A number of other topics were included in the Ofcom presentation that have arisen from correspondence that Ofcom has had from individual amateurs and issues that the RSGB has raised from time to time. We intend to run further Litmus Tests on a number of subjects that come from Ofcom’s presentation, such as the use of /AM for telemetry, command and control, etc for unmanned airborne platforms (balloons, small rockets, etc), Remote Station operation, licence progression, etc. These will follow later in the autumn.
As we are already getting mail raising other topics that people would like Ofcom to consider in their consultation we have created a third Litmus Test to see what the key additional issues are. In putting forward your suggestions for changes to the licence, it would be helpful to explain the benefits that your suggestion might bring to amateur radio.
The Litmus test consultation has now finished, with the following outcome:
The RSGB has invited proposals for additional topics for inclusion in Ofcom’s proposed Licence Review Consultation. The suggestions that Ofcom may wish to consider including in their review are:
a) Unattended operation of data communication stations. Some provision for Intermediate Licence holders, as well as re-instatement of the privilege to Full Licence holders, might support the concept of Licence Progression;
b) Re-instatement of a small licence charge to encourage licence re-validation and, importantly, facilitate more enforcement both of both licence infringements and interference complaints made by radio amateurs (PLA, Plasma TVs, etc);
c) Higher power licence that would provide additional incentive for progression;
d) Availability of a searchable database for all to allow licence validity checks (not including any personal information);
e) The provision of autopatch or temporary talk-through for repeaters;
Extending the provision to Foundation and Intermediate Licence holders to operate in CEPT countries was also raised by several people, but the RSGB’s understanding is that the compatibility with our exams and those of other CEPT countries would make this practically difficult, as well as undesirable in terms of maintain and improving our own standards and encouraging progression.