- February 21, 2019 at 1:07 pm #109710
A recent, somewhat slanted, post was made over at the ALPB Forum with that title. I was not planning on responding, but then another post seemingly confirming it went up, from a formerly reputable poster, and I feel that I have to respond to several inaccuracies. So let’s set the record straight.
The ALPB was formed from an idea made by then Part 15 broadcaster, Lefty Gomez, and it was intended to be a democratic organization of broadcasters and those interested in same. A Chairman was elected, and served at the pleasure of the membership. During its initial years, many contributions were made by numerous members, and that appears to have been forgotten in those posts. The ALPB is most certainly not, and never has been, the Chairman’s personal group. Particularly since, despite the posted protestations and excuses, the Chairman quit his position abruptly and without notice, leaving the remainder of the membership to pick up the pieces.
Which was done, rather successfully, with the support of everyone.
When the former Chairman decided to come back, there was a new Chairman in place, along with a new Moderator group. The only posts that the Moderator group (which did NOT include me, despite insinuations to the contrary) found problematic at that time were those of the former Chairman, who had decided that his, and only his, opinion mattered. In his posting rants, he proceeded to attack both Moderators and members whose posts he disagreed with. If, in fact, he really felt he was right, and he was truly being altruistic in his intent, there were far better ways to go about achieving his goals other than publicly attacking the Moderators.
I find it distasteful that in this particular ‘ALPB history’, it was made to appear that Jim Henry sanctioned his position, when, in fact, Jim had not participated in the group or Forum for months, and apparently was seriously ill. I find it difficult to believe that Jim, if he had been of sound mind and body, would approve of someone pulling a power play and attempting to override the Forum moderators. No matter who or what you might have been once. As far as I am aware, Jim never consulted with the Moderators on this subject.
It is true that the former (and now self appointed, current) Chairman was banned from Part15.org. I feel I can acknowledge that, since it is now public knowledge. He was banned for attempting to bring his rants over to Part15.org. He published a post that claimed that the ALPB Moderator group had taken over the Forum (!? – what do you think they are there for) and exhorted members to rebel. That post was removed from Part15.org by me, and he was warned not to do it again. He then published almost exactly the same post in his Part15.org blog (part of the same site). That was removed and he was temporarily banned (at least that was the plan – I was having difficulty believing that he would act in this manner). Several rather nasty private e-mails then followed and there was really no other alternative but to ban him permanently. An olive branch was extended, to the effect that if his behavior changed he could come back, but he has never availed himself of that offer. So much for being “summarily” banned. And by the way, both Moderators and the Forum owner were kept in the loop during the entire process.
Those are the facts. Bob can feel justified in acting the way that he did if he wants, and he obviously does (to the point of maybe even believing his own story). We are where we are now, and hopefully the ALPB can move forward into whatever it morphs into.February 21, 2019 at 4:40 pm #109716MarkModerator
Total posts : 583
A good insight into the inner workings of the ALPB. Of course I never knew any of the behind the scenes things as it was just another forum to me to connect with others in this hobby, basically the same people in this forum. I also never knew this about the current admin/chairman so maybe Carl was right in saying he is a dictator and was the reason he left….I don’t know one way or the other as like I said other than just casual participation I was never involved that much into the running of it but it was good of Artisan to give us this info. as to what was wrong.February 21, 2019 at 4:56 pm #109717MarkModerator
Total posts : 583
OK I just read the post on the ALPB of which this is about and I got his side of the story.
Should have read it first but anyway, I now have to different versions from two people who have two different perspectives on what happened. Who’s right or wrong who knows.
It’s like small claims court where 2 people see an event from two different angles in two different ways, and a judge has to find the truth. Is one person not telling the truth…not necessarily, two people just see things two different ways.
So I have two explanations as to what happened with the ALPB and all that matters now is what’s ahead. I think the forum should continue as Micro Broadcasters or if not an idea could be to merge that one and this one. Don’t panic, just an idea!
Yes I agree that the anything goes posts could have gotten out of hand and that had something to do with this.February 24, 2019 at 9:18 am #109771Carl BlareParticipant
Total posts : 1540
Sides of the Story
The Newly Revised History of the ALPB as posted a few days ago by the self-declared Admin leaves out the original description of the organization still posted on the ALPB Website’s About page.
We reprint below what the About page says as of this morning, 2/24/19.
Since the Page is due for re-write we can watch for the change to take place.
About the ALPB – as of 2/24/19
ALPB Founding Member Joe Martinez, also known as Lefty Gomez, hosted a successful program on a commercial AM station in California.
