PDA

View Full Version : FIDE World Amateur Championship 2013



Keong Ang
22-04-2013, 04:47 AM
FIDE World Amateur Championship 2013

Iasi, Romania.
From 21st April (Arrival) to 1st May (Departure) 2013.
Official website:
www.wacc2013.ro

9 rounds from 22nd April 2013 till 30th April 2013.
1 round per day.
Every round starts 3.30pm (+3 GMT).

Link through chess results page:
chess-results.com/tnr91568.aspx

All relevant links and information on official website.

Keong Ang
22-04-2013, 05:18 AM
Being one of the arbiters here I'll post updates when able.
They will be from an arbiter's perspective. ;) :hand: :whistle:

We just finished the technical/players meeting.

Theodoros Tsorbatzoglou is the FIDE technical delegate and would also be chairing the appeals committee. One point that was announced is that appeals are only possible if submitted in writing within 30 minutes from the end of the game being appealed. Appeal fee of EUR100 is also required and this would be refunded if appeal is successful.

Another point to note is the strict "mobile phone rule". No mobile phones or electronic devices are permitted (none of this "unless switched off" nonsense). Players are required to leave such devices in their hotel rooms or at home or in the car. If such devices are brought to the tournament venue, there will be a place to impound them but no responsibility will be taken for the safety/security of the devices.
The announcement of this rule (made by FIDE in February) was met with huge applause from the players present.:eh: :cool:

Agreed draws are permitted. Players need the permission of an arbiter to leave the playing area, eg. to use the restrooms, etc.
It is allowed to drink water at the board but eating is prohibited. Got to leave the playing area just to have a piece of chocolate. This should cover all religious and medical problems around food. It also keeps things clean and removes distracting/offensive behaviour due to consumption of food.

In drawing of colours, top seed would start on black.

There may be up to 12 live boards broadcasting games.

heligan
22-04-2013, 10:43 AM
All the best to Alphaeus - get him to bring us back some rating points!

I'm curious - does the mobile phone rule apply just to official FIDE events, or is it intended to apply to all FIDE-rated events?

Keong Ang
22-04-2013, 01:43 PM
All the best to Alphaeus - get him to bring us back some rating points!

I'm curious - does the mobile phone rule apply just to official FIDE events, or is it intended to apply to all FIDE-rated events?
This is the first time I've encountered this total prohibition of mobile phones and other electronic devices rule. In fact, the arbiters and organisers of this tournament was caught a bit off guard by this.

Theodoros made us correct the mobile phone rule wording.
I think this rule is just for official FIDE events. Not to every FIDE rated event.

Bringing back some rating points may be easier said than done!
Everyone is aiming for 1st place that gives automatic FM title and 2200 FIDE rating points.

Judging by the size of the trophies, it's going to be difficult to bring home a trophy!! :lol:
We'll worry about this closer to the finish if there is a chance of winning it...:uhoh:

lost
22-04-2013, 09:05 PM
This is the first time I've encountered this total prohibition of mobile phones and other electronic devices rule. In fact, the arbiters and organisers of this tournament was caught a bit off guard by this.

Theodoros made us correct the mobile phone rule wording.
I think this rule is just for official FIDE events. Not to every FIDE rated event.

Bringing back some rating points may be easier said than done!
Everyone is aiming for 1st place that gives automatic FM title and 2200 FIDE rating points.

Judging by the size of the trophies, it's going to be difficult to bring home a trophy!! :lol:
We'll worry about this closer to the finish if there is a chance of winning it...:uhoh:

It is common practice for all official FIDE tournaments to have no electronic devices in the playing hall. I am not surprised by this and I am totally surprised why the arbiters and the organisers are caught off guard.

Personally, I think this ruled should be applied to all FIDE events and arbiters should not have their phones at all on and organisers until the start of the round.

The second paragraph is just my personally opinion.

lost

Keong Ang
22-04-2013, 09:16 PM
It is common practice for all official FIDE tournaments to have no electronic devices in the playing hall. I am not surprised by this and I am totally surprised why the arbiters and the organisers are caught off guard.

Personally, I think this ruled should be applied to all FIDE events and arbiters should not have their phones at all on and organisers until the start of the round.

The second paragraph is just my personally opinion.

lost
The playing area is full of electronic devices. Clocks, eboards, computers... :lol: :lol:

Usually players are allowed to have devices with them as long as they are completely switched off.
This time any player found to have such a device on them would immediately lose the game. We don't care if they were switched off or not.

Arbiters are permitted to have our phones and other electronic devices. The rules specify 3 types of people: players, spectators and arbiters.
Prohibition for mobile phones etc. do not apply to arbiters. While embarrassing, no rules are broken if an arbiter's phone rings... :whistle:

Now I've got to go off to the opening ceremony. Starts in 15 minutes.
Cannot keep the Romanian minister of sports waiting.!!

lost
22-04-2013, 10:45 PM
The playing area is full of electronic devices. Clocks, eboards, computers... :lol: :lol:

Usually players are allowed to have devices with them as long as they are completely switched off.
This time any player found to have such a device on them would immediately lose the game. We don't care if they were switched off or not.

Arbiters are permitted to have our phones and other electronic devices. The rules specify 3 types of people: players, spectators and arbiters.
Prohibition for mobile phones etc. do not apply to arbiters. While embarrassing, no rules are broken if an arbiter's phone rings... :whistle:

Now I've got to go off to the opening ceremony. Starts in 15 minutes.
Cannot keep the Romanian minister of sports waiting.!!

I think the mobile phone rule should apply to arbiter's as well. If they call this an official FIDE tournament, these rules should apply regardless.

