Impoverishment of ham radio.

It is the same kind of complaints or rather deep disappointment for the modern trend of CW operations, which I have repeated here many times. Omit reading this post if you feel unhappy to.

As the condition for NA was disappointing to me on the higher bands this morning, having a faint hope for ordinary QSO, I came down to 40m and tried to work some JAs. A HL and a JA  have called me. What they have sent to me was "only report" or "report plus name". Hasty QSOs with use of BK in the end of transmissions. Not in QRS. Apparently, they were just collecting QSLs.

The higher portion of 40m was occupied by contesters. Wow, two domestic contests are being held in a chain. Has it become a dream to enjoy ordinary QSOs?

What has brought this reality to CW world? I believe two factors might be involved in it.

One is that they are not trained to do the ordinary QSO. Maybe, lack of training of head copy and/or linguistic limit. Both could be overcome with training and learning. It is a good chance for them to make ordinary QSOs. It seems, however, they are satisfied with such hasty rubberstamp QSOs.

We, or at least I, used to have an intense desire to communicate with hams oversea when we started ham radio. It seems to have been lost. CW has become a tool to collect QSLs or to compete in contests. Even CW clubs are oriented to this way. What a terrible impoverishment!

On the background of this trend, there seems another more profound problem. They may not want to be involved in the others. They don't want to know what the others think, hope and feel etc. What they want to make is a very superficial relationship with the others. It is the relationship of Ich und Es as Martin Buber described, as I quoted in this blog before. What a desolate world it would be!

Maybe, I have hoped for something CW world could not offer to me. It may not be too far when I quit this hobby, I felt.  


  1. So sad! So sorry! It is difficult for Old Timers like us to adapt to the changes going on in the world! Not just CW. Just Look at the horrible politicians we have!

    1. I agree with you Bob! You are an oldest friend of mine who has lived and shared things together for decades!

  2. Well Shin, I think it has to do with the pursuit of instant gratification rather than a lack of interest in others. The contest type of QSO is like an endorphin rush as the points, multipliers, new countries, counties, and zones add up. Our young kids are getting the same when they play video games and score points by "killing" something. This is our version of the online video game.

    The second factor is that you do not have to be very good at copying CW to engage in such QSO's. After a while, 599 is easy to copy at almost any speed and the DX sites such as DX Summit already gives an operator the call sign.

    It takes effort, patience, and time to pursue a good long CW QSO along with the ability to copy CW accurately. All we can do is to serve as good examples to other operators, engage each other ans seek to learn. That is what I try to do as much as the other operators will allow. I don't think the "new way of operating" will change much but we just need to keep doing what we do to encourage a FB CW QSO.

    It takes a dedicated effort and time to engage in a long QSO