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"Doing QSO" without listening


#1

Dear friends, I have heard repeatedly, that some chasers, calling station - activator only calling her without hearing, but even they are able to have a connection with it, “do” QSO and write it into the log. This fact in evaluating sota chaser points is only seen as not having any star to a database connection, points are added to them, anyway. I’m sorry especially from the perspective of the activator, when I can get points for the top only once a year. However, such a dishonest chaser can theoretically attributed to the peak points for each day of peak one activated, regardless of whether it is heard or not. I propose to consider whether it would not be fair to count only paired QSO, the ones that are found in activators logs - like in contest. I know it’s difficult now to change the rules for the otherwise excellent sota program, but I mainly wanted to say that this seems excessive softness rules for the recognition points greatly penalizes the most honest, and I am very sorry. I think that there would probably some change needed.
with many 73s Petr OK3EQ


#2

In reply to OK3EQ:
Hi Peter

I have also noticed this problem both when activating on HF and from what I hear when chasing SOTA stations in my shack. This happens in both CW and SSB.

It is the same few stations that “call blind” when they can’t hear the activator in the hope they get into the log. They call on the frequency spotted by SOTAWatch even though they cannot hear the SOTA station. I don’t want to name and shame these stations but of late the stations doing this whenever they are on the air are an OM and an EB station, and there are no doubt several others. Even if these stations aren’t logged by the activator it is evident that they still record the contacts they think they have made in their own log and into the database. They aren’t being honest with themselves but they do not seem to have a conscience!

I’m not sure if there is anything that can be done to stop this practice, although I make certain if I am activating that if the timing on handover of the transmission is not correct I ask the chaser to confirm and give them several chances to do so. If I do not get a response at the right time then I do not log the contact.

Maybe activators could check the likely suspects chaser logs a few days after their activation and post a comment publicly on the reflector to inform the stations concerned that they did not complete the “QSO”?

73 Phil G4OBK


#3

In reply to G4OBK:
Hi Phil,
You described exactly the way I experience it on hills too. These are still the same station would have to create a blacklist, but such a practice for its activation do not want to introduce - sota activation is always fun for me and every friend Chaser take it as a close friend who shared with me, at least partially, beauty and also difficulties of stay in nature, field conditions and grandeur radio contact.
I also give more opportunities to those who are calling me, I realize that my QRP power is, therefore, very small, and if I have complete confidence that the connection is done, I try to complete it at the cost of other delays. Unfortunately, such a calling station has blindly when completed connection is about listening to even try and that’s a shame. Such calls, of course, I have must to strike in my log from this reason. But I have done for them and logged in, unfortunately it will appear only with the little star in the database. The real solution seems to me only full pairing of QSO´s, where no entry in the log activator points will not be credited for chaser. The only injustice, but against much smaller, is that some activators not record their activator-log into the database. I think those are but very few, and so would the results of this would be not appreciably affected.
Petr OK3EQ


#4

In reply to G4OBK:

I concur with all the above however the issue of a * in the database does not always align with not having made the contact. I have several *s still listed in my chaser log. I check through them all and find that there are normally two reasons for that non conformance.

  1. Transcription errors in the the activators log e.g. I’ve seen G41SJ (that’s a one)entered instead of G4ISJ. To be honest I’ve made that mistake myself and when trying to read scribbles off a rain sodden scrap of paper I think we must expect some errors to creep in and actually do very well!

  2. Activators who have never submitted logs. I’ve got a few of those! Even though I worked the stations, they appeared on SOTAWATCH, and many others called, there is no corresponding activator log in the database.

Where the activator log has been submitted, checked and I still can’t find my entry I just delete the entry and hope for better luck next time.
73
Pete


#5

In reply to G4OBK:

Hi, Phil. I have noticed the two that you have referred to, and a few others, too. Mistakes do happen, of course - at one point yesterday on 20 metres I was being given a report by two different activators at the same time, though I was only working one of them! It is difficult to draw the line between self delusion and actual cheating, but if a case of sustained cheating is proved the MT have the ultimate sanction available - deletion of their chaser logs.

73

Brian G8ADD


#6

In reply to KD9KC:

The check is quite slack. If activator and chaser have each other in their logs, and the chaser has logged the same mountain/band/mode and the date matches then you should get a * in your chaser log.

