Larry, W2LJ, recently wrote about a topic that all of us can identify with, the LID in a DX station pileup who ignores protocol and has no sense of manners. They ignore DX requests for specific stations to respond and just blast the frequency, often with high power, until they get their contact. The problem has existed for decades and is nothing new. It’s one reason why I get turned off by DXing (despite dreaming of going on a high profile DXpedition someday), and it’s especially frustrating for a QRPer where timing and skill are much more important due to the power disadvantage. Conversely, RF power often makes up for a lack of skill or manners, and the DX pileup LID makes a nuisance of himself to the point where the DX station can’t ignore him, and rewards him with a QSO.
The problem has been going on too long. The reason it continues to exist is much like why we have email spam after nearly 20 years of the “mainstream” Internet. There’s no cost associated it, and the bad behavior is rewarded. The DX Code of Conduct is a great model for people to follow, but unfortunately it’s only the honest and polite people who follow it. There must be consequences for bad behavior.
First off, DX stations need to stop rewarding these LIDs with contacts. They need to call them out and let them know they’re not getting a contact during the DXpedition. Perhaps we could create a specific Q signal that says “you’re blacklisted” to keep it short and sweet and avoid long on the air explanations. Or they can work the station and not QSL the contact and let the station know through some means they got a non-QSL for their bad behavior.
Second, DX organizations and organizations like ARRL, CQ, and perhaps RSGB need to maintain a “three strikes” policy. If they receive evidence, such as recordings, of bad on the air behavior three times within a given period, the offender has awards stripped and they’re identified on a blacklist that can be accessed by high profile DXpeditions. The minutia of appeals and reinstatement and the level of public notification can be debated, but I think the basic idea is sound and something that needs to be done.
This all may sound harsh, but in order to change bad behavior there needs to be consequences. All too often in amateur radio we don’t call out bad behavior and it affects the enjoyment of the hobby for the rest of us. It’s time for the organizations who have the power to enforce consequences, to take action, rather than continue to provide rewards.