Game fee to be abolished?

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
Alex Holowczak
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Sun Mar 05, 2017 11:29 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Nick Grey wrote:As the proposal is to change on non-members they do note have a vote.
Votes are held by chess organisations, some of whom, in particular junior organisations run events for non-members, otherwise known as new players.
Two notable junior organisations running large events, such as EPSCA and NYCA, run their team events as 3-round Jamborees, meaning there is never going to be any Game Fee liability for these events. This proposal was drawn up in ignorance of that, but it does seem to put to bed any concerns that those particular events would be adversely effected.

Michael Flatt
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Michael Flatt » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:29 am

Alex Holowczak wrote: Two notable junior organisations running large events, such as EPSCA and NYCA, run their team events as 3-round Jamborees, meaning there is never going to be any Game Fee liability for these events. This proposal was drawn up in ignorance of that, but it does seem to put to bed any concerns that those particular events would be adversely effected.
EPSCA events, as you say, are run with jamboree pairings (3 rounds per day) but their competitions usually comprise more than one day:
1. In the Inter-Association u9 & u11 competitions there is a zonal qualifying event in March followed by the final in April and May.
2. In the National Primary Schools Chess Championship (NPSCC), the 'Pontins competition', there are qualifying zonals followed by the semi-finals and finals; plus the plate competition.

Thus, EPSCA competitions do comprise more than 3 rounds and will be affected by the proposed new rules.

It would be better if a simpler charging system could be devised which avoided the need to count how many games each individual player played and whether they were FIDE rated or not.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:51 am

Michael Flatt wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote: Two notable junior organisations running large events, such as EPSCA and NYCA, run their team events as 3-round Jamborees, meaning there is never going to be any Game Fee liability for these events. This proposal was drawn up in ignorance of that, but it does seem to put to bed any concerns that those particular events would be adversely effected.
EPSCA events, as you say, are run with jamboree pairings (3 rounds per day) but their competitions usually comprise more than one day:
1. In the Inter-Association u9 & u11 competitions there is a zonal qualifying event in March followed by the final in April and May.
2. In the National Primary Schools Chess Championship (NPSCC), the 'Pontins competition', there are qualifying zonals followed by the semi-finals and finals; plus the plate competition.

Thus, EPSCA competitions do comprise more than 3 rounds and will be affected by the proposed new rules.

It would be better if a simpler charging system could be devised which avoided the need to count how many games each individual player played and whether they were FIDE rated or not.
I must confess that I assumed a Zone and the Final would be different competitions. But I can see the counter-argument.

Angus French
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Angus French » Mon Mar 06, 2017 4:14 pm

Neill Cooper wrote:My main concern with the proposals is that there is no distinction between rapidplay and standard play. Various county leagues have some divisions of two rapidplay games in an evening instead of one long play game. Examples include Berkshire Division Four, Surrey Stoneleigh Trophy and Briant Poulter (Surrey Schools) Div 4 and 5. If someone plays in just two such rapidplay fixtures then they play 4 (rapidplay) games and will be subject to the membership charge. However, if they play standard play then it is only on their fourth fixture that this is applied. It would be sensible, therefore, if a single rapidplay game counted as half a standard play game, as is at present the place with game fee. Then the charge would apply on the fourth fixture, whether in a rapidplay or standard play league.
My club runs two internal rapidplay events a year. Both are six rounds and held over two consecutive club nights. Both used to be graded and, to encourage new players, the club would provide a subsidised entry fee for ECF non-members. When the rapidplay game fee went up from £1 to £1.25 we stopped grading one of the tournaments (and it became more popular). If the new proposal is implemented we'll have a choice: either to stop grading the second tournament also or to make it less attractive to ECF non-members (because any subsidy we provide probably wouldn't be meaningful in the context of a £11/15 Bronze membership fee) - and put up with a lower number of entries.

Ian Thompson
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Ian Thompson » Mon Mar 06, 2017 6:28 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:I must confess that I assumed a Zone and the Final would be different competitions. But I can see the counter-argument.
So what this discussion definitely shows is that there must be clear, unambiguous criteria defined for what constitutes separate, and the same, events.

You could say, for example, that if an entry needs to be submitted for each stage of a competition that makes each stage a separate event. You could equally well say that if participation in a later stage of a competition requires qualification from an earlier stage that makes each stage the same event.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Mar 06, 2017 6:53 pm

Ian Thompson wrote: So what this discussion definitely shows is that there must be clear, unambiguous criteria defined for what constitutes separate, and the same, events.
Rather than events, should it not be by organisation? Is a league that is run as multiple grading limit competitions, one event or several? What if it runs a knock out cup?

