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Frequency or internet - to monitor or to spot?


#1

Hello everybody,

This should be continuation of the thoroughly discussed topic in the last 10 days about “To spot or not to spot”. Since I would appreciate coments from chasers on what I wrote bellow, I decided to open new topic.

In my experience as activator, I found spotting critical to the success of the activation. The reason is simple: - It seems that the chasers are very common with waiting spot to appear on the internet and then to turn the radio on and only few people have practice to monitor the SOTA frequenies and be ready to respond quickly. It is problem for the activator because calling CQ for 15 - 20 minutes can easily drain your battery, bringing to question the result of hours and effort spent to reach the summit. I consider this problem and I self spot myself every time I have chance, but sometimes it is not possible.

Just for example, when I am spotted from the first moment, I work more than 40 QSO-s in just 15 minutes. When I am not - only a couple of them. Sometimes 7, sometimes 5 or even only 4. This summer I spent 40 minutes calling CQ SOTA on 14.285 and worked only a couple of stations which were by the way not the common ones I work and know. No frequent SOTA chaser appeared.

There is no point of calling CQ SOTA in contest. Nobody ever responded to me in a contest weekend, allthough I use some time to call CQ SOTA. At the end - I work a couple of contest stations and reach the minimum points to make the activation valid.

Another fact that shows that most of the operators READ (internet) insted they LISTEN (frequency) is that it happens often some listener to spot me with wrong summit refference or wrong callsign. No matter how many times I repeat my callsign and refference, many respond with my wrong callsign or log wrong summit. Once even happened that my friend Vlado, Z35M worked the same summit just after me, clearly announcing several times that operator and callsign are changing and using his callsign in EVERY transmition… Oh no…! - Maybe 80% of the operators continued to call him Z35BY - just because it was written in the spot.

So my point to the chasers: - Please listen - not just read. Finaly that is the way how our hobby should be done. And please spot whenever you can - it is crutial for the success of SSB activations.

Best 73 and hear you from the summit !

Damjan
Z35BY


#2

In reply to Z35BY:

The vast majority of the chasers listen. Some don’t, maybe because IMHO they will have their chaser points anyway as the logs are not crosscheked.

I love SOTA, its a fun thing. Thanks to the chasers and please listen to us.


#3

I agree 100% with you Damjan, without spotting sometimes it can be extremely difficult to get any response from chasers, what you say about listening is a also very valid point. Mike I think you have misinterpreted what Damjan was saying, he did not mean you have to sit by the radio listening, BUT when you see a spot please listen to the activator and confirm you have the correct details !

73 Victor GI4ONL


#4

In reply to GI4ONL:

“please listen to the activator and confirm you have the correct details !”

Something I always try and do, but sometimes the level of interference from lid operators is just so bad that you have to trust the spot. Apropos, how did it ever get established that its good operating practice to call right after previous callers so that you get a long procession of callers and often cannot hear who the activator has gone back to? You can’t cure stupidity!

73

Brian G8ADD


#5

In reply to G8ADD:

I am afraid I have to agree that operating standards are deteriorating - on ALL modes (CW, SSB and PSK31). I also agree with Damjan that the main problem is that people do not LISTEN properly before calling, and often they rely entirely upon internet spotting or DX Cluster spots.

The latest annoyance has happened to me three times already this week: I hear someone calling CQ, so I answer him. The ‘CQ’ station replies to me and starts a QSO. However his first over, including report and details, is wiped out by some OTHER station who starts calling ME over the top of him!

The remarkable thing is that the offending callers, on every occasion, were all from the same Central European country! If it happens again, I will name the country. It is the same country that is responsible for endless calling on a SOTA activator’s frequency, even when the chasing operator is clearly NOT hearing the SOTA station.

73,
Walt (G3NYY)


#6

In reply to Z35BY:
Hello Damjan!

I agree also 100% with you! The first rule for ARS :“listen, listen, listen” have forgot 90% .

73
Holger
OE7HPI
sometimes “/7” and not “/p”. But that will be ignored mostly


#7

In reply to Z35BY:
Hello All,

What are the SOTA calling frequencies? They seem to be a few up from the QRP calling frequencies.

Thank you,
73
Jay AB1II


#8

In reply to AB1II:

Often a bit up the QRP QRG but not always. You can rely on the alerts here, +or - depending QRM


#9

I think most of us know who and which central country you’re [Walt (G3NYY)]is talking about. I find it quite difficult to understand why someone will call a activating station who is actually transmitting themself at the same time. It happens by the same summit chasers on both CW and SSB.
I think the reason behind it is they hope that if the DX/activator happens to hear them they might get logged even when they themselves do not hear the activator.
We all know they are just cheeting themselves but it takes all sorts to make a world!
Of course there are times when most of us can get a bit excited when that jolt of adrenaline kicks in which can result in a sort of ‘Road Rage’ but generally we learn to control it! But these chasers in question here are aggressive people ignorant of the disruption they cause and best just ignored. I think most activators will cope with it.
Damian M0BKV


#10

In reply to M0BKV:

But these chasers in
question here are aggressive people ignorant of the disruption they
cause and best just ignored. I think most activators will cope with
it.

Why SHOULD we have to “cope with it”? Why not have a formal policy of issuing some type of warning that can escalate to a temporary suspension (e.g., no chasing for 1 month) by the MT?

73,
Barry N1EU


#11

In reply to N1EU:

Like I posted earlier, they will get their points anyways, despite the activator does or does not copy them.

