[CQ-Contest] Contest Participation (U vs A)

Bill Tippett btippett at alum.mit.edu
Thu Jun 12 22:00:52 EDT 2008

I wrote:
 > Allowing Skimmer in Unassisted could have unintended consequences on
 > participation.

K1TTT replied:
 >how, by increasing it?  by keeping some operators on the air more?  anything
that increases interest in cw should be considered a good thing.  Nothing
else is going to get more operators on cw now that its not required to get a
license.  What else recently has brought this much discussion on operating
cw?  What else recently has provided new reasons to try cw?  Right now this
is a unique opportunity for cw operators and contesters to show that new
technology can make cw contesting interesting, even if you can't decode it
by ear.  And its unique technology that makes use of characteristics of cw
that can't yet be applied to ssb... if I had the time I would adapt it for
rtty, but I have enough other stuff to do right now, then we could start the
debate in those forums also.

         In case you missed it, the Skimmer poll is currently2:1 
against in the Contesting.com survey (456 votes currently).
I expect most of those operators are experienced since no-code
has not been in effect until very recently.


As I've stated before, you must balance potential new ops
gained against experienced ops lost.  My point is that no
one can fully predict the consequences one way or the other
in advance.  An unintended consequence of Packet appears to
be that it may have facilitated cheating at a level impossible
in pre-Packet days.

         Packet was started by a contester but I doubt AK1A
foresaw it could have led to degradation of CW skills of the
type commonly seen today (e.g. busted calls, calling without
listening or even hearing, guys who cannot copy their own call
after you answer them, etc).  Technology does not always lead
to improvements in the state of the art.  If you read SM2CEW's
blog about JT65 you'll see another example.

                                         73,  Bill  W4ZV

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