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  1. Today we celebrate 20 years of VATSIM! An incredible feat, and one which would not have been possible without all our members, past and present. You have contributed to our community by flying, providing air traffic services, and serving as supervisors or in administrative positions to ensure that our network continues to grow and be successful. To celebrate, we are starting a month-long celebration with events on the network, interviews with some of our staff members, distributing over $2,500 of prizes, and some other surprises! During the next few weeks, we will be visiting all th
    19 points
  2. You may be increasing access to Air Traffic Control positions for VATSIM members, but this fails to fulfil the second part "whilst maintaining a standard of quality Air Traffic Control service that VATSIM has become known". If controllers are allowed to continue controlling after showing they do not want to maintain the "standard of quality Air Traffic Control service that VATSIM has become known." then we are not upholding the purpose of the document that lets them do that. This is truly all about quantity over quality.
    15 points
  3. And you think this is a BAD THING??? If the controller doesn't care to keep up with changes, then why the heck would we keep him around? If you kept insisting that 2+2=5 after spending years doing my taxes, I sure as heck would not keep you as my accountant just to "connect an accountant to a tax payer"? If we're going to have this kind of standard, we're going to end up in IVAOs "no ARTCC" levels at some point - i.e. controllers who don't even know what a runway is and I for one, don't think I want to stand for - or be associated with that sinking ship. Matt - your comments come acr
    12 points
  4. Happy 20th anniversary to VATSIM. I can vividly remember the moment that Roberto flipped the switch and we were live on our own network. Special mention to the Founders who helped build the finest online aviation simulation in the world. I know we are all proud of the staff and members who define who we are. Stay Safe, Stay Well and Blue Skies to all. Again, Happy Anniversary. Harv Stein VATSIM5
    11 points
  5. This is the crux of the issue. An incompetent controller who refuses to improve will drive away competent controllers. @Matt In the examples you provided, two of them refused to comply with the standards or re-train themselves in order to comply with standards. In the follow-up, you asked "So you would prefer to fly on unicom than fly with a controller who's not perfect?" No one is demanding perfection here, what we want is competence that simulates reality which is vastly different from perfection. I would rather fly with no ATC than be vectored in circles by an incompetent controll
    11 points
  6. Your entire statement just proves, that you prefer low quality, all-around-annoying incompetent ATC, rather than single departure of this kind of person, who is refusing to improve, lol. Because of the decisions as per above, you save a single, incompetent departure from the network, making tons of people dedicated to the network going off, because they are driven nuts by these kind of people.
    7 points
  7. GCAP is the perfect opportunity as far as I'm concerned to "reclaim" what a C3 should signify and to set some baseline standards for attaining the rating. The problem that it needs to fix is that the C3 rating is so inconsistent across the network in what it signifies and represents. Anecdotally speaking, there are places on the network where they are given out with almost no requirements, and others where there are multiple stringent measures in place to ensure that the rating is seen as a proper achievement. The policy does a good job in places of trying to set some sort of a standard,
    7 points
  8. I'm not sure how Don comes into play. He had to be checked out to work SMO at all, and SMO is smack in the middle of really busy, fun, and complicated airspace. It took weeks to build to that, anyway, and the debate in general over how visitors and new transfers are restricted has to do with getting them to traffic sooner. It's going to take 4 weeks to build steady traffic if you control regularly (and are even good enough people want to come back) or less than a single week to check out for and run wild on more than a single airport, and in the process the educators have an opportunity to edu
    6 points
  9. Speaking from a division where we were known in the past for "rating tourism" I can tell you that this 100 hour requirement before transferring will make an effect. We had several members from multiple divisions notably from VATEUD and VATUK in the past come here get training in the small quiet places and then transfer out after 50 hours and 90 days have passed. Some quiet vACCs would love to train more people so they get activity I think these quiet vACCs need to be recognized. Not everyone is VATEUD or VATUK in terms of activity, if a vACC wants to retain it's member then this is one way to
    6 points
  10. Great thoughts, Matthew. I wish to uniquely develop them one step further and include my recommendation for network currency requirements. In them, I also build in an incentive for our members to control and accelerate through training while paying respect and courtesy to members that have already put in the time and effort to want to be here. General Requirement: 3-6 hours in 6 months, LOA anytime and perpetually renewable (removal prevention). Required GRP check if a member returns to service after 6 months or upon the end of the LOA. Division controls the hours, but it must fall between a
    6 points
  11. [Citation Needed] So what you are saying is that you would rather have someone control a position they are not competent on, and provide bad service to pilots than force them into retraining. Cool. A lot of the GCAP now makes more sense, and the places where you have stated "the BoG doesn't care to inflate numbers" is complete and utter BS, when you look at this statement and the fact that the BoG doesn't want controllers removed for inactivity. The "educate" part of VATSIMs motto is a joke.
