Roger de Coverly wrote:
Maxim Devereaux wrote:
I have now followed the example of my Barbican colleague GM Turner, and transferred affiliation from England, though in my case to Norway rather than Scotland.
You might want to tell us how it works in Norway. I believe you have to be a registered member of a local club to play in the domestic team events. Does the club then pay a fee to the National Federation for every player it registers? In terms of voting, who controls the National Federation? Players, clubs or regional associations?
If you retired from local league chess in Norway but remained active by playing in the 4NCL or even local rated tournaments, would the local Federation offer the choice of "your money or your rating", as the ECF have done in the past couple of years?
That's roughly right, yes, Roger, at least as far as my understanding goes. In general, it's like this (E&OE: the NSF laws are only found in Norwegian, so I've had to translate it):
If you are Norwegian-registered and play in a tournament or league *in Norway*, or you are foreign and play in a league, then you are obliged to be a member of a club (which then pays membership for all its members to the federation), or a direct member of the NSF. The surcharge for being a direct member is 50%, and I can't find any figures that suggest that anyone actually avails themselves of this opportunity (not really hard to see why). There are roughly 2500 members at present.
There is only one form of membership (1/2 price for juniors under 20, 1/4 price under 17). Half price again for a part-year (after 1st August). Standard membership fees are higher than for Gold membership in England (about £48 compared to £28), but this should be seen in light of higher disposable income (about 70% higher based on recent figures), which therefore more or less equates to equal.
However, there is nothing in the rules about needing to be a member of the federation if you do not live in Norway, and do not play any chess there, and I have not heard any reports of "your money or your rating", so without evidence to the contrary, I believe these (likely very few) players are effectively subsidised by the NSF.
Personally I think this is a much more reasonable approach than that taken by the ECF. I recall Stewart Reuben saying (when I queried it) that the IRO was still working for those of us who lived abroad, even if we played all our chess abroad, since he/she would have to deal with rating queries, title applications and the like. I think we can agree that this is a very infrequent occurrence (of the order of once or twice per person per lifetime, on average, I expect) and my view is that it is somewhat unreasonable to demand annual payment on those terms.
As regards organizational structure, all legislative decisions are taken at the annual congress of the NSF, which usually takes place alongside the national championships in July. Each club has a vote per (started) 25 members, and each league has a vote. This congress selects new members as required (for terms ranging from one to three years) for the central board (which is responsible for day-to-day running of the federation), the rules committee and the elite committee, and various other minor committees.