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All comments by Joe Hertz
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Not in my experience… Maybe it's just that the data can't be pulled because there is no data to pull, like Steve mentions below.
Aug. 14
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I read this as an attempt to show that PR is not implemented right.

I mean, if NFL players actually can lobby EA for higher numbers in Madden Football, you should be able to as well.
Aug. 13
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I would think that most KO rounds end too late to publish.
Aug. 12
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I do almost the same thing but I start from 37 since that's the most number of hcps you can have with 13 cards. The other three, if you have them too will be duplicated and crash into partners other winners. You can get all 13 with 37, so a trick is a little below 3 points. Works out to 25.6 for 3nt

Your method (40/3) has a trick being worth 3.33 or 30 points for 3nt.
Aug. 11
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 11
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The problem isn't that we teach high card point count. The problem is we don't teach what high card points are and what they represent. When all your student knows is how to hammer, everything looks like a nail. We're giving them one tool that's inappropriate for a number of applications. they just don't know it yet. If they are unlucky, yet may never come.
Aug. 11
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I don't think you can credibly claim “fake news” solely because of an article on Wikipedia not being in agreement. Wikipedia is organized crowd sourced data. It's not authoritative about anything.

That being said, it usually does a good job of citing its sources. Quote those, if it did that in this case.
Aug. 11
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 11
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“…but I do wonder how referring to someone as ”sleazy“ and a ”douche-bag“ fits in with the site guidelines.”

It fits because the person in question has not been named. Unless there is only one 70-something male EBU TD on Facebook, and that description makes the name of the person clear, then this thread is kosher.
Aug. 10
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 10
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John – possible? Sure. Likely or even probable?

Why not suggest looking at their list of friends? You could rule that possibility in or out from that.

FB's suggestion algorithms are bizarro. I mean, I'm sure if someone has an MO using FB exclusively for the purpose of friending young cute women, that's all it might show them on the “people you may know” screen.

But even so, that doesn't make what they are doing any less sketchy.
Aug. 10
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Honestly, I've never tracked my friend requests my gender, age, or charisma ratings before. So I'm taking a few minutes to think about the answer to this before I continue writing here.

Friending someone I've never met? That would be *rare*. Usually they'd be public figures. David Gerrold and Jim Wright of Stonekettle Station. I friended Matthew Weingarten and I've not met him before (we got put together doing Vugraph commentary and had a blast).

I doubt Shannon Cappeletti remembers me from the time she end-played me no fewer than 3 times in the SF 2012 NABC on one single hand, but I sure did, and so I sent her a friend request afterwards that she accepted.

There are a few people I've friended and never met, but only after interacting with on FB in various communities or common friends' walls posts.

Closest I've come to what you describe I think would be Rachel Rinast, a defender on the Swiss National Football Squad, after her performance in the 2015 World Cup, and Patricia Tallman who is an actress and stuntwoman. I freely admit that these are strictly me being fans of theirs.

Now that I've answered your question, I'd like to restate, I agree what this guy did is skeevy and the friend request shouldn't be accepted, and I'd suggest blocking him. When you play night-time bridge for as long as I have, you get used to walking people to their cars for safety's sake as a matter of due course. I just don't know what the EBU can do to stop him. I mean that in the literal sense. I just don't know the answer to that question. I'm hoping someone else on this thread can provide it.
Aug. 9
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 10
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Full disclosure: I've friended random friends of friends on FB but usually only after interacting with them on some level. Often it is bridge players I've played against once or twice. Not one time though has my motivation been to facilitate perving on people, whether I know them or not, regardless of how I came to know them.

I'm going to assume you have good reason to believe this is not the case with this EBU director. Correct assumption?

I ask because that's an important plot point towards someone acquiring a “sleazy old TD” designation.
Aug. 9
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 10
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Totally get it, but I'm not an expert on things EBU so let me ask this:

Does the EBU have rules of employment for their directors on how they behave on social media?

I'll stipulate that this behavior is unseemly at best and that it's in the interest of the EBU to stop their employees doing this sort of thing.

But I am asking if the EBU has it within their power to discipline their employees for it, and if not, why not, because that's likely to blow up in their faces at some point in a really bad way.
Aug. 9
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 10
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Why does the relative success or failure of the particular action taken matter? What should matter is what the UI implied would be successful. Not whether it actually was.

In this case, there was UI and the person used it to avoid a bad outcome they were quite possibly headed for. Are we required to let them have any good outcome if they do such a thing? The UI implied certain things were likely to be unsuccessful, so he used it to avoid them. That's enough for an adjustment. If he got to 4 (making or not) instead of a diamond contract, that's use of UI, If he got to 6 (making or not) that's use of UI.

Using the UI to avoid a *bad* result counts as using the UI. Why does “how good of a result they got with it” matter to the legality of it? If he gets a bad result by using the UI he gets to keep it, but he never gets to keep the good one if got lucky on the particular path he chose to avoid the bad outcome.
Aug. 9
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 9
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We might have all thought it.
But the 15 year old actually had the gumption to say it.
He might be rude, but the rest of us who agreed with him would be laughing our collective asses off even as we agreed about him being rude.

The reputation he would gain for doing this? It would be one for being a 15 year old without a regulator on his mouth. Totally deserved, and hardly worth damning him over. Lots of us were like that at that age. Or worse.