    6 points
  12. After all else fails, downgrades are the cleanest and easiest way to establish a baseline of competency upon which a controller can improve. So long as opportunity and help exist to be able to afford a student the opportunity to earn back their proficiency, the educational construct of this network is in tact. It’s when there is an unequal opportunity for success that is present that there’s a breakdown in our system. If after showing the student various ways in which they can get back on the right track they fail to accept their end of the bargain, then their dismissal is not only acceptable
    6 points
  13. We all know that's way too logical of an idea for the BoG.
    6 points
  14. I read through this entire topic - and it appears the representative (sorry if this is not the correct phrasing) for the BoG is completely out of touch with what almost every person who controls on the network or manages an ARTCC in some form appears to be trying to get across. I am that pilot (the one who Matt initially proposed opinions from closer to the beginning of the topic). I am a pilot on the network - a pilot who has had a lot of amazing experiences. As someone who sometimes takes breaks, I myself struggle with coming back after a while. - add the responsibility of a controller,
    6 points
  15. We all need to recognize that this is a hobby with a diverse set of students with varying experience and learning ability, let alone time to dedicate to the task at hand. Trying to force every student into the same box is going to end up pushing many students away if they don't fit into the box right away. I have dealt with many students over the years that barely need two words from me. They are RW controllers or pilots and know the system well. They self-study well. The minimal training is more than enough to get them on the network. Then there is the other side of the coin: S
    5 points
  16. Citation needed. Can the BoG provide data that controllers who have been downgraded leave vs remediate? If not, this is all conjecture and should be thrown out.
    5 points
  17. I’m a real world controller™. I was a VATSIM controller long before I got into the FAA. Do I agree with top down being flawed? Only partially. The top down model is borne out of necessity otherwise you’d have a bunch of center only guys staffed treating every core 30 field as one in, one out. Where’s there any semblance of enjoyment in that for the pilots? FAA/ICAO/insert Aviation governing authority here-isms absolutely have their place on VATSIM, but the reality is that the staffing and aircraft density doesn’t lend itself well to treating the entire vNAS as “terminal facilities ar
    4 points
  18. Edit: I'll be honest, I wasn't going to bother responding to any of these threads because the attitude that VATGOV has given thus far has been "we're doing what we want, we'll act like we're listening, but then give you the same response and MAYBE compromise, but it's all a show". Please, by all means, prove me wrong. I left VATSIM for ~6 years. If there was a lower controlling requirement, would I have actually stayed on? No, no I wouldn't have. I just got bored/exhausted of the hobby, and my life focus changed to something else. ZSE's requirements back in 2014 was 3 hours a month. Did I
    4 points
  19. All members of the Board have been intimately involved in the preparation for this public review. Matt has done a great job in leading the charge. I think you will find the draft was only posted publicly a few days ago - I'm not sure what engagement we would expect from the rest of the group until the community has had a bit of time to offer their comments, given that we have already commented extensively prior to the public review. It's certainly my intention to return to this topic and engage in the conversation over the coming week.
