[CQ-Contest] The impending demise of SSB spotting in contests - and should we care?

K9MA k9ma at sdellington.us
Thu Nov 19 14:31:22 EST 2020

This raises an interesting question: If there is no SSB RBN, and everyone is just clicking on spots, where do the new spots come from? The ONE operator who isn’t clicking on spots? Might unassisted operators actually have an advantage?

Scott K9MA 


Scott Ellington

 --- via iPad

> On Nov 19, 2020, at 11:25 AM, N4ZR <n4zr at comcast.net> wrote:
> Did you know that over 40,000 different stations made at least one contact with the 8500 stations who submitted logs for  the CQWW SSB contest in 2018?   Without the non-entrant, casual ops, SSB contesting would be a lot less fun for us all.  And why do the casual ops get on?  I submit that for most of them, the chance to work new countries, zones, states and so on are what it's all about.  And how do they know which stations to call, to achieve these goals?  They connect to DX clusters.
> Okay, so what?  Well, as someone recently pointed out, there has been a pretty steep decline in human spotting of both SSB and CW, at least partly because on CW, there's little need to spot anyone any more.  The RBN takes care of that.  But on SSB -- not so much.
> The problem is exacerbated because contest sponsors tend to view any cluster connection during a contest as evidence that the connected station *must* be assisted.  This tends to deter people from spotting unless they themselves are, in fact, in the assisted category.  This, in turn, means that features like N1MM+'s "Spot all S&P QSOs" don't get the use they could.
> So, what to do?  It would be helpful if contest sponsors would clarify their rules to specify that stations entering as unassisted can still send spots.
> -- 
> 73, Pete N4ZR
> Check out the Reverse Beacon Network
> at<http://reversebeacon.net>, now
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