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Re: (Fwd) Well, Maybe One More!

On Sun, 4 Apr 1999, KF4FDJ (Mike in Ft. Myers, FL) wrote:

> Think through this now.  How bad could the messages really be?  "Launch
> a satellite, and the entire world will beat a swatch to your door." 
> From what I've read, the only qualifier they have for their messages is
> it has to have the word "beat" in the message.  So?  If I'm talking on
> FO-20, and I use the word Motorola, am I guilty of breaking the rules? 
> I don't think so.  I don't think the word "beat" is even a Swatch
> trademark.

Say you're employed by a big multifaceted radio company called Xyzzy, Inc.
and have a repeater on top of Bob's house which is operated by the Xyzzy
Amateur Club, made up of Xyzzy employees, in their own time.  Now, talking
about Xyzzy products on the air wouldn't be a big deal, since you guys
work all day with them, and probably still have them on your mind as you
drive home and chat on the club repeater with members and non-members.

But if the Marketing Manager of Xyzzy comes to you and offers a space on
top of Xyzzy HQ for your machine and $50 a month for the club if you have
the repeater announce as "Welcome to the Xyzzynator(TM), aka the AA2XYZ
repeater, I love Xyzzy(TM) for the best Widget(TM) 2000s you'll ever hear
on the air," it's not quite the same.

I think the Beatnik satellite is a fine hair between the two situations.  
In both, suddenly you as an amateur have an obligation to Xyzzy and have
to use amateur radio to fulfill it.  As far as I'm concerned, that goes
against the spirit and letter of both ITU and FCC regulations.
In my opinion, it's a slippery slope when we as amateurs start to be
underwritten by corporations.  It's only a matter of time before the good
faith becomes a contract, and the contract becomes an obligation. Listened
to National Public Radio lately?  What started out years ago as very
tasteful brief mentions of corporations and grants used to support the
show has expanded into what amounts to 45 or 60 second advertisements for
those companies, replete with contact numbers, web pages, slogans and God
knows what else.  I have visions of the same thing happening to amateur
radio, if the bands aren't just out and out stolen first.

To everyone who is supporting this effort, however, please try not to burn
bridges behind us by posting foul language and obnoxious comments that you
would never think of saying on the air.  If you wouldn't want your mother
or your kids reading in on the page, for goodness sake don't post it up
for everyone else!  I've posted up a number of excellent suggestions for
less vehement courses of action on the web site and I hope that you will
all read and consider them carefully.



Rob Carlson, KC2AEI | rcarls2@umbc.edu | http://rob.carlson.org

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