At its January 24, 2017 meeting, the Board of Directors approved this policy. This Policy was amended to its present form and approved as amended at the during the February 7, 2017 Club Members Meeting .
The OH-KY-IN/K8SCH Acceptable Repeater Use Policy
The OH-KY-IN Amateur Radio Society, the owner of the K8SCH repeaters, accepts and follows the values contained in The Radio Amateur’s Code, originally written by Paul M. Segal, W9EEA, in 2016, as modified as it appears on the ARRL website:
“The Radio Amateur is
“CONSIDERATE…He/[She] never knowingly operates is such a way as to lessen the pleasure of others.
“LOYAL…He/[She] offers loyalty, encouragement and support to other amateurs, local clubs, the IARU Radio Society in his/[her] country, through which Amateur Radio in his/[her] country is represented nationally and internationally.
“PROGRESSIVE…He/[She] keeps his/[her] station up to date. It is well-built and efficient. His/[Her]operating practice is above reproach.
“FRIENDLY…He/[She] operates slowly and patiently when requested; offers friendly advice and counsel to beginners; kind assistance, cooperation and consideration for the interests of others. These are the marks of the amateur spirit.
“BALANCED…Radio is a hobby, never interfering with duties owed to family, job, school or community.
“PATRIOTIC…His/[Her] station and skills are always ready for service to country and community.”
The Society expects that all users of its repeaters will follow the tenets of this Code.
All Amateur Radio Operators are governed by the Regulations/Rules set forth in the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 97, that were enacted by the Federal Communications Commission to apply to Amateur Radio Operators. Included in these Regulations are Sections that impose duties on Amateur Radio repeater owners and operators. It is the responsibility of every Amateur Licensee to know and understand the Regulations, found in Part 97 of the Federal Code of Regulations.
FCC Regulation 97.101(a) provides: “In all respects not specifically covered by FCC Rules each amateur station must be operated in accordance with good engineering and good amateur practice. Section 97.103(a) provides “The station licensee is responsible for the proper operation in accordance with the FCC Rules.” The ARRL booklet FCC Rules and Regulation for the Amateur Radio, 2014 edition, explains this Rule :”These simple sentences underscore the responsibility of each operator to use good judgement and common sense when pursuing their interests. It means each licensee must continue to learn how stations interact properly, cooperate with fellow amateurs and treat each operator on the air with respect.” In addition, the ARRL book provides, at page 14, [A] repeater owner or trustee may set more stringent standards for the use of their repeater[s] …than required by the FCC.”
Repeater users should always remember that other members of the general public can monitor repeaters for any reason. If those people would be offended by the users language or conduct on a repeater, that language or conduct is objectionable.
The OH-KY-IN Amateur Radio Society expects the users of its repeaters to operate as if the repeaters are G rated. Anything, topic, language, etc., that would be offensive to a G audience is not welcome on any K8SCH repeater and will lead to enforcement of the policies contained in this document.
The FCC Rules also requires that each repeater owner has the responsibility to require that each repeater it owns is properly used. This is accomplished by the actions of the OH-KY-IN’s Trustee (acting as a control operator) and control operators. FCC Rule 97.105 provides: “The control operator must insure the immediate operation of the station, regardless of the type of control.”
The Regulations allow the owner/operator of an amateur radio repeater to ban certain amateur radio users from use of their repeaters when those amateur radio users conduct violates what the owner/operator finds objectionable. Ruled Section 97.205(e) states, in part: “Limiting the use of a repeater to only certain users is permissible.” There is no FCC Regulation that requires a repeater owner/operator to allow users that it does not want to use a repeater. Thus, if the owner/operator of an amateur radio repeater determines that a user of that repeater uses objectionable conduct, the owner/operator has every right to revoke the privilege of such user to use the repeater. In practice, an offending user can be banned from using a whole repeater system.
Acceptable Use Policy
The OH-KY-IN Amateur Radio Society, acting through its designated Trustee and/or its Board of Directors, will have the final say on any repeater systems operation and/or user access, as allowed by the FCC. This Policy may be reviewed periodically and revised. Users are responsible for reading, understanding, and adhering to this Policy. Conduct on the repeaters will be governed by this Acceptable Use Policy. Questions may be sent to the Society’s President at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amateur Radio Operators are required to be “self-policing”. Each user is expected to do this in two ways – by ensuring that their own conduct of operations is above reproach, and also exhorting and challenging other operators to use their best practice on the air.
- All K8SCH repeaters are “G” rated at all times. Language that is not suitable for all listeners is not acceptable on the K8SCH repeaters.
- Do not violate any provision of FCC Part 97. Period. If it becomes apparent that a user is willfully ignorant of, and/or disregarding any FCC regulation(s), that user may be asked by the Trustee or a control operator to immediately cease transmissions and to review FCC requirements before returning on-air with the K8SCH repeaters. Alternately, the repeater in use at the time of violation may be shut down with or without warning.
- Each user must identify him/herself as required in the FCC Regulations. See FCC Rule 97.119(a).