But you’re right that date boundaries cause a problem and the check code simply ignores that fact. Also activator calls get embellished with prefices and suffices (or in the UK change MM0FMF->MW0FMF etc.) so the callsign root finding code sometimes breaks.

The result is the lack of a * is not considered robust indication the QSO is bad. When awards are being checked the logs are viewed and a chaser log with significantly fewer * in it would be checked more thoroughly. Only if that shows up something out of the normal would very detailed analysis of logs and claims be made.

So * are nice and helpful for all concerned.

As for chasers calling blind. Yes it can be a problem. It happens to me when I activate. I have a list of calls that I’ve noticed appearing to do this along with a list of poor ops. I take care when I hear one of those calls and if I don’t think they could hear me I don’t log the QSO. The list is small enough to memorise!

Andy
MM0FMF


#7

In reply to MM0FMF:
Hi friends,
Of course, everyone can make mistakes and I do it too. 100% conformity of contacts of course not be possible. I wanted to draw attention to the practice, which may have known more people who harms those honest. Stems from the desire to win at any cost…

First I’m as much on the band and do everything I hear, if possible, as the first and with the greatest power as possible.
Second If I not hear the activator, never mind. Cluster is my big helper. Just wait until the first rush subsides pileup and I’ll call you. My PA will ensure that I will surely hear more stations than other callers and give me a report. Although it can not hear but never mind, after a well-timed moment, and I’ll report and thank you for the connection.
Third Now I just write QSO. For sure, I will not in the database sota, that’s not so obvious. Just a couple of days.
4th With luck, my call activator not deleted from his log. Then I can even check the date and time. Connection is then fully correct …
5th If I’m not in his log, never mind. I throw it to the database anyway. After all, no one does some control…

I’m very sorry, but I think that the better thing to describe accurately. This conduct really harms our hobby. I would be very happy if it was not true.

(Btw, the discussion title should be “doing QSO” without hearing. But we all know what we are talking about).
73 Petr OK3EQ


#8

In reply to MM0FMF:

As for chasers calling blind. Yes it can be a problem. It happens to
me when I activate. I have a list of calls that I’ve noticed appearing
to do this along with a list of poor ops. I take care when I hear one
of those calls and if I don’t think they could hear me I don’t log the
QSO. The list is small enough to memorise!

Andy
MM0FMF

Hi Andy, I hope that doesn’t include me!

The thread prompted me to check my chaser log, and I noticed no * by a contact I logged with you: 29/Jul/2012 11:06 G4AZS MM0FMF/P GM/SS-100 Croft Head 7MHz CW

I gave you 559, you gave me 519, or so I logged it. I see that I’m not in your log for that activation though.

Its a very minor point, but I will delete the entry if it wasn’t a completed qso from your viewpoint…?

I only mention it because CW chasing is still a novelty to me, and I’m nervous of taking up activator time with too may RR’s or QSL?s :o)

Cheers
Adrian


#9

In reply to OK3EQ:

This conduct really harms our hobby. I would be very happy if it was not true.

These people only cheat themselves Petr. Just like those that fabricate the truth and believe their own lies. It is just a part of some people’s make up and there is nothing that can be done about it. I am sure IOTA and other schemes have the same issues.

73, Gerald G4OIG

(sometimes logged as G40IG on the database… )


#10

In reply to MM0FMF:

So * are nice and helpful for all concerned.

This is probably a big ask Andy, but I wonder whether there is any way a contact email address can be added to the database to help facilitate an exchange between participants to iron out logging discrepancies? It is not always possible to trace an email address for activators via the internet.

73, Gerald G4OIG


#11

In reply to G4AZS:

I’m not sure if I have the paper logs for that anymore, I’ll check though. It sometimes is transcription errors but mainly ineptitude on my part. You’re lucky as I’m working from home today as I’m having some new doors fitted.

Aha,
1203 G3XQE, 599, 539
1204 DL3HXX, 599, 559
1206 G4AZS, 519, 559
1207 DJ5AV, 539, 339

All the above were missed from the log, on the other side of the paper. Oops! :frowning:

I’ve updated the log so you have a * now.

