Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Amateur radio

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WikiProject Amateur radio (Rated Project-class)
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Callsigns, WP usernames, minors...[edit]

I've noticed a few in the project use their callsign as their username. It is, understandably, a form of validating oneself as really being a ham.

As a ham instructor, the topic of vanity license plates with ham callsigns comes up in every class. My reply is always the same, and I'd like to relate it here (not to criticize any of my fellow hams and wikipedias, but merely out of concern):

Imagine you are driving down a road or freeway somewhere and you really piss someone off, whether due to your lack of driving ability, his lack of understanding, or just a simple and honest mistake. I mean really get this person angry. How far away are we these days from high resolution cameras? In less than 10 second, this really angry person could have taken a picture of your car with their phone, having a copy of your license plate. In this case, your plate is your ham callsign. "Interesting..." thinks this person that is now really steamed at you, "that doesn't look like a normal plate number, lets google it and see what happens." Well, what happens is the first search result, and likely all but one in the front page, will be a link to a database that contains your street address.

In reality, only a mentally-ill person will want to cause you harm, but the opportunity is there. It may be just too much coincidence to think that

  • A) you'll get someone angry on the road,
  • B) they'll either take a picture of or remember your plate (callsign),
  • C) they'll look it up on google,
  • D) decide to do something bad to you.

And it is, that is why so many hams have license plates with their callsigns.

Now comes WP usernames. We sign that hundreds if not thousands of times in talk pages. We have discussions, edit wars, light and severe disagreements... any kind of conversation you can think off. These stay online forever, and your callsign is on all of them. The chances of someone not liking you because of your comments are much higher here than on the road. You all know what you are doing, you are responsible adults and you determine how to keep your families safe in this crazy world. Except you are not all adults, and this is what prompted me to write this. Clicking though callsigns today, several userpages had direct links to their QRZ profiles. And some of those bios were something to the effect of "Im so and so, Im X years old" X oftentimes being underage, and in a few occasions pre-teen. The addresses weren't PO boxes...

Please, please, please, kids, if you are editing wikipedia, make sure you do so with your parent's permissions, and don't, don't use your callsign as your username. Any sicko with the wrong intentions (of which there are many in this world) only has to follow a couple of clicks to hurt you badly. I know it is cool to have a ham license and a callsign, but keep it off the internet. Never give out your age if you are a minor, in QRZ, Wikipeida, Social Media, or on the air. Either change your username or remove your age from QRZ, or both. In fact, you should at least remove your age from the internet.

To the adult hams here: you also have kids, keep that in mind. But it is your choice, please don't think I think I know better than you. This issue is a deep concern of mine and I simply want the safety of all who share so many things in common with me.

There is no WP policy I can think off to enforce this, so my request is all that stands. We like you kids, and appreciate all your contributions to WP. Please just stay safe.