I've spotted something else, where the discussion paper is worded in an ambiguous manner.
Juniors
Junior Game Fee, at 60p per standard play game, was set ridiculously low. It is simply uneconomic to collect at this rate. Given the subsequent introduction of introductory free junior silver membership there is now no entry barrier to competitive junior chess. The Board therefore see no reason to modify the regulations for junior players, despite the apparent contrast of charging £15 for four games rather than £2.40 as at present.
Does "no reason to modify" mean that the present arrangements stay unchanged, or does it mean that the full adult rate will be charged?

As there was an organiser who tried to save on the ECF's FIDE related fees by bundling all his tournaments into one, will there be leagues who declare their events to be separate competitions and look for a three game limit in each one separately?

Neill Cooper
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Neill Cooper » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:06 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:I must confess that I assumed a Zone and the Final would be different competitions. But I can see the counter-argument.
I find it concerning that the ECF Home Director does not know how the new rule would be applied to events where he enters teams. What hope is there for the rest of us who run junior events?

Alex Holowczak
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:33 pm

Neill Cooper wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote:I must confess that I assumed a Zone and the Final would be different competitions. But I can see the counter-argument.
I find it concerning that the ECF Home Director does not know how the new rule would be applied to events where he enters teams. What hope is there for the rest of us who run junior events?
I regard it as a positive thing that when someone writes something they take on board their view and accept that there's a different view, which may or may not be right.

Indeed, this was a case where I was wrong and Michael Flatt was right. I've just spoken to David Thomas - I assume no one else decided to contact him to ask the question? - he confirmed that because entries are taken centrally, it is one event. This contrasts with the Unions organising the county championships, by way of a parallel.

However, it is not a problem I will be losing too much sleep over as someone who enters teams into EPSCA events. All of the players who have played for us in internal events this season are Junior Silver members. All of the players who have played for the county are also members (search Warwickshire Juniors in the grading database), with two exceptions. One exception has played in one NYCA event and one Four County invitational, events which appear to unambiguously fall within the 3-game exemption. The other was the brother of someone else who played, and was in attendance so played as a filler. So all that I have to do in my capacity as someone who enters teams in that event is continue doing exactly what I have been doing, something I think I can cope with.

Neill Cooper
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Neill Cooper » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:40 pm

Juniors
Junior Game Fee, at 60p per standard play game, was set ridiculously low. It is simply uneconomic to collect at this rate. Given the subsequent introduction of introductory free junior silver membership there is now no entry barrier to competitive junior chess. The Board therefore see no reason to modify the regulations for junior players, despite the apparent contrast of charging £15 for four games rather than £2.40 as at present.
I do not accept that it was set "ridiculously" low:
1) The payment is collected from organisers not individuals, so it is not very small amounts.
2) For rapidplay (much more common for juniors, as shown in the data with 143 juniors playing four rapidplay games and only 9 four standard play) it will be "£15 for four games rather than £1.20 as at present".
3) The low rate came about because in 2012 the board wished to impose an unrealistically high game fee of £2/£1 for juniors. It was pointed out that this would lead to many junior organisations ceasing to use ECF grading. With the reduced game fee introduced it was only the largest (in terms of ECF income) who withdrew from ECF grading as they had already commissioned its own alternative grading system.

Neill Cooper
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Neill Cooper » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:42 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:However, it is not a problem I will be losing too much sleep over as someone who enters teams into EPSCA events.
But it is something that many other EPSCA team managers will also have to ponder and might lose sleep over.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:49 pm

Neill Cooper wrote: 3) The low rate came about because in 2012 the board wished to impose an unrealistically high game fee of £2/£1 for juniors.
It also came about because otherwise the ECF would have massively increased the income it was demanding directly or indirectly from junior events. Such is the patchwork of junior organisations, that for many the ECF and its grading system was an optional extra. The UK Chess Challenge in its Basman era being a case in point.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Alex Holowczak » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:52 pm

Neill Cooper wrote:
Alex Holowczak wrote:However, it is not a problem I will be losing too much sleep over as someone who enters teams into EPSCA events.
But it is something that many other EPSCA team managers will also have to ponder and might lose sleep over.
Right, but your supposition was that as someone who enters a team into the event I should know what problems it might cause me. In that capacity, I hadn't given much thought to it, because I knew it wouldn't cause me any problems.

Neill Cooper
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Neill Cooper » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:54 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote: I've just spoken to David Thomas - I assume no one else decided to contact him to ask the question?
You are privileged - I am afraid that not all of us have the ability to get a quick answer from him on this subject.

Paul Cooksey
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Paul Cooksey » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:23 pm

I guess it is time for my annual post suggesting rapid-play should be free, solving the the junior and new player issue. At a cost, but one I think is reasonable.

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Michael Farthing
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Re: Game fee to be abolished?

Post by Michael Farthing » Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:56 am

I rather like the idea, Paul.
But have you made any attempt at costing it?
If not, to do so might get the idea more attention.

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