ECF Membership - The proposal

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
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Alex Holowczak
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Alex Holowczak » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:35 pm

HLang wrote:The implications of the proposal to England-resident players who are registered with another federation aren't clear to me.

I live in England. I am SCO on the FIDE list, and a member of Chess Scotland. I play local league and 4NCL, and possibly the occasional e2e4 event. The only reason I am currently an ECF member is to be registered as an ECF accredited coach.

Under this proposal:
  • Would a bronze membership be sufficient for all of the games in the competitions above to be ECF graded, as the FIDE side of things is already covered by my CS membership?
  • Or would just the league games be ECF graded?
  • Is the 4NCL a league for these purposes, or something else?!
  • If the 4NCL is a league, would the only benefit to me of silver or gold membership be getting FIDE rated congress games graded on the ECF list (as I'm not playing non-FIDE rated congresses)?
Apologies if this area has already been discussed in a previous thread - there are a lot of pages to wade through with no search terms guaranteed to bring it up.
You'd need to be a bronze member to play in ECF-graded league chess.

You'd need to be gold for both "the occasional e2e4 event" and the 4NCL. Yes, the 4NCL is a league, but all FIDE-rated events are counted under gold. At least, you would if you were English. Pay to Play comes in at £6/event (or whatever rate is deemed appropriate) for e2e4 and 4NCL if you're not English. I guess it'd be up to you to work out whether it was better to go for Pay to Play or become a Gold member.
Last edited by Alex Holowczak on Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Paul Cooksey

Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Paul Cooksey » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:36 pm

E Michael White wrote:
Paul Cooksey wrote:I think the assumption is that strong players are willing to pay £25 for rated chess even if they do not play for a club or in other events. I think the 4NCL has proved this is true.
Its no use mentally surveying those who play, you need to assess those who dont play but might if things were different, unless you want the ECF to operate in a smaller arena with diseconomies of scale.
Agree, but my experience of talking to strong inactive players is it is overwhelmingly about time not money. I think it is the beginners that are more price sensitive.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:51 pm

HLang wrote:
  • Would a bronze membership be sufficient for all of the games in the competitions above to be ECF graded, as the FIDE side of things is already covered by my CS membership?
Your position is a bit like Max's except, I presume, you remain a member of Chess Scotland by choice rather than necessity. I think the position with Bronze membership is that you can play in the Oxford league. You can play in the 4NCL, e2e4 and other internationally rated events by having SCO as your FIDE designation. I don't think you would be thrown out if your membership of Chess Scotland had lapsed, e2e4 in particular only check your membership status if you are ENG or intend to be ENG.

If, however, you wanted to play in, say, the Kidlington Congress or even the Cowley rapidplay, there seem to be two options. One option is that you have to upgrade to Silver, the other is that you rely on your SCO membership, but pay the non-member per Congress charge of £ 5 or £ 6. Actually it's not you that pays directly but the Kidlington or Cowley organisers, who might be required to screen entrants for non-members, Bronze members, non-members who were not English but not on the FIDE list, non-members who were on the FIDE list but not under ENG etc.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:02 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:. Pay to Play comes in at £6/event (or whatever rate is deemed appropriate) for e2e4 and 4NCL if you're not English.
Are you quite sure about that? I see the ECF have abolished the notion of collecting a player based membership charge from any FIDE rated event. Is it intended to reverse this policy?

How do the 4NCL and e2e4 feel about paying £ 6 per head or whatever for almost every foreign player?
ECF April Board meeting wrote: 3. FIDE Rated Events / ECF Membership
AF explained the background to the item, namely that there appeared to be uncertainty over the membership requirements for FIDE rated events and over whether such events should attract game fee for non ECF members. AF sought the Board’s confirmation of policy in stages as follows:
(a) “All active English-registered players on the FIDE rating list must be ECF members.” This was agreed nem con. It was assumed, subject to confirmation, that there is no ongoing cost to the ECF for inactive English-registered players, and on this basis it was agreed that ECF membership for inactive players was not a requirement.
(b) “For all events under the ECF umbrella (i.e. in England or in designated ECF territory, such as Gibraltar), the following principles apply:
a. English-registered players on the rating list must be current ECF members;
b. Players registered on the rating list for another national federation do NOT need to be ECF members;
c. Players NOT registered on the rating list must be current ECF members unless the organisers are satisfied that they are in the process of affiliating to a different federation or that they are a member of a different national federation.”
Following considerable discussion, the above was agreed nem con.
(c) “Organisers of FIDE rated events taking place under the ECF umbrella should make every effort to ensure that players in their events meet the criteria. The results of any player NOT meeting the requirements set out in point (b) above shall not be rated.” Following considerable discussion of how best to balance practicality and fairness with the responsibilities of organisers, this was agreed nem con.
(d) “FIDE rated events are exempt from Game Fee.” On the basis of points (a) to (c) above, it was agreed that it would be inappropriate to charge Game Fee for these events.

