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ACBL: Things that just shouldn't be

What elements of the ACBL just shouldn't be? What problems - big or small - mandate immediately correction ("immediate" may, of course, mean the next iteration of some process)?

The Pendergraph incident from a few years ago exemplifes problems that just shouldn't have been, and it gives hope because that problem was indeed solved -- reluctantly and only after heavy pressure from the bridge community.

The ACBL had a good 2012, is having a very good 2013, and - thanks to popular NABC sites, a 4th RaS, and some diminishing expenses should have a blowout 2014. I remain a defender of the current ACBL system, though the waste rankles me. As such, my list is relatively mundane:

  • Conventions. Quoting Adam Meyerson from a separate thread: "The first change [to the gcc] must be clarity.  There is no excuse for a pair being unable to look up whether their preferred methods are allowed. The current approach is simply riddled with ambiguity and directors have no idea in many cases whether something is permitted."
  • Online Results. National/Regional/Sectional results should be online within 10 (2?) minutes of session completion. The problem of qualifying to the next stage of a national event and not knowing it just shouldn't be. Local volunteers shouldn't have to do anything to post high-quality results online for regionals and sectionals.
  • Results. should have a list of all the games I've played and this should allow simple sorting, filtering, and computation. This issue came up a few months ago on BW. An ACBL contractor said that the database design is too complex for the current ACBL environment.   As a techie, I this tells me there are a host of other technology problems that just shouldn't be.
  • Tournament Entries. The requirement of cash tournament entries just shouldn't be. I grant that this idea takes a little longer to solve, but currently the grapevine word from the ACBL is that non-cash entries are too inefficient and so not being worked on.
  • Advanced NABC Entries. The requirement to register on-site the day before national events just shouldn't be.   Wait, our friends at BridgeWinners have temporarily solved this problem for some events.
  • Volunteers. The way the ACBL de-prioritizes volunteers is wrong. Unfortunately, this problem is cultural. I grant that the problem can't be solved right away, but the powers-that-be should at least publicly recognize the problem.
  • Tournament management. A tournament manager should be able to tell whether he/she is being billed properly by the ACBL. I actually escalated this issue and the current status seems to be "we know there are billing problems and that tournament managers should have a clear means of determining the proper bill - but we don't currently intend to take any remedial action. Some problems might incidentally be solved with ACBLScore+."
  • Financial Transparency. The Board of Governors and ACBL members in general should not have to fight to get financial information that the bylaws, et al. state will be provided online. It's true that the BoG has very litte formal power (not none, but very little). Still, they are due a good faith effort to enable their participation.  
  • BoD conflict of interest.   BoD members should be required to recuse themselves on issues pertaining to their own self-interest.
  • Board of Governors meeting. The BoD should not be given several days of hotel and per diem solely to attend a BoG meeting: 1) that the BoD is not allowed to participate in, 2) that is attended by unreimbursed BoG members, 3) for which the BoD won't even provide the required financial reports (especially bad in Atlanta). Note that ACBL president Bill Cook tried in 2006 to fix this $35K "shouldn't be" situation in Dallas 2006: motion 061-27.

Let's hear your ACBL problems that just shouldn't be.



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