Thursday, January 15, 2009

PLT Buzz Reaches Geek Sites

Thanks to the efforts of the UKQRM group, the disastrous effect of powerline communication devices on HF radio is becoming publicized where it matters. This is in the computer professional press, which reaches the people who make the purchase decisions.

An informative story, which is about as technically correct as writing about the radio hobby ever gets, appears on The Register site:

'Interfering' BT Vision attracts campaigner glares
Ham radio enthusiasts call up trading standards

By Bill Ray
Posted in Telecoms, 15th January 2009 11:33 GMT

Campaigners complaining about interference generated by BT's Vision product have financed independent tests to show that the kit BT is pushing fails to conform to the appropriate EU standards, prompting a complaint to trading standards officers.

Shortwave radio users have been complaining for a while about interference generated by networking over mains wiring, with BT taking the majority of the flak, but until now the protestors have been complaining to Ofcom on the basis of illegal broadcasting. By demonstrating that retailers are selling kit that fails to meet EU standards the protestors could prevent its sale, not to mention the possibility of fines for those manufacturing or importing the kit.


This was also excerpted on ISPReview, another UK IT site.

Both embed this latest YouTube video, ominously (and accurately) entitled, Power Line Signalling: The Death of H.F. Radio.

Other links:

UK citizens' petition to save shortwave
UK interference report database
UKQRM web site

Also check out the UKQRM video page for a comprehensive look at what is going on in the UK (and starting to happen in the USA!).


Added 1/25/08

The discussions on geek sites have led to hostile comments to the effect that short wave radio is obsolete, and should be abolished anyway. Apparently, we have done a poor job of informing the public of the consequences of eliminating the only long-distance communications system that does not depend on wires and/or links controlled and maintained by third parties.

Some people have even made remarks to the effect that they will stop using their PLC adapters when their cold dead hands are pried from them.

It would appear that we have something of a fight on our hands.

Bring 'em on.