[CQ-Contest] Too Much 'Assistance'?

Mike & Coreen Smith VE9AA ve9aa at nbnet.nb.ca
Thu Feb 20 18:38:55 EST 2014

Hey Tony, 


I don't often comment on this reflector, but read it quite often.  

I've gone assisted about 50% of the time the past couple years, mostly just
in the slower contests, just to increase my enjoyment level and keep me
interested.  Sometimes I'll go assisted to attack a certain Canadian record.
Often I will ignore this 'assistance' 95% of the time as I find it
distracting and just a clickfest.  BORING !  Anyways, prior to the past
couple yrs, when in contest mode, it's always been a "boy and his radio".but
I digress.


A couple contests ago, I forget which one (probably CQWW) something like
this happened to me and I thought it was REALLY strange, like I had
experienced a rip in the space-time continuum and I had to scratch my head.


I was running a small and very weak pileup of Europeans on 10m CW and at the
VERY moment, and I mean EXACTLY at

the moment, I sent the DX's callsign (and hadn't event sent 5NN 5 or
whatever yet) I saw his callsign spot me. (manually I guess)

I thought this was really bizarre, as I had not yet sent 5NN 5, nor had I
heard 5NN 20 from him yet. 


Normally you would only spot a station after you would work them, right?  I
mean, you don't want MORE competition on the frequency you are battling
others on, right?

Anyways, as it turned out, I got his call correct on my own, but I wondered
at the time, just what the bleep had occurred?>!.


Reading your posting, a light bulb went on and I think here's what might
have occurred.


I was running.


TA3XXX was calling. (I made this call up just now)


He wasn't getting through, so hoping I was watching he manually spotted me.


The manual spot went out of his logging program via internet (or VHF
FM?)..some delay occurred... and

at the very time I saw it I just happened to be working him anyways.


What he/she probably had anticipated was me seeing the spot, seen a semi
rare country farther and weaker than the more western EU's, so he/she
presumed I would stop and listen for them,  THEN working them.


I think it was just luck of the draw that I was already sending the
thankfully correct call (and thereby knew the zone by default)


I felt weird about it at the time, but I had no "spare" time to dwell on it
in the heat of battle.  Your post now makes sense.

I dislike this practice and have said to myself if that ever happens I will
ignore that station, EVEN if it's a mult.


I don't need to win that bad.  It takes away all my satisfaction.  It's
about the same as a list operation where Net control gives my call, then the
DX listens to me scream "22, 22, 22, rifle shots, bang-bang", and then
someone else OK's the contact.


Thanks for bringing this up Tony.  I am on-board with your thoughts.  I
can't imagine why anyone would condone this practice.


One other thing that just occurred to me is every so often if I am just
listening to a contest, maybe making only a dozen contacts, or maybe very
casually just tuning for mults, I'll spot guys (and not even work them, or
perhaps I worked them earlier) and a couple times I have actually stayed on
their QRG long enough to hear the DX send "VE9AA 5NN 15" even though I have
not transmitted ! ! !............now I know why.




Mike VE9AA


Mike, Coreen & Corey

Keswick Ridge, NB


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