Major long-term project by Nigel G3TXF
I am planning on doing the same once the new clublog QSL system is up and running.
Hopefully we are not far away from dxpeditions being able to offer immediate electronic qsl delivery as soon as the qso is made, straight into my online qsl gallery.
There is also scope for new qsl card innovation when we are dealing with electronic rather than paper qsls
Imagine being able to click on your electronic qsl and hear an actual recording of your qso as taken by the dxpedition – may be the qsl card can have a short embedded video when you click on it. It would also be easy for a dxpedition to offer qsls in different designs and formats and leave the choice of design up to the card applicant.
There is also an opportunity to eliminate qsl card fraud – the dxpedition could maintain a database of the qsl cards it has issued and card checkers could use this as a cross reference when checking cards for award submission. This would be particularly effective if sound recordings were included.
Finally, there is a big opportunity to redirect the thousands of dollars wasted in qsl postage costs each year and actually spend this on funding more dxpeditions
Paul – vk4ma
I think LoTW is already taking care of all that quite handsomely.
QSL cards are the joy of a contact, why all these changes, I prefer the original QSL
card not any electronic card saying that we have had a contact. I my days , at the start
of my HAN radio activities no one was talking about sending money for a card. That
was on my believe RADIO HAM you taken care of sending your cards and everyone was
getting cards back.
Today is 3 to 5 dollars to get someone else cards. I am ware of the cost and other staff
but I am still old faction guy I still send my cards and if someone sends a card back is OK
other wise I don’t get the card
FULLY aree on Martins/M0PAM view of qsl-cards. ,,,Most of us all,,,
remember when we received our first qsl-cards. I ,,HOPE ,, qsl-card
will continue to be the final courtesy of a qso. Of course,,, some Hams
prefer LOTW.Thats ok, BUT please if possible arrange so you can qsl
with solid paper qsl-card as well, for theseHams that prefer this.
Unfortunately LOTW has destroyed the old way of qsl-ing,,,,via bureau.
IF a qsl-bureau runs like Germany and Japan, we shold not need all these
expensive way of qsl-ing. Finally, I do understand that Nigel/TXF and
others ( also myself ) do not collect cards from thir expeditions. Then OQRS
is perfect. However still many many like to have qsl-paper cards for their own personal activety. Each hobby costs money, therefore , whats the problem to pay some for a qsl-card. Specially qsl-card that gives some information about the Ham you worked and his area.This gives a lot of good knowledge and pleasure.73 Hans SM6CVX
M0PAM / SM6CVX
When exactly was this time of milk and honey when qsl cards were free?
I have been a ham since 1979 and when I first started a direct qsl card required you to send one or two US$.
Checking the inflation calculator at the following web ref:
A 1979 US$1 is now the equivalent of US$3.26. Two 1979 US$s equals US$6.50
So the amounts being demanded by dxpeditions now for a direct qsl card are roughly equal (if not less) than what was being charged back in 1979.
The QSL bureau was a farce back in 1979 – I always remember receiving a QSL from a guy in Chile back then which had a picture of him lying in a coffin – the caption underneath read something like “I will most likely be dead by the time you receive this QSL”. This was an accurate depiction of how slow the bureau was back then.
The reason why the JA bureauu system works is because they have huge volume. In virtually every other country in the world this volume does not and will never exist.
The problem with this hobby is that it is populated by too many old men who bathe ham radio in an errant nostalgia.
Pile-ups were just as unruly in 1980, qsl cards cost about the same as 2015, radio gear was about five times more expensive.
I have no problem with paper qsls or bureau qsls as long as the guys that want them are willing to pay the extra cost and not expect to be subsidised by those who contribute financially to dxpeditions (and by those members of their local radio society who have no interest in dx or qsls whatsoever)
Paper QSLs should be replaced by websites. Digital cuts the costs for all parties, and we get quick confirmations directly in our logs.
The money saved on postage, can be used to support those activating rare DXCCs.
