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WikiProject Amateur radio (Rated B-class, High-importance)
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edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for Contesting:
  • Need image of large HF contest station with acceptable copyright status and source information for introduction.
  • Need a photo of a single operator at a conventional HF contest station.
  • Need an image of a VHF rover station and/or a VHF contest fixed station.
  • Need a photo of a portable contest station that is more than just antennas.
  • Need a photo of a contest award plaque or certificate.
  • Sub-articles on HF Contesting and VHF Contesting might be appropriate.
  • I'm pondering removing the MD4K photo, as I'm not sure that it contributes much - it's just a bunch of hard-to-see antennas. We need other, more relevant photos to replace it first, though. I would especially love to see photos of JA or South American stations as well, to give a better impression of the worldwide scope of the sport. --Kharker 15:15, 7 December 2005 (UTC)
    • I added the MD4K photo to represent a 'field day' station, as opposed to a permanent station. I've taken several since then, if you would like to pick one from my gallery please feel free to do so. Copyright-free. Also, a small point, what is the callsign of the Moroccan station pictured, could be useful. M0RHI 01:55, 9 January 2006 (UTC)

First VHF contest[edit]

The article states that first VHF contest was the ARRL VHF Sweepstakes held in 1948. I'm almost certain that the RSGB sponsored contests on the 5 metre/56 MHz band in the UK before the Second World War. Will check. Gerry Lynch 16:28, 9 March 2006 (UTC)


I have added a note about its amateur radio use on the Cabrillo disambiguation page with a redirect to this page. Is it worth adding a description of this and related contest logging formats on here?Dsergeant 07:53, 28 August 2006 (UTC) (G3YMC)

Merger with VHF radio contest[edit]

I am not sure why we have a separate page for VHF contesting. If we do, why do we not have one for HF contesting? This page covers both quite well as it is and VHF radio contest has little new. Its example is very specific to USA contests, European contests follow a different format. Rather than a merger I propose that VHF radio contest is simply deleted.Dsergeant 06:42, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

Makes much more sense to make a single page for contesting with subsections for HF vs. VHF and if the page gets too big then split them into separate topics. Williamwells 21:10, 17 November 2006 (UTC) de WW5X

edit war caused by the anti-contest lobby[edit]

Can anyone stop the anti-contest lobby from adding this non-neutral text repeatedly? Time to get productive... JurgenG (talk) 13:12, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

It's amazing that anybody who dares to criticize the actions of the selfish, bullying contesters who stamp all over ordinary ops, are called anti-contest and biased! Sounds like a comment from any of the notable dictators in the world. Maybe they are all contests ops in their spare time? Seems like the RSGB has woken up to the selfish bullying tactics of _some_ contesters - see radCom Jan 2008 p7. A minor victory in the 'war' as _you_ call it. Maybe we should have a party when the first selfish, bullying contesters are disqualified. I will even buy the beer. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:39, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

I presume that you're referring to the comment "Due to the lack of international governance, contest rules do not necessarily require entrants to comply with international band plans and other operating standards. For this reason, amateur radio contests often result in friction between participants and other users of the amateur service." This comment is not necessarily 'anti-contest' - but it does reflect the problems often encountered on the HF amateur bands these days. If you are in any doubt, several references can be found in the journals of national amateur radio societies. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:45, 21 November 2007 (UTC)

