BE Informed No. 5.1
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The VPoD Protocols
John B. Johnston W3BE
Q. What are the VPoD Protocols?
A. VPoD is an acronym for verbalizing person or device. Its
hypothesis is that a surrogate or a device - at the discretion of the designated Section 97.105 control operator - can compliantly
originate the speech transmitted by an amateur station as well as formulate and act upon judgments that are otherwise the
responsibility of, and are normally carried out by, that designated Section 97.105 control operator. VPods are among the alternatives
to VE-certification protocols (“AVEPs”) whereby VE-certification is excused.
Under a VPoD Protocol scheme, a non-VE-certified surrogate or device performs
some or all of the operational and technical duties of the designated Section 97.105 control operator of an amateur station
transmitting on our amateur service radio frequencies. VE examining disappears. The designated Section 97.105 control operator
simply makes an on-the-spot judgement whether or not a surrogate or a device possesses the Section 97.503 operational
and technical qualifications required to perform properly the duties of an amateur service licensee.
Q. I hear a lot of chatter on simplex channels
these days with but few call sign announcements being transmitted. I am not in favor of stretching the rules to accommodate
more of this. Our amateur service seems to be morphing into another social media like CB did. Let’s maintain a higher
standard of technical requirements.
Imported VHF/UHF two-way radios are now very inexpensively available to anyone. Our amateur service
community, moreover, has changed dramatically in recent years. It has morphed into a social media for intercommunication by
persons who have nothing of importance to say to each other and don’t care who knows it. This seems to have given rise
to the thinking that the rules are so far behind reality they must be stretched to accommodate today’s Technician Class
operators and non-VE-certified persons while awaiting our regulators’ acknowledgement of this fundamental change in
our constituency’s interests.
For Field Day, with yours truly as control operator, my three grandchildren, my son and his XYL called CQ. We were often referred
to as a GOTA station. What is a GOTA station?
A. GOTA is the acronym for Get-On-The-Air. It is reportedly
for attracting new people into the hobby, encouraging upgrading, and developing support for the hobby among the non-ham population.
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October 14, 2017
Supersedes all prior editions