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GMRS repeater linking and the FCC

MTS2000des

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According to this popular YouTuber, the FCC is finally taking action to end the practice of linking GMRS repeaters. It should be noted that it is common practice for the FCC to not publicly release information when conducting enforcement actions. Even when a rogue BDA jammed my public safety trunking system, the FCC EB did not place anything in their public file nor put out any public notice. A warning letter was sent to the party involved and case closed as compliance gained.

So taking that into consideration, it appears as if the FCC is finally enforcing 95.333 and 95.1733.8 and the repeater owners complied with their cease and desist request.
Time for sad hams to return to part 97 where copious amounts of spectrum are available for coordinated repeaters and linking is allowed and encouraged!
 

Echo4Thirty

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Maybe they can come on down to Houston and do something about the idiotic allstar GMRS linking crap here next. I sure do miss Steve Lee, he would have put this nonsense to bed years ago.

Inane hours long nets tying up all 8 pairs to ask people what their favorite sandwich is. Getouttahere with that.
 

Echo4Thirty

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They absolutly are. They have duplicate linked ham systems too though. I guess when you want to know what someones favorite condiment is, you need to make sure you include the folks on Part 97 and Part 95 although a lot of the users are licensed for both services and show up for both nets.

On Part 97 there is plenty of spectrum for this to put up large linked systems along side small local repeaters, on GMRS with only 8 repeater pairs, this practice is extremely inconsiderate to other folks wishing to put up small community repeaters as the linked repeaters are generaly wide coverage, co located on the same towers. Some of these sites are part 90 public safety and the Part 90 guys just co-locate their ham and gmrs stuff high up on the same stick.

Its an ego thing. "i have a huge linked ham and GMRS system... blah blah" who cares! Its about as impressive as the giant F150 they drive that has never been off road.
 

KevinC

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Maybe they can come on down to Houston and do something about the idiotic allstar GMRS linking crap here next. I sure do miss Steve Lee, he would have put this nonsense to bed years ago.

Inane hours long nets tying up all 8 pairs to ask people what their favorite sandwich is. Getouttahere with that.
I miss the days of being able to call Steve directly and getting things done.
 

prcguy

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They absolutly are. They have duplicate linked ham systems too though. I guess when you want to know what someones favorite condiment is, you need to make sure you include the folks on Part 97 and Part 95 although a lot of the users are licensed for both services and show up for both nets.

On Part 97 there is plenty of spectrum for this to put up large linked systems along side small local repeaters, on GMRS with only 8 repeater pairs, this practice is extremely inconsiderate to other folks wishing to put up small community repeaters as the linked repeaters are generaly wide coverage, co located on the same towers. Some of these sites are part 90 public safety and the Part 90 guys just co-locate their ham and gmrs stuff high up on the same stick.

Its an ego thing. "i have a huge linked ham and GMRS system... blah blah" who cares! Its about as impressive as the giant F150 they drive that has never been off road.
Then there are the mindless linked amateur systems lIke Winsystem. They consume lots of precious amateur pairs, up to eight pairs covering the exact same area and the owners and handlers will jump on you if you strike up a lengthy conversation letting you know you are tying up repeaters all over the world.
 

jeepsandradios

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So if you listen to the full interview with the president the system in question was not a linked system like 99% of the stuff out there. It was a wide area simulcast voted system. I think there is a big difference in that setup and configuration and every joe and fred with a raspberry pi linking on the internet. I'm curious how this folds out as I know of a couple decent well built simulcast GMRS systems out there.

I'm all for linking to be gone but I wonder where the line gets drawn. For years I had a repeater site with 3 voters thruout my county to help portable inbound. It wasn't linked across the country or with other channels. So where is the line drawn ? I have no use for linking every pair together, nor listening to a net from 300 miles away that I heard 30 minutes ago on my 2M rig.....
 

bharvey2

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I saw the video on Youtube as well. I have to admit, I'm a bit perplexed by the method of notification. What I find unusual is that several years ago there was a GMRS DMR system of repeaters in the midwest that were linked and it was addressed in fairly short order. If the FCC was taking aim at linked systems (DMR use not withstanding) I'm curious why it's taken them so long to move on to their next target. As jeepandradios mentioned, this system is a bit different than the raspberry pi/Allstar VOIP links popping up everywhere so maybe the answer is in the details. Time will tell.
 

