateur Radio Practice.

2) As you well know, no station or group "owns" any particular frequency at any given time. Frequencies are used on a first-come, first-served basis, except in the unique circumstances of a bona fide emergency. Your regular rag-chew does not qualify.

3) Had you identified your station(s), you would have been reported to the FCC for the violations. You did not, and therefore avoided any disciplinary action, including possible license revocation, which you so richly deserve.

Be aware that this frequency will be monitored daily at and around the time of the violation and any further violation reported to the FCC.

David Thorpe, W8WMM

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