The ARRL has taken a stand against automated QSOs in Contests and DXing (during the July Board meeting). It’s not difficult to imagine that the technology to do this already exists, however, it’s a bit much to swallow that anyone would actually want to use it in a radio contest or in pursuit of DXCC awards.
Given that the point of these pursuits are for pleasure, it’s a hobby for crying out loud. Why would anyone assemble a ham radio station in such a way that would put the operator out of a job?
Hey! Here’s a thought. Since we can’t use automation perhaps that work could be outsourced to some low-wage worker in another country? Hire them to operate your station remotely so “you” could be chasing a DXpedition while playing golf or piling up “your” big contest score while at the same time taking a Zumba class (wink-wink).
In fact, why not just outsource the entire hobby and then we all could paper our shacks with lots of operating awards and kudos while never having to personally make contact with another radio amateur?
That the ARRL even has to clarify its position on unattended station operation for award credit is a sad commentary on the voracious appetite for “winning” of some in the fraternity who have clearly lost their way and their minds…