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Basic Voice Communications 4 Dummies




Since it seems like a lot of people are starting to use gamevoice, roger wilco, etc, I thought that this might be a good time to introduce the concept of radio discipline.


Hardware and Voice Applications


I won't really address this other that to make a few general points:

  • There are a lot of pretty good voice apps on the market right now which range in price from free to ~$50 USD. Roger Wilco,
    Gamevoice, and Teamsound are probably the three best known voice apps.

  • At a minimum, you'll need the application and a microphone. Some packages come with additional hardware, but you should really try it out and determine that you really have a need for such an extensive package before going out and spending your money.

  • Try to stick with a push to talk (PTT) configuration where a key is set up as the transmit button. Voice activated (VOX) is cool, but can cause problems if it is set too sensitive - then, you transmit and therefore step on other people whenever you make the slightest noise.


Prowords



Prowords are standard phrases used to shorten a message and convey understanding or acknowledgement. These are useful for keeping radio transmission to an absolute minium while conveying the maximum amount of information.

  • Over - used at end of phrase to signify that you are finished talking - so that other people don't step on your transmission
  • Out - used to signify the conversation is over. Typically used by the person who initiated the conversation
  • Roger - I understand
  • Wilco - I understand AND will comply
  • Say Again - repeat what you just said (NOT REPEAT)
  • Say again all after ... - self explanatory
  • SITREP - typically tells current situation, casualties, and ammo status. You might give a quick sitrep after capturing the documents in the map room
  • Wait one - wait one second


Other protocols.

Depending on how many people are on the voice server, you might want to start off a transmission with "You, this is me, [message]. This alerts your intended audience, tells them who's talking to them (sometimes we all get garbled), and let's everyone else know that they can disregard the message.


Direction

How many times has someone told you, "look, up on the hill to your right", only to turn to your right and realize that the two of you are looking in two different directons? This may have to be modified, but I always use a clock direction from the audience's point of view. 12:00 is always directly forward, 3:00 to the right, 9:00 to the left. It's even more helpful when you can give a clock direction and a distance or a landmark (e.g., sniper, 2:00, top of the tower)


Conciseness.

Be consise, accurate, and complete with your transmission. You don't want to clutter the channel with meaningless garbage and you don't have the time to repeat everything you just said. When radioing a contact report, a good acronym to make sure you've covered all the bases is SALUTE



    Size (3 men)

    Activity (approaching forward bunker)

    Location (from the boats)

    Uniform (1 engineer, 1 medic, 1 soldier)

    Time (right now)

    Equipment (flamethower)



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