435 Summer 2016 Changes
Request for Comments
June 3, 2016
Version 1, Working draft, requesting comments and suggestions.
Wow, it’s been a crazy and mostly fun three years of 435 stewardship. It’s an honor to help keep the 54 year old 147.435 dream alive.
I’ve “let it ride” for three years, but am now considering taking a more active role, along with other 435ers to make the repeater more fun for more people. However, we don’t want a traditional hi-hi-om repeater. We enjoy a reasonable amount of chaos.
My primary goal for 435 continues to be providing a place where radio amateurs can speak their mind, bicker, debate and discuss controversial subjects. It’s one of the few places on the amateur spectrum where you can let loose, use gutter parlance and speak freely like friends in a bar.
I’ve talked privately and publicly to several 435ers, and even some long time listeners, about how 435 can be improved. I couldn’t talk to everyone, so those discussions are summarized here for further comment by others. A few decisions have already been made, but many are still up for discussion. You can contact me at:
Proposed Changes to 435
[Decided] Provide priority VOIP and RF inputs — [Decided] Yes. We will deploy VOIP and a new RF priority input (not the 220) to the repeater this summer. We don’t plan for the priority inputs to be available full time and don’t want this to create two classes of 435ers. The goal is to allow 435 conversation to continue during high power jamming or out of control remotes and to allow special guests and out of area 435ers to occasionally join in. We are still discussing when and how these inputs will be used and who will have access. The equipment has been purchased and will be installed on the hill this summer.
[Decided] Organize an Enforcement Team — We are setting up an enforcement team to find jammers. Unfortunately this will require involving non-435ers to avoid personal bias.
[Decided] Enforcement Team — We are setting up an enforcement / t-hunting fund for donations. 435 is still *not* accepting donations for general repeater operating expenses.
[Decided] RF Fingerprinting — We are deploying an RF fingerprinter on the hill. Fingerprint information will be limited to the enforcement team and only be used against the worst offenders.
[Decided] New Blood — Encourage new People to join 435 and former 435ers to return. Plan being developed, somewhat depended on showing success on enforcement. Need a plan and maybe a “promotion czar”.
[In discussion] Banning Policy (see below)
[In discussion] Policy on Remotes (see below)
[In discussion] Setup more face-to-face events. Need organizers.
Summary of Q&A with 435ers so Far
What are 435’s Core Principals?
- You can say what you want. The limits are determined by the 435 community.
- Off air harassment shouldn’t be tolerated.
- Repetitive high power jamming shouldn’t be tolerated.
- We have fun and don’t take things personally; it’s a show.
- It’s not a democracy, it’s a meritocracy. Those with the best signal and best show win.
- We fight amongst ourselves, but in the end we are a family, a tribe.
- There should be no principals; it’s anarchy. Just let people talk.
Should people be Banned from 435; when?
- No bans of licensed stations for what they say.
- Ban people only for repetitive jamming or off air harassment.
- If someone is continuously disrupting the conversation, being obnoxious or adding no value to the degree that many 435ers don’t want to use the repeater, that person should be banned.
- Banning requires a commitment to enforcement and legal followup. That is time consuming and expensive.
- What is the Banning Policy?
- Banning only makes the problem worse.
Roger: I am reluctant to ban based on what someone says on the air. I am considering banning people for jamming and off air harassment.
What’s your opinion on High Power Remotes?
Obviously, the Platinum Team remote was the main topic of discussion and is the most controversial.
- High power remotes have always been part of 435, deal with it.
- Some remotes are hijacked and used for jamming. We need to work with remote owners to fix that.
- We need to put pressure on remote owners to restrict access and control their users.
- No content blithering remote users should be assigned a lower power transmitter on group remotes.
- You can’t let remotes create two classes of 435ers.
- When xxxxxx is doing a rambling key-down bender on a high power remote and no one else can talk, I turn my radio off. It’s killing 435.
- Ban all group remotes, only allow personal remotes.
Roger: I think remotes are part of 435 and part of the hobby. 435ers should establish what is acceptable. I do agree that some unworthy people have been given access to powerful remotes.
Should 435 Provide RF and VOIP Priority Inputs; when and for whom?
- Don’t do it, you’ve been good about keeping the 220 input to yourself and limiting priority of the Asterisk VOIP. It will divide 435ers into the haves and have nots.
- You should be able to provide priority to select 435ers when needed.
- That might be useful for nets and special guests.
- Doesn’t matter, that shit will be hijacked and jammed.
- OK, but don’t put unworthy people on priority inputs. Same standard as remotes.
How Should 435 Deal with “Undesirable People” on the Repeater?
- Don’t talk to or about the squeakies, whisperers or other people that have don’t identify with calls signs.
- Ban them and followup with enforcement.
- How is “undesirable” determined?
- Let 435ers decide who they talk to and who they ignore.
Should we Encourage new People to Join 435 and Former 435ers to Return; How?
- People who want to talk on 435 will talk without encouragement.
- Yes! we need new blood badly.
- I know several 435ers that will return if the unidentified noise and off-air bullshit is address to some degree.
- Advertise online via Facebook, Broadcastify and offer a trial by fire via VOIP if needed.
Should we use an RF fingerprinter at the repeater site?
Greg Pitta have been playing with separate MoTron finger printers for awhile. They work fairly well, but it needs to be done on the hill to hear all the interference.
- It sounds a bit spooky.
- Yes, since everyone should be IDing, there should be nothing to hide. 435 is not an anonymous forum.
Summary of Other Comments
We should create more 435 teams
Sounds like you have a good technical team, but what about control operators, event team for planning BBQs, enforcement team, etc.
We should encourage more nets on 435. Trivia and the bong hit net are popular, what else?
Roger: Yes! please propose something cool and I will support you.
More 435 BBQs and other meet-ups.
Patch in more guests
By phone patch or whatever. Former 435ers. You’ve talked about Kevin Mitnick, out of state former 435ers, listeners having 5 minutes priority. That sort of thing.
- You should accept donations to a general repeater fund.
- You should accept donations to an enforcement war chest.
- It’s cool that you have never accepted donations to the repeater. People tend to expect favors for donations.
Roger: I don’t want to accept general donations toward the repeater operation. I am willing to setup an enforcement fund for people to donate towards the expense of t-hunting equipment, T-hunter expenses and legal fees.
Turning the Repeater Off
- Turn the repeater off when xxxx occurs to punish the behavior and pressure 435ers to address that behavior.
- Never turn the repeater off, if only rewards the behavior.
Unidentified Transmissions — squeakies, whisperers, etc.
- You need to start by eliminating these people from 435.
- Most are low power, intermittent and harmless. Most people felt that they are not an enforcement priority but we need to do better at not responding to them on the air.
- There are a few that are annoying to the point of needing enforcement.
- Just don’t talk to them or about them and they will go away.
- They have always been part of 435, deal with it.
Recruit more 435ers
- Recruit new 435ers. We need new blood. Most of you are boring as hell.
- Bring back the 435ers who left.
Should we do more on Enforcement?
- Do it off air, use peer pressure, etc. Using t-hunters, private investigators, fingerprinting will scare good people away.
- Yes, create a doppler network for real time location.
- Create a “Doppler Dogs” goon squad.
- Hire third party non-435ers for T-hunting. As you know, jammers have been found by 435ers by they won’t turn in the jammer because they are friends.
- Focus on the hard core Jammers, unidentified, music, long-playing DVRs, etc.
- Hilltop finger printer.
- You shouldn’t be reluctant to involve the FCC and peruse other legal action.
- Finding jammers rarely solves the problem and often makes it worse.