[amsat-bb] Re: -={Echo Madness}=-

Andrew Glasbrenner glasbrenner at mindspring.com
Wed Mar 30 12:51:31 PDT 2011

On 3/30/2011 2:12 PM, Patrick STODDARD (WD9EWK/VA7EWK) wrote:
> If the last-minute change is done because someone
> is frustrated with what is being heard, or so someone can try to work a rare
> station or a rare grid, that is wrong.

Let me clear something up here. I didn't change the frequency so I could 
work Jim or anyone else, otherwise I'd have called him after the 
frequency change. I worked Jim on the next FO-29 pass. I seriously 
resent the implication that I intervened out of personal greed, 
especially from you Patrick.

I changed the frequency for a number of reasons. There were multiple 
stations QRMing the uplink with whistles, blowing in the mike, and CQs. 
A lot of this was before John's recording started. If you listen to the 
recording, no QSOs were being made, no calls getting through, NOTHING 
was working. Changing the frequency and asking for a little courtesy was 
an attempt to make things at least somewhat useful for the remainder of 
that pass. Considering a few QSOs were made afterwards, I consider it at 
least a partial success. Again, you'll notice I wasn't among them. I'm 
sorry a few of you missed Jim, but you likely would have anyways, as he 
had already decided to QRT because of the bedlam, until I changed the 

For what it's worth, you and Damon are the only two who've objected. At 
least you were moderately polite about it. Both of the "DX" stations on 
that pass were understanding and did not object to my action in the 
emails exchanged afterwards. Several others have written in support, and 
I only wish more would have done so publicly.

I take input from everyone, and try to be out in the public as much as 
possible. Take a look back at the level of interaction from the previous 
few VP Ops and ask if yourself why they stayed the hell away from the 
users. So your objection is noted, but in the end, I alone am 
responsible for the operation of AO-51 and our other satellites. I will 
continue to act in the satellite and AMSAT's best interest, as charged 
by the President and Board of Directors of AMSAT, in the manner I best 
see fit, until removed or replaced. Consider we already have two open VP 
positions, an open BOD alternate, and a highly complex and finicky, 
aging satellite, before you decide to run me out of town on a rail.

A lot of the users of this satellite have NO idea the hard work it takes 
to keep AO-51 running. I have volunteered hundreds, perhaps thousands of 
hours over the past several years, in order to make AO-51 available as 
often, and in as many modes as possible. I've left work early, went in 
late, postponed personal vacations, missed family events, and spent 
thousands of dollars to upgrade my station, in order to be able to keep 
it in service so we can download and process telemetry, reload code, 
keep the repeater running, and promote AMSAT. Mark, Kevin, and Gould 
have done the same. While you guys bust tail to get on the air to work a 
new grid, we are there on the digital downlink trying to keep AO-51 
alive, hopefully long enough to see it's replacement on orbit. I'm 
writing schedules for SO-67 and AO-51, emailing answers to users who've 
asked questions, and trying to find time to spend with my family. So 
before you get on the -bb and take potshots at us, whine, piss and moan, 
you better think of the alternative scenario without a few command 
stations who give a damn, or without a VP Ops. It isn't all fun and 
games and chasing grids for us.

Drew Glasbrenner, KO4MA
AMSAT-NA VP Operations

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