The Amateur's Code for future generations...
Over the past while I've been discussing the Amateur's Code and its place in our community. I've shown that it was published in 1927, despite credits to the contrary and it's possible that it existed since 1923. I've discussed the original code, how it evolved and what changes have been made across the decades since.
I'd like to take this opportunity to compare the original from 1927 to a revision that I've constructed using the various versions that have been published since. Originally I was going to use the current 2022 version in the ARRL handbook to discuss this, but it's completely different from the one shown on the ARRL website today, which appears to be more recent, that it made little sense to pick one over the other.
Back to 1927, or 1923 if you like, written by Paul M. Segal 9EEA, or W9EEA, Director, Rocky Mountain Division and General Counsel of ARRL.
The Amateur's Code
I - The Amateur is Gentlemanly. He never knowingly uses the air for his own amusement in such a way as to lessen the pleasure of others. He abides by the pledges given by the A.R.R.L. in his behalf to the public and the Government.
II - The Amateur is Loyal. He owes his amateur radio to the American Radio Relay League, and he offers it his unswerving loyalty.
III - The Amateur is Progressive. He keeps his station abreast of science. It is built well and efficiently. His operating practice is clean and regular.
IV - The Amateur is Friendly. Slow and patient sending when requested, friendly advice and counsel to the beginner, kindly assistance and cooperation for the broadcast listener: these are marks of the amateur spirit.
V - The Amateur is Balanced. Radio is his hobby. He never allows it to interfere with any of the duties he owes to his home, his job, his school or his community.
VI - The Amateur is Patriotic. His knowledge and his station are always ready for the service of his country and his community.
It has a certain "quality" about it. Leaving aside that it's written with a male radio amateur in mind, it represents what the character Dennis Denuto in the 1997 Australian movie "The Castle" refers to as "It's just the vibe of the thing".
I present to you an updated version of the code in an attempt at preserving that vibe whilst taking into account that we're not in 1923 any longer:
The Radio Amateur is CONSIDERATE and RESPECTFUL...never knowingly behaving in such a way as to lessen the pleasure of others.
The Radio Amateur is LOYAL...offering encouragement and participation to the global amateur community.
The Radio Amateur is PROGRESSIVE...keeping abreast of science, striving to build and operate their station above reproach.
The Radio Amateur is FRIENDLY...patient; offering friendly advice and counsel to the beginner; kindly assistance, cooperation and consideration for the interests of others. These are the hallmarks of the amateur spirit.
The Radio Amateur is BALANCED...radio is a hobby, never allowing it to interfere with any of the duties owed to home, work, school or community.
The Radio Amateur is SUPPORTIVE...knowledge, station and skills always ready for service to country and community.
Hopefully you've followed along with the evolution of this discussion and find the reasoning for it as compelling as I do. Of course this is just one perspective on what a revised Amateur's Code might look like and I am offering it as a topic of discussion to the entire global amateur radio community. I hope that it provides food for thought, talking points and encouragement to ask questions.
I will reiterate my thanks to the WorldRadioHistory.com website where you can find many of the earliest editions of the ARRL handbook. If you have any of the missing editions, or better copies than those available, I'd encourage you to share them to continue to preserve the history of our community.