[CQ-Contest] Guest ops

Jim Idelson k1ir at designet.com
Tue Apr 1 10:18:43 EST 2003

Is a ham with a lower class of license than the station licensee/control op 
where he is operating permitted to communicate from that station with hams in 
other countries when no third-party agreement between the countries exists?

I reread the portion of Part 97 that discusses third party communications. See 

I think there is some ambiguity in the language that addresses this question. 
Here's the relevant portion:

"No station shall transmit messages for a third party to any station within the 
jurisdiction of any foreign government whose administration has not made such 
an arrangement. This prohibition does not apply to a message for any third 
party who is eligible to be a control operator of the station."

How restrictive is the language " . . any third party who is eligible to be a 
control operator of the station . ."? 

Interpretation A: As an FCC licensed amateur - regardless of your license class 
- you are eligible to be a control op of the station. Taking this view, even if 
you are operating outside the privileges of your own license under the proper 
supervision of a control op, you may transmit/receive third-party traffic.

Interpretation B: Your eligibility to be a control operator for the station 
depends on the circumstances at the moment. If the station is being operated 
outside the privileges of your license class, then you are not currently 
eligible to be the control op, and you may not transmit/receive third-party 

I don't know what the intent of the rule is, but the words seem to point 
towards interpretation A. If not, I would expect more restrictive wording 
around the term "eligible".

Bottom line - If a ham who can do 200 per hour is interested in contesting and 
wants to come and operate at my station as part of my usual multi-single 
efforts, but he only holds an Advanced class license, I will allow him to run 
Europe on 7001 with me as the control op. And I believe it will be legal. In 
addition, many non-US licensees may also operate the station under this model 
because they can be control ops under the terms of reciprocal operating 

So, it all comes down to whether or not you can do 200 per hour.

Jim Idelson K1IR
email    k1ir at designet.com
web    http://www.designet.com/k1ir

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