In a ideal world, the chasers points should be allowed only if the chaser’s callsign does appear in the activator logs, which should make the chasers attentive but I suppose this would be too complicated or tihs could be unfair to chasers loosing points beacause the activator made a typo in his log.

I don’t cope with it, but try to make this happen in some order. I like pileups but don’t like someone transmitting as I am clearly not talking to him, and this is happening more frequently, like you probably noticed Barry.

In my last activation, I even sent “you are not in log” as I did not get the entire callsign, to later think “does he care?”


#12

In reply to N1EU:

The thing is, Barry, that the MT IS prepared to take action, probably in three stages: warning, temporary suspension and total removal from the database, but we can only act if the activators who are plagued by these lids actually complain to us. This is something that most activators seem unwilling to do.

I am keeping note of the disruptive operators that I hear when chasing and keeping note of the few formal complaints that I receive (so far three complaints about two operators) and the MT is on the point of issuing its first warnings, but if these disruptive operators are to be brought under control then the co-operation of other participants by informing the MT is essential.

73

Brian G8ADD


#13

In reply to G3NYY:
Unlike yourself, I am not an experienced cw chaser, my reading speed is still uncomfortably slow and I admit to having difficulty working out how different activators are operating. One problem, not always being able to hear every chaser, is when to call and when not - not every activator sends ?, QRZ or even … at the end of a QSO. How an activator can sort out any calls from the mayhem of a cw pileup I have no idea. Thus I am not aware of the identity(ies) of the chaser(s) concerned.

I would have thought, given the amount of discussion that this topic has generated, that the MT would have become involved, perhaps in the background, to at least ask the Association(s) concerned to explain the the individual(s) concerned the problems they are causing. Is the MT doing this?

As a general question, why has nobody yet ‘named and shamed’? It wouldn’t make anything worse, would it?

Regards, Dave, G6DTN (on hf)

(Composed while Brian posted)


#14

In reply to G8ADD:

The reason is simple Brian. What if the said chasers happen to know we complain about them send continuous 1000 watts sigs on our QRP wires stations?

End of that SOTA thing, simply put.


#15

In reply to G8ADD:

The thing is, Barry, that the MT IS prepared to take action, probably
in three stages: warning, temporary suspension and total removal from
the database, but we can only act if the activators who are plagued by
these lids actually complain to us. This is something that most
activators seem unwilling to do.

Sounds like a good plan Brian. Nice to know the disciplinary mechanism is already in place.

73,
Barry N1EU


#16

In reply to VA2SG:

The reason is simple Brian. What if the said chasers happen to know we
complain about them send continuous 1000 watts sigs on our QRP wires
stations?

End of that SOTA thing, simply put.

Can you think of a better plan to deal with disruptive operators?

I don’t think we would be any worse off if they progress from selfish disruption to deliberate QRM, there are already a few nutcases targeting SOTA activations! However, the MT have no intention of telling these lids who it is that is complaining about them. Hopefully, when they realise that their actions are likely to lose them hundreds or thousands of chaser points they will reform, if not then good riddance!

73

Brian G8ADD


#17

In reply to G8ADD:

No I have no idea :wink:

IHMO, chasers points should be allowed only if their callsigns appear in activation logs. But, I understand this could be too complicated etc…

And I want to enjoy the thing. I still am hi.


#18

Sure, MT can act, and will if necessary. However, the solution is in the activator’s hands.

It is obvious to me and most on here who the particular stations and DXCC of origin are. They have disrupted my own activations in the past. However, I make it crystal clear - not by saying/sending anything, but by the pattern of my own operating - that they will not be worked out of turn. In fact I usually wait until they are the very last station calling before working them, if they are operating inconsiderately!

Sometimes, as others too have noticed, they cannot actually hear the activating station, so the activating station’s protocol has little or no effect. But what does happen in that case is you hear a “TU TOM 73”! I make a little note in my logbook, and sometime later check to see if that chaser has claimed me. If they have, they get a quick email advising “No QSO”.

As a result, I am rarely plagued and QRMd by these stations any more. There are another couple of stations still behaving like this on my activations, but neither are from the DXCC that I believe most are talking about.

I should add that in the vast majority of cases, the stations concerned work me quite normally with good and valid QSOs. It can also be seen that the overwhelming majority of their chaser logs have the confirmation asterisk appended to them. So I guess it is all a case of over-enthusiasm/over-optimism rather than deliberate cheating, although the associated selfish operating style is rather grating.

Tom M1EYP


#19

In reply to M1EYP:
I think you’re dead right Tom. Neither stations concerned are deliberatly trying to cheat, they are just over-enthusiastic and unfortunatly probably come from a background where walking all over others is the norm. Unfortunatly not all of us have been brought up in a society where polite behavior is part of education from early years. I have to give these rude individuals the benefit of the doubt.
Would it not be best for all of us that are generally ‘peed off’ by what has been happening to write individual notes/emails to them and try and explain what they’re doing wrong and the fact it’s unacceptable to continue and explain what will eventually happen. The stations, I’m sure, if approached in a pleasant but forcefull manor will change for the best with their tale between their legs and continue to enjoy the hobby in a more civilised manor.
Regards
Damian M0BKV


#20

In reply to M0BKV:

I found one chaser who claims chaser points with me for my last activation without being in my log. He is certainly not the only one in my 52 other activations. I sent a message to MT.

Like I posted, listen to us. We are rather quick on pileups handling but listen. You will be the only one responsible for not being in my log in the end and are fooling yourself. Let’s have fun :wink: