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All comments by Richard Willey
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It would be interesting to see how online robot events skew the statistic
July 27, 2016
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> I wrote my thesis on Constitutional Law, so I am very familiar
> with “Due Process” as it is defined in U.S. legal system.

So, when you did that thesis, did you study the differences between the U.S legal system and the Code Napoleon? (You are, of course aware, that the Swiss legal system is far more relevant here than that of the US)
July 27, 2016
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Where to begin…

>If there were such irrefutable proof, where was it and where
>were all their adversaries all these years?

The widespread dissemination of video feeds from major events is a relatively recent innovation. There were rumors that F+N and F+S were cheating for years. Once the video feeds became available, folks started to notice irregularities in card and board handling (relatively) quickly.

> The EBL, contrary to what many have written did absolutely
> nothing here. They have no structure or personnel to even
> examine a legal proceeding.

I agree with you. Neither the EBL, nor the WBF, nor the ACBL seems adequate to the task at hand. Worse yet, these organizations seemed far more interested in avoiding the appearance of impropriety than launching any proper investigation into these matters.

You might dislike the fact that the crowd sourced investigations didn't follow due process as defined by US constitutional law. (Let's leave aside the question whether or not the US legal system should have any bearing on the matters at hand) Personally, I am more aggrieved that virtually every major international event over the past 15 years is irrevocably tainted. Simply put, due process doesn't work if the process itself is fundamentally broken. Regretfully, we appear to be living in such a state.

I am extremely happy that

1. An alternative to due process existed in this case
2. The alternative system produced high quality findings

Last, but not least,

> An investigation was started and prosecuted on vague
> Internet videos put together by a young, presumptive
> and obviously jealous boy. No formal complaint was
> ever filed, or if it was, it was done as an after thought
> to make it look official.

The strength of your convictions is matched only by the depth of your ignorance. You don't appear to know the first things about how these events unfolded.

From my own perspective, I might wish that this could have been prosecuted somewhere other than public internet forums. I don't see a practical alternative. (For example, the WBF refuses to treat with individuals). With luck, one of the changes that we might see moving forward is a return to regular order, however, I'm not holding my breath.
July 27, 2016
Richard Willey edited this comment July 27, 2016
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This sounds like it was well thought out.
July 26, 2016
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If we are serious about wanting to improve seeding, the first step needs to be dramatically improving record keeping.

Rather than “just” recording the results for matches, we need to start recording results for each board that is played.
July 26, 2016
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any estimate regarding head count?
July 26, 2016
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I'd be interested in understanding how the card fees have changed vis–à–vis other expenses associated with traveling to Nationals…

I certainly agree that card fees have increased, however, my gut says that this change really isn't material compared to changes the various costs associated with travel.

Even if card fees have doubled and travel costs have only increased by 20%, I expect that the change in travels costs would swamp the card fees.
July 25, 2016
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> Lots of talk about clients being cheated. Though I haven't – yet –
> seen one complain about it, by members of their teams or opponents.
> Not Pierre Zimmerman, not Jimmy Cayne, not anyone I can recall.

How might a legitimate journalist respond to such a quandary?

Some of them might go out and interview some of the individuals directly involved and see what they actually think about this issue.

Other might try to draw inference.

1. We know that Cayne and Zimmerman can't be happy about what's going on
2. We haven't seen much in the way of public statements expressing their displeasure.
3. It would appear as if these individuals are keeping mum

The worst type of journalist would post sloppy and biased innuendo…
July 25, 2016
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This comment has been marked as inappropriate by the moderator(s).
July 22, 2016
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So, from the sounds of things, the set individuals who were harmed the most by the cheaters (i.e. the other pros and the sponsors who were competing directly against them) care more about their own ability to misrepresent their tax liabilities than they do about punishing the folks who were cheating them.

If this is truly the case, I find it really hard to care…
July 22, 2016
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For the life of me, I couldn't care less about any of this.

1. I don't believe for a minute that revoking titles is any kind of real “punishment” for F+N or F+S. They have already been branded as cheats. Erasing some titles from the historical records doesn't change didly squat.

2. We can never know how those matches would have turned out had the cheaters not been competing. There is no way to correct the record and hand the title over to the pair that would have won. Therefore, I'm not going to get too worked up over this side of things.

If we really want to “punish” the pairs, we need to hit them where it hurts. Their pocket books.

1. The sponsors of the teams that are losing titles should be encouraged to sue F+N and F+S for damages, seeking to recover any and all fees / bonuses that were paid to these individuals for their services up to an included fees paid to transfer residency. (Even if the lawsuits fail, the legal fees necessary to defend themselves are going to be much more painful for the tarnished pros than they are for the clients.

2. The sponsors should also provide records of the fees and bonuses paid to the tax authorities for F+N and F+S's home countries as well as any country in which they might have competed. A nice audit and some fines from the feds will be a lot more painful than loosing a title.

3. If the pairs ever start showing up again, folks should - once again - start reporting their activities to the IRS.
July 22, 2016
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Ian, the ads that you are shown aren't determined by Bridgewinners. Rather they are selling space to an advertizing consortium that that the looks at the cookies on your system and determines what type of ads you are likely to find interesting.

If you are getting sexist ads, its not a reflection on Bridgewinners, rather its your browsing history at play.
July 20, 2016
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Good luck. (I rather have the bacon)
July 17, 2016
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> Perhaps you will be surprised to know that there are no
> accusations, but rather a consistent suggestion/demand/advocady
> of/? a proper investigation of the videos themselves, by a
> recognized expert. Upon receiving such an analysis from
> someone I know to have the expertise and integrity, whose
> identity I don't have permission to disclose, I posted that
> information, expressing pleasure that the suggestion of
> impropriety, if not accusations, had no merit. There's not
> much sensational about that, is there?

Given that your own judgement of the merits of the video are so badly flawed, why should we have any faith in your ability to identify an individual who is qualified to evaluate said video?

FWIW, I find it strange that anyone would be unwilling to make a public statement regarding what this video does / does not claim…

If I were to hazard a guess, I'd say that either

1. You're making the whole thing up
2. You're acting as a socket puppet for the folks who created the video to begin with
July 17, 2016
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Hanan,

It was obvious to me within five seconds of seeing the hypothesis and board selection that wasn't a serious claim that B+L were cheating. The concluding four slides of the video made it perfectly clear that this was a critique of the methodology, not a cheating charge.

If you are unable to understand things that are this simple then you are doing a disservice by making public posts.

It's great that you took the time to double check what you posted. It shows a lot of class to publicly admit that you made a mistake. Just take appropriate corrective action.
July 16, 2016
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Next time, please do this in advance of posting…
July 16, 2016
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>The questions I got from ACBL last month were:

>1) What's a Makefile?
>2) What is gcc?
>3) Where can I get it from?
>4) How do I compile a C program on Windows?
>
>I answered the questions.

It might have been more useful to explain that these were the wrong questions to be asking…
July 15, 2016
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> I don't support the theory, I want it tested. Period.

Prepare to be disappointed.

Simply put, the people who are smart enough to test this realize that there is nothing to test.
July 15, 2016
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> I find it hard to understand how the videos in and of
> themselves are not considered an accusation. They
> lay out a pattern which, if verified, constitutes illegal
> communication – ie cheating. Which should be
> investigated.

I guess that the notion of satire is completely beyond you…
July 15, 2016
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Ron, I am saying this as a friend and a former bridge partner.

You know better than this. Stop trolling.

I'm sure that you are able to recognize that this video is NOT a claim that B+L are cheating, therefore, there is no need to treat it as such.

The case against F+N lives or dies based on the quality of the analysis used to prosecute them. It is not necessary to waste time and effort disproving every possible case where someone went and cherry picked some data and came up with some ridiculous hypothesis that happened to fit it.

If someone were to bring a serious charge of cheating that would, of course, warrant an investigation. This video is not such a charge.
July 15, 2016
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