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All comments by Len Fettig
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What if:
The ACBL required that all players who attend the NABC GNT events qualify at their Club Level, qualify at their Unit level and qualify at their District level?

I've seen players who just show up at their District Final, win their bracket and advance to the NABC GNT. Has the term ‘grass roots’ been changed?

I think there needs to be some uniformity to the qualifying process.
Perhaps I'll raise this idea as a BoG proposal. It seems that something has to change. We can go back to a true grass roots event or else we should just delete the GNT from all levels.
Feb. 2
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This is a cute story.

If directing, I'd use my rule book to whack each of the four players up the side of their head. Then, at match points, each side would get a zero. When asked why, I'd say it is the standard result for multiple procedural penalties.
I would not waste time looking for rules for guidance.
Feb. 2
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Tanya, what year? I can't find this on ACBL.org
Jan. 31
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Grand National Team (GNT) comments

There are many pieces to this topic and any remedies are likely to require several actions.

Do our NLM players play in many team games? At tournaments, do they stay for the Sunday Swiss?

When a KO event is offered, do our Flight C players buy an entry?

When I surveyed all of the Clubs in D-15 (90+ clubs), the lack of team games, at Clubs, was attributed to 1) not enough tables, club too small and 2) players object to up-charges for special games.

GNT buy-in - some Districts allow players to advance directly to their District final without ever playing in a Club or Unit qualifying game.

IMP scoring - Where do our NLM players get meaningful practice with IMP strategy?

With electronic scoring devices, the manual team scoring has been eliminated and Victory Points are obscured. Our players don't understand the basis of the scoring. Match points they understand. Team game scoring is a mystery to them.

Do they have any chance of placing in Compact Swiss events?

Do we communicate to our players about the GNT (grass-roots) qualifying process? Do we promote it, market it and provide enthusiastic support at all levels?

There are no doubt other important aspects to this topic. I think we need to do more to encourage play in our grass-roots events. However, if we look at a typical Club calendar, there are many special events, each with meaningful benefits.
Jan. 31
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The new site for the Educational Foundation is: https://www.acbleducationalfoundation.org/

To gain a better understanding or the organization, please read this set of minutes: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5c1d658f7e3c3abf96dacded/t/5c4e8082562fa7de1abec5d3/1548648580488/2018+Teleconference++ACBL+Educational+Foundation.pdf

My assessment is that the Educational Foundation is a rudderless ship, with no defined destination and no navigational tools. The position for an Executive Director does not include abilities to define a direction or to build an organization. Instead, he/she is responsible for maintenance activities on this ship of ____.

In the meantime, they have plenty of money and are destined to allocate the funds to most any reasonable grant request.
Jan. 30
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… and then Harry has a stroke and everyone at the Club says “I should have realized that Harry was having a medical problem.”
Jan. 29
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I smell a plea bargain. If the offender pleads guilty to misdemeanor Cheating, the prosecution would not try for Cheating in the 1st Degree.
Jan. 23
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The ACBL and The Common Game are independent organizations. So which one shared propriety information with the other?
Jan. 23
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I think most people recognize that Membership Growth is something that occurs as a direct result of grass-roots efforts.

However, I am enjoying the fumbling and stumbling that is occurring at the Home Office level on Membership Growth.

When writing the new Job Description for the Executive Director, the BoD put in this item: “Ability to Grow the Membership”

Thus if membership does not grow, Joe J. is already the scapegoat.

Further, I believe that when people do not understand a problem, they may try to regulate a solution or they may throw money at the situation.

Here is the approach contained in the Exhibits:

“Growing membership is a top priority, so management is currently developing several new recruitment and retention programs:

Improved Recruitment Incentives – The majority of club officials and teachers are not actively recruiting ACBL members: typically they only enroll new members as a result of regular club and teaching activities.
In order to promote recruitment, we need to offer better incentives. Management is currently developing a new plan that includes: 1. More attractive compensation; 2. Paying rewards out frequently; 3. Pays a bonus tail when member renews in the first few years.”

Said another way: We don't know how to regulate a solution so we will throw money it. Further, it is not my fault.


lol
Jan. 21
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The term ‘expelled’ has been replaced. The current term is: Pre-readmitted.
Jan. 12
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Suzi,
I think Billy Rosen was a student at U of I when he was on the US Bermuda Bowl team in the early 1950's.
Jan. 5
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I'll add a few more things that Bridge teaches us.

Leadership
Communications
Cooperation

Good Luck.
Jan. 4
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Ray Y.
You are right. Sorry all, I did not intend to highjack this thread.
If someone wants to discuss free plays and other topics, please start a new topic.

Play Nice and Build for Tomorrow.
Dec. 26, 2018
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I thought it strange that Robert Hartmann was granted free plays at NABC's. This occurred last year at the Toronto BoD meeting.
http://web2.acbl.org/documentLibrary/about/172TorontoMinutes.pdf

Why would an Ex-CEO qualify for free plays?

Then when he was elected by the BoD to represent us on the WBF, that was a major red flag.

There must be a lot more to this story than what little has been shared.
Dec. 25, 2018
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He was convicted for cheating on one hand?

Yet he and his partner had developed methods to signal each other.

So they planned to cheat. For me, the intent to cheat is a more powerful issue than the single-hand comments.
Dec. 19, 2018
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Ira,
Good data. Thanks for doing the research. It supports Jeff's conclusion, that it is the smaller Clubs that are closing.

I didn't understand the comments about tournaments. Do you also have data that supports your tournament comments?
Dec. 16, 2018
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Ed,
That sounds like a good activity for our new BoG data collection and analysis committee.
Dec. 15, 2018
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Bridge in China
I'll add my one-cent worth.
Upon completion of High School, students must pass a difficult exam to be admitted to the University. Those who do not pass, can attend a trade school.
There is a huge emphasis on academic achievement.
As we know, bridge is a mind exercise that helps to teach inductive reasoning. Therefore, it is an appropriate activity to help the Chinese students to achieve better mental acuity.
Dec. 15, 2018
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Michael,
Great analysis. Thank you for doing this.

In my District, we analyze the attendance data, much as you have done. For ‘local’ players we divide those into ‘day-trippers’ and out of towners. When we have a lot of out of towners, the number of plays per person averages around 7.8 times. As our population group shifts more toward day-trippers, then the average number of plays is around 6.8 times.

We also adjust the event times. Day trippers prefer the 10 and 3 start times. We also run very few evening sessions; for a commuter tournament.

Like Peg's D-14, our players will (must) travel to tournaments. We define a 200 mile circle as our Hot Zone. As our tournaments grow in popularity, we see more players from outside of the Hot Zone attending.

Michael, I know how much work you put into your data collection and analysis. Please know it is appreciated.
Dec. 11, 2018
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I felt we needed some data to analyze, before making recommendations for altering the number of Regional tournaments.

I pulled data for 2005 and 2017 for comparison.


2005 2017
Open Regionals 116 119
Senior Reg. 2 3
Split Reg. 4 6
I/N Reg. 2 8
Cruise Reg. 0 2

Total Regionals 124 138

Total Tables 171,663 162,915.5

Membership - 1/1/2007 was 157,286
1/31/2017 was 168,215

Please overlook the helpful (joke) reformatting by BW.
Dec. 10, 2018
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