VP8SGI/STI was confirmed via LOTW, for all HAMs within a month.
That is way of the future.
No more shipping of cards, to the ARRL for awards.
@LA7DFA: one more easy step: make the contact by internet, not on HF!
@LA7DFA Per, What complete rubbish you talk!!!
I have been active for more than 40 years chasing DX and I STILL get tremendous pleasure from receiving paper QSLs fom dxpeditions and other rare dx.
I do not routinely QSL run-of-the-mill DX contacts, e.g. JA, W, VK, etc but if the other station wants to exchange QSLs either direct or via bureau then no problem. And I am happy to pay the return postage costs unlike some G stations who, having spent thousands of pounds on their station equipment, then demand that the other station pays the return postage costs of ~ 1-2 pounds for the few direct QSL requests they receive.
Furthermore, the recent increasing useage of OQRS has cut out unnecessary sending of QSLs to a dxpedition or dx station who does not need them.
So, as Willi CX8TC suggests, why don’t you give up ham radio and go make all your contacts via internet, e.g. Skype, etc?
Your comments would be fair if I was not active, or did not confirm paper QSL’s. But I am very active and enjoy HF daily. I have sent more than 50.000 paper QSL’s from JX7DFA and LA7DFA. So I know perfectly well what it is, and is not. LOTW is the future.
The mechanism for confirming a contact is not congruent to the mechanism for making the contact. This means that stating that someone that wants to use an electronic medium for contact confirmation “should use Skype” is, at best, insulting and is totally irrational.
Using the Internet to argue against contact confirmation via the Internet is the very definition of irony…
I use my received QSL’s to explain one of the things we amateurradio operators do: hunting DX. People LOVE to see those cards from remote locations and countries they never heard of. QSL’s give them something in hand to understand the passion we have for spending hours and hours on the radio: for a card confirming a good contact.
I don’t think showing statistics on a monitor would do the same.
Don’t know what to make of this. Sure, it’s the 21st century and LoTW is apparently the way forward, but in essence what we have here is a well known QSL manager / multi-DXpeditioner getting rid of cards, which at the time, were definitely the final end to a QSO for so many people. Kinda sad to see them being binned..
Not everyone uses or agrees with LoTW is what I’m really getting at, I guess. ^^
BTW, why is the “o” of LoTW small, when all other letters are large? :-D
73 Col MM0NDX
I fully agree with the post of PA2LO!
A QSL is the true reason for hunting a QSO.
I am on the age below 35 and collecting cards is my hobby inside our hobby. Even I have stored 15.000 QSL’s plus maybe for each DXCC in alphabetical order. Also storing my cards arriving for my own DXpeditions. LoTW is maybe fine for applying DXCC but it will never give the same what it feels like a QSL arrives. I think OQRS is a great way to order cards. And I wish more people will use our world wide buro system. So keep on going to send these beautiful cards from everywhere… 73 Jan,DL7JAN
I think your comment is a misrepresentation. The cards were not just binned – they were scanned and are being preserved for all time on the soon to be released Clublog QSL display system.
If you take an old home movie and convert it from a VHS tape to digital format would you still say thay your memories have been binned.
I further assume that you and other guys defending paper qsls have completely shunned the digital photography revolution? Presumbly a photo is only a photo to you guys if it is printed out on paper?
Similarly I guess you also shun electronic books and Ereaders as I expect your view is that books can only exist in physical paper format.
When the Clublog qsl display system is operational there will actually be far greater opportunity to share your qsl collection with others. Currently PA2LO must wait for someone to visit his shack to view his paper qsls. I am absolutely certain that younger persons would be far more impressed browsing the PA2LO qsl collection online, interacting with video and audio files.
We are not talking about LOTW here – we are talking about a new qsl display system.
As usual, the old farts have pre judged this new system without first having seen it
No need to call me an old fart at 39 years of age!!
Yes, I did misrepresent – thanks for correcting me.
