Amateur radio is an activity governed by rules and regulations more than almost any other non-commercial activity. Firstly, amateurs are bound by the rules for amateur radio operation established by their governments regarding frequency, power and other limits of their operation. Those who pursue the art of DXing are bound by the rules of the various DX programs in which they participate. Contesters are bound by the rules of the contests in which they operate.
Where ever there are rules, there are inevitably rule breakers, intentional or not. Some are blatant, others, not so much. For every rule there is an interpretation of what the rule actually means. In the case of award programs and contests in particular, there is even room to argue that rules are wrong.
Opinions on these matters, like certain body parts, are universally widespread among the populace. This has lead to a sub-genre of activity in the amateur radio world defending or attacking various rules and interpretations. To date, this activity has been haphazard and un-organized. Amateurs, however, love clubs and organizations. Except for those who hate clubs and organizations - another argument for another day. But for those who feel a need for organization and recognition, we are proud to announce the founding of the Armchair Radio Lawyers League (A-R-Double-L).
The A-R-Double-L is predicated on the assumption that everyone has watched enough episodes of Law and Order to be a self-educated lawyer and can apply that astute thinking to interpreting the rules of the DXCC program or the 10-minute rule for CQWW and can argue their opinion persuasively without resorting to childhood epithets involving bodily parts. Hence, it is not expected to attract a large crowd of 75m ragchewers.
A new list-serv dedicated to A-R-Double-L arguments will be created. As needed, special list-servs may be created for individual topics such as “Should Scarborough Reef be considered ‘land’?” and “What actually constitutes ‘assistance’ during a contest?”. The hope is that these will remove some of the dreck from CQ-Contest*.
The Armchair Radio Lawyer League will be administered by the law firm of Howe, Dewey, Cheatham and Wynn.
* The Armchair Radio Lawyer League has no affiliation with the CQ-Contest website, the CQ-Contest list-serv or Major League Baseball.