Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
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Is the ECF doing a good job?

Poll ended at Wed May 31, 2017 9:42 pm

Yes
23
53%
No
20
47%
 
Total votes: 43

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JustinHorton
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by JustinHorton » Fri May 26, 2017 3:30 pm

If it's anything like Spain then comparisons with England are pretty difficult simply because the whole way chess is organised is very different.
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John McKenna
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by John McKenna » Fri May 26, 2017 3:36 pm

Obviously the original question posed by Paul C is - for a multitude of reasons (see preceding discussions, above) - an unanswerable enigma wrapped in a conundrum.

There is, however, an answer to how the ECF could be more democratic and act more in accordance with the players' wishes and it is .......................................... 42, or some such number.

That number being the number of votes at Council given to each of the 8 Direct Member reps that would enable their total number of votes to equal all the other votes at Council.

Let's say, for the sake of simplicity, that there are 10 times the number of chessmen on the board in votes available at Council, i.e. 320 votes.

[NB - Minutes of the Finance Council held on 16th April 2016... Approximately 40 attended, although the number of votes at the disposal of all Council members totalled 322... (SCCU ECF News)]

Partitioned into 2 lots - 160 Direct Member reps' votes (20 to each rep) and 160 other votes allocated to various bodies much as they are at present.

In the resulting scenario the Direct Members' reps, if they all agreed, would be able to match the votes of all other bodies, if they were all agreed, on any matter to be decided on by voting in Council.

One extra deciding vote should exist - to be cast by, say, the Chair of the meeting - just in case such a finely balanced situation arose.

Of course, that would still leave some, but considerably reduced, room for machinations and associated accusations of the kind we have seen and heard about regarding ECF meetings and votes therein.

Hopefully, voting would be better balanced and far more democratic than at present since half of all votes would be cast by 8 persons directly accountable to the paying-player membership of the ECF - who provide a significant amount of revenue, which really should merit more of a say in the voodoo that the ECF does do, so well, than it currently does . The status quo is stale, mates, the change proposed would be win-win. Go figure.

Just a quick comment on what follows - the DCMS goverment grant came with strings and oversight attached. The player membership of the ECF probably contribute a similar, or even larger, sum and get fringe benefits but little or no direct say or oversight in return.
Mick Norris wrote:English chess players don't want to pay much to the federation, and to some extent get the federation they pay for; government support has been withdrawn, and local authorities don't support chess any more (I've been to chess events in Town Halls in Rochdale, Bolton, Bury & Manchester, but they now charge too much to host anything)

What's the situation in France & Germany?
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Paolo Casaschi
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Paolo Casaschi » Fri May 26, 2017 3:39 pm

Mick Norris wrote:English chess players don't want to pay much to the federation, and to some extent get the federation they pay for; government support has been withdrawn, and local authorities don't support chess any more (I've been to chess events in Town Halls in Rochdale, Bolton, Bury & Manchester, but they now charge too much to host anything)

What's the situation in France & Germany?
The situation is that, for example, the latest FIDE rating list (if I did the pivot table right) has 2923 players for ENG, 19439 for FRA and 22897 for GER. You certainly can try to find issues and excuses for that, but isn't the chess federation job to overcome those issues and make chess a success?
Last edited by Paolo Casaschi on Fri May 26, 2017 3:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Paolo Casaschi
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Paolo Casaschi » Fri May 26, 2017 3:40 pm

JustinHorton wrote:If it's anything like Spain then comparisons with England are pretty difficult simply because the whole way chess is organised is very different.
Yes, in those countries chess is simply better organized and attracts a wider audience, including younger people. But isn't the chess federation role to make sure chess in the country is organized in such a way to be a successful enterprise for those that enjoy the game?
Last edited by Paolo Casaschi on Fri May 26, 2017 3:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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JustinHorton
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by JustinHorton » Fri May 26, 2017 3:44 pm

That's quite right in my view, but it may also be right that the ECF isn't in a position to do the same thing. It can't just be FEDA: it hasn't got the rights, the powers or the funding.
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Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Fri May 26, 2017 4:16 pm

Paolo Casaschi wrote: The situation is that, for example, the latest FIDE rating list (if I did the pivot table right) has 2923 players for ENG, 19439 for FRA and 22897 for GER. You certainly can try to find issues and excuses for that ....
You don’t have to try. There’s an entirely obvious reason why the figures aren’t directly comparable.


One of the questions that I’ve had in mind reading this thread is "what is par?" If we are deciding if the ECF is doing a good job or not, what is our yardstick?

Are other (european) federations and what they do may or may not be relevant to judging what the ECF is doing? Is the past ECF - or the BCF - comparable to the current ECF and vice versa? I’m not sure I know.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri May 26, 2017 4:34 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote: Is the past ECF - or the BCF - comparable to the current ECF and vice versa? I’m not sure I know.
Almost all leagues and many Congresses have histories going back to the 1970s and earlier. So, yes, you can compare numbers now to numbers then.