Others may want to reply to you. I’m probably in the don’t care category if truth be told.
Still, you might like to answer my question about the small “o” to lighten your mood :)
The original name given by ARRL was Logbook of The World, from which the LoTW abbreviation was derived. Wikipedia is also indicating the original name as above. Unfortunately, both the ARRL website and Wikipedia’s presentation of LoTW are inconsistent, as they change the reference throughout as Logbook of the World. In any case, once LoTW got implemented and known as such, it stuck.
“Old fartedness” is a state of mind and is not necessarily related to physical age.
Have no idea re the small “o”
Would say to DL7JAN
Dxpeditions and Dxers in general would still send qsl cards as we know them now – the only difference is that these qsls would arrive in your mail box electronically. These qsls could be even more colorful, have more pages, have embedded video, have embedded audio, could come with display and multi-media options that you the receiver select online. These enhancements are not possible with a paper qsl.
Instead of putting the paper card in your alphabet sorted box, your high resolution electronic qsl with all the added features listed above, will go into your Clublog QSL gallery where it can be displayed and shared online, presumably sorted in various ways and will also last forever (and not fade over time)
What is not to like
All ok, but want to have a card in my HANDS and not on a server or something like that! And it’ s not necessary to share it with others. I am doing DXing just for myself… some things should be forever!!!
I have no problem with you wanting a paper qsl card and my guess is that they will still be provided for many years yet.
My main argument in this area is that I do not want my dxpedition donations or radio club society fees paying for your soon to be out dated desires for a paper qsl.
By all means, if you are happy to pay for the paper qsl and its delivery to you then I have no problem with this whatsoever.
Currently however paper bureau qsls are paid for by dxpeditioners or money raised from donors or direct qslers.
VK4MA nails most aspects of this. Yes we will provide paper QSLs as long as they are wanted. But dont expect us to accept *your choice*, not to use LOTW. That is just as “rude” as not sending out a paper card, or not being member of the bureau.
Some DX clubs take this to another level. They won’t support you or provide any donation to your upcoming DXpedition just because you didn’t provide free bureau cards to your previous two DXpeditions. They don’t care if you uploaded to lotw within 1 week and offered direct paper QSL. Some people think the QSL card is more important than the QSO.
It is interesting how small communities such as ham radio reflect the bigger problems in the world.
For some reason it is perfectly acceptable for a club to dictate dxpedition management decisions in return for what is usually a smallish donation (relative to total dxpedition budget).
The Clubs can do this because they know there are no negative ramifications. If the donation is accepted, the Club gets to dictate its qsl policy for a smallish outlay – if the donation is declined then the club gets to keeps its money and it members still work the dxpedition as well.
If a dxpeditioner were to refuse the donation, get a list of club members and then refuse to work them, this would be considered disgusting behavior. Yet for some reason, the equally disgusting behavior of dictating dxpedition management practices in return for a donation is considered perfectly acceptable (I would call it extortion)
Some may argue that the dxpeditioner is begging for the money so he must accept terms. But I could equally argue that a dxer is begging for a dxpedition qso……..
For some reason, that mystifies me in the world every day, there is this strange double standard where one type of mercenary behavior is accepted, yet the equally mercenary response to that behavior is not.
On another thread here on Dxworld I discussed how it was considered OK for a fellow dxer to refuse me a LOTW confirmation, but most agreed it was not OK for me to refuse him a paper qsl in return. This is a further example of this strange (to me) inconsistency at work
I am with those who remember the thrill of receiving paper QSL cards. Sure progress goes ahead and it is great. But so is enjoying the radio the way it was years ago. That includes finding DX, figuring out the callsign without using cluster, making QSO, designing your own card, sending it out and receiving a QSL signed by the operator (JY1A, FO5GJ, VK9NS, the list goes on). In other words, as much as we enjoy Netflix and Teslas, most would still read paper books and would be happy to drive an old classic car from time to time.
