ECF to scrap its grading system

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
NickFaulks
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by NickFaulks » Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:04 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:43 pm
As far as many are concerned the bulk of their annual fee is for grading.
I'm sure that the Board is delighted that many paying members feel that way, since grading is probably the only thing they are perceived to be doing well ( pace proposed radical changes ). The accounts tell an entirely different story.

Membership fees are used to fund, in descending order of significance

1. Running expenses. The existing grading system claims a small percentage of these. I remain of the view that a detailed analysis would show that the biggest single expense is the collection of membership fees.

2. The national team.

3. The rest - net of external income, not much.

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Michael Farthing
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Michael Farthing » Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:19 pm

Ian Thompson wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 1:45 pm
Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 1:21 pm
Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:43 pm

Some match captains on the night take 2 weeks to input. It may well be because the opposition captain has not got the correct player details.
Most League management systems require that players are selected from a drop down club list, so an unreadable scribble on the match card should not be an issue.
It's an issue if the player isn't on the drop-down list. Whilst that may result in a forfeit for the match result, the actual game played is still likely to count for grading.

It's also an issue if the unreadable scribble might be more than one person on the drop-down list.
There is a facility in the ECF system to select "New Player" with message to the site administrator with full details of the new player to be added to the list. It works very well (I have used it for two years on the precursor system). The game result can be entered immediately with this name of "New Player" so no further action is needed after the player's details have been added. I assume the "more senior" administrator does this to ensure that checks for duplicates and matching to ECF membership is done by someone who is aware of the checks needed.

Regarding the scribble it is intended that match results will be entered by team captains who will be interpreting their own scribble or present at the match to check they can read the writing while still in the presence of the relevant player. I've never had a problem, but I suppose I'm lucky that I can read my own writing.
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Brian Valentine
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Brian Valentine » Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:41 pm

Angus French wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:22 am
Alex Holowczak wrote:
Sat Dec 22, 2018 10:50 pm
The deadline for July (e.g.) is normally about 15th July. Leagues are normally finished in the middle of May, so a league grader has maybe 6 weeks to get the results in. I suspect there's a heavy element of graders working to a deadline, and if the deadline was tighter (as it is in January), they'd get the results in sooner. But if the deadline is 15th July, why do the grading on 29th May?...
Two of the three leagues in which my main club plays have matches in June.

But it's the January grading list for which the deadlines are obviously tightest and, as recent consultation with results officers carried by Brian Valentine discovered, it wasn't really feasible to attempt to speed things up. You don't know about this, Alex?

In any case, the issue remains: what sort of turnaround would be expected for monthly grading? And if it's something faster than is currently the case, I think it would be a good idea to consult with the people who do the work.
I don't know (yet) what turnaround timescale graders can achieve, but I doubt we can shave more than a week off the current delay without a significant upgrade (spoiler alert: I don't intend to try without improvements). And some goodwill from the reporting community.

Nevertheless we can all see what is going on around us. Mentioned elsewhere we see that FIDE can get out monthly grading lists. In England the Yorkshire Grading System updated daily and in Wales there is a general 24 hour turnaround, including results from outside Wales.

Until recently I officiated in two cricket leagues. In one results have to be in by midnight. In the other results are texted in after each game and all 16 divisions have updated league tables within an hour. This sort of speed greatly facilitates publicity and community interest.

I'd have thought club internal events would benefit from having results and tables uptodate on line. I can't believe that anyone can defend unreadable scrap of paper reporting.

We should be getting chess result reporting up to the standards of many other sports whether we need monthly grading or not.
Last edited by Brian Valentine on Sun Dec 23, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mick Norris
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Mick Norris » Sun Dec 23, 2018 3:23 pm

Ian Thompson wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 1:45 pm
It's an issue if the player isn't on the drop-down list. Whilst that may result in a forfeit for the match result, the actual game played is still likely to count for grading.

It's also an issue if the unreadable scribble might be more than one person on the drop-down list
Agree, that's the issue we have with the Manchester League system; it allows online reporting (indeed, we insist on it) and theoretically captains have 3 days to submit the result (but some need chasing after this deadline); but there are times when players are ineligible and we have to alter the results
Michael Farthing wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:19 pm
Regarding the scribble it is intended that match results will be entered by team captains who will be interpreting their own scribble or present at the match to check they can read the writing while still in the presence of the relevant player. I've never had a problem, but I suppose I'm lucky that I can read my own writing.
:lol: personally, I find my handwriting a bit of a struggle
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

NickFaulks
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by NickFaulks » Sun Dec 23, 2018 3:32 pm

Brian Valentine wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:41 pm
We should be getting chess result reporting up to the standards of many other sports whether we need monthly grading or not.
I have a great deal of sympathy with that view. The argument against is that as soon as this information is available, then the authorities will use it to produce lists that are widely considered to be just a nuisance.

Nick Grey
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Dec 23, 2018 4:58 pm

Nick I agree with you on something. But some of our own teams do not update results on the current systems within 24 hours. Or it may be wanting confirmation from opposition or a controller or something else. Mick yes it is also the point. I'm quite miffed when both teams get the wrong player.

I think it is a bad analogy with other sports for individual sports (e.g. football). On Sat week Kingstonian beat Bognor 4-1. A lot of detail including no of spectators. On 17/12 Kingston 2 v Surbiton 4 was 2.5 each with 1 game adjourned. So for those that live in the Kingstonian area the news is on football (other sports) but not chess.