Sean Hewitt

Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Sean Hewitt » Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:31 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:How do the 4NCL and e2e4 feel about paying £ 6 per head or whatever for almost every foreign player?
I can't speak for the 4NCL, but I would have no problem with this. However, it seems to me as though this is optional. If non-members are allowed to play, then a foreigner might well choose to forgo this membership. His games won't get graded but so what? He doesn't care about an ECF grade, does he?

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:44 pm

Sean Hewitt wrote: However, it seems to me as though this is optional. If non-members are allowed to play, then a foreigner might well choose to forgo this membership. His games won't get graded but so what? He doesn't care about an ECF grade, does he?

As you say, in practice it might be optional. But there will be resident players like Heather who might want their games ECF graded. Do you have a tick box which says, "I am not ENG on the FIDE list, but I want my games ECF graded anyway for an extra entry fee of £6" You then have to tell the graders and the Office who you are paying for and who you aren't.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Alex Holowczak » Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:52 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sean Hewitt wrote: However, it seems to me as though this is optional. If non-members are allowed to play, then a foreigner might well choose to forgo this membership. His games won't get graded but so what? He doesn't care about an ECF grade, does he?

As you say, in practice it might be optional. But there will be resident players like Heather who might want their games ECF graded. Do you have a tick box which says, "I am not ENG on the FIDE list, but I want my games ECF graded anyway for an extra entry fee of £6" You then have to tell the graders and the Office who you are paying for and who you aren't.
I'm under the impression that gold also includes any FIDE-rating fees. I don't know whether this will mean the games won't be rated unless they pay the £6, as well as not graded. (It may just be the £1/annum to be on the list that's covered.)

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:23 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote: I'm under the impression that gold also includes any FIDE-rating fees. I don't know whether this will mean the games won't be rated unless they pay the £6, as well as not graded. (It may just be the £1/annum to be on the list that's covered.)
There are two fees. The first is that FIDE charges membership of itself to national federations by size. Size is measured by counting active players with your designation. The charge being 1 Euro per head. This is capped at 1500, so if you get beyond that, every additional player is free. ENG is about halfway there in the 850s, but with more to come from this season's 4NCL.

So every active player costs the ECF a Euro. Whether trying to make them all members is really worth the time and effort currently being devoted to this is another matter.

Also there are rating fees. These are calculated per event and are very much higher for all play alls than for a Swiss. For a Swiss I think the cost is 1 Euro per player per event. The current position is that the ECF charge a fee to all FIDE rated events to recoup the costs of the International Rating Officer and the rating fees to FIDE. Whether this changes, I don't know. Perhaps they are proposing that the Gold membership should cover the rating fees. If so, then it's yet another example of the ECF being determined to transfer costs to the relatively less active players.

Andrew Farthing
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Andrew Farthing » Fri Jun 24, 2011 5:53 pm

Maxim Devereaux wrote:I played 8 games in England this season just gone (all in the 4NCL). Why do I have to pay £25 to have those games graded and rated, when someone can quite possibly play 30+ games in leagues and clubs for around half the cost, or 100+ games including congresses for around three quarters of the cost?

As far as I can see, from a personal standpoint, this will make matters worse, and not better.
The current situation is that English-registered players who play only in the 4NCL are required to be ECF members. Standard membership costs £25 now, £27 from 1st September 2011.

If the approach set out in my letter were to be introduced, the cost in 2012 would drop back to £25. If the Membership Scheme proposals are not passed, the Standard membership rate of £27 might well go up again when the April 2012 Finance Council decides how to close the remainder of the budget gap.