Joe has a passion for broadcasting and decided to start his own legal-license free-low power AM radio station.
Seeing the potential of this low power radio outlet, Joe decided that a network of low power broadcasters could aid each other with technical expertise and programming content. The purpose of this is to provide professional sounding broadcasts that will grow public support for low power broadcasters.
The ALPB is a global organization. Anyone with a desire to improve radio broadcasting is welcome to join. Simply read over our Charter Document. If it sounds agreeable, download and install TeamSpeak Client. Contact The ALPB Chairman for TeamSpeak server address and password by clicking on the CONTACT link for information. Links to the Charter Document and TeamSpeak Download are on the home page.February 24, 2019 at 9:30 am #109773
I believe that all those actually doing Part 15 broadcasting (or whatever you call it in your particular country – here in Canada BETS or RSS210) have those goals in mind.
It’s important to remember that.March 3, 2019 at 7:01 am #109937timinboveyParticipant
Total posts : 684
OK, here’s the deal. I’ve been meaning to type this up but haven’t found the time.
The ALPB is a lovely social organization. By by it’s very definition, it is NOT an “activist”. Which means it’s purpose is to offer information, and provide a forum and on-line meeting presence. This is all fine and good for what it is.
Having been involved with Part 15 broadcasting for about 5 years now, and commercial broadcasting as show host (DJ), program director, chief engineer, operations manager, and various other positions over for 45 years, I have a pretty good grasp on the concepts involved.
What Part 15 broadcasting needs, as I see it, is an actual organization that IS an “activist”, and that is a real, legal, 5013c non profit organization.
I’ve been involved in a long list of such groups over the years. You don’t need to be big to be legal and effective. Probably the smallest group I’ve been involved with would be various radio control model airplane clubs over the years, some with as few as 30 members. All were legal 5013C tax exempt, non-profit organizations. Or the figure skating club. About 300 kids involved. Another 5013C. All the way up to the Minnesota Street Rod Association (about 10,000 members) to the ARRL and the EAA. The scope of a legal group such as this can go from very few to very many members.
You want to protect Part 15? You need countable, documented members. You want to have any influence on Part 15 rules? You need countable, documented numbers. A list of user names in a member forum doesn’t cut it. You also need experts, both legal and technical who can back up your goals.
In some of these various clubs I’ve been involved in the scope of things that would only be handled by a legal group involve things like liability insurance and obtaining property for a model club flying field, including publication and enforcement of club rules satisfactory to the Academy of Model Aeronautics and local officials as well as local authorities. Coordinating of radio frequencies. Common rules with other clubs in the state for state, regional and national competitions. In the figure skating club, we handled tens of thousands of dollars every year, from membership fees that paid for ice time, coaches, instructors, travel for teams, liability insurance, to music licensing for shows, etc. The MSRA not only puts on the number one car show in the nation, but is active in the legislature and has an effect on state laws relating to the old car hobby. All these things happen because the group is a real, legal organization. The MSRA started with a half dozen guys hanging around a cafe 40 years ago.
Part 15 needs a real organization that is a 5013C corporation. They need a list of real members who paid something to belong, and real officers, minimum president, vP, secretary and treasurer. And a couple board members. Normal monthly meetings for this board of directors can be done via a platform such as TEamspeak, etc. Members at large can also join the meetings by request. The board handles things. The only regular membership meeting would be once a year. A way for members to vote on various activities would be determined. Either via an internet communication, Facebook, etc.. etc.. or old school through a mailed newsletter. Board meetings could be monthly or quarterly. Minutes would be kept and published among the members including a treasurers report, etc. Meetings would follow Roberts Rules of Order. I’m sure most of you have been involved in a group of this nature.
The “activist” part of the organization would be decided by the original board and approved by the members. Being a 5013C organization lets you accept donations. e.g. a consulting engineer, an FCC attorney, a printing company, etc. In various groups we could always find lawyers who would help with pro-bono work, or donated work for which they could claim a tax deduction since we were a non-profit, etc. Same for engineers, or anything else the group might need, right down to sending a lobbying committee to the FCC in Washington if necessary at some point. These are things that can be done. The MRSA is very active in Minnesota lawmaking. The ARRL is very active in FCC rule making. The EAA has done amazing things for general aviation. Our model airplane club was able to get the necessary local zoning and related things handled to create a flying field blessed by the county and city. Such a group could be involved in filing documents with the FCC. Giving Part 15 broadcasters a professional presence in the eyes of the law and the industry.
