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Re: [CQ-Contest] Self Spotting

To: <cq-contest@contesting.com>
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] Self Spotting
From: "Nat Heatwole" <nat@ajheatwole.com>
Date: Wed, 31 Mar 2004 12:51:22 -0500
List-post: <mailto:cq-contest@contesting.com>
Barry, W5GN, wrote:

> At least 100 QSOs of my 700 Qs would never have happened
> if not for Packet Spots; most were the very weak stations
> who were running the East Cost while Texas had no real
> propagation, typically they were sandwiched in between
> the thundering-and-always-calling-CQ-USA stations.
> Only because of the spot did I stop to listen, power up
> the passband tuning and notch filter, and between the
> CQ-bursts, I could tell a station was there by hearing
> that the East Coast stations were working them. By listening
> thru several QSOs (and after discovering that 10 degrees of
> beam heading made a significant improvement, and carefully
> pointing the the OB16-3 directly at them, instead of the old
> 030 for Europe!), I could eventually hear the station and
> confirm the call sign and sequence number, and I was able
> to eventually work every single spot that was really there,
> giving these weak stations Qs that never would have happened
> if it had not been for packet spots.

It seems that you've found a positive use for packet, Barry. But the
fact is that the majority of packet users, especially those operating
seriously and full-time do not use packet in this same way. It's not an
efficient use of time, in many cases, to go to the effort you did to
work these stations, especially in WPX when there are so many
multipliers it's not worth it to spend a lot of time trying to work one
(except perhaps during the really slow times). Sure there may be *some*
positive uses for the packet network during contests, but that doesn't
mean that they supercede all of the less positive uses. Thus, just
because packet has some positive attributes doesn't mean that, on
balance, it contributes anything positive to radiosport.

Nat - WZ3AR

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