[CQ-Contest] ETHICS

Robert Chudek - K0RC k0rc at citlink.net
Sat Apr 4 09:50:15 PDT 2009

"What I am sure of is that if I'm the only one who sees this, then we
have a bit of a problem, as then the issue isn't even seen as an issue.
It certainly goes a long ways towards explaining to me what seems to
be wrong with radiosporting today."

What you have described Brett is the reality of "instant worldwide 
communications" which the internet now provides. A reliable method of 
communication which is QSB, QRN, and QRM free. We also know it's the drain 
of young talent, now diverted to this technology instead of amateur radio. 
"Look ma, no wires!"

It used to be amateurs were the "privileged class," the only ones with 
instant communications in their homes and cars. The average person was 
restrained with long distance charges and international fees to talk to 
someone across the country, let alone across an ocean. I still have a phone 
patch laying around here somewhere!

We're probably all guilty of post-contest confirmations at some level. "Hey 
Joe, that was a near ESP contact with you last night on 160m."Seemingly 
innocent enough in an email or phone conversation, but still at some level 
log messaging after the fact. *I* remember speaking/writing those words more 
than one time in the past few years. Did I take any action after hearing the 
response? No. Whether I was in the log or not didn't matter to me. It was 
more interesting to hear whether it was a struggle at the other end as well.

It was suggested a while back that contest logging software should "shut the 
log, encrypt it, and send it to the contest sponsor within one minute after 
the event is over." Of course the debate then turned to "this is impossible 
because..." Yeah, right... "man will never fly", "man will never walk on the 
moon", "nobody will ever need more than 64-Kb".

If log massaging becomes such a big threat to contests, things will change. 
Just think, instantly sealed logs would mute this topic and energy could be 
devoted to all the other aspects of cheating. I could support this concept. 
You don't get "do overs" in any other sporting event after the whistle 
blows, at least that I know of.

In reality, probably +95% of contesters never read this reflector. They turn 
the radio on, hear the commotion, surf the net to "see what's playing this 
weekend", then decided whether to put in a few hours of *fun*. I have read 
so many messages based on the presumption that the transgressor is a 
competitive entrant in a particular contest. You don't always know that.

Their callsign shows up in your Super Check Partial only because in the 
previous year or two their call appears in some contest logs. What 
difference does it make if they send an email asking for a call 
verification? They may be looking for a new DXCC hit, which is one reason 
many casual operators participant in contests. Their message certainly takes 
advantage of instant technology compared to sending a QSL, inserting a few 
bucks, waiting a month or two, and in return, receiving a "NIL" stamped on 
their original card.

In my mind, the answer is simple. Don't make any changes to your log after 
the contest is over. It's over. It's done. It's finished. Then you can send 
messages with a clear conscience and answer whether "you're in the log" or 

<rant off> I feel better now... :-)

73 de Bob - K?RC in MN

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "VR2BrettGraham" <vr2bg at harts.org.hk>
To: <cq-contest at contesting.com>
Sent: Saturday, April 04, 2009 7:23 AM
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] ETHICS

> Brain got way ahead of fingers previously, let me finish & continue
> with two other examples from right here on cq-contest.  I suggest
> reading my previous post (repeated below) before continuing.
> It appeared that since the guy who posted this A-P Sprint log on an
> Internet forum prior to the log submission deadline had operated the
> contest with a different call, when another participant saw the log he
> thought he may made a mistake in what he logged for his contact with
> the guy who had posted the log, as he didn't see the call of the guy
> who posted this log in his own log.
> In the end, it was felt from the discussion on this forum that the guy
> who thought he may have made an error in logging the contact with the
> guy who posted his log had logged the correct call to begin with &
> therefore made no changes to his log after seeing the log that was
> posted by the guy who he had worked.  However, if there had been an
> error, the act of posting the log would have made it possible for this guy
> to see his error & correct it, therefore it was decided to make it clear 
> to
> the guy who posted the log that this was not acceptable behavior.
> Now, with that having been explained, let us look at two cases from
> here on cq-contest.
> Most recently, someone mentioned getting contacted by a guy his
> had worked in a contest, the reason for this being that this other guy
> realized he had made a mistake by operating on frequencies he was
> not allowed to use.  So the guy who made the mistake is contacting
> who he worked, informing them he was removing these contacts from
> his log.  This allowed those he worked by mistake to remove the Qs
> from their logs & avoid a NIL penalty.  Although it is hard to tell for
> sure, the guy who worked this guy who had operated where he
> shouldn't have removed the Q from his log.
> The other case was where someone here made a post asking if a
> recent DXpedition he thought he had worked in a contest was actually
> working the contest.  What the DXpedition apparently was sending to
> stations being worked could have been a valid contest exchange, or it
> could have been simply RST & "over".  Further, this DXpedition had
> previously announced that it would not be QRV in this contest, so it is
> understandable that the guy with the query wasn't sure if an exchange
> had taken place that qualified as a contact in this contest.  Several
> others replied with information & the matter appeared to have been
> settled by someone sharing what they found from looking for the call of
> the guy who originally asked in the on-line log of the DXpedition station.
> The apparent result was that the guy who originally asked left the Q in
> his log.
> Now I may be wrong, but to me these examples might be a greater
> concern to all than the current discussion about momentarily oblivious
> Ws who call VEs on frequencies Ws are not allowed to transmit on.
> One of these examples is borderline IMHO, but the other was well over
> the line.
> What I am sure of is that if I'm the only one who sees this, then we
> have a bit of a problem, as then the issue isn't even seen as an issue.
> It certainly goes a long ways towards explaining to me what seems to
> be wrong with radiosporting today.
> 73, ex-VR2BG/p.
>>What I find interesting about this discussion is how apparently
>>nobody seemed to notice that this list was used to solicit &
>>receive input for some potential post-contest log massaging just
>>a little while ago.
>>Although it is a minor event - admittedly not up there with, say,
>>some state QSO parties - last year we came across some
>>post-contest activity on the Internet where an Asia-Pacific
>>Sprint log was publicly posted & a potential logging error by
>>an entrant could have been corrected before the log submission
>>Please folks, set a good example, otherwise discussion of
>>ethics here seems a bit hollow.
>>73, ex-VR2BG/p.
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