As far as I'm concerned the individual chess parts are the equivalent of fantasy football performance & of no interest to the general public, other than to individuals that want us to keep their scores for them because of ECF registration. Though we did take the local news worthy opportunity to put the Alexander Cup Final into the local press.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Dec 23, 2018 5:12 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 4:58 pm
with 1 game adjourned.
There's your reporting problem then. Get Surrey to join most of the rest of country in abolishing adjournments and adjudications.

Near instant reporting is done by tournaments, particularly those using the chess-results server, as well as the 4NCL for match results. So even inside chess, there's timely reporting.

NickFaulks
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by NickFaulks » Sun Dec 23, 2018 5:23 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 5:12 pm
Get Surrey to join most of the rest of country in abolishing adjournments and adjudications.
Sorry, but where increments are forbidden I have reverted to requiring adjournment / adjudication rather than guillotine finishes. I have been involved in too many shambles resulting from the latter.

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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Alex Holowczak » Sun Dec 23, 2018 5:27 pm

NickFaulks wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 5:23 pm
Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 5:12 pm
Get Surrey to join most of the rest of country in abolishing adjournments and adjudications.
Sorry, but where increments are forbidden I have reverted to requiring adjournment / adjudication rather than guillotine finishes. I have been involved in too many shambles resulting from the latter.
I've gone even further as a result of guillotine finishes, and just stopped playing.

Nick Grey
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm

Why nothing wrong with adjournments and adjudications? Particularly as both leagues voted for them (as well as London League which I also play in). Looks like you want to scrap more than half the graded games in England as part of the process. What is the point of that for those that care about chess.

Technically does the chess-results server allow a year long league? Not that I'm expecting that those that will implement to know the answers yet.

My most worrying part of the server was not getting a fide result in the last round of a tournament because my opponent was not on a fide grading. I was also shocked that the player on the board after you in your 4NCL team was without a fide rating. It works both ways having a Gold membership I am expecting 100 percent grading on fide & ECF. So I think that implementing this system undermines the whole membership structures too.

I usually plump for adjournments or quickplay. Letting my captain know I prefer a slow play board but will not object to quickplay if needed to get a full team out. When I play quickplay I want a digital clock. It helps on guillotine QP finishes & 10.2 claims at 1030 in the evening when I have started work at 7am.

Please note I'm not in a position on any league - though quite happy of the match reporting system for County matches as well as SCCU rules which had a quick change when a few quirks with new rules were ironed out.

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Matt Mackenzie
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Matt Mackenzie » Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:07 pm

Adjudications should be stamped on from the greatest possible height, I accept there can be adjournments in exceptional cases though.
"Set up your attacks so that when the fire is out, it isn't out!" (H N Pillsbury)

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:34 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm
Looks like you want to scrap more than half the graded games in England as part of the process.
I don't know if there are any reliable statistics, but in much of the country it's completely normal for games to be finished in a single session and without engine or adjudicator interference. More likely to be under 20% potentially subject to adjudication or adjournment.

But if the ECF did want to include local leagues in monthly calculations, protocols for dealing with unfinished games would be needed. It must happen occasionally now, for a game started before Christmas, but where the result is still unknown at deadline for result submissions.

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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Alex Holowczak » Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:34 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm
Why nothing wrong with adjournments and adjudications? Particularly as both leagues voted for them (as well as London League which I also play in). Looks like you want to scrap more than half the graded games in England as part of the process. What is the point of that for those that care about chess.
One of the most important questions to ask oneself, I think, is whether or not a layman would understand it. The chess world would understand it, and that's great, but to get new people involved, you need to make it something that they're expecting to see. Would players new to chess/league chess expect to play half a game on one evening, then half a game some other evening? The league might reasonably argue that the main thing is the interest of their members, and that's fine - but it lacks a certain amount of strategic thinking as to how the league might go about growing, rather than just ticking over from one season to the next. By the way, games ending in adjournment or adjudication are in the significant minority in leagues in England these days. London is one pocket where it still happens, but most of the rest of the country moved on. In fact, increments are increasingly used. But you shouldn't confuse London's position on this issue with that of the rest of England.
Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm
Technically does the chess-results server allow a year long league? Not that I'm expecting that those that will implement to know the answers yet.
Yes, it does. It doesn't matter how long the tournament lasts. It will struggle to cope with the ad hoc playing arrangements though, where individual matches are played on different nights. But the LMS can cope with that.
Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm
My most worrying part of the server was not getting a fide result in the last round of a tournament because my opponent was not on a fide grading. I was also shocked that the player on the board after you in your 4NCL team was without a fide rating. It works both ways having a Gold membership I am expecting 100 percent grading on fide & ECF. So I think that implementing this system undermines the whole membership structures too.
Gold membership covers playing in a tournament which is FIDE-rated. If, to comply with your 100% expectancy rate, organisers wish to not permit ungraded players to play - that's their prerogative. I suspect few will take that option though, because how else will unrated people get a FIDE-rating?

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by Roger de Coverly » Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:37 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm
I was also shocked that the player on the board after you in your 4NCL team was without a fide rating.
I don't see what's shocking about it.

It's a valid method for a player to gain an international rating by playing in the 4NCL. I suspect offering the chance to play for a FIDE rating may even be part of a recruitment process by 4NCL captains and managers.

LawrenceCooper
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Re: ECF to scrap its grading system

Post by LawrenceCooper » Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:02 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:37 pm
Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:02 pm
I was also shocked that the player on the board after you in your 4NCL team was without a fide rating.
I don't see what's shocking about it.

It's a valid method for a player to gain an international rating by playing in the 4NCL. I suspect offering the chance to play for a FIDE rating may even be part of a recruitment process by 4NCL captains and managers.
That's certainly true in some cases where I have been captain.

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