Topband: WebSDR use and other comments.
hfdxmonitor at gmail.com
Sun Jan 14 20:54:35 EST 2018
Like most of you, my interest in radio started with a tube
radio/turntable combo, listening to shortwave broadcasting stations back
in the late 60s. Unlike some of you, my SWLing interest remained after
getting a ham license in 1980.
WebSDR has been an issue in SWLing circles for many years. While not as
common as in the past, SWLers still pursue QSL confirmations from the
stations they hear. Some of these receptions are being made through
WebSDRs. Unfortunately, not all of them disclose this 'minor detail'
when submitting reception reports to the stations.
To give you an idea of the difference of opinions regarding the use of
WebSDRs in SWLing, one SWLer adds an interesting tagline to all his
logs. It's something like this: "Heard with my own ears, on my own
receiver, in real time."
The reason for the tagline, is that a number of SWLers, not only use web
receivers, but are not even at the dials during the reception. They'll
record entire bands (SW-MW-FM), and go through the MP3 files later, some
sending reception reports to the stations, after the MP3s have been
As cogently stated already, it's all a hobby, and each individual will
decide what is valid or not as his/her own achievements. It only becomes
a 'problem' when those 'achievements' are compared against others'.
As for amateur radio remotes, a lot has been said already. There seems
to be an understanding of the proper use of remotes, things such as
proper identification and the like.
One poster mentioned something that I don't recall seeing here before,
but crossed my mind many times, as being an 'injustice'. That is, the
use of a remote station within a country, regardless of the distance, as
being valid for DXCC and/or contests.
Nothing wrong in principle, until you realize that a ham in Canada, the
US, and other big countries, benefit a lot more from this allowance,
than a ham in Andorra, El Salvador, or Hong Kong, for example.
It's no uncommon to see west coast hams claiming to be at a disadvantage
compared to east coast hams. They may have a point, but it's difficult
to equalize this perceived injustice. In the case of remote stations, I
think the 'within national borders' criteria is flawed. A much better
criteria would be distance based. It would not allow for border
crossings, even if still within the allowed distance, of course.
Not trying to ressurect an old/bad discussion, but FT8 is in the
'news'again. Full automation has been achieved through the use of
macros. Only one more development to sow disagreement in the ham
The hobby is changing. There are more ways to enjoy it. We may not like
all of them, but we must find a way to coexist.
73 de Vince, VA3VF
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