Sep 262009

Well, I really didn’t think I’d be writing a post like this.

This is following on from, and indirectly in reply to, an operator who decided to call in on the Australia-Wide Night-Owl and Insomnia net which is held every Friday night at 3595kHz.

Now, this net is pretty laid back… all are welcome. There are however, some things that just are not done on radio. Just as much as they are not done here on the internet. One of them, is to air dirty laundry on air.

Without going into detail… we had an operator call in from Victoria (a VK3V.. call, standard licensee) who then proceeded to make allegations about the off-air activities of another operator (VK2.., advanced licensee), in particular, the allegations involved claims of abusive phone calls and threats. The VK2 station responded pointing out some other misdemeanors allegedly purpotrated by the VK3 station, before (thankfully) moving on with the net. Thank heavens both had the decency to leave it there rather than tie up net time arguing.

Now, undoubtedly, the vast majority (me included) are not privy to all the information. They may be completely false, or there may be some truth to them. That isn’t for me to decide and does not concirn me. What I object to, is the usage of the amateur bands, as the platform for this kind of debate. It does not help any of the participants, or bystanders at all… and perhaps what both sides should realise here, is that by airing this material on-air, they are opening themselves up for a potential defamation case.

It is no different to me for instance, making similar allegations on this site… I could be sued for defamation. This is one of the reasons why I did not reveal the callsigns, or even the names of the guilty culprits. In the past, I recorded the net and provided it as a podcast (and had I done this, the recording would have been up for the world to hear)… but sadly the computer that I used for this is not operational at the moment. In any case, those who were listening, know to whom I refer.

I would ask that all people, who make use of radiocommunications services, whether it be amateur, citizen’s band, marine, airband or any other service out there… please bear this in mind. Your personal squabbles have no place on the air, as I for one (and likely countless others) am not interested in hearing them.