I am not a ham radio operator

What do you present yourself as – a ham radio operator, a ham or a radio amateur? I most definitely do not feel like a ham radio operator.

I will admit it straight away – I have used the term myself: Ham radio operator. But think about it – what does that mean to you? Does the term reflect the one, main purpose of our hobby, which is to experiment with radio technology and frequencies? I don`t feel that it does.

To me this hobby is all about continuously acquiring knowledge, learning, creating and trying things I haven`t done before. Actually operating the equipment is probably what I do least. An operator operates, and operating requires little if any technical knowledge. Operating a radio station is just like driving a car: It doesn`t take much technical know-how to get the thing moving, although it may be handy or even get you further.

Perhaps the term radio amateur makes it sound like I`m an “amateur” figuratively speaking, but in its original meaning (amore) it makes so much more sense: To be passionate about radio.

I do occasionally operate a few ham radios. But I am not a ham radio operator. I am a radio amateur.

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