In 1999, the SWATCH AG tried a world-wide promotion of their new Internet Beat line of watches using a special satellite.
Unknowingly, the downside of the promotion was that the satellite was to operate in the Amateur Radio Space Service. That led to a protest campaign by amateur radio operators around the world. Below are the left-overs at the end of the campaign. The links are old and probably are broken.
- There is a link on that page to a MIR station tracking page:
- Bulletin! April 15. The Sputnik-99 mission,
also known as RS-19 and BEATNIK has been cancelled due to technical reasons.
- April 16. The Sputnik-99 satellite has been hand launched from the MIR space station without the transmitters turned on.
- A signal check of the 18-degree 16:37 HST pass on April 16 over Hawaii by AH6RH did not reveal a signal.
- April 17. A signal check of the 83-degree 17:00 HST pass on April 17 over Hawaii by AH6NF did not reveal a signal.
- The SWATCH AG website: http://www.swatch.com
- The SWATCH/BEATNIK boycott and protest WEB site: http://epistolary.org/rob/swatch-protest/
- Ham Radio On-line: http://hamradio-online.com/
- Wired magazine: http://www.wired.com/news/news/technology/story/18968.html
- American Radio Relay League: http://www.arrl.org/w1aw/1999-arls002.html
- MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.com/news/257630.asp
- Wireless Institute of Australia: http://www.ozemail.com.au/~vk2wi/
I would thank Rob Carlson, KC2AEI for his investigative work in compiling his open letter to the amateur community and disseminating it via the Internet alerting amateurs. It tuned us in that there was an upcoming event that needed their attention and participation.
I would also like to thank Ed Mitchell, KF7VY for his online newsletter and numerous industry contacts which helped to obtain vital contacts in short order.
I would like to thank the PR office of the SWATCH Group for maintaining a bridge for dialog with the amateur community.
And, I would like to thank you for making the time to communicate and constructively let your presence be known -- and to help inform and educate newcomers about applicable rules and regulations that govern the international radio spectrum. Continue to carry amateur radio in a positive, constructive light and continue the proud tradition of being international ambassadors of goodwill.
I have learned a lot through this process in the past two weeks about how postive, constructive comments combined with prayer can accomplish mutually desired goals, and I hope that when intervention is needed in the future that you can do the same as well.
Copyright © 1999-2015 Ron Hashiro
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