Friday, July 24, 2009

American Preppers Radio Net and your Call Sign

by 'Santa(Dave W4DMH)

A question was asked to me by someone who wishes to remain anonymous, but here's what they asked, and my answer to them. I've also replaced a name of a Web site they've mentioned, at their request, with the word BLANK - 'Santa

How do you handle the prepper people who want to participate, but who might not want their call sign posted on the website because they made contact with us?
They continue...
For example - I know that I've promoted the new preppers radio net over on BLANK , as there are a ton of amateur radio guys there - there is a whole thread dedicated just to amateur radio. But I also know that most of those guys, because they post about preps and opinions and stuff...are not about to tell everybody their call sign due to the ease of looking up and getting info on their name and where they live.

I haven't disclosed my call sign to anyone on the BLANK either, for the same reason. I just don't want every person I don't know on BLANK, including who knows how many trolls, having the ability to look me up.

My Reply:

You have asked a very good question, but I'm not sure I can give you the answer you may be looking for.

Consider Amateur Radio as a giant party line... anyone can listen in. There is no privacy when you talk on the public airwaves.

ABOVE: Can you believe it? I've heard he still uses a CB RADIO!

We also use a program called NETLOGGER during the net, that sends the data across the Internet for anyone to see who also has that program. This is a very common practice in Ham radio. Also, most nets do publish lists of the check ins as a common practice. If you Google my call sign W4DMH, you'll find about 14 pages listed.

A persons Ham Call sign, something that is even more unique than a persons actual name, IS by it's nature, a publicly known identity.

BUT...if you check in to ANY net, unless you mention that you blog, or that you post on a forum under "such n' such" name, then NOBODY would know who you are on the computer. So I fail to see why everyone worries so much about it.

I've gotten probably 50 emails from people saying they are hams but they will not check into the net because that links there call to prepping. Well...my answer to them is, while it's sad for you to feel that way but SO WHAT?

As I see it, if you are emailing me telling me that, you must want to come "out of the closet" anyway. Please consider that as long as we hide in the shadows, the only people that will know who we are is the .gov people. This fact alone is what will stop us from being a voice able to effect change...like we preach for other people to do. I for one know the .gov people know who I am, and they are the ones that I worry about more than any one else. I am personally proud of the fact that I consider myself a Patriot and a Prepper and since the .gov people already have my IP address I may as well stay public as everyone that knows me also knows that I am not suicidal so a strange accidental death would seem suspicious.

Gee...I hope that helps and does not scare you off. We need all the help we can get. As I say it is sad that people feel they need to hide.

To take this a little farther I want everyone to know I refuse to hide in the shadows like a scared puppy dog with my tail between my legs. I will continue to live free as this nation intended for me to do. If they come and take me away then so be it because my worries will be over and my pain gone. If you are a true Patriot I would think you would feel the same. The word PREPPER or PREPPERS is new but this way of life has been around a lot longer than people think. If you are a PREPPER you should be proud of the fact that you have done what you could to be more self reliant just as my Irish Immigrant Grand Parents did. This is not a new way of life it is just a new word to describe a very old way of life. I am not saying that you should post a list of everything you have but to be afraid of admitting you have an interest in learning about the new word PREPPER or PREPPERS to me seems to go against every thing I have ever stood for.

When you check in to our net with your call sign that is the only thing you are admitting to. That you have an interest to learn more about this new word PREPPER. If we truly believe in teaching people to be more self reliant and less dependent on outside help than we most also be willing to stand in the forefront of this movement and not hide behind some name on a computer lurking in the shadows while we preach how we all need to stand up and teach people how to live a better life and help return this country to what it once was. I refuse to hide and if that means that they will come for me first than so be it. My name is all I have when it really comes down to it because if I don’t pay taxes everything else is gone.