Andy
MM0FMF


#12

In reply to KD9KC:
Mike, I will not be deleting any non starred QSOs. Often people I QSO with are repeat contacts that “just don’t play” SOTA (yet) I have had people approach me at a SOTA talk that I am giving, and say I worked you last year a couple of times, and I am thinking of logging now. I sometimes take a printout of all my SOTA logs with me and they can search, or I tell them to search my log on the database, to see if they are in there. In the first years of SOTA in NA, most people were not “playing” , and even still people who “know me”, QSO only to “give” me a point. Even to the point of probably 500+ points that they have left lying on the table. Some of my most faithful chasers have never logged a point. Yes there have been people that show up, throw their call out, and then reply with thanks for QSO and are gone. It is what it is, and they usually do not make it into the log. Sometimes their call will be there with a “no QSO” next to it. SOTA grows by random contacts that may not be “playing”, yet. To delete them slows SOTA growth. They are all valuable to me anyway.
73
Doug
W1DMH


#13

In reply to G4OIG:

It’s not unreasonable Gerald but we do have a Data Protection/privacy issue.

When people signed up their contact details were private and so suddenly making them available is going to upset a few. Many wont care.

Probably a system that allows you to flag a contact that is in error would be the fix. i.e. you record the fact that a chaser has your details wrong. Then when the chaser logs in (s)he gets a prompt saying “contact xxx is in error please fix”.

I’ll put that on the list.

Andy
MM0FMF


#14

In reply to OK3EQ:
Hi all…
Since around 2 month I´m chasing with QRP…so i have to wait longer and have to listen…So I heard some station wich such “Ghost QSO´s”…
The best was a station calling and made a “QSO” on a spot in SOTAWATCH with the remark “SMS-Test please ignore” :-))
No station was on the QRG :-))

best 73 de Tom
DL1DVE (QRP)


#15

In reply to DL1DVE:

ROTLF!

Andy
MM0FMF


#16

In reply to DL1DVE:

There is one particular chaser who is quite blatant about imaginative contacts.

He never reads the second line of an alert and I too have heard him arrive on the spot frequency and work an imagined activator with a 119 report when the alert said Active in 30 mins

His latest procedure is to arrive on a spot frequency and send double calls (always a giveaway that a chaser cannot hear the activator). He then repeats the double calls for a few minutes to ensure that he stamps all over any contact that is currently running then sends either RST 000 or RST 119 and claims the points.

The majority of chasers are well aware of the person involved.

Roy G4SSH


#17

In reply to MM0FMF:

Probably a system that allows you to flag a contact that is in error would be the fix. i.e. you record the fact that a chaser has your details wrong. Then when the chaser logs in (s)he gets a prompt saying “contact xxx is in error please fix”.

…This is a very good idea Andy, it could great help in these cases. If it is possible to realize, I´m very much looking forward to this feature. I consider it some protection by such "Ghost QSO"s. My full agreement also that in case of unwanted bugs and missing logs will be really good to keep the system somewhat softer…

Thank you very much for all the contributions received so far. I had a feeling that this is just my experience…
And the last examples from Tom and Roy are really curious! :slight_smile:
Petr OK3EQ


#18

In reply to MM0FMF:

Aha,
1203 G3XQE, 599, 539
1204 DL3HXX, 599, 559
1206 G4AZS, 519, 559
1207 DJ5AV, 539, 339
I’ve updated the log so you have a * now.

Andy
MM0FMF

Thanks Andy, much appreciated!

I’m glad it was a good contact. Its always nice to work anyone in a SOTA context, but especially so when it is one of the team who make it all possible for the rest of us :o)

Adrian
G4AZS


#19

In reply to MM0FMF:

The result is the lack of a * is not considered robust indication the
QSO is bad. When awards are being checked the logs are viewed and a

Matching two log files is an interesting computer problem. It has been implemented in the LoTW and I did an online matching algorithm to the ‘adifmerg’. For example

adifmerg -f log.adi -M log2.adi -v

The code is on the web. For the time comparison it is probably best to use julian day number.

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#20

In reply to G4SSH:

I wonder if this ‘particular station’ is not CW competent?
Sends computer generated Morse and receives by a Decoder!

73 Peter TJE+