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Don Desfosse

Possibly the end of free US online charts

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http://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news/FA ... 722-1.html


This is obviously terrible news!


May I suggest we all write our senators and congresscritters. This site is one of many that helps you identify their contact information pretty quickly: http://www.contactingthecongress.org I have already written mine; I urge you to write yours as well. As an AOPA member, I have also written AOPA ([email protected]


Though I didn't specifically mention VATSIM, I spoke to using the data for nonprofit safety work. While I'm sure you can't all claim to be FAA Safety reps, many/most you can still modify my letter and refer to providing public presentations of safety-related data where you use the FAA information. Heck, you do this every time you train a student and/or help a pilot understand their charts.


Feel free to modify my example, below.


Don Desfosse

Air Traffic Manager

Boston ARTCC



Dear Senator xxx,

Dear Representative xxx,


I just read a news article that the FAA will be discontinuing access to online charts for individuals, and will begin charging for this data, beginning April 5, 2012.


I currently use this data in several ways, all nonprofit. I use FAA chart data in the development and deployment of aviation safety training as an FAA FAASTeam Lead, and I also use it to give local training presentations on flight and air traffic control in the community.


Though I certainly understand the FAA's need to recoup some of the cost of producing and hosting the data, I know that the data is required to be produced, so it exists (notwithstanding any argument to reduce the amount of data/products available).


I would just sincerely ask that the FAA consider simply allowing free access to either individuals, or at the very least, folks who register with the FAA and demonstrate a legitimate nonprofit and/or safety and/or education related benefit, and allow the costs to be borne by the commercial enterprises that profit from the data.


[do not include the following if you are writing to the FAA] Would you help me influence the FAA to consider a proposal such as this?



Kind regards,


Don Desfosse

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I signed and I urge every Vatsim member to do the same. The proposal to charge the pulbic for public information is outrageous. Just goes to show how the government continues to nickle and dime us to death.

Jack Gilbert

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