Calling out of turn, what do you think?

Posted: November 11, 2014 in Uncategorized


I am a member of one of the oldest and largest DX Clubs on the West Coast. The club is steeped in history as well as tradition. Many of the luminaries in the DX World have crossed paths or have been members of our club.

Most of our club members are considerate and careful Dxers. I recognize that we all make mistakes with split etc.

I am perplexed by one of our prominent club members who I regularly hear in pileups calling out of turn. I have contacted him twice in the past and even sent him a recording of his calls. The first time I emailed him he was contrite. The second time I contacted him on this he was defensive. Just now, I heard him calling S79VR. No matter who S79VR came back to, this prominent club member continued to call him over and over making it hard for the S79VR to work the people that he was calling.

After this club member made his contact, he stayed around to play “DX Cop” he made two transmissions on top of S79VR, “He is listening up 5” and he called to another club member on top of S79VR “Russ are you still on frequency”.

Its never okay to transmit on top of the DX, not ever. I think peer pressure could help curtail practices like this, what do you think?

  1. Bob - W6OPO says:

    Sorry to hear of someone not behaving in a pile-up and most especially when it is a NCDXC member. We pride ourselves on our approach and decent behavior. Shame.

    But how does one deal with such behavior?

  2. n6pse says:

    Bob, that is a good question, that same member is now acting as a “DX Cop” on S79’s frequency. I just heard him! I have received email messages asking me to name the errant ham, but I am not ready to do that. He should consider this a “shot over his bow”.

  3. Mike KJ4Z says:

    There’s a station about 10 miles from here who must be running well over the legal limit. 10 miles, and yet he pegs my S-meter and I can hear him up and down the band when he’s on. His signal is easy to recognize, because it has chirp and distortion. And he has a habit of tuning up right on top of the DX for an extended period of time (must take a while to get that beast in alignment). I regard him as a menace. But I’ve never said anything to anyone about it. I’m young and a relative newcomer, both to the area and to the bands, and I think this fellow is a real Old Timer. Is it my place to say anything? Likewise, I’m sure that locals know who most of the QRMers in the pileups are, but don’t know what to do about it. I wish we had some sort of societal norms on how to proceed. How to be helpful and courteous, and yet call the errant operators out?

    • Roy WA4DOU says:

      Mike, I don’t doubt you about the fella near you running in excess of the legal limit. We hams tend to think of amplifiers made for amateur application that are conservatively rated and could probably reach 2500-3000 watts output. In a conversation with an old W4 that I worked for years ago, licensed in the ’30’s and not given to exaggeration, when asked what the highest power he had knowledge of any ham using, he replied, “13 Kw”. You can bet those types are among us today.

  4. Jim Brown says:

    When behavior like this is repeated and intentional, and when the guilty party won’t stop when contacted, I think it is appropriate to apply peer pressure to him. In this case, a reprimand from the NCDXC BoD might be a start. Or contact by a mutual friend. With respect to KJ4Z’s situation, I suggest that he enlist the help of other old timers in his neighborhood.

  5. N7SMI says:

    Having recently been on the business end of moderate to large (not FT4TA large) pileups as TX7G, I can attest that intentional out of turn callers impacted our rates by at least 10%. It had by far the most significant impact on rate – higher than DQRM (we had LOTS of this), callers on our frequency, DX cops, or any other controllable factor.

    This means that if callers simply listened to instructions and answered only when called, our medium-sized operation could have logged at least 3000 more QSOs from at least 1200 additional unique stations. Of course we were strict about not working out of turn callers knowing that our rates would have been even worse had we promoted such behavior.

    I suspect the impact on FT4TA was significantly higher as it seems the more demanded the entity the more out of turn callers there are, which more notably impacts the DX station’s rates, which then DECREASES the likelihood that the out of turn caller (or anyone else for that matter) will get in the log. If you think about it, it really is illogical to ever call out of turn (assuming the DX station knows what he’s doing).

  6. Roger K5RKS says:

    Most DXers subscribe to the DXers code of conduct.

    We all make mistakes occasionally by not running split and calling on top of the DX station.

    Or maybe the DX station just switched from working only 6s to working only 7s and we missed his latest instruction due to someone tuning up on top of the DX. Stuff like this can happen and it has happened to me. In my case, I didn’t hear the DX change his instructions from “listening for 5s” to “listening to 7s” and I was calling out of turn. But this only happened once.

    But blatant, repeated, and intentional activity should not be tolerated. If something like this was going on here with a particular station in Oklahoma I think our local DX club, the Oklahoma DX Association, would definitely confront the perpetrator.

    I don’t know if it is prudent, or even effective, to publically identify the op or not. The worst
    behavior on the ham bands has happened by ops who were well known. For some of the worst case situations the FCC finally stepped in and revoked their licenses.

    I think in the DX community we at least should consider revoking membership in the local DX association for those who continually violate the rules of the road. I don’t think there should be a presumption that membership in any DX group, especially such a prestigious group as the NCDXA, is going to be granted regardless of “on the air” behavior.

    I spent 40 years in Silicon Valley before moving here to Oklahoma. I was NQ6C [and earlier WA6DCF] during most of this time. I had tons of friends who were members on the NCDXA during the 1970s and 1980s. None of them would put up with the type of stuff that is going on with the guy you are mentioning. I just don’t see how any DX group can “look the other way” in the face of this type on on-air behavior.

    I’m going to ask a question, “Should DX clubs pull the membership on those who continually and willfully refuse to follow the ‘rules” of DXing?”

    I think the answer has to be YES!

    73 Roger K5RKS

    • Roy WA4DOU says:

      Roger, I’m inclined to agree with you, especially if one or two attempts by individuals are unsuccessful in eliminating the bad behavior.

  7. Warren says:

    Peer pressure is a very powerful enforcement tool. However, one has to be very careful – like being doubly sure you have the right person before the accusation is made and the ‘pressure’ is brought to bare.

  8. Rich Haendel says:

    I hear the same stuff that others hear. What I do is e-mail the “offender” immediately. I do not comment over the radio. About half the time I get an e-mail reply. Most of the replies are apologies but some are defiant and crude. Most stop the intentional QRM and bad behavior, but some continue to be LIDs. I think off the air e-mails can be effective but surely not near enough to stop the poor behavior.

    73 Rich W3ACO

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