Don't Waste Other's Time

 

If you are one of the hams who does FT8, FT4, or other digital modes and yet doesn’t believe a digital FT8 or FT4 or any digital contact constitutes a valid QSO, stay off the band. Sadly, I have read comments from several hams on several QRZ and other logging sites from hams stating they don’t log these QSO believing they are not valid; "it's not real radio". If you don’t believe these are valid contacts, why are you on the bands using using the digital modes taking up bandwidth and wasting others' time? Perhaps you should just fire up that old single crystal QRP CW transceiver, your straight key, and go back to 1960 and let the rest of us collect valid QSLs in bliss.

That said, if you do believe these are valid QSO contacts and if you don’t log them with Logbook of the World (LoTW), what is your problem? “There is no fee for obtaining a Callsign Certificate, submitting QSOs, or using one's LoTW Account to view submitted QSOs, confirmed QSOs, or award progress. A fee is only charged when submitting confirmed QSOs for Award Credit.[1] If you have enough going for you upstairs that you could set up WSJT-X then you could certainly set up LoTW and use any one of dozens of logging programs. If you are not going to log contacts, then again, stay off the bands, quit wasting others’ time.

It really pisses me off that only about 75% of my QSOs are confirmed because others don't log. All good contacts, just the other side didn’t log them. No excuses, there is no longer a need to spend money on postcards and postage, just use LoTW. Wouldn’t hurt you to use some of the other logging sites as well – QRZ, eQSL, QRZCQ, ClubLog, and HRDLog to mention a few. As an experiment I took the effort to time just what it takes to do uploads to all of these sites and it worked out to less than two minutes to upload to the collective bunch. Too lazy to do that? Use JTAlert with WSJT-X and the logging is done for you. Just post that you upload monthly to LoTW and then follow through and upload monthly to LoTW. Problem solved and you would make many fellow hams happy to have your QSO. 

Oh, and are you one of those who constantly complain about the cost of membership to ARRL? This is something else I hear a lot from some “old timers”. Again, there is no cost for LoTW, you don't need to join ARRL to use LoTW, but being a member of ARRL helps all of us in Amateur Radio. You might keep in mind ARRL is the only lobbing organization fighting for your amateur radio rights in this country. For $49 a year you have someone watching your back. And don’t give me the old I don’t have that kind of money. I am retired and on a fixed income, yet I find a way to pay; and do so gladly. Without their efforts over the past century you might only have a couple of FRS frequencies to talk on, if that. Do you think the FCC rules for Over-the-Air-Reception Devices (OTARD) got through Congress without lots of money from the dish network companies? If you want Ham Radio parity, then ARRL needs support in terms of membership. Membership brings in money that can go to hiring lobbyist to further the cause of Amateur Radio.

Also, if you happen to use Amazon for purchases then sign up for the Amazon Smile program and list ARRL as the charity of your choice. Doesn't cost you a penny, doesn't add any cost to your purchases. AmazonSmile offers all of the same items, prices, and benefits of its sister website, Amazon.com, but with one distinct difference. When you signup and shop on AmazonSmile, the retailer's Foundation contributes 0.5% of eligible purchases to the charity of your choice. Again, cost you absolutly nothing and ARRL gets a few dollars.