- Emergency use, Service Nets, and Special Events sanctioned or authorized by OHKYIN hold absolute priority over routine use of Systems resources. Do not use the word “break” to enter an ongoing QSO unless you need help with an emergency situation. Repeater users must immediately allow emergencies to be handled properly and to a conclusion and shall not interfere with any emergency communication. Use of the word Break, Breaker or similar words are to be used ONLY in emergency situations.
- DO NOT REBROADCAST OR OTHERWISE ANNOUNCE UNAUTHORIZED LAW ENFORCEMENT OR PUBLIC SAFETY ACTIVITY!! Placing these personnel or their work at risk will not be tolerated. This offense is likely to cause immediate banning of the offender from the K8SCH repeaters. There shall be no rebroadcasting of any radio, television, or other medium at any time without the written consent of the Board of Directors obtained prior to such use of any K8SCH repeater.
- IGNORE JAMMERS and others who try to disrupt a repeater’s normal operation. Without a reaction in an ongoing QSO, such interference tends to go away on its own. Comment about, speaking to, or otherwise recognize a jammer or other interferers with an ongoing QSO only serves to encourage the offending activity. The repeater may be shut down without warning if Jammers and other offenders are in any way recognized, commented about, etc. In such a case there will be no comment about why a repeater was shut down when the repeater is turned back on.
- Do not monopolize the use of any K8SCH repeater. Allow a sufficient time between transmissions so that any amateur radio operator may interrupt an ongoing QSO, such as request the opportunity to contact another amateur radio operator to engage in a QSO on another frequency. By the same token, an amateur radio operator may not interrupt an ongoing QSO to change the topic, or for some other improper purpose. In such a case, that user should wait until the ongoing QSO is over or use a different frequency. Promptly acknowledge any station seeking to be recognized. Again, always yield to a user with an emergency need. Do not monopolize use of any repeater. Long winded QSO’s belong on simplex or other ham bands.
- There shall be no use of obscene, indecent or profane language, indecent profane or suggestive (sexual or otherwise) language. There shall be no critique or criticism of any person’s body, mind or soul. Use of Citizen Band language is prohibited. Use of slang is discouraged.
- 9. Refrain from discussing religion or politics. Criticizing or ridiculing (as opposed to discussing, clarifying, or edifying) anyone’s religious and/or political beliefs will not be tolera Discussion of religion, religious beliefs and politics are all strongly discouraged.
- Harassing or baiting/ridiculing of any ham operator is unacceptable.
- Do not belittle, berate, defame or speak ill of others. This includes individuals, groups, nations, etc. Using words such as idiot, stupid, hate monger, etc. in reference to any person, entity or group will not be tolerated. Intimidation is prohibited, whether direct or implied.
- You may collect information which may help locate a jammer. Report that information to the Club’s Trustee.
- Repeater users may not conduct any business on any repeater. This is a stricter rule than the FCC’s Rule.
- Repeater users shall not engage in, suggest, advise or recommend and criminal action or activity.
Repeater users may advertise their personally-owned ham radio equipment for sale, but shall not state any price or complete any transaction while using a repeater. All other business transactions of any kind are prohibited regardless of whether or not permitted by FCC Regulations.
The OHKYIN Amateur Radio Society, the repeater owner, and assigned Control Operators prefer NOT to intervene in any given conversation held on the System’s repeaters. Users are expected to follow the Acceptable Use Policy. When-users exceed the boundaries described above, or exhibit behaviors deemed to be out of line with intent expressed in them, then access to K8SCH repeater resources is subject to evaluation, restriction, and enforcement
Except as set forth above, enforcement usually proceeds as follows [deviation for the process set forth here is authorized in especially objectionable situations]:
- First warning: Except as set forth above, a verbal reminder, email, phone call, or private message will be given by control operator, the Trustee or other authorized person. Multiple violations may be subject to a Written Warning.
- Written Warning – The offending amateur radio operator is given a formal written warning and offender is placed under routine observation by Control Operators. Ordinarily this will follow a verbal warning, but this is authorized in more serious offenses as the initial enforcement action.
- Continued violation after Written Warning: The offending radio amateur will be formally banned from the repeater or repeater system in writing. Attempts to use the repeater for other than bona fide emergency use only after being banned will lead to a complaint filed with the FCC, and relevant civil law options may be exercised. The OH-KY-IN Amateur Radio Society retains the right to bypass all warnings to issue an immediate ban for gross violations of the Acceptable Use Policy.
- In addition to or in place of warnings, a repeater may be turned off with or without warning for continued violations of the Acceptable Use Policy.
- Recordings may be used to begin an FCC enforcement action, when requested by the FCC, and to respond to legal requests in any form. Repeater input frequencies may be recorded as an aid to enforcement of this policy and to support number 6 below.
- The Club’s Trustee or Board of Directors may call upon club members with special expertise, including radio direction finding and recording, and/or ARRL Official Observers to gather evidence to support complaints to be sent to the FCC seeking enforcement of violations of this policy, repeated violations of FCC Rules, or to support responding to FCC or Law Enforcement requests.