[aprssig] APRS legality

Steve Dimse steve at dimse.com
Wed Jan 28 20:18:24 EST 2009

On Jan 28, 2009, at 6:07 PM, Robert Bruninga wrote:
> And I disagree with your facts.  I contend that the vast
> majority of APRS stations are two-way and that the remote
> transmitter-only one-way telemetry devices are in the tiny
> minority.
> In my area, right now, I see 241 stations on local RF in the
> DC/Baltimore area:
> - 56 are digi's     (2-way)
> - 44 are objects    (2-way)
> - 50 are home stns  (2 way)
> - 18 are home WX    (2-way)
> - 60 are D7/700/710 (2-way)
> -  2 are remote WX (1 way)
> -  4 are Mic-E's   (1-way)
> -  3 are NMEA      (1-way)
> -  4 are trackers  (1 way)

Even after all these years, Bob, you manage to impress me. So now  
objects are two-way APRS stations?

Even aside from this absurdity, I reject these numbers as immaterial,  
the vast majority of these stations, even though they have receivers,  
are not expecting transmissions, and are not monitored by a human for  
such. They are sending their data in the blind, every bit as much as  
if they did not have a receiver.

My statement that most people use APRS one way is based on your own  
experience. Every time you come back from a trip you complain about  
there being no humans on 144.39. True, because most people are using  
144.39 in a one-way fashion. How many of the 228 two-way stations you  
claim above are participating in your "rapid-real-time human digital  
communications" system at this moment?

I maintain people have a right to use 144.39 as a one-way vehicle  
tracking system if they choose. Just as you have a right to use it as  
a real-time net. You own the trademark APRS. That is all you own.  
Everything else belongs to the amateur radio community as a whole.

I tire of this. I got involved because of statements from you like

On Jan 19, 2009, at 2:21 PM, Robert Bruninga wrote:

> 2) Transmit-only-trackers!  These transmit-only devices were
> killing the APRS concept of rapid-real-time human digital
> communications (APRS) by attempting to turn the national network
> into nothing more than a vehicle tracking system. (APRS was
> never intended to be a "tracking" system.

It doesn't matter what you intended. If these trackers are killing  
anything (how can something that is 8 of 240 (or 3% by your own  
numbers), kill????) then it is because that is what these hams want.  
You are free to lament about missed opportunities all you want, and  
encourage people to do more real-time things, but please do not try to  
tell people that the way they choose to use 144.39 is any less valid  
than the way you choose to use it.

Steve K4HG

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