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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Mick Norris » Fri May 26, 2017 4:35 pm

JustinHorton wrote:That's quite right in my view, but it may also be right that the ECF isn't in a position to do the same thing. It can't just be FEDA: it hasn't got the rights, the powers or the funding.
Yes, I'm sure the stats don't provide much useful evidence; I'd like to know the funding models in France & Germany, how much the players pay and how much money comes from elsewhere
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Fri May 26, 2017 4:46 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Jonathan Bryant wrote: Is the past ECF - or the BCF - comparable to the current ECF and vice versa? I’m not sure I know.
Almost all leagues and many Congresses have histories going back to the 1970s and earlier. So, yes, you can compare numbers now to numbers then.

Well, yes - but I was thinking of something more a tad sophisticated than just comparing numbers.

As we have seen, for example, you can compare the number of FIDE registered players in England/Wales and France. It wont’ tell you anything meaningful, but you can do it.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri May 26, 2017 4:55 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote: As we have seen, for example, you can compare the number of FIDE registered players in England/Wales and France. It wont’ tell you anything meaningful, but you can do it.
With a little bit of inside knowledge, you note that almost all players in France have FIDE ratings because they structure their competitions that way, whilst in the UK, it's only those who participate in the minority of FIDE rated events who have ratings. It's fairer then to compare the respective head counts in the National rating lists or the number of games played and rated both for the national system and for FIDE. You can also sum up the respective counts for leagues and Congresses or compare entries to the National Championships where France like England runs it as a festival with events for all levels of player.

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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by NickFaulks » Fri May 26, 2017 7:43 pm

Paolo Casaschi wrote:The comment about the forum is obviously a joke.
How were we supposed to guess that? The previous ECF administartion really did believe that this forum represented everything that was wrong with English chess.

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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by NickFaulks » Fri May 26, 2017 7:52 pm

Paolo Casaschi wrote:The situation is that, for example, the latest FIDE rating list (if I did the pivot table right) has 2923 players for ENG, 19439 for FRA and 22897 for GER. You certainly can try to find issues and excuses for that
That is an extremely simple one to answer - the ECF has taxed FIDE rated chess almost out of existence. They have treated it as a cash cow and have killed the golden ( membership ) goose.

Perhaps they believe that it it is better for junior players not to play internationally rated chess - that view is regularly expressed on this forum. I think it is quite wrong, and so do our European neighbours.

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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by LawrenceCooper » Fri May 26, 2017 8:00 pm

NickFaulks wrote:
Paolo Casaschi wrote:The situation is that, for example, the latest FIDE rating list (if I did the pivot table right) has 2923 players for ENG, 19439 for FRA and 22897 for GER. You certainly can try to find issues and excuses for that
That is an extremely simple one to answer - the ECF has taxed FIDE rated chess almost out of existence. They have treated it as a cash cow and have killed the golden ( membership ) goose.

Perhaps they believe that it it is better for junior players not to play internationally rated chess - that view is regularly expressed on this forum. I think it is quite wrong, and so do our European neighbours.
Do we really have a lot less rated chess now though? I can't recall a time when England had that much rated chess compared to other countries eg France, Germany, Spain etc and those events that have stopped haven't been because of the actions of the ECF introducing membership. I stopped running FIDE events more due to FIDE changing the titled player requirements than anything the federation did and I don't think e2e4 stopped or cut back because of membership. Other events in my time eg Lloyds Bank etc lost sponsorship so I don't think we've lost (m)any events albeit I could accept that it may discourage new ones from starting up.

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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by Roger de Coverly » Fri May 26, 2017 8:03 pm

NickFaulks wrote: That is an extremely simple one to answer - the ECF has taxed FIDE rated chess almost out of existence.
It has never existed in the past in any volume much greater than now. With the British chess tradition of playing sessions of less than four hours, much of British chess is out of bounds anyway. Those Congresses that had four hour or longer sessions have slowly been moving towards having their top section or top two sections rated. The e2e4 Congresses were rated and they were the innovators in showing that 90 30 could work over a weekend. Their disappearance from the calendar may have reduced the number of rated games played.

The ECF dangled a carrot for FIDE rating, being a British Qualification place, but, as you suggest, also a stick, in demanding membership requirements. They falsely claimed that was not their fault but a FIDE requirement, but arbiter requirements imposed by FIDE are also a disincentive.

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: Poll: Is the ECF doing a good job?

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Fri May 26, 2017 8:06 pm

The ECF Membership scheme has an interesting effect on FIDE-rated chess in this country: the more FIDE-rated events there are, the more other encouragement other events have to becoming rated.

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