[CQ-Contest] Remote contest operation

Paul O'Kane pokane at ei5di.com
Fri Apr 12 10:25:13 EDT 2013

On 12/04/2013 13:10, Bob Naumann wrote:

> Your objection to any use of the Internet or commercial telecomm facilities
> in any ham radio activity is well known.  You've been grinding the same
> flawed axe for years.

Once again, Bob has misrepresented my objections.

I am using the internet here and now, in a ham
radio activity, to rebut his arguments.  In this
context, the internet is an accessory - it is not
a communications medium replacing or displacing
amateur-band RF in contest QSOs between people -
as it most certainly is when used for remote
control of contest stations.

> I'm sure we would agree, however, that the use of a remote receiver would be
> completely unsportsmanlike as defined by many contest and award program
> rules - including the CQWW. But, that is not what we're discussing here.

Then why bring it up?  :-)

> And, despite your persistence in continuing to grind that tired old axe,
> none of what you're complaining about actually impacts the "RF" aspect of
> the "amateur-band-RF-all-the-way contesting" you seek to protect.

Yes, except that the difference between an internet-
dependent contest QSO and an amateur-radio contest
QSO is the internet!  If you have to get on the
internet before you get on the air, you're doing
something very different from amateur radio.
Sure, there's an amateur-radio component, but your
total dependence on the internet to have any QSOs
rules them out as as amateur-radio QSOs in any
meaningful sense.

> In your preferred configuration, we have the traditional "base" or "home"
> station configuration:

And in Bob's preferred configuration, there is a
remote operator, totally dependent on the internet
for any communication.

> In this case, the Interface now includes long wires, UHF or microwave links,
> some digital telecomm facilities, and other stuff.  Again, none of this is
> changing the "Amateur RF all the way" in any way.

Reminds me of the sailboat racer who complained
"I don't know what all the fuss is about, it's
only a little engine.  Of course I sailed across
the Atlantic single-handed."

We can't have it both ways.  Remote-controlled,
internet-dependent contesting is fundamentally
different from what Bob describes as "traditional"
contesting.  I have no objection to internet-
dependent contesting, so long as it is identified
as such, but I do object to the pretense that it's
no different from traditional contesting.

> So, your premise is completely without merit.

And Bob's premise is entirely without reason :-)

> If you feel that using technologies such as the Internet and others in the
> Operator to Radio interface portion of the configuration, then let's discuss
> that - but let's be honest that it does not alter the RF at all.

I'm happy to discuss this, subject to Bob's
acknowledgement that remote-controlled
contesting is generally at variance with the
500m-radius rule for station equipment and

> I don't see any tangible difference in using a 6' piece of wire between the
> operator and the front of a radio or a 600 mile connection via a network.

The tangible difference, apart from 599 miles
and 5274 feet, is that the remote QSOs are
internet-dependent.  How many times does this
have to be repeated?

> Nothing on the front of the radio impacts what goes on at the back of the
> radio. Again, all of the "RF all the way" stuff is not changed and certainly
> not enhanced in any way.

And if I shoot big game, by remote control from
600 miles away, the animal is every bit as dead.
 From its point of view, nothing has changed and
nothing has been enhanced.  So, what exactly is
Bob's point?

> Propagation does not change, noise does not get reduced, and frankly,
> someone using an extended interface to their radio puts themselves at a
> disadvantage to anyone not choosing to do so.

This is the old "Poor Me" argument once again.
By the application of inappropriate technology
I've made things harder for myself - and now I'm
looking for sympathy, or extra points :-)

This thread has had the subject "Remote contest
operation".  In reality, the subject discussed
has been internet propagation issues.  That needs
to be repeated - "Internet Propagation Issues".
In an amateur-radio contesting forum!

Paul EI5DI

ps - and now I'm off to watch the Masters, live and
free on masters.com via a VPN gateway in Dallas.
It's exactly the same as being there and, for me, it's
just another amateur radio activity?  :-)

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