Responding to bureau cards as a courtesy is a lot more gentlemanly than pushing classic cars off the road “in the name of progress” or calling people driving them old farts. It is a hobby after all. Be happy and enjoy it.
Hello Stan (ei6dx)
If only the issues being discussed here were analogous to driving a vintage car.
Firstly, it would be a rare thing to find even a vintage car owner that would argue that his vintage car is better than a modern equivalent. It would also be rare to find a vintage car owner who uses his vehicle as his day to day car. But that is exactly what is happening in this qsl debate. The “old farts” are not just dabbling in a bit of harmless nostalgia with their paper bureau qsls, they are actually advocating that this old system is better than the new and more efficient computer based equivalents. They are also insisting that all modern car drivers (electronic QSLers) pay for their nolstagic jaunts in their Model T by keeping alive vintage car infrastructure which is simply outdated, time consuming and expensive.
The horse and cart was also once a popular means of transport and no doubt there are still some folk that get around in this type of conveyance. I have no problem with this as long as the horse and cart owner acknowledges that his transport is a thing of the past and is not blocking traffic on the freeway. In this qsl debate however, the old farts are not only blocking the fast lane of the freeway with their horse but they are actually insisting that car drivers pay for horse related infrastructure.
Do I need to point out that the guys who need to be protected and defended here are the guys who actually have the energy to get off their behinds and go out into the world to activate rare spots. There simply is no dxing without rare dx to chase. But instead of supporting these guys, and making life easier for them you are supporting a system whereby radio clubs tell the dxer how to run his dxpedition and if they do not get their way they simply withhold their money. This is the equivalent of your horse and cart driver saying – “up yours community – I am not going to pay my taxes because the community refuses to build horse hay refueling stations on every second corner”
The other guy who needs support is the one who is actually innovating and building new systems to make our life more efficient. Instead you choose to defend the guy driving the vintage car who is contributing very little to the progress of the automobile and in fact is still championing his vintage car as the best means of transport going forward.
I also note that you have selectively cherry picked my “old fart” comment yet you presumably have no problem with cx8tc saying that people who favour electronic qsling are the equivalent of remote station cheaters.
Yes it is only a hobby but that does not stop persons on your side of debate referring to non bureau qslers as “money grabbers” and “thieves”. We are also told that we are lacking in ham spirit if we do not bureau qsl. Your little nolstagic trouple of paper qslers are happy to forget the “spirit of ham radio” or the fact that it is “simply a hobby” when they lobby their local Dx Club to withold donations simply because they are “dummy spitting” the fact that they are not getting their free bureau qsl.
Stan – I can walk and chew gum at the same time – I am quite capable of enjoying the hobby that I love whilst still taking the time out to support dxpeditioners and innovators in the hobby (the two activities are not mutually exclusive)
That’s a lot of text Paul. Good to see so much passion there. Enjoy your hobby OM!
Might as well jump into this…
Been a member of LOTW since day one but as of today it has 84,482 users. I am sure this contains a lot of award trackers but it is a very small percentage of the WW ham population. Some of the group donation T/C’s were meant to drive its uses not already accepted ways of QSLing.
And indeed, not everyone uses a computer. Should the DXpedition have to provide computers and train those hams who want a QSL but don’t have one? If you think that the younger generations are looking at anything but on a device other than their mobile phone…think again! So who again is thought to be an ‘old fart’?
I am not thrilled about the Bureau although I do subscribe and use it. Just too slow. But when you think about it is a fair trade. Operator must belong, have cards to send, and pay for in country mailing. So it does require involvement. The DXpedition must bulk print some level of QSL cards (and in some cases the printer sponsors them) and bulk ship then to a bureau or direct to various country bureaus. Given the cost of DXpeditions these days my guess is that this a very small portion of expenses.
Honestly have you every heard about a DXpedition complain about being committed to sending Bureau Cards?
(Waiting to someone suggest the excess donations be distributed back to donors…NOT)
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