--WingtipvorteX PTT 22:37, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

Not something I've ever considered before, and an interesting point, well made. Although there is nothing we can do to stop this, and the risk, although very unlikely, is potentially very high impact, so it is sound advice. As wingtipvortex says, it is very easy to track down an individual in this way, and even though I'm in my 50s, I wouldn't use my call-sign (hey - most people don't use their real names for much the same reason!) on Wikipedia! 73 de Lynbarn (talk) 23:08, 3 August 2012 (UTC)
Good advice. Though there are quite a number of people that use their real names (with links to their personal websites) on Wikipedia without any ill effect. But it's a personal choice. Who knows, maybe some people like the attention or the possibility of danger? Definitely a poor choice for minors, though. - LuckyLouie (talk) 23:16, 3 August 2012 (UTC)
Yes, people should consider how much personal info they disclose on the Internet, but I have to say this thread is very hypothetical. How many problems have actually been caused by people revealing their callsigns (with or without their age) on Wikipedia? None that I know of. It's easy to frighten yourself with "movie-plot scenarios", where there's actually very little evidence of a problem. This has little to do with Amateur Radio. It's more about social networking ala Facebook.--Albany45 (talk) 01:00, 4 August 2012 (UTC)
Albany45, yes, hypothetical is the truth, movie-plot, maybe. I definitely did not want to scare anyone, thought it could easily be read as such. I am not aware of any incidents, though I am trying to prevent any that may happen. As I said above, the reason I posted this was because minors were had both their age and their address on QRZ and they liked that right on their WP userpage. I think you would agree with me that a 10 year-old should not be telling the world his age and address. The originator of the problem is, of course, the FCC, by making our addresses public, so it has everything to do with Amateur Radio. If a Wikipedia wants to say his age in WP, facebook, g+, or whatever, that is fine, even if underage. But if parents are not telling an underage kid to not give out his age when their address is public, someone should. I don't live in a bad area, but there are still plenty of sex-offenders and child molesters nearby. --WingtipvorteX PTT 01:14, 4 August 2012 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:How to not get outed on Wikipedia.
Wavelength (talk) 01:28, 4 August 2012 (UTC)
Although this topic is of chief concern to minors (and their guardians), I changed my username a while back for this very reason. Anonymity (to as great a degree as possible) is a pearl of great price. All the best, Miniapolis (talk) 02:11, 4 August 2012 (UTC)
I've never revealed my callsign here or on Facebook, even though many of my Facebook contacts are hams who know my callsign. (Not a minor) Roger (talk) 06:30, 4 August 2012 (UTC)
  • Many good points here. I don't use my personal callsign everywhere -- such as with WP, I use the name of an organ stop, to show my preference for musical instruments. I don't currently have a call plate on my van, simply because the state is unable to make a zero with a slash through it. So instead, I use a license plate frame with my callsign. I've been a ham for 25 years now and I've never had any problem with anyone because my ham radio callsign was somewhere on my vehicle. I am active in ARES, Emergency Management, and Skywarn. As for public information, because ham radio licenses are issued by the federal government, that information becomes public domain and anyone can search it. This does not concern me. I have no kids so I am not worried about an attack in that direction. My only kids are my cats (and my radios, of course!). All I can say is I have no control over the actions of others. If they intend to do something, then they're going to do it. They should, of course, be prepared for the consequences of their actions if they decide to go through with them. --==-- I am a ham, and my callsign is NØJAA. I have a phone with 911 and GPS, I have radios, and I have guns. And I know how to use ALL of them! Erzahler (talk) 18:27, 13 August 2012 (UTC)
  • With our society so deeply connected via social media, seemingly by default, in ever more invasive ways, it should no longer be novel and esoteric knowledge that the individual, active online, should be a wary and self-protective social agent. Using an amateur radio callsign on the radio, on the open airwaves, leaves that amateur radio operator open to discovery. That is why I never use a street address for my FCC-assigned callsign. I use a post box, which keeps my personal street address safe from disclosure, if the United States Post Office follows regulation. This privacy is acknowledged by support groups to women experiencing domestic abuse, simply to add some protection to those women that are in need of postal services, with the safety that comes from obscuring their physical location. All members of my family are amateur radio operators, and each of them have used a postal box number address in connection with the FCC administrative database.
-- NW7US (talk) 12:30, 9 August 2014 (UTC)

Jazz CQ[edit] (CQ in CW) --Cqdx (talk) 20:51, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

Slim Gaillard, probably not a ham radio op? - LuckyLouie (talk) 21:31, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Most probably not. But his CQ is perfect :) --Cqdx (talk) 21:36, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

{{Infobox amateur radio country}}[edit]

Template:Infobox amateur radio country (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has been nominated for deletion -- (talk) 02:04, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

Leaflet for Wikiproject Amateur Radio at Wikimania 2014[edit]

Project Leaflet WikiProject Medicine back and front v1.png

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Adikhajuria (talk) 16:46, 26 June 2014 (UTC)

Comment on the WikiProject X proposal[edit]

Hello there! As you may already know, most WikiProjects here on Wikipedia struggle to stay active after they've been founded. I believe there is a lot of potential for WikiProjects to facilitate collaboration across subject areas, so I have submitted a grant proposal with the Wikimedia Foundation for the "WikiProject X" project. WikiProject X will study what makes WikiProjects succeed in retaining editors and then design a prototype WikiProject system that will recruit contributors to WikiProjects and help them run effectively. Please review the proposal here and leave feedback. If you have any questions, you can ask on the proposal page or leave a message on my talk page. Thank you for your time! (Also, sorry about the posting mistake earlier. If someone already moved my message to the talk page, feel free to remove this posting.) Harej (talk) 22:47, 1 October 2014 (UTC)