I'll admit that I liked the comment about him being rude, but I also liked the comment about what he said.
Aug. 9
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My guess. Someone was friends with the director, who was friends with the original poster, and FB's algorithm thew up the original poster's daughter on the “People you may know” list.

And the director pushed the button on one of them – possibly not even realizing the connection they had to them before they did it.
Aug. 9
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A friend request like this is the symptom of the problem, rather than the problem itself. So yeah, damn sure log any conversations in chat and be prepared to pass them on to the ruling body. It's skeevy as hell, but I'm not an EBU member, and I don't know if the EBU has rules about this, or if it did if this actually would violate those rules. Like I said, it's skeevy. I'm not saying it shouldn't be reported. I just don't know if the EBU is the correct group to hear the report.

Dirty old men exist everywhere. Not all professions care that they are in their employ. Unknown if your bridge federation is one of them. As your daughter isn't a bridge player, this was almost certainly a case of some rando friend of a friend sending a friend request to someone that popped up on their “people you may know list”. Given that, I can see the NBO saying it's not within their jurisdiction to regulate..as unseemly as it looks. Which completely sucks, but that's part of the problem with trying to define skeeviness.

Now… screen-shotting that friend request and saving it up for an appropriate moment to make a BridgeWinners comment? You betcha.
Aug. 9
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 10
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Bill C writes:

“It is difficult to get us players to simply say there is no agreement. Your daughter's lack of experience should not lead to a penalty. The director should inform her of the correct phrasing.”

I've never met Simon ever, but how about informing *him* about the correct phrasing of questions??

He's the one who phrased the question, "What does that bid mean“ rather than, ”What is your agreement about that bid?“.

Simon is claiming he was damaged by the truthful answer he got to the actual question he asked.

Had Simon simply asked, ”What is your agreement about that bid?“. I'm all but certain he would have gotten the correct answer to that question, but not any answer about if it was natural. And the answer to that question, i.e. ”undiscussed“, would not be nearly as helpful to him, on quite a number of levels.

Note two things that happen because of his chosen phrasing when the question, as phrased, gets answered honestly.

1) Heads. If said inexperienced player had guessed correctly, that it really was intended as natural, then Simon gets to find that out despite the fact there is no agreement about it. Simon is essentially claiming that this scenario, should it occur, is not his fault, and the opponents should make a point to learn what their disclosure obligations actually are. If his opp decides to share more than she legally had to, then that's on them. And there would be no adjustment for that if that's what happened. I mean, would we take away those tricks he gained from the answer because the opp had been Jedi-Mind-Tricked by the phrasing of the question and thus damaged by it? I doubt it.

2) Tails. What actually happened. The assessment offered in her answer (which, again, was not required of her, nor would have been offered with proper phrasing of the question) turns out to be wrong, so now he can claim he was damaged by the MI he received! Not only that,but he could also claim that the person who actually bid 2 had UI too!

<sarcasm> Neither of these problems, are, of course, his fault either as he'd never ask an improper question. He's the damaged party. People just interpreted the question incorrectly, and in such a way that there were absolutely no losing options for his side. He didn't realize this about his question at all. It's just a coincidence that the ”worst case scenario“ is that he would have been told ”undiscussed" because that opp didn't happen to be too inexperienced after all. No harm. No adjustment </sarcasm>. Ptootie.

You've heard of a double-shot? This question is the bridge equivalent of a Gatling Gun.
Aug. 9
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 9
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Mike Bell-

I wouldn't go quite that far. It very possibly could mean “I think that's what our agreement is”.

That's what Simon is claiming he took it to mean, simply because that is the only proper response to his question. Simon knows full well he's only allowed to inquire about his opponent's agreements.

The real problem though is that Simon himself says he asked "what the 2 bid was". Really - just don't ask it that way. Specifically ask what the agreement is. For this reason, I'm not willing to declare his partnership as the non-offending side.

What happened next was poor Simon getting a truthful answer to his actual question. The opponent told him what they thought it was and even disclosed that was only what they thought!

His complaint now is that, because he asked a badly phrased question (one that quite possibly is going to get more of an answer than he is entitled to receive, I may add), and that the opponent not only didn't know that it was improperly phrased, but then proceeded to actually answer it, as asked, to the best of her ability – and that damaged him!

I mean – How dare she?!!

If Simon wanted redress, he could have asked, “What is your agreement about the 2 bid at this point in the auction?”.

It's strictly Simon's own fault if he thought his opponent should have known they didn't have to be so helpful.

The clincher is that once you get that “I think it's…” answer, you're on notice you might have got the answer to the question you actually asked, rather than the question you should have by all rights asked.
Aug. 7
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 7
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I'm working on that.
Aug. 6
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Simon-

If you get a response of, “natural, I think” and you're a bridge player of any note, why in heaven's name would you not then ask, “Do you actually have an agreement about it or not?”. Lots of people don't realize that “undiscussed” is an acceptable reply. Surely you know that too.

I'm not a big believer in “failed to protect himself” rulings (to put it mildly!). I think the logic is often abused by the offenders to try and blame-shift… but imho THIS is *the* textbook example of why they absolutely still need to exist!
Aug. 6
Joe Hertz edited this comment Aug. 6
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Good luck trying to have an algorithm diagnose a do-something-intelligent double
Aug. 6
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