ELMER TIP OF THE WEEK: Station Identification Requirements.
FCC Regulations require us to give our call sign every ten minutes during a communication and at the end of a communication. Remembering to identify can be a challenge for those coming to amateur radio from unlicensed personal radio services. Of course nervous mistakes happen when one is new but in the absence of gentle reminders it is easy for such mistakes to become habit. A common error is giving one’s call sign only when making a call or checking into a net, then forgetting to identify every ten minutes during and at the end of a communication. On nets such as the Wednesday PARC Net where we check in and later get a turn to make comments, it is important to give our call sign at the end of our comments regardless of timing or whether we expect to transmit again during the net. We may not know whether we will be transmitting again or how long it will be before our next transmission. Identifying at the end of our turn ensures we stay within the rules. For normal communications outside nets, we should identify every ten minutes and at the end of the contact or conversation.
Why it matters: Identifying may not seem important when everyone on the repeater knows each other, but remember we are granted extensive privileges to use a finite and valuable resource known as the electromagnetic spectrum. In return we are expected to follow certain regulations. It behooves us all to do so.
Remember it is often kinder to elmer than to overlook.