    4 points
  20. If a candidate is blessed with more than just 2 brain cells, they will find the local AIP that offers some advice for phraseology. The rest will be done with Google Translator, YouTube videos and the local staff. I do, however, sympathize with the fact that it would be a huge task to learn Japanese phrases, for example. The takeaway from this discussion is, IMO, that this is not a black&white topic, but that it does contain a number of shades of grey.
    4 points
  21. Great, so I check someone out to S1/2/3 on Fargo, they never see a single airplane in the wild for 3 weeks, and they leave. Or we use those 3 weeks to finish their major cert on MSP. Which is a better use of my students’/instructors’ time? The powers that be really need to stop counting meaningless hours spent staring at nothing as “productive”. Empty stats are just that - empty. You’re creating the illusion of access when it’s not actually propped up by meaningful pilot/controller interaction.
    4 points
  22. Interesting... This is a very outcome oriented goal as opposed to process oriented...just an observation. There's a role of course for both types of goal setting, however this metric of "success" you are measuring this is not entirely in the control of the instructor/sub-division. The students' personal motivation to progress or control in a certain subdivision plays a larger role. Their desire to "contribute back to the community they trained in" is a result of the culture of the sub-division that allows this to happen. Of course instructing is not enjoyable if you pin your succe
    4 points
  23. No. Instructing really isn’t that enjoyable. There is a lot of time and effort invested in each student to ensure that they are able to provide ATC on the network. Instructors do this selfless job because they want to contribute and make VATSIM, but more so their local facility a better place. It is the ultimate insult to an instructor and their time to leave immediately after getting your rating. This is why we are making that controller who used the time of the instructor have to contribute back to the community they trained in, before they are allowed to transfer out. As with most thi
    4 points
  24. It is very high and for good reason. The training staffs invest significant amounts of time training people for their area and we want to make sure their work isn’t in vain. The requirements ensure that those places see the return on their time investment as opposed to someone coming in to skip a training queue somewhere and then immediately transferring out after getting their rating.
    4 points
  25. Plenty of examples where you rather have a lower quality of controllers to please the few that don't even want to improve themselves. Sorry, but we might actually be better off without those unwilling to train on a network that is focussed on training and education. And again, I get extreme artificial inflation of controller numbers again. Sorry, but this really seems like a prank show to me.
    4 points
  26. Yes. Alternatively, you could provide some sort of aggregate data like "we've had 10 cases of requests to downgrade ratings in Q1 & Q2. Of those, 2 were disgruntled and left the network (with documentation supporting their actual reason for leaving), 1 was granted a downgrade, 3 were given warnings and are in the process of remedial training with their respective divisions while keeping the rating, and the remaining 4 left the network due to unknown reasons." No data or purely anecdotal data should not be represented in policy decisions nor should they inform any reasoning behind thos
    4 points
  27. VATSIM Scandinavia consists of 5 "regions". - Norway, Svalbard - Sweden - Finland - Denmark - Iceland, Faroe islands, Greenland. This is also how our FIR directors and training department is grouped into. These 5 regions primarily have their ATC groups, which will say those who was trained in Norway for example, mainly (and often only) controls in Norway. Even though an controller trained in Norway is allowed to staff as ATC in Sweden, they still have to read up on the local procedures and such before controlling, however we are highly suggesting them to apply for famili
    4 points
  28. Another example that the policy is based on assumptions, rather than facts. Would love to see some data from this @Matthew Bartels Am I suddenly in a prank show? If someone leaves because of a downgrade, then that's though luck for them, we move on. If they leave because of a downgrade, they never really intent to learn and better themselves. And they only care about a rating. Instead, let's please them by having them keep their rating and confuse everyone else instead by suspending some privileges. In another topic you said it isn't about artificially inflating
    4 points
  29. I promise you this isn’t about artificially inflating numbers. This is about letting someone who earned a rating come back with no significant hoops they need to jump through to control again. We’re really not interested in mandating an activity requirement. If a division or sub division did not want to have an activity requirement we would fully support that. We’re in essence now allowing activity requirements which really hasn’t been acknowledged by global before. The point is they can’t be excessive and we’re already discussing revisions. Something to the tune of 6 hours with
    4 points
  30. Writing policy by implication is the wrong idea. If you want something to be in policy, write it down. Gray area has no room here.