Echo4Thirty

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I saw the video on Youtube as well. I have to admit, I'm a bit perplexed by the method of notification. What I find unusual is that several years ago there was a GMRS DMR system of repeaters in the midwest that were linked and it was addressed in fairly short order. If the FCC was taking aim at linked systems (DMR use not withstanding) I'm curious why it's taken them so long to move on to their next target. As jeepandradios mentioned, this system is a bit different than the raspberry pi/Allstar VOIP links popping up everywhere so maybe the answer is in the details. Time will tell.

The FCC agent we used to have here would often call me up with some 'heads up' type stuff rather than putting in an actual NOV. It gave us a chance to take a look at our operations and make corrections unofficially without any action. I suspect the same thing happened here.
 

mmckenna

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The FCC agent we used to have here would often call me up with some 'heads up' type stuff rather than putting in an actual NOV. It gave us a chance to take a look at our operations and make corrections unofficially without any action. I suspect the same thing happened here.

I've experienced that before, and I agree.

So I guess we can expect the FCC to publish something soon. That should be interesting. I know there are some large GMRS systems that will fight this tooth and nail and won't go quietly. I'm sure it's also going to be very hard for the FCC to enforce, even though I'm sure there will be plenty of "FCC's little helpers" out there.
 

bharvey2

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The FCC agent we used to have here would often call me up with some 'heads up' type stuff rather than putting in an actual NOV. It gave us a chance to take a look at our operations and make corrections unofficially without any action. I suspect the same thing happened here.


Having never run afoul of the FCC, I haven't had any interaction with their enforcement division. It's nice to hear that there is some level of reasonableness among them and that their interests don't lie solely in revenue collection. - Can't say the same for other government agencies I've dealt with.
 

MTS2000des

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The FCC rules didn't change. It's the "no one tells me no" generation that does what they want, and the rule enforcers have now caught on, mostly because these spectrum hogging pig systems preclude others from operating their equipment/infrastructure without stepping all over each other. Complaints have been coming in, and they were compelled to respond.

The rules are pretty clear to me, and like any other licensee, I was aware of them before applying for, an being granted a LICENSE. I LICENSE is just that: permission to do something based on rules/requirements as issued by the grantor. Contrary to popular belief, a LICENSE is not a RIGHT to do anything, and can be revoked, modified or set aside for not following the rules.
 

KevinC

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Having never run afoul of the FCC, I haven't had any interaction with their enforcement division. It's nice to hear that there is some level of reasonableness among them and that their interests don't lie solely in revenue collection. - Can't say the same for other government agencies I've dealt with.
Unfortunately that was then, this is now. Steve got pushed out after over 30 years because he didn't have a EE. Not sure how things work these days.
 

radioopperator

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The old FCC rules said: They would no longer issue pairs of frequencies for linking! And you could NOT be connected to a PTSN IE: OLD TEL CO! There was nothing in the rules wrote to catch up with the internet! The FCC would come into issues with a good attorney today because they over time admitted that type acceptance fcc departments have not kept current with ENFORCEMENT agents! That's a fact. The FCC says no encryption on GMRS but has allowed import of GMRS radios that will do encryption yes look for them they are out there but rules say no encryption! last I looked. P.S. don't read someone's inturpitation of the FCC rules READ THE ACTUAL FCC RULES your self!
 

MTS2000des

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Again, you are in a fantasy land. There are no "old" rules. Read 95.333 and 95.1733.8. If what the YouTuber says is correct, the FCC enforcement bureau, that is, the one who ENFORCES current rules, contacted licensees and advised them to cease and desist.
At the end of the day, the FCC's opinion is the only one that matters. One's license is a privilege not a right, and the FCC isn't an agency that operates by criminal evidentiary rules- they find fact with those who violate their rules, and issue NOVs and NALs accordingly, and modify/suspend/revoke accordingly. Sue them if you don't like it. Bring lots of lawyers and money too.
Hopefully the FCC will issue a public notice, or post the NOV or correspondence so the entitlement crowd will shut their traps, stop being part 95 pigs, and get or use their ham tickets and spectrum and move on.
 

AK9R

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Sue them if you don't like it. Bring lots of lawyers and money too.
And, plan to travel to Washington DC for the hearings. Those hearings will be held in front of an administrative law judge with the FCC's attorneys in the role of prosecutor and you in the role of defendant. The judge will decide whether or not you are liable. Don't claim financial hardship as a reason for not being able to attend the hearings, either. That's been tried before and the subject of the NAL was found liable in absentia.
 

smcbmt

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The follow on video with the club President answers many questions and raises a few. I found the employment of the network operator / provider and his professional relationship to the FCC official interesting…

 
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