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Re: [CQ-Contest] The two/four-point rule in WPX

To: cq-contest@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] The two/four-point rule in WPX
From: Ward Silver <hwardsil@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 10 Apr 2014 13:32:57 -0500
List-post: <cq-contest@contesting.com">mailto:cq-contest@contesting.com>
> Of course the real problem lies behind the scoring system.

The problem is not in the scoring system. The problem is that the competitors do not compete on the same field - a characteristic unique to radiosport AFAIK. WRTC is the closest thing we have to an equal competition and even there we encounter disparities from noise, local topography, and ground conditions among other things.

With propagation varying so wildly from place to place, along with unequally distributed populations and multiplier representation, it is not possible to devise an equalized scoring system. About the best any scoring system can do is to compare stations with similar propagation, either within a region or perhaps at similar geomagnetic latitudes, and having similar distributions of population and multipliers. Even distance-based scoring gives false results when there is a skip zone. As they say in New Jersey, "Fuggidaboudit!"

My suggestion has been and will continue to be the reporting of results organized according to geographic proximity (or similarity). Anyone can do this - the sponsors, contest clubs, individuals. If the contest scoring or reporting does not make comparisons you consider valid, then create and publish your own comparisons. Even better, form a group of like-minded individuals to promote and report on those comparisons independently. Sponsor challenges and contests-within-a-contest based on those comparisons, then publish those results. If your comparisons have a wide validity, stations will compete according to those comparisons.

Ultimately, however, we all choose to compare ourselves against a group of peers whom we select for their operating, technical, and geographic attributes.

73, Ward N0AX
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