Paid membership gets you the right to vote and shape how the group operates and which activities it takes up. The possibilities are endless, and my typing skills limit my speculating here.
Naturally all this takes money to get started, and once started it should be self maintaining on membership dues, fund raisers, and sales of group merchandise. I have a ton of experience in doing this sort of thing. Initial costs, and a list of officers can get things started. I’m not saying that I personally want to do it, or that I should do it, but the mission of Part 15 broadcasting needs something like this. This is an area completely missing from the cause. ALPB, hobby broadcaster, Part15.org and all the rest are all nice social groups, but near as I can tell there is no “activist group” working on behalf of part 15 broadcasters.
One thing a formal, legal group would likely not have is a forum online. There are plenty of those, and the groups business doesn’t need to be argued in public.
I read somewhere that the ALPB was owned by the members. Who paid the bills? Where’s the roster of members? To be a real organization with any clout at all, there needs to be a legit list of members with real names, addresses, etc. This is not something that would be published to the public of course. But every group I’ve belonged to has always had a membership roster available to the members — with rules for it’s use of course.
But this social club atmosphere is fun, but doesn’t get anything done. And for this sort of thing to get rolling officers must be chosen, the legal paperwork must be done and paid for, and the basic structure of the group must be outlined. Members need to be solicited, and once started and enough members have been acquired then voting on the direction of the group can happen. Can this happen? I’m not sure. I’ve never been involved in such a group that was started by a group of people online. But I’m sure it could be done.
TIBMarch 3, 2019 at 7:48 am #109945
By the way, you had mentioned the ARRLs strength in influencing change .. If you have the patience to read their entire article concerning the matter http://www.arrl.org/part-15-radio-frequency-devices, you’d find their view is that attempting to change the part 15 rules could backfire and result in lines in the sand leaving us in new situations we wished we didn’t have – Their view concludes it’s better to deal with it as it is and leave it alone.March 3, 2019 at 7:58 am #109946
Dammit, it deleted my post before last when I went back to add a paragraph break!.. Copy and paste to the rescue:
“..You want to protect Part 15? You need countable, documented members. You want to have any influence on Part 15 rules? You need countable, documented numbers. A list of user names in a member forum doesn’t cut it. You also need experts, both legal and technical who can back up your goals…
The “activist” part of the organization would be.. a 5013C organization lets you accept donations. e.g. a consulting engineer, an FCC attorney, a printing company, etc.. ..Same for engineers, or anything else the group might need, right down to sending a lobbying committee to the FCC in Washington if necessary at some point. These are things that can be done. The MRSA is very active in Minnesota lawmaking. The ARRL is very active in FCC rule making. The EAA has done amazing things for general aviation….. Giving Part 15 broadcasters a professional presence in the eyes of the law and the industry.”
I agree with the sentiment and potential of what your illustrating, however; totally disagree the approach should be.. or even can be towards a modification of part 15. What you seem to be suggesting is establishing some kind of authorized broadcast service under “Part 15” and the whole premise of that is against what the FCC has expressed numerous times as an inconceivable proposal.
About the only reasonable modification that feasibly could be considered is an additional 10 or 15 foot ground lead to correspond to what has been anyway the most common method for the last 45 years of pole mount operations (which could backfire).
I think your focus is great of part 15 operators uniting towards an ultimate cause, but not vain attempts to overhauling the existing part 15 rules but instead towards potentials of establishing of a new and more capable classification entirely.
UMarch 3, 2019 at 8:24 am #109947
I would agree that the ALPB was not an activist group, in the formal sense.
But to be fair, portraying it as a social club, at least until recently (I really don’t know what it is now), is inaccurate and slightly unfair.
While it did not have a paying membership and a board, the ALPB did have an organizational structure, an elected Chairman, formal rules for conducting meetings (including recording them, voting, etc.) and a Charter.
If I were to categorize it, I would place it somewhere between that activist group and a social club, with attributes from each.
Discussions were held periodically as to whether to move to a more formal organization, and they were always tabled, for various reasons. The focus was always on helping others out in the field of micro powered broadcasting, both members and potential members. In that regard, the Forum was essential.
I’ve always felt that it might be possible to harmonize the Canadian and U.S. unlicensed micro power FM rules (i.e., BETS and Part 15). Currently, the U.S. has more flexible and ‘better’ unlicensed micro power AM rules and I’d like to see Canada adopt the AM aspects of Part 15 into BETS (it’s already there in RSS210, but you can’t broadcast using RSS210).
