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Affirm? Or Roger...

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I started flying in 1965 and "affirmative" was commonly used. Those were the days of full reporting and I think that requirement helped create a higher standard of radio use.....call me old fashioned!

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3 hours ago, Head in the clouds said:

I dare say there have been some changes since the 1960s. I got my CPL in the 1980s and I never heard of Affirmative, it was always Affirm. Over and Out are still in use (never used together of course) but mainly for HF rather than VHF. Though in cases of poor VHF reception such as was the case on the far north coasts until 10yrs or so ago, they can still be helpful for understanding.

 

Roger is still in everyday use, as is Wilco.

 

Here is a link to the AIP - see pages 293 & 294 (Gen 3.4 - 25 5.) This is the current version issued a few days ago.

 

A few extracts -

 

AFFIRM        Yes.

 

NEGATIVE    No or Permission is not granted or
                     That is not correct or Not capable.

 

OUT              This exchange of transmissions is
                     ended and I expect no response from
                     you {not normally used in VHF or
                     satellite communication).

 

OVER            My transmission is ended and I
                     expect a response from you {not
                      normally used in VHF or satellite
                     communication).

 

ROGER         I have received all of your last
                    transmission [under NO
                    circumstances to be used in reply to
                    a question requiring READBACK or
                    a direct answer in the affirmative or
                    negative).

 

WILCO         I understand your message and will
                    comply with it.

 

I found a line there which read  Yes, Affirm, Affirmative, That is correct, so maybe there's an error there; I know you said your memory goes back to the '80s but I'm not so sure.

However, I can see the logic in using "Affirm" to avoid any "tive" confusion with negative.

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2 hours ago, facthunter said:

 Why do you say IF AT ALL. ?   The change appears to have been around 2006 in AUSTRALIA.. and I worked as a full time airline pilot for 25 years. and always used Affirmative  Never  Yes, Roger,,  Over or Out.  Plenty of Australian pilots operate internationally. Nev

 

I didn't mean any offence, I just wondered whether you might have picked it up while flying overseas. But since Silvercity has mentioned it was in use in 1965 then you probably just retained what you learned at the beginning, as many of us did.

 

When I started commercial in 1980s we used to be Maintaining (which soon became Cruising) and we broadcast to Traffic, which became All Stations and so on (and they later changed back again ...) - it took a long while to remember to use the latest version.

 

Either way, I'm sure Affirmative didn't become Affirm in or around 2006, it must have been at least 20yrs before that because I never heard it, nor used it from the beginning. A while ago I saw a 1980s VFG lying around a club hangar - someone's souvenir I guess - one of those orange plastic binders of the era, next time I'm down there I'll have another look, it may provide some insight.

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54 minutes ago, turboplanner said:

I found a line there which read  Yes, Affirm, Affirmative, That is correct, so maybe there's an error there; ....

That's a different reference, it's a definition of the abbreviation AFM (Section Gen 2.2-32/page 186). It's not a spoken phraseology, it just indicates that that abbreviation can mean any of those plain-language definitions.

 

General and Meteorological Abbreviations

 

AFM      Yes, Affirm,
              Affirmative, That is
              correct

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 You should note that OUT and OVER are NOT used in VHF communications which is ALL we use generally these days in RAAus and "Roger"  MUST NOT be used where readback is required. It should be discouraged in any case as just giving your callsign works better  Identifying YOU . Anybody could say roger, and you don't make a call without an ident. You terminate a conversation with just "ABC' and can add "clearing your frequency" if that helps. where you must transfer to another to  enter a circuit etc or give a 10 mile call.. 

 If "Affirm" is an abbreviation it makes sense, and it is claimed to be so,  but AFFIRM is a transitive verb with a quite different  and less appropriate meaning to Affirmative which is an adjective or a noun and  makes more meaningful sense in this context. The claimed risks of the endings being similar are not proven anywhere I can find and you are meant to EMPHASISE the  first part of both AFFIRM ative.. and it's opposite NEG ative  The original publications did everything Phonetically where Quebec for instance was KEE bec.  (from memory) but all the letters of the alphabet were similarly "modified" to be given the maximum transmitted  clarity. You sound like a right "GIT" when you do this in normal conversation, but  it was and is effective. Like I said in  in earlier post, the standard has dropped  off considerably. Most mumble , talk too fast,  key the MIC carelessly . Talk over others and make excessively complex and non standard calls.. Nev

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59 minutes ago, facthunter said:

 You should note that OUT and OVER are NOT used in VHF communications which is ALL we use generally these days in RAAus and "Roger"  MUST NOT be used where readback is required. It should be discouraged in any case as just giving your callsign works better  Identifying YOU . Anybody could say roger, and you don't make a call without an ident. You terminate a conversation with just "ABC' and can add "clearing your frequency" if that helps. where you must transfer to another to  enter a circuit etc or give a 10 mile call.. 

