The FCC is seeking to increase the fee for a vanity callsign.
What we're talking here is chump change - a mere 90 cents from $13.30 to $14.20 - a mere 9 cents a year, if you think about it.
But the "Don't Tread On Me" hairs on the back of my neck get prickled just a little by this. I am reminded of the old tale of the frog who sat in the pot of water, thinking that nothing was wrong, until the water boiled and it was too late! Yes, I have a vanity callsign. No, I do not mind paying for the privilege. If I minded, I would not have changed from N2ELW.
BUT ....... in the days of computers, does it really cost the FCC anything to allow me to keep W2LJ? I don't think they have to pay a lil' ol' man somewhere in Gettysburg who sits behind a desk wearing a green eye shade and sleeve garters and toils all day writing down vanity callsigns in a huge leather bound ledger, like a monk in the Middle Ages.
Maybe there should be a one time fee for the privilege - like say $50 or something when you originally apply and then wham!, it's yours for the rest of your life (or as long as you choose to retain your license) - like any other callsign? If you want to apply for a different vanity callsign, then you submit a new "application fee".
Really, once you change your call, it doesn't cost the FCC anything to maintain that. Once their licensing system knows me as W2LJ or N2ELW or even KA2DOH for that matter, it doesn't cost a thing to maintain.
To me, as it stands, this just smacks of another tax increase.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!