    4 points
  31. Hello all, For use in my local VACC I have made a simple euroscope plugin to add some timers to use to apply wake turbulence separation between starting aircraft. After releasing and testing it locally within the Dutch VACC I think it's good to go to share with everybody. These timers are drawn inside your euroscope screen, it includes timers for 1, 2 and 3 minutes. Left mouse button will start or restart any of the timers independently. Right mouse button will reset any of the timers. A sound will be played and the relevant timer will be shown in red when a timer has finished.
    3 points
  32. Nothing will be less engaged or productive than a controller going through the motions to fulfill minimum hours to transfer. The end goal of GCAP seems to just be force feeding controllers into position. Never mind how dead-end those ATC positions are or how badly those controllers do or do not want to be working them. A connection in the list is the important data point.
    3 points
  33. No disrespect to FH, as he was a valuable member of VATSIM and his name and legacy will live on forever, but you CANNOT keep referring to something that happened in 2005 as substantial evidence for 2021. The network is COMPLETELY different now than it was then. Seems your one crutch throughout this entire discussion is "once upon a time in 1878." Are we writing a policy for 10, 15 years ago? Or a policy for now?
    3 points
  34. There will be a transition period when the final document becomes policy. 6 months does sound fair, but we’re not even close to that point yet. We’re still reviewing the initial comments and making tweaks there.
    3 points
  35. The GCAP committee is not consisting of only one person. There are several people behind the scenes that are discussing points from everything that has been discussed on the forums here. Mentioning that every point get's "dismissed" is not the way to go just because someone is debating points being made on the forum. Remember that everyone has their own opinion and that a middle ground needs to be found in order to settle on the final decision on XYZ clause of the new policy. You've seen so far only one person respond to all of the members questions/complains/suggestions from the Board of Gove
    3 points
  36. Just call it aircraft data tags.
    3 points
  37. In the case of EURM ("Maastricht" control position) I have to say that I have my reservations that it cannot be restricted anymore. It's a very intense piece of airspace with at least 8 busy or even very busy airports within or adjacent to its borders that make it quite a bit special and demanding. If we allow someone new to control it with the expectation that the candidate will do so with at least good quality, then more training will be required and we simply do not have the resources for that at VACC EUC. The other sectors are also demanding, but in a different way and are more compatible
    3 points
  38. Hello all, Attached to this post you will find the VATSIM Europe, Middle East and Africa Region quarterly region report for Q2 2021. On behalf of the Regional staff team, thank you to all the staff members, mentors and other volunteers within the region that help and contribute towards VATSIM and the Region! Should you have any questions about the report, don't hesitate to contact us at any time! 🛩️ EMEA_Q2_21_Report.docx (1).pdf
    3 points
  39. Let's start of by saying that I can understand that rating downgrades are not fun for anyone and I can agree that this should be avoided when possible. However, by suspending some or all controlling privileges just makes things immensely confusing. This is basically saying (as I interpret it, otherwise the paragraph is not written clear and concise) "Hey, you're an S3, but missing competences. We don't like downgrading you to S2, so we are removing privilage X, Y and Z that are part of the S3 rating. So technically you're an S2, but you're shown as an S3". See? This only increases confusion
    3 points
  40. To add on to this, Sweatbox scenarios let us target very specific scenarios that are not uncommon on the network but wouldn't reliably appear in a CPT. For example, you can't reliably generate ties between aircraft being handed off live on the network whereas it's trivial to program that into a scenario file. The Sweatbox simulators we use are able to randomize speed variations and different delay/reaction times to by pilots to turn and descent instructions. As an instructor, I also purposefully give bad readbacks, delay executing a turn, or turn the wrong way in order to teach how to handle t
    3 points
  41. Because these places entirely different skill sets and rely on visitors mainly to provide service on a normal day. Nobody is really a home controller for the Caribbean FSS. If we want these places staffed, we provide incentive by not having it count against their visiting limit.
