Topband: The Future of Ham Radio

WT2P - CJ Johnson fredwt2p at
Fri Oct 27 01:32:19 EDT 2017

(this is a non-topband related matter but I feel I must chime in -- 
mostly because if you scare away the next generation of topbanders, 
there won't be a topband)

I wish most of you (agree or disagree with the ARRL) were in attendance 
at the W9DXCC Convention this year where Tom spoke very powerful and 
thought provoking words about the "Next Generation Ham"

We as ham operators can sit around and lament all day about things that 
divide us, or you can get with the program to get new hams in.

How you work your awards or your contest operations, that's fine! I've 
won a total of *one* plaque in my ham radio "career". Yay. Woopee. Most 
of my friends are pissed at me for spending weekends in front of a radio 
(which is abstract to them) just to win wallpaper.

K1NZ who is younger than me hits the head on the nail with this post. If 
you really want to know what 20-somethings (and to be honest, myself and 
hams that grew up in the 90's) are thinking, read and re-read that post.


On 10/27/2017 12:03 AM, Nick Maslon - K1NZ wrote:
> Hi all,
> I apologize if this is not the place for this, but the recent FT8
> discussion has gotten me to thinking. I'm one of the younger hams in the
> hobby. I got my license and extra at 20 and am 26 now. I was semi-active on
> the phone bands up until late 2015 when I moved into my current apartment
> and put up a bunch of wire antennas. I have a G5RV, 30m dipole, and a 160m
> L. Now, I am one to admit that I'm not all that proficient at Morse, but I
> can fudge my way through a QSO. Because of this, I have almost exclusively
> (outside of contests) turned to digital operating. I, personally have that
> thrill of working a new one on whatever band regardless of mode, even if
> it's a JT/FT mode. I just worked my first Bahrain on 40m FT8 tonight and
> cracked a beer to celebrate.
> My whole reason for writing this post is because of the "You can play in my
> sandbox only of you play my way" mentality. I am referring to the JT/FT
> modes if you want to be specific. I am lucky in that I rent from my uncle
> who doesn't care what wires I put up. On the other hand, most people my age
> are either living with their parents or are renting from people that will
> not let them participate in the hobby. In addition, I'm part of the vast
> minority of hams who got licensed before they were 40. I'll be blunt. It's
> going to be hard to retain teens in this hobby. Once they find girls/boys
> and go off to college, we might as well write them off for 20 years. This
> is an old (wo)man's hobby. It requires disposable income. I've barely
> cobbled together a station myself, but I'm limping along because of my love
> for this hobby.
> I hate to say it, but this whole mindset is why the youth of today are
> turned off from ham radio. Why should I pump hundreds of dollars into a
> hobby if I'm going to be greeted with "You need to learn CW" "FT8 is
> ruining the hobby" "You're not a real ham because you didn't pass the code
> test." I realize that new things involve change and that change is scary,
> but can we please welcome people into the hobby, even though that future
> isn't what is comfortable? Isn't is better to be using the bands than for
> them to be sold off and forgotten? This hobby is extremely multi-faceted.
> Can we please not judge and harass the people that want to get involved? I
> guess the whole reason why I wrote this post is because I'm sick of the "DO
> IT MY WAY" mindset. Can we please just get back to having fun and ignore
> the politics?
> 73 es gud DX,
> Nick K1NZ
> _________________
> Topband Reflector Archives -

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