contest po-lice

Ward Silver hwardsil at
Fri Apr 30 13:39:44 EDT 1993

de Ward, N0AX
    My suggestion is that we institute a system of contest OO's (Official
Observers).  Volunteers for each contest, at least one team of two for every
ARRL section, more where required.  These could be CW guys for phone contests,
or versa vice, etc.
    These guys are armed with field strength meters and mobile rigs.  As with
the rest of the contest judging, their decision is final and if you don't like
it, don't enter the contest.  There would be no specific accusations made  such
as high-power or other such items that carry legal repercussions.  However,
disqualification for "unsportsmanlike conduct" would be the ruling.
    Referees were a roaring success in WRTC, by the way.  The operators, all
world-class, insisted on a level playing field to the maximum extent possible.  My 
guess is that is wouldn't take very long before the more blatent cheaters
found another way to spend their weekends.  Good, clean ops should welcome 
this self-policing, non-invasive solution or something similar.
    If we can't enforce or aren't willing to enforce some very simple rules
about basic conduct and compliance with license restrictions, then I guess we
just have to put up with 'em.

    As an aside, we shouldn't confuse loopholes or unregulated activities with
transgressions.  Every competitive hobby pushes the envelope with better tech-
nology and better tactics.  It usually winds up that the guys who didn't think
of it first call it cheating...
    In the case where the responsible authorities decide that certain devices
or tactics are damaging to others or are not generally available to all participants
they then amend the rules to eliminate such behavior.  Witness gas turbines at
Indy and the America's Cup Yacht Design rules.

    It boils down to "beat me fair and square or leave the ring", which requires
real-time, on-site referees.

Ward, N0AX

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