It is true that for players in this specific situation, the original Membership Scheme proposal at £18 for all adult players, regardless of the type of event entered, would have been cheaper. The latest proposals reflect the view that FIDE-rated events are of a stature which justifies a certain premium.

benedgell
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by benedgell » Fri Jun 24, 2011 6:22 pm

I've just skim- read through the document, but my initial reaction (and admittedly I was against a membership scheme previously) is that this is very much an improvement over the original suggestion.

Mike Truran
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Mike Truran » Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:37 pm

The latest proposals reflect the view that FIDE-rated events are of a stature which justifies a certain premium.
I'm interested in this point about the 'premium' attached to FIDE rated events that Andrew mentioned. I had emailed Andrew on the subject separately but got no reply (no doubt he either has other things on his mind or added me to his blacklist), so I thought I would just throw it out for public debate. If there is a 'premium', it arises mainly from two sources: (a) the effort made by the organisers and participants in such events to develop and maintain them in terms of playing conditions, prize money, good organisation etc etc; and (b) the possibility of obtaining and maintaining a FIDE rating.

It seems to me that the value of any premium associated with (a) is generated by and so should accrue to the organisers of and participants in such events, and that the value of any premium associated with (b) belongs to FIDE, who maintain the system overall.

It is unclear to me exactly what value the ECF itself brings to FIDE rated events that justifies it charging any sort of premium membership category to participate in them.

HLang
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by HLang » Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:42 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
HLang wrote:
  • Would a bronze membership be sufficient for all of the games in the competitions above to be ECF graded, as the FIDE side of things is already covered by my CS membership?
Your position is a bit like Max's except, I presume, you remain a member of Chess Scotland by choice rather than necessity. I think the position with Bronze membership is that you can play in the Oxford league. You can play in the 4NCL, e2e4 and other internationally rated events by having SCO as your FIDE designation. I don't think you would be thrown out if your membership of Chess Scotland had lapsed, e2e4 in particular only check your membership status if you are ENG or intend to be ENG.

If, however, you wanted to play in, say, the Kidlington Congress or even the Cowley rapidplay, there seem to be two options. One option is that you have to upgrade to Silver, the other is that you rely on your SCO membership, but pay the non-member per Congress charge of £ 5 or £ 6. Actually it's not you that pays directly but the Kidlington or Cowley organisers, who might be required to screen entrants for non-members, Bronze members, non-members who were not English but not on the FIDE list, non-members who were on the FIDE list but not under ENG etc.
Two direct replies, two different answers (from you and Alex) - glad it's not just me! :-)

I'm a member of CS for international selection reasons (life membership taken out a number of years ago, though I also subscribe to the magazine to support CS). I send all of my external results in to the CS grader, don't really care about my 3-digit grade and have never had a pet goldfish.

I'll wait and see what transpires, I think. It just wasn't clear to me how an English-resident paid-up member of another national federation would fit in with what was being proposed.

Ian Jamieson
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Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Ian Jamieson » Sat Jun 25, 2011 2:36 pm

Where is it envisaged would county chess fit into the tiered membership structure?

Would the new charity have to pay VAT?

Sorry if these have already been answered.

Jon D'Souza-Eva

Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Jon D'Souza-Eva » Sat Jun 25, 2011 5:38 pm

Mike Truran wrote:It is unclear to me exactly what value the ECF itself brings to FIDE rated events that justifies it charging any sort of premium membership category to participate in them.
I think the justification is that people who play in FIDE rated events are more serious / dedicated to the game and so the ECF feel that these players are likely to cough up extra cash if asked to.

Jon D'Souza-Eva

Re: ECF Membership - The proposal

Post by Jon D'Souza-Eva » Sat Jun 25, 2011 5:43 pm

Ian Jamieson wrote:Would the new charity have to pay VAT?
Charities have to pay VAT but they may be able to claim it back for some things. Much more useful is the fact that they are able to claim the VAT of any donations made. For example if someone gives an ECF charity £1000, the charity would be able to claim an extra £250 back, i.e. as if the person had donated £1250 but £250 (20%) had been paid to the government as VAT.

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