Foundation Progression- RSGB and Ofcom Updates

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Those following the debate regarding amateur radio progression may be interested in the following updates from the RSGB and Ofcom:

As a reminder, Ofcom is planning a public consultation next year on a number of issues around amateur radio licensing. One of these covers ideas around progression from Foundation to Full, with a suggestion from Ofcom that Foundation licences have an expiry period, to encourage holders to move to Intermediate and Full.

Ahead of the consultation, the RSGB has been running a Litmus Test (via a discussion forum) to get opinions from amateurs, and 500 amateurs have been debating the topic with passion. From the RSGB’s Litmus Test – Progressive Licence summary, the headlines are:

  • Many M3 and M6 don’t want to be forced to progress, or won’t be able to
  • Forced progression would cause a lot of problems and negative feelings, especially if the motives are unclear
  • Rather than time-limiting licences, other suggestions to aid progression have been made, including power and band restrictions, as well as less attractive callsigns (e.g: M6ABCD)

In response to concerns raised to RSGB, Ofcom has made a statement on the matter, which can be found on the RSGB’s site (Ofcom Progression Statement). Here is an extract:

“We do recognise that progression may not be appropriate for everyone. What we do want to do is try to encourage progression for as many people as possible. It is not Ofcom’s intention to discourage people from the hobby but we want to set up a framework that encourages those interested in pursuing the technical hobby to stretch their knowledge and operating skill.”

“We won’t be designing a regime that leaves or pushes people out”.

The formal consultation is likely to take place in Spring/Summer 2014, with any agreed changes to the licence coming into effect in mid-2015.

Worth a read: Take a look at the summary of discussion between RSGB and Ofcom this month, as a number of other topics have been discussed: Ofcom RSGB Forum December 2013 – Note that 47% of licences have yet to be revalidated!

One Comment

  1. Clive Jenkins 4 November 2018 Reply

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