Proposal - Shorten "S2S" to "SS" on CW for brevity

In order to provide CW activators with a short, concise way to alert another activator to a Summit to Summit contact, I am proposing that we shorten the typical “S2S” that is sent in CW followed by the activator’s call to “SS” followed by the activator’s call. The reason for this is that “S2S” takes too long in CW particularly when there are a number of higher power chasers on frequency. One can insert an “SS” into the narrow space between calls much quicker than an “S2S”. In CW a simple “SS” is shorter and can grab one’s attention much more readily than sending the whole “S2S” CW string. This proposal can be an additional tool to help improve the chances that an activator to be recognized by another activator who is working a pileup. Moreover, doesn’t “S2S” sound a little like “SOS”? Using “SS” will also eliminate any confusion between an S2S call or an actual distress call for someone tuning around the bands who is not familiar with SOTA. Just a recommendation.
Mike NS1TA


I support that, only 6dits. The alternative is /P. This character string has 9 dit/dah, which is already too long.

SS has an extremely inglorious and inhuman German past. But that’s another matter.

73 Chris


Wow! Do you think that dropping a “2” will make much difference in the scheme of things? Most activators I hear (including me) don’t add S2S after the callsign. I hear it at the end in the final over like “tnx s2s 73 e e” and I’m never in such a hurry as to want to shorten such a pleasantry.

Most of us automatically recognize “s2s” and I cannot believe there would be any confusion with “sos” given the context of the rest of the message.

Most EU activators add /P to their callsign and 95% of the time you hear that it is a S2s.



I disagree, S2S in CW sounds distinctive, it has a nice rhythm, in a similar way to ‘73’.

Are you really in that much of a rush that you need to shorten by just one character?

S2S has worked well for years, whilst I support progress, if it ain’t broke, why fix it?


Recently I’ve been called with just /P from European activators. The first time it was because their callsign was something like OE/F9ABC/P so they probably didn’t want to send it all until they were sure I would hear it. But today it was just something like F9ABC/P. Anyway, the point is that the /P is a very distinctive sound and it works well, especially when added at the end of a callsign.

And my first thought when I saw the title was the reference to an unfortunate part of Europe’s history.


Oh, then it wouldn’t surprise me if in future someone only wanted to call cq ST or cq SA in cw instead of cq SOTA, hi.

From my point of view, the variant /p used in cw up to now is indisputably the best solution, because the slash sounds best in the chorus of calling cw stations.
I know that sending a slash doesn’t seem to be easy for everyone, it just takes some practice.

Well, maybe then someone will suggest that instead of /p you could just send the / alone, hi.


Hi Mike,

May be you need more time to reconsider your proposal … work more S2S contacts maybe …
S2S is good tradition, I think it would be fine to keep it :wink:

73, Jarek


When I’m chasing and I hear S2S, I stop any attempt at calling and let the S2S try and get through. For me, it’s a distinctive sound with the 2 in the middle. Don’t think SS would get the attention like S2S. 73 Karen


Shorter isn’t always better.

I agree with other’s sentiment that the “2” in the middle make it very distinctive. Yes, it’s longer. But sometimes longer and more distinctive is better! :wink:



I agree somewhat with the intent of the proposal.

I think compared with cw abbreviations like ES and FER and BK and UR, S2S is not efficient and I would have preferred STS. It is a better abbreviation of the words as it is an actual acronym, made from the first letters of each word.



This could be mistaken for a part of a “special call” or believed to be part of someone else’s prefix/suffix.
In Japan 7Mhz is a pandemonium (everywhere I think!) and I have always had success sending S2S between the signals of chasers that surely work with more power.
S2S is distinctive, impossible to confuse.


CQ SS has been used in Sweepstakes since the very beginning of that US contest.

Elliott, K6EL

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I also understand the proposal, but suppose you are in the middle of a pileup and you hear “SS” and for this reason you send SS? The odds of chasers responding to you with an ¨S¨ or ¨SS¨ in their callsigns are high. On the other hand if you send S2S? the rest of the pileup will understand that you are responding to another activator.


Here in Europe, most activators still use /P on their calls even though it is optional. So many Europeans find that /P stands out well amongst the calls and is a 99.9% indicator the other station will be an S2S contact.


It seems to be the season for proposing changes! :grinning:

Why stop at eliminating the “2”? A single “S” is even more concise if the aim is to eliminate unnecessary characters!

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Yes, that’s true Elliot. I hadn’t thought of the contest aspect of using SS since Im not a big contester. Thanks for that gentle reminder!
Mike NS1TA

STS could be just as likely be part of someone’s callsign whereas, as others have said, S2S is very distinctive and unlikely to be mistaken for anything else. Clear communication is more important than brevity.

If I were to break down how the time I spend when QRV or even during a typical SOTA QSO, cutting out the occasional letter or number would make no difference to the total time.

Andy, are you sexing up my previously stated 95%?



Moi? Maybe!