This is indeed the text I was referring to, I do agree there are some frictions in contesting but Wikipedia is not the place to fight this battle. Noone will change contest rules because of this text on Wikipedia... If you have references about this, please write an NPOV text about it and it will be accepted. I can cite numerous references of contest rules where compliance with the band plans is required. JurgenG (talk) 09:12, 21 November 2007 (UTC) (proud not to be anonymous...)
The edits seem to be coming from one individual in the United Kingdom whose IP address (in a British Telecom block) keeps changing. It's clear from past edit attempts that the anonymous user is attempting to introduce biased anti-contesting content to the introductory section of this article, which is unacceptable in Wikipedia. Having said that, conflicts between contesters and non-contesters are already covered in the Contesting controversies article, which is linked to from this article in the last paragraph of Contesting#Types of contests. Perhaps the connection between the two articles could be made clearer either there or in the Contesting#Contesting activity section. In either event, it doesn't seem (to me) to rise to level of importance that would place it in the introductory section of this article even if it could be done in an NPOV way.--Kharker (talk) 13:52, 21 November 2007 (UTC)
The callsign of at least one of the 'offenders' is known to me... guess that's one callsign I'll never find in any of my contest logs :-) JurgenG (talk) 15:21, 21 November 2007 (UTC)

Restoring fair access to the popular HF bands[edit]

All this talk of 'edit war' and 'anti-contest lobby' in the earlier thread is nonsense. The issue is about presenting a fair description of contesting. This page is not 'owned' by the promoters of contesting, and it needs to present both the upsides, and the downsides of this aspect of the hobby. Rather than edit the previous topic title, I've started this new thread.

Why doesn't it surprise me you don't even sign your messages (with your callsign for example)? It's of course far easier to criticize anonymously... 73 de ON5MF/OQ6A JurgenG (talk) 10:02, 24 December 2007 (UTC)
A good point. However, looking back, it doesn't seem to have been common practice for contributors to include callsigns. (Except that these can usually be ascertained from the IP address!) Season's Greetings and best wishes from Steve, GW4ALG.
Yes we had worked out that for those on fixed IP addresses... but not so easy for those of us on dynamic IPs but we have our suspicions. At least I am not anonymous, it is a lot better to register, and please don't forget those four tildes after your edits on the talk pages which helps to make individual edits more obvious. As mentioned many times there needs to be a balance between what is encyclopediac content for WP and what is biassed content, and some of your edits will never be allowed under WP rules. Although sympathetic to some of your views (but certainly not all) I get somewhat annoyed with all the edit wars going on which is not doing your case any good at all. 73 Dave G3YMC Dsergeant (talk) 15:13, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

So Mr Sergeant Major 'untruths' are anything that you disagree with eh? Why are contesters so afraid of the real truth? Why do you want to perpetuate an image that is totally different from the reality? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:47, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

The biggest untruth is your claim that contesters form a 'very small' number of HF operators. If that really were the case the bands would be choc-a-block every day with non contest activity, yet all I hear many times is wide open spaces. Contests and dx-peditions serve to increase activity and interest in amateur radio and are an aspect of the hobby which many clearly enjoy. I used to be sympathetic to your views, but no longer. I get on very nicely with poor antennas and QRP and do not feel inconvenienced by contests on the bands, in fact I join in the fun. This campaign by what seems to be a very small number of (in most cases now QRT) amateurs on here has to stop. Remember also that this talk page and the article are not forums to promote your views, you should take those elsewhere. 73 G3YMC Dsergeant (talk) 17:56, 16 January 2008 (UTC)
The same discussion can be held about the bunch of undisciplined lids disrupting the bands for yet another pile-up over the next big DXpedition or the guys on 80m reserving THEIR frequency for THEIR net... SIGH Let's get on the air and give the good example, at least that's what I try to do while contesting, dxing or ragchewing.JurgenG (talk) 07:35, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

Such a simple outlook you have. Total number of hams worldwide is ~ 2,000,000 max participants in CQWW contests is ~65,000 = 3.25% Which is hardly a big majority. And I guess contesters would be anti 'ragchewing' and any other NORMAL ham radio activity especially when there are contests on - you would not want the vast majority of ordinary hams taking up valuable bandwidth which might stop you getting points now would you. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:10, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

But Mr Sergeant, Wiki should not be forum to present YOUR views. That is the whole point. You continue to peddle a view of contesting that is totally biased, inaccurate and completely one sided. Why are you SO afraid of telling it how it is? There are many many people out here who have been driven off the bands by lunatic, selfish, bullying contesters. Yes, there are some of us who are vocal but I know of lots of others who have just gone quietly. That is NOT, under any circumstances, what ham radio should be and it is not what the traditions of the hobby were founded on. So, come clean, admit there is a problem and air it fully.

