Tonight we’ll cover prowords that allow us to conduct basic radiotelephone operations.
The Prowords we’ll cover are:
- THIS IS
- WAIT OUT
- I SPELL
- FIGURE (S)
Prowords are pronounceable words or phrases that are assigned meaning for the purpose of expediting message handling on Nets where radiotelephone procedure is used. These words are used to convey, in condensed standard form, certain frequently used orders, instructions, and information related to communications.
Our knowledge of prowords enhances the brevity and clarity of our network exchanges. This helps us maintain discipline and as a result helps ensure the reliability of our communications.
In NO case will a proword or combination of prowords be substituted for the textual component of a message.
THIS IS – The proword “THIS IS” is used to alert the receiving station that you are about to identify your station and is the lead-in proword to just about all of your voice communications. “THIS IS” is immediately followed by your call-sign, which as we know is always spoken phonetically.
OVER – Our voice transmissions are always concluded with either the proword “OVER” or “OUT” (Never Both). Each proword signals the listener that the sender’s transmission is finished. Use “OVER” if you are awaiting a response.
OUT– use “OUT” if you are not awaiting a response. (Normal practice is for the station initiating the contact to conclude the exchange; although this is not an absolute rule it is good practice.)
WAIT– We use the proword “WAIT” when during a transmission if we must pause for a short period of time, normally only a few seconds.
WAIT OUT – If we must pause for longer than a few seconds we use the proword “WAIT OUT” which indicates to the listener that the sending station still has
information to send and will call them back shortly.
Note- during net operations even after you hear the proword “OUT” there are times when it may not be appropriate to transmit. These include after “WAIT OUT” or when the Net Control station has directed traffic relay.
ROGER– The proword “ROGER” indicates to the listening station that you have received their last transmission satisfactorily. Note this does not mean you agree with the transmission or that you will comply with any instructions it contained. Additionally, since it only signifies understanding, the proword “ROGER” is not used as an action word. For example, it is inappropriate to say “I ROGER INTO THE NET…” or “I ROGER YOUR TRANSMISSION”, where “ROGER” spoken alone will suffice.
AFFIRMATIVE – The proword “AFFIRMATIVE” simply means, “yes” or approval of a request.
WILCO – The proword “WILCO” is a contraction of the two words “WILL COMPLY”. “WILCO” is a time-honored military proword that indicates exactly that, you understand the guidance given to you by the other station and will accomplish it. More beginning military communicators have been sent down the wrong path from their movie watching experience where they may have heard the infamous “ROGER WILCO OVER AND OUT”; we all recognize that as a gross violation of our standard procedures. Either the phrase “WILL COMPLY” or the contraction “WILCO” is acceptable.
NEGATIVE – The proword “NEGATIVE” means “no” or the denial of a request.
I SPELL – Difficult words or groups within plain text messages may be spelled using the phonetic alphabet preceded by the proword “I SPELL” . Where text is composed of pronounceable words, they will be spoken and not spelled out. If clarification is needed, say the word, say “I SPELL”, spell the word phonetically, then say the word again. An example of this would be “CATENARY…I SPELL CHARLIE ALPHA TANGO ECHO NOVEMBER ALPHA ROMEO YANKEE…CATENARY”
INITIAL – A single letter will be phonetically spelled precede by the proword “INITIAL” . The words “I” and “a” are considered words, not initials, and should not be pronounced phonetically.
FIGURE(S) – We precede numerals with the proword “FIGURE” or “FIGURES” when there is a need to distinguish between numerals not in mixed groups and words. “FIGURES” is not used when transmitting the heading of a message or when the prowords “NUMBER”, “TIME”, or “GROUPS” are used. Numbers will be transmitted digit by digit, except that exact multiples of hundredths or thousands are spoken as such.
NUMBER – Finally, the proword “NUMBER” is used to indicate the station serial number assigned to a message. An example would sound like “ MESSAGE FOLLOWS NUMBER 39 ROUTINE TIME 142200 OCTOBER 2012”.
That concludes tonight’s training. Are there any questions, comments or suggested additions to this material?
Thanks, this is (callsign) clear to net control.