    3 points
  42. These stories depict that in fact there was an opportunity given to connect a pilot to a controller. The opportunity resulted in a unsuccessful application of learned skills (or maybe a failure to apply those skills, or to learn those skills in the first place). Without an accurate rating system which is supposed to directly reflect learned skills, "levels of controlling" are meaningless. If the expectation of an S3 is not generally congruent everywhere, or if there is specific allowed policy permitting an S3 to be really an-S2-who-is-going-through-remedial, but showing as an S3, then
    3 points
  43. How will this be guaranteed? Put it in the policy, make the policy up for review every x time. I cannot take your word for it.
    3 points
  44. Just another example of how for some reason, we are focusing away from the education part and instead of facilitating and focusing on the dedicated and passionate controllers, mentors and instructors who spend so much time in perfecting their quality of control, and are instead facilitating for the "controllers" who cannot be bothered to learn or train at all and want to leave and are trying to get them to say. For some reason we are facilitating those controllers and making life easier for them. I agree with everyone but Matt here - if someone isn't willing to learn because they can't realise
    3 points
  45. We will be starting our celebrations in South America, with 4 days of events, from July 27th until July 30th. Below you will find the Events scheduled for South America. July 27th: 2100z - 2359z: Samba Shuttle The Samba Shuttle will be connecting Rio de Janeiro to Brazil's capital, Brasília. Between 2100 and 2359 UTC fly between SBGL/SBRJ and SBBR. Recommended routes: 2300z - 0200z: Coast to Coast In this event fly between Córdoba, Santiago, Asunción, and Montevideo. The Argentinean, Chilean, Paraguaian and Uruguaian controllers will be online from 2300 until
    2 points
  46. No offense, but half the planet has been issuing S1 ratings without touching the network. Works fine for us, and it can absolutely work fine for anyone else. The notion that someone trying to get minor ground couldn't possibly be cut loose without seeing "how they handle bad pilots" is, frankly, bananas. If they can issue the clearances and taxi instructions correctly, and hold up under a reasonable workload, then cert them. Unless at a major, they won't see enough workload to validate the concern. And like I said, dozens of divisions, including VATUSA, have lived without network evaluati
    2 points
  47. As I wrote, at VATSIM we are wasting too many human resources, we are not managing them efficiently. As we have a very limited number of mentors, we need to use them wisely. That's where this policy is trying to make a point. Controller retention has always been a difficult subject and many things have been tried to improve it. It did not work.
    2 points
  48. Why has this even a place in a global policy? This is one of those things that happen only in America (and maybe like 1 or 2 other places in the world). Doesn't need to be in this policy, and should be more in a divisional / regional policy.
    2 points
  49. I would like to offer another perspective to this topic, even though it is not directly related. What might be hard for (only) native English speakers to understand is, that all these sub-divisions are usually communities that are speaking the language(s) of their country. So most communication, be it voice or text will be in the native language. We in Germany accepted a long time ago, that German can not be mandated, and we try to provide all relevant information in English as well, switch to English when one of our members not speaking German joins the Teamspeak and mentor in English if the
    2 points
  50. However, a problem appears when this controller transfers or visits a different facility. When my facility receives a controller with an S1 rating, I will have no way to tell whether they were issued it "for training purposes only", or if they earned the actual certification. This is why I'd love to see the practice of granting an S1 rating to a non-certified trainee stop... It adds pointless ambiguity when an S1 shows up on my doorstep whether they're a "real" or "fake" S1. I would love for GCAP 7.05(c) to be removed, in order to establish consistency for the S1 rating. Granting an
    2 points
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