My rant is over...and I guess you now know how I feel about this topic. By the way, Santa is really my nick name and what most people call me but if you want to see what I look like at least in December and you want to know who I am it is easy enough to look my call sign up on qrz.com. I am not busting my butt to get this net going to toot my horn people I am doing it because I feel very passionate about being able to communicate with people like me in the event the grid goes down or whatever. If the Internet is gone where the hell are you going to turn to for communication... No grid No Internet = no cell phone as well.
73 Dave W4DMH

God Bless from the Wild and Wonderful West Virginia


  1. Kudos my friend, and I echo your thoughts exactly.

    Its rather hard to describe anything we do here as subversive, extremist, or even fattening!

    I would really hazard to guess that to the uninformed public, anyone with a Amateur Licence alone is more of the lunatic fringe crowd than anything else.

    Besides, what other "hobby" can you think of carries with it a Federally Issued License... short of someone who likes to build large rockets for fun, shoot automatic weapons to relax, or some other more "dangerous" pastimes. Compared to that kind of fun & games, checking into our net is really pretty tame.

    I have no fears, to sit in my shack, wear my tinfoil propeller cap and call CQ CQ...

    '73 KI4HEE

  2. Great post. I can only refer to this:

    "In Germany, they came first for the Communists, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist;

    And then they came for the trade unionists, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist;

    And then they came for the Jews, And I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew;

    And then... they came for me... And by that time there was no one left to speak up."

    There is safety in being public, hiding and keeping quite in the shadows will only make it easier to be taken out in the shadows...Besides it's still legal to discuss prepping topics such as canning, gardening knitting and even how to clean a rifle. So far I haven't heard of anyone being arrested or assasinated for teaching others how to organically grow a tomato plant...at least yet anyway. As long as we discuss these things openly and publicly then we can keep them legal. Being public and open doesn't mean you have to list off everything you have stored if you are afraid of people coming to your house and ripping you off.

  3. I think the concern comes not from PREPPING, but other related topics that the gov has already attacked. If there really is a different idea behind PREPPING and another now known as anti gov -surivialist, then there should be no problem. The concern (not fear) I think comes not from the gov who like you said already know who you are and have made a decision about your level of interest, but from the public who can track you by your call sign right to your front door. Because when the SHTF and they start looking for the those that have prepared, by using your call sign instead of something anonymous, they now know exactly where to look. We will soon have people arrested for growing a garden without Monsanto, and having animals not registered under a gov system for ID, so that also would be reason to not advertise your LAT/LONG of where you house is so some idiot who believes in those programs can come visit your house, not from the gov but from the lunatic fringe. Yes HAM radio is a great medium for communication and will work well in an emergency, that I do not disagree about, but I do see and feel the concern about the general public coming over to see my prepping, or my chickens, vegetables, or my rifle.

  4. This is good I am glad we are getting different opinions here. I hoped this rant would get people to voice there opinions. I did not direct this toward any one person as I said I have fielded 50 + emails on this topic and now people are leaving there beliefs on this for others to see. I hope that more will do the same. Thank you to everyone that has commented so far. Rather I agree with you or not does not matter. I just want for everyone to say what they feel.

  5. Well, if the general public wants to come over and see my chickens and my garden they are welcome!!! If they want to cause trouble, I have ways to help them there too. You know, I think we have to have a sense of real pride when we consider that we are paddling upstream in a world that is quickly becoming more reliant on what the government can do for us.I for one can proudly say I DON'T NEED ANYONE TO PROVIDE FOR ME OR MY FAMILY, We can do it ourselves...thank you.....
    Now as far as worrying about who knows what about us, if you have a telephone, electric bill, social security #, credit rating, have gone to the doctor, have a drivers license, guess what??? You are WELL KNOWN!!!! So, come out of the closet, spread the word about Prepping and let big brother know that there is a movement growing FAST that just might last a good bit longer than he does!!!!!!!

  6. Good post santa. I agree 100% with what Bulldog said as he nailed it. I would add that if you are that worried about people coming to get your preps that you have worked hard to acquire then I have to ask, are you really prepared? There is another reason to be spreading the word, because the more folks we get involved now with their own preps the fewer people we will have to worry about knocking on our door if tshtf. I too do not think you need to advertise all your preps, I also do not see any reason why you need to hide the fact that you do have prepared to take care of your family. Just my .02 worth, Gary


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