 If "Affirm" is an abbreviation it makes sense, and it is claimed to be so,  but AFFIRM is a transitive verb with a quite different  and less appropriate meaning to Affirmative which is an adjective or a noun and  makes more meaningful sense in this context. The claimed risks of the endings being similar are not proven anywhere I can find and you are meant to EMPHASISE the  first part of both AFFIRM ative.. and it's opposite NEG ative  The original publications did everything Phonetically where Quebec for instance was KEE bec.  (from memory) but all the letters of the alphabet were similarly "modified" to be given the maximum transmitted  clarity. You sound like a right "GIT" when you do this in normal conversation, but  it was and is effective. Like I said in  in earlier post, the standard has dropped  off considerably. Most mumble , talk too fast,  key the MIC carelessly . Talk over others and make excessively complex and non standard calls.. Nev

No, AFFIRM is not an abbreviation, the abbreviation is AFM and as shown above, the abbreviation AFM has no relation to the spoken response AFFIRM.

It doesn't really matter whether the use of Affirm for Yes is grammatically correct English or not, because as you conceded earlier, if it's in the AIP then that's how it is to be done. If they decide that we should say Wibble for Yes, then so be it, classic English or not ...

As far as Roger is concerned, in practical terms it's rarely used as a single word response but if you keep in mind it's purpose is to indicate a fully understood communication, an example of a complete response might be - Roger, ABC is holding clear of runway 12. Hence more information has been supplied than would be by the suggested use of just the call sign. 

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26 minutes ago, old man emu said:

"Affirm" is a word with several meanings, depending on the context in which it is used. However, none of these meanings can be construed as "Yes".

 

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/affirm

Does that really have anything to do with it? See my post above, ref Wibble. I think it's a bit scary that people just don't 'get it'. No wonder the OP is confused ...

 

It's a Code - y'know? - we're all supposed to understand the same simple few words (or created words) that are intended to be hard to confuse with other words, so that communication can take place in difficult radiotelephony circumstances and noisy surroundings.

 

But then you've got some who say that anything that isn't perfect English isn't acceptable, and others who seem to think any change from the old days is an abomination.

 

No wonder CASA/DCA/DoA has/had little patience with recreational flyers, I think you'll find the present day CPLs just get on with what phraseology is required rather than worrying about whether it's a 'transitive verb' or not  007_rofl.gif.c0acfa65b346376a3dbfced8cc47aa8b.gif . Then again it's an ICAO thing, but it seems every personal opinion here is considered more relevant than those of an international organisation trying to make people of different native languages understand each other.

Edited by Head in the clouds
it needed it - poobah
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20 hours ago, IBob said:

Just be sure to get an Affirmative before you Roger...)

If I was about to be Rogered I'd respond Negative.

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The system was completely revised after the war. The older able ,baker. etc. What the US do is important  as most of the world's flying is done there, and they manage (much better than we do ) to run a good scene. Radio procedures here are a crock.. Radio is a good addition to see and be seen which is by itself a bit of a gamble.. I haven't seen much on radio procedures and technique being promulgated in years. Nev

Edited by facthunter

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All arguments aside, my main point was I have a habit of saying affirm in situations that really warrant a roger 🙂

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We said fife and niner and affirmative when I started. Turning base, not turns base. Cranked out a hf aerial in the bush. Them was the days.

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Thank you for this clarity.I will now use AFFIRM not AFFIRMATIVE.I started flying in 2005 in South Africa,we were using AFFIRMATIVE and ".........ready for Departure".It became weird to me when I came here around 2010 to just say "....................ready" when ready to enter the runway.It`s interesting to note at times we are copying the American way without realising how wrong it is.  

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I worked for several years as a radio operator in a Fire Control Centre for NSW Rural Fire Service.  We were the conduit for all radiotelephony between FCC & the fireground.  Since all rural fireys are volunteers, with varying experience, standards of radio calls differed greatly. 

 

The old Standard Operating Procedure for radio terminology called for "affirmative". I have personal experience of the difficulties this causes, when the operator is not speaking clearly (raging bushfire outside the cab), when terrain degrades the signal, and when the first couple of seconds is not transmitted after the ptt button is pressed due to the system itself.   Even asking for a repeat still often results in multiple    "##@%&*<%#..ative"  Only the last syllables come through.

 

It is clearly unwise to use two words sharing much of their sound when their meanings are opposites. So eventually the SOP's were changed and "Affirm" became the required word, with the emphasis on the first syllable.

 

This mostly worked, except for a few older hands. These guys complained that they'd been trained to use affirmative, they'd always used it, & didn't see the point of changing.  Had they heard what we heard, with scratchy radio transmissions sometimes conveying urgent and important information, they may have appreciated the need for change.

 

Bruce

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I've just got to say, Nobody, that I just love your forum name, modesty it may have been intended to be, and it's a classic! Gets me every time I see "Nobody said this and Nobody said that ..." love it.

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