Request comment[edit]

Is this [1] revision NPOV or not? Proponents and opponents of contesting don't seem to agree.

That edit does not conform with a neutral point of view. It argues a position of opinion. Point by point:
  • "...that although contesters claim worldwide participation..." This aims to refute a claim is well documented and supported by accurate citation in the article. Contests like CQWW do have worldwide participation, and stating so in this article is a relevant and acceptable point of fact.
  • "This SMALL number of people cause complete disruption of the most popular and most usable amateur frequencies for long periods." This is inaccurate, but more importantly cannot be proved one way or another. What does "complete disruption" mean? what are the "most popular and most usable" amateur frequencies? What does a "long period" mean? The aim of this sentence is to persuade the reader to accept a particular point of view. It is by nature a POV statement.
  • "This makes them very unpopular and attracts the label of bullying, selfish behavior." This is patently indefensible in an encyclopedic article. It would difficult enough to support a claim that events which attract up to 65,000 participants are unpopular, but to stereotype an entire group in a derogatory manner is basically juvenile, bigoted name-calling.
  • "This could easily be avoided if all contesters stuck to internationally agreed band plans and accepted that others have the right to operate during contests." This is clearly an argument aiming to persuade the reader that some hypothetical change could result in some hypothetical benefit, and is by definition POV. While that might be acceptable in a discussion forum, it is completely innapropriate in an encyclopedia. This is like writing in an encyclopedia article about a sports team that "sports team A could win a championship in the future if only the coach would cut player B from the team."
In short, there's really nothing in that edit that meets the standards of NPOV.--Kharker (talk) 20:49, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

The fact that one group even wants this RfC removed proves indeed that they don't even want to discuss this... JurgenG (talk) 07:15, 19 January 2008 (UTC)

First, getting all your mates to back you up is not democracy neither is it a discussion. If you really want a debate on this issue then you need to include all the ham community, worldwide. Talking of which, just because a contest attracts people from all over the world i.e. is worldwide, does not mean that it is majority pursuit. The numbers involved in such contests is a VERY small percentage of the world ham population.

Second, the REAL debate is not whether this or that is included here but is about the damage caused a small minority of selfish, bullying hams. You can try to ignore this, and that includes not admitting it happens i.e. presenting a rosy view of contesting here, but you, ‘as a group’ need to face up to the fact that your activities stop others from pursuing their hobby. You can squirm and slide around this point all you want but sooner or later you will HAVE to deal with this issue.

The answer is very simple indeed ''''''MAKE ADHERENCE TO BAND PLANS A CONDITION OF ENTRY FOR ALL CONTESTS''''''. That would show you really do care about democracy, free speech and fellow hams. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:54, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

The preceding comments clearly indicate that you are pursuing an agenda (to make adherence to band plans a condition of entry for all contests) and are willing to resort to ad hominem arguments (stereotyping contesters as selfish and bullying) to do so. Wikipedia is not an appropriate venue for waging your personal crusade. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, not a discussion forum. Write letters to the editor of RadCom, make posts to or, discuss it at a local radio meeting, or whatever. There are countless forums that invite that kind of debate and discussion. In the meanwhile, please stop vandalizing this encyclopedia article.--Kharker (talk) 16:23, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

And you, and your mates, are presenting a view of contesting that suits your aims - hardly fit for an 'encyclopedia'. How can you say that what you are doing is any different? You clearly want to present a one sided view that does not included anything that counters the rosy view you peddle. Oh, and BTW, it is not just the band plan thing, it is about time contesters took responsibility for their actions and recognised the problems they cause, adhering to band plans would be a start. So why not include that in your text? What are you afraid of? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:29, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

