[CQ-Contest] Why listening time (should not) count

Mike Gilmer, N2MG n2mg at eham.net
Sat Feb 8 11:05:27 EST 2003

> Someone suggested the "listening time counts as operating time" rule was
> foolish and should be stricken.

That someone was me and I stand by it.

IMO, the "fix" for this issue is setting a large minimum offtime and ontime.
It's enforceable; limiting listening time is not.  And larger minimum times
will not materially change the contest - an important concern.

> If you get on too
> early Sunday and dog it for three hours and then have to shut down in the
> middle of a hot run at 6 or 7 p.m. because your time has run out, you've
> learned an important lesson for next year. (Made that mistake at WB0O in
> 1997).

With short minimum times - 30(SS) or 60 (WPX) minutes is short IMO - why
would you dog it for 3 hours?  Just operate for 30-60 minutes and walk away.
If the minimum time were 3 or 4 hours it would negate most of the
"advantage" of listening when you were supposed to be off the air.  Why
listen when you know it'll take 3 or 4 hours before you can work anyone?

> You have to declare an off time and then leave the radio. If you picked
> well, it works. If you picked poorly, it doesn't.

> If you could sit at the radio for those three hours without declaring an
> 'on' time until things were hot, what would be the point in having an
> element of strategy in the rules?

A three or four hour off period does the same thing - it makes it moot to
tune the bands since you are NOT allowed back on anyway.

Somewhat related: CQWW recently defined that a band change occurs when the
first contact on the new band is logged - NOT when you first start listening
to that band (which is how it used to be and is immeasurable).  You may like
the rule or not, but it *is* very enforceable and removes any funny business
regarding "listening time".

73 Mike N2MG

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