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ARRL Expands its Roster of Online Discussion Groups


ARRL’s Committee on Communication with Members has launched three new online discussion forums as part of its ongoing efforts to enhance and improve communication between ARRL leadership and members or prospective members. The new forums, which focus on antenna law, regulatory issues, and support for new amateur radio licensees, will go live on Thursday, January 30, at 0400 UTC.

The committee launched the three new discussion groups on the basis of requests from the amateur radio community, to support ARRL’s efforts to provide more resources for  beginner-to-intermediate operators.

The online discussion program launched last fall with three forums — contesting, awards, and the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) — all open to the amateur radio community. The program was based on the success of the online ARRL-LoTW Group, which, for the past several years, has served to answer questions and generate discussions about ways to improve the service.

  • ARRL New England Division Director and attorney Fred Hopengarten, K1VR, will moderate the Antenna Law and Policy Forum. Hopengarten is the author of Antenna Zoning for the Radio Amateur.
  • ARRL Regulatory Affairs Manager Dan Henderson, N1ND, will moderate the Regulatory Affairs forum.
  • QST Editor and ARRL Publications Manager Steve Ford, WB8IMY, will moderate the New Hams forum. 

ARRL IT Manager Michael Keane, K1MK, worked with to set up the new groups. Those wishing to subscribe must use a username and password, if they have one, or create a account if they don’t.

The new groups join an ARRL discussion forum lineup that already includes:

  • ARRL-Contesting, moderated by ARRL Contest Advisory Committee Chairman Dennis Egan, W1UE.
  • ARRL-Awards, moderated by ARRL Radiosport and Field Services Manager Bart Jahnke, W9JJ.
  • ARRL-IARU, moderated by IARU Secretary David Sumner, K1ZZ.
  • ARRL-LOTW, moderated by ARRL IT Manager Michael Keane, K1MK.

Everyone who subscribes to an ARRL Group is automatically subscribed to “ARRL Groups,” an administrative feature that allows ARRL to convey routine announcements to subscribers of all ARRL groups, such as planned system outages.

ARRL expects to create additional online groups that focus on other areas of interest to radio amateurs, including ARRL activities, services, initiatives, and policies.

ARRL currently hosts some “members-only” online forums that include the topics of Awards and Contesting. While these forums will continue to operate, participants are being encouraged to post new topics in the new Groups.

All questions will be welcome, no matter how many times they have already been asked and answered, or how obvious the answers might be. Neither personal attacks nor foul language will be tolerated. Violators will immediately be placed on “moderated” status, meaning their subsequent posts will require Moderator approval. Civility and courtesy are expected, even when disagreeing.

The Committee believes that providing more opportunities for two-way discussion between the organization’s leaders and the entire ham radio community will assist ARRL in truly serving the needs of this community. — Thanks to ARRL Communications Manager Dave Isgur, N1RSN



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