Again, what you write here is a partisan viewpoint that does not address the weight and serious of the complaints against contesters. This is in breach of the impartiality required by Wiki as it is written by contesters who want to present a particular viewpoint that supports, condones and maintains their stance. It does not present a full and accurate IMPARTIAL view of the subject. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:05, 4 February 2008 (UTC)

I've just re-read through the article, and I have to say that I don't see anything in the article text that is promotional or expository. It is a description of contesting aimed at informing a general audience about what contesting is - not persuading a general audience about how great it is or how terrible it is. There are perhaps too many External links, and I'm going to trim them. Adding ad hominem attacks against contesters is clearly unacceptable just as adding racial insults to an article about an ethnic group would be clearly unacceptable, even if the author is claiming to do so in the name of democracy. Is there a place in this article to mention that contesters do not always follow voluntary band plans? Perhaps. Is there a place to mention that there can be friction between contesters and non-contesters? There is a duaghter article, Contesting controversies, where those issues are mentioned. But the contributions of that sort in the main Contesting article have so far have been problematic. They either make an unsubstatianted claim that a single governance body would require band plan compliance (which is completely speculative and likely false, given that the current IARU-sponsored contests presently do not have such a requirement) or that band plan compliance would eliminate any friction that does exist (which is also speculative). If the friction between contesters and non-contesters can be included in a dispassionate, descriptive, and accurate manner in a way that doesn't take over the article, I don't think you'd have people opposed to it. But prejorative, insulting, and speculative contributions are out of line for an encyclopedia.--Kharker (talk) 16:55, 4 February 2008 (UTC)

It can only ever be a partial description if you fail to include anything about the problems that contests cause. Even when one of your group made a slight concession to that a few weeks back his edit was removed. Squirm all you like but while you continue to exclude the realities of contesting this entry will never be an honest and complete account of the subject. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:52, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

Kharker makes some good points, you should read them... Please understand I am not really a contester myself but I do enjoy entering the occasional one with my very modest station (just like some of your friends who post here used to do before they went QRT..). I also enjoy the odd ragchew. I personally see very few of the problems you so passionately complain about, contests do not prevent me persuing my other amateur persuits in any way. The article is balanced in that it accurately describes the sport of contesting in the way an encyclopedia should and like many WP articles does refer to criticisms of it, both in the main article and in the controversies article. Remember also that personal criticisms and abuse aimed directly at particular editors are against the rules of WP, please don't do it. 73 G3YMC Dsergeant (talk) 07:35, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

Sigh! But the reality is that every time contesters invade a band, ignore band plans, ignore requests to move out of segments that are not allocated to the mode they are using, the chances of ordinary ops have a contact is ruined. This happens SO often that it forces people off the air. Yes I know band plans are voluntary but that is the point, contesters CHOOSE to ignore them which shows they have no respect for other hams. This causes a LOT of resentment. At least the RSGB has finally recognised the problem, it is just a real shame for ham radio that the majority of contesters continue their selfish and irresponsible behaviour. This issue SHOULD be included here as it presents a FULL picture of contesting and not just a rosy view! No entry in an 'encyclopedia' should be written by enthusiasts with an axe to grind; it should be BALANCED AND IMPARTIAL.

This is NOT a chat room[edit]

REMINDER: This talk page is NOT for discussion of amateur radio contesting. This talk page is for the discussion of the article in Wikipedia. Please keep discussions here pertinent to the article ONLY. Not bandplans, rules, contesters vs. emcomm, or anything else. The discussions here MUST relate to the article. Mdechris (talk) 23:28, 14 June 2012 (UTC)

Except that all the comments above date from over four years ago. They seem to have got the message.... Dsergeant (talk) 05:56, 15 June 2012 (UTC)


This article opens "Contesting (also known as radiosport)..." - does that mean the two articles should be merged? If not, what's the difference between them? --McGeddon (talk) 20:15, 23 May 2013 (UTC)