FCC

Anyone have any contacts with them?

I have an issue woth (I think) a Ham screwing with my broadcast TV. But I can’t find anything about that part of the FCC’s job on their website.

Trying to find somewhere to report via their website is apparently beyond me. 

Calling the contact number  isn’t terribly productive….Their phone tree is….irritating.

Anyone know anyone in the FCC who might be able to tell me how to find the people who deal with this sort of thing?

Closest major city office would likely be Chicago or Indy. I’m in NW Indiana.

Any help appreciated.

10 thoughts on “FCC

  1. Try contacting the local hamradio club, they should be very glad to help. The ham operator may not be aware that he is causing a problem.

  2. To add, if the HAM operator is operating within FCC regulations, there isn't anything that they can or will do.

    To state the obvious, the people most likely to be able to help you are the ham radio operators themselves, and if you piss them off by doing things like calling the feds on them, they will not be inclined to help you.

    The vast majority of the time, when licensed and properly maintained HAM transmitters are interfering with consumer electronics, it is the consumer electronics that are at fault. Many CE devices are not properly shielded against RF interference, because it saves money to not do so.

    Often, a small filter on your TV, or ferrite core on the power cord will fix things. Those would legally be your responsibility, but many HAMs will have something available to give you, if you're being a good sport about it.

    If his transmitter is putting out some odd-frequency spurious emissions, he'll need to put a (big) filter on his stuff, and that's entirely his responsibility, because such emissions are outside of FCC regulations.

    Perhaps you should start by collecting some information, like keeping a log of when the problem occurs and what channels are effected. Are other neighbors having the same problem?

    How about inviting them to a "Can you help me fix my DTV interference Barbeque"? Serve real good food.

    If all of that fails, try:
    http://transition.fcc.gov/eb/AmaCmpl.html

  3. To add: Many cheap electronics made in China are interfered with because they are not shielded and do not comply with part 15 regulations from the FCC, which require that they must accept interference from licensed and properly functioning apparatus, and that they not interfere with other legally functioning apparatus.
    If they are being disturbed by a HAM set, the HAM is also likely getting interference from your device. If it is determined that the problem is your equipment having improper shielding, then the FCC may well be looking at you and not him. Best to keep the Feds out of it, if you can.

  4. THank you for all the advice.

    Divemedic: THis is a TV that has issues. (more than one, actually). I think I am the only person not on cable or satellite, but rather using an antenna for miles.

    I THINK it is a ham, because of the pattern. I don't know.

    I'll contact the Ham folks and see if they can help.

  5. I use an antenna and was experiencing some interesting tropospheric ducting during evenings this week. I was receiving stations from well beyond their broadcast area that were interfering with the local stations.
    Have you tried doing a new channel search? There seems to be some frequency drift or something with my gear and doing a new channel scan gets things right again.
    You might consult with Roberta on this. Her knowledge base in bost broadcast tv and ham radio might prove useful.

  6. Here's the rule: if the ham is causing destructive interference it is the ham's responsibility no matter how cheap or sloppy your hardware is, and the Indy field office should be your next stop if the local repeater club can't or won't help (they probably will, "foxhunting" (sniffing out a transmitter with direction-finding gear) is FUN). The offending ham can provide you with a filter that will keep his signal out of your set. He'd better, his alternative is to stop operating, and maybe pay a fine.

    73,

    KF4NEJ

  7. Alternative thought, are you near a body of water? In my youth I could talk to my entire neighborhood through their televisions with my marine-VHF transmitter.

  8. Talk to the Ham. Most of them will find a way to help you. My dad is a Ham, and he's been known to stay off certain bands when neighbors complained. Or even find a way to filter it.

    They're a pretty goo bunch of guys.

  9. @ Temnota: Not entirely correct. Here are the regs:

    97.121 Restricted operation.

    (a) If the operation of an amateur station causes general interference to the reception of transmissions from stations operating in the domestic broadcast service when receivers of good engineering design, including adequate selectivity characteristics, are used to receive such transmissions, and this fact is made known to the amateur station licensee, the amateur station shall not be operated during the hours from 8 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., local time, and on Sunday for the additional period from 10:30 a.m. until 1 p.m., local time, upon the frequency or frequencies used when the interference is created.

    (b) In general, such steps as may be necessary to minimize interference to stations operating in other services may be required after investigation by the FCC.

    (emphasis added)
    KK4BNE

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