Other than that, I’ve felt that attempting for more is a pipe dream, and as Rich Powers states, could backfire.March 4, 2019 at 2:25 am #109966timinboveyParticipant
Total posts : 684
The goal of such an organization would NOT be focused on making changes to Part 15. That was simply an example. Maybe I didn’t make that clear enough. But if you wanted change, it would take an organized, formal group.
But such a group could come to the aid of those who find themselves in legal trouble while attempting to be legal (no pirates or course). Could lobby for reasonable music licensing if the need arises, along with scores of other things.
Also, I wasn’t commenting on the ARRL’s stance on Part 15 (and most of their issues involve Part 15 as it applies to consumer goods making scads of RF noise on the bands with virtually zero enforcement, not intentional Part 15 radiators) but on their legal structure and effectiveness over many decades.
A group such as this could provide publications, etc that could be useful to many, from potential operators to perplexed landlords. These sorts of things are taken much more seriously from a legal organization than a random group of forum members.
Silly. Most Part 15’ers prefer to hide in their basements and play their songs.
TIBMarch 4, 2019 at 5:25 am #109967
“Silly. Most Part 15’ers prefer to hide in their basements and play their songs.”
That’s almost an insult. Almost any hobby involves private and self involved activity.. I wouldn’t call it silly for a hobbyist not having an activist mindset regarding their personal pastime pleasure. In fact it could in some ways be “silly” to even consider escalating a hobby into an activist group.
Nevertheless, do understand your points and agree with many of them.March 4, 2019 at 5:32 am #109968
As for ARRLs stance.. their comments at the above linked article which always jumped out at me was the following:
“..The needs of Amateur Radio are unique, with hams routinely dealing with signal levels lower than most services consider acceptable. This would be an impossible task for the FCC to manage, and if they did, Amateur Radio might not like the line in the sand the FCC might draw with respect to signal levels.
Instead, Amateur Radio gets the best of all worlds when the FCC relies on Amateur Radio to work with the Part 15 manufacturers and operators to voluntarily resolve harmful interference. …
Together, they are determining what type of FCC information could be sent out on a routine basis to help amateurs better deal directly with Part 15 manufacturers (probably through ARRL) and operators of Part 15 devices..March 11, 2019 at 6:02 pm #110220gamewellParticipant
Total posts : 50
I’ve spent some time reading the postings here; one thing I can agree with is (as another poster noted in this thread) that to have any positive impact you need to have “countable, documented workers”. How true. There is strength in numbers so the more you have, the more seriously you will be taken by the various agencies/groups.
Right now (and this is only my opinion) the ALPB appears to be a most dysfunctional group and as such, attracting new members to your ranks could prove to be a challenge. If the group wants to be taken seriously they will need to “clean up” their act, stop all infighting, strengthen your mission statement and work to attract new members and build on that.March 11, 2019 at 6:42 pm #110221
It should be made perfectly clear that this Forum is not associated with the ALPB (other than the owner also hosting the ALPB website). So there is no “your ranks” here. Part15.org and the ALPB are definitely two different entities, each with their own direction and agenda.
gamewell, you would be better served taking your comments over to the ALPB (although there are a few members here that are also members over at the ALPB, and they might see fit to pass them along).
Part15.org is not activist, and is not seeking as part of its mandate to change anything. Its basic goal is to assist current and potential members in the technical and regulatory aspects of Part 15 (or whatever rules are applicable in a given country) unlicensed broadcasting. Perhaps some members might have an activist bent, but that is not the primary goal of the site itself.
And that was also not the mandate of the ALPB, at least when I was a member. I’m not sure what the mandate is there now, but I still don’t think that it is activist in nature.
Attempting to change the rules, which is what is generally meant by activist in the Part 15 broadcasting context, is not something that is easily done via a Forum, or even a roughly democratic group. It also takes money, something that is in short supply in the Part 15 world (otherwise, potential broadcasters would just go out and buy a licensed station, forgoing all the pain and frustration associated with legal, unlicensed, broadcasting).March 11, 2019 at 8:29 pm #110223ThelegacyParticipant
Total posts : 298
If you are interested in an activist group that wants change and wants to set up a separate service for hobby broadcasting with some serious range of about 2 miles with a good strong signal you should check out the new radio Revolution.
We are a very strong Pro activist group for c-quam AM stereo and ways to improve the dying am broadcast band by allowing hobby broadcasters to broadcast with some serious power I mean power enough to have a strong 2-mile signal to a good portable radio.
We also tell you where you can get c-quam AM stereo receivers so that you don’t have to be stuck listening to AM radio that sounds like you’re talking through your nose.
We invite you to become a ride or die member over there if that’s what you’re into.
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