Coordinating the Magazine and Web Contest Results

Thesis Tower and Antenna There is some good commentary going on about the ARRL posting of the ARRL International DX Phone contest results on the contest reflector.

You will recall the original hullabaloo when either CQ or the ARRL (or both) said they were going to limit contest results printed in the magazines due to costs and move more content over to the web. I agreed with that proposition then and still do now. Any magazine article should be of the highlights of the contest that any ham would enjoy (and perhaps enter the contest the next time). Those of us diehard contesters want more and you can provide endless content on the web at the cost of network and disk space.

There seems, however, to be an issue with execution. What is becoming apparent is that the publishing of the results takes place in different locations at different times. For example, the top ten boxes come out differently than the contest write-up compared with the magazine publishing version.

If you are fanatic about contesting, this will drive you crazy. If you are rules based (and many hams are), this will drive you crazy.

Process Suggestion

Somehow, I think the contest managers pursuing the holy grail of speed to results answer lost their way and just published whatever they have at that time. Or, they have scheduled it in a way where they know the schedule and we don’t.

So my process suggestion is this one: release all the results on the web at the same time, regardless of the magazine publishing schedule. One day there are no results for the contest, the next day they are all there. Even if it delays the entire publishing one week, it would be worth the reduction in craziness we all feel when getting half a detailed loaf when all we want is the full meal.

Use the power of “future date” publishing and get it all showing up at once.

And, my hats off to all the volunteers providing content, producing it, and getting it published. As one who publishes a blog, I know it is no easy task. This is a process issue, not a content issue.

Scot, K9JY

PS You might want to add in ALL the current licenses from the FCC into the log checking programs too before doing the log checking. It really helps on the accuracy numbers of the contesters working people who just got their license…