That's just my view. I can speak from experience in not been an arbiter at an Olympiad but a Captain, and arbiter's were not allowed there phone's at at all. This is how it should be at the event of the World Amateur's.

I wish you the best of luck over there Keong and all the best to Oceania countries!

lost

Kevin Bonham
23-04-2013, 12:05 AM
Not sure what the final resolution to mobile phones in the 2013 FIDE Laws was or even if there's been one yet but the post-Congress moves late last year seemed to be in the direction of complete exclusion.

Adamski
23-04-2013, 12:13 AM
Best wishes to all Australasians playing - I imagine they are few in number, Romania not being exactly on our doorstep.
And best wishes to Keong with the arbiting side of things.
Must say I am not overly keen on the total ban of mobile phones from the playing area. There is a certain comfort if an emergency develops in having your mobile with you, even though it is switched off. Even more so when many miles from home.

Keong Ang
23-04-2013, 05:20 AM
Thanks for the well wishes.

I can happily report that both the Australasians won their 1st round games as black against unrated players.

Round 2 pairings for them are


7 75 Ang Alphaeus Wei Ern 1853 1 1 Dinca Ovidiu 1976 12
12 79 Wijesuriya G.V. 1846 1 1 Vrencian Lehel 1966 18

Things have just become tougher. But that's what they are here for.
Pity there are only 6 live boards, Alphaeus just missed being on a live board.

I better not too publicly cheer for the Australasians and start looking like a biased arbiter!! :uhoh: :uhoh:

ElevatorEscapee
23-04-2013, 11:54 AM
Go Vineetha! :D

Keong Ang
23-04-2013, 01:45 PM
Go Vineetha! :D
Who came all the way from Ballarat.

ER
23-04-2013, 04:58 PM
Here is Veneetha, with son Tumula, and Ballarat legends Pat Cook and Kevin Perrin during the 2012 Australian Championship at North Geelong!

http://i1230.photobucket.com/albums/ee481/jak_jak1/100_7319_zps516ce125.jpg (http://s1230.photobucket.com/user/jak_jak1/media/100_7319_zps516ce125.jpg.html)
Photo: Elliott Ranzies. The Chess Players Collection

Keong Ang
24-04-2013, 05:45 AM
ARRGH!! :doh: :( :wall: :wall:

Talking about the Australasians seem to have put a hex on them...

Keong Ang
24-04-2013, 04:13 PM
Apparently the interview I gave on camera yesterday was for Romania national TV...
Wonder if they liked having a kiwi arbiter around! :cool:

Hopefully I said the right things... and looked the part of a titled arbiter from NZ who's also the NZCF Secretary. :lol:
Wasn't prepared for media exposure.

Keong Ang
24-04-2013, 05:22 PM
<RANT MODE ON>

I think the NZCF has got something right with scoresheet design and format. I wish I had brought a stack of them here for distribution. (while not familiar with Australian scoresheets, I assume they are similar to NZCF's).

The bit about NZCF scoresheets that I have come to very much appreciate is the fact that they not only have a carbonised copy at the back, but the two pieces of paper are stuck together properly. With a stack of scoresheets, it is a simple matter to flick it a few times to fan them out and all the scoresheets are flapping loosely for distribution with all the original and carbon pairs still stuck together.

Now I don't know about what they normally have around here but after preparing for 3 rounds (out of 9) such a convenient feature of sticking scoresheets in original and duplicate pairs is sorely missed!

Here the scoresheets are also in 2 sheets, a top original that the player writes on and a carbonised duplicate at the bottom. They are also arranged in original-duplicate-original-duplicate layers. But this is where the similarity ends.

The scoresheets are packed into "receipt book" packs. So we rip out each scoresheet from the glued top edge. The main drawback with this physical setup is that the scoresheets original-duplicate pair is separated with this action!

Imagine having to PAPERCLIP all these original-duplicate pairs together for each player in a 200+ player tournament. We have to have more than 200 paperclips ready. Then we:
1. Rip out an original-duplicate pair out of the scoresheet pack.
2. Paperclip the pair together.
3. Distribute the scoresheets, making sure the paperclips do not catch other bits.
4. Repeat steps 1 to 3 by number of boards x2.

When each game is completed in every round we arbiters then have to ascertain the correct results are there, make sure the players sign their scoresheets, then collect the paperclips and give each player their carbonised duplicate while taking the original for entering results and PGN.

Obviously some paperclips are lost and that means additional supplies of paperclips are always required each round!!!

I wonder why they just cannot produce scoresheets like those we use in NZ where each pair is individually glued together and stays glued together until we actually rip them apart. Then instead of receipt books of scoresheets, we just have shrinkwrapped packs of scoresheets. Makes distributing scoresheets a breeze!!

:evil: :evil:

<RANT MODE OFF>

My apologies for the rant but after paperclipping 600+ original-duplicate pairs of scoresheets, attempting to collect (in a futile bid of recycling) 400+ paperclips for reuse AND looking at the prospect of paperclipping 1400+ pairs of scoresheets and then collecting 1600 paperclips, I really need to get this off my chest!

Sorely tempted to get someone in NZCF to urgently super-express courier a couple of packs of scoresheets to Iasi, Romania. Hopefully we can at least save the arbiters fingers from thousands of papercuts. Optimistically change Eastern European (the Polish arbiter says it's the same there) scoresheet design for the better. Hopefully also generate an export market for Bocarda Print..... :hmm: :hmm:

Another aggravating feature of their scoresheets is having space for 60 moves only. So we need to rush around handing out extra (paperclipped of course) scoresheets to all those games that have run out of space.

One positive from this experience is that I have come to appreciate the simple efficiency of the NZCF scoresheet!!

Kevin Bonham
24-04-2013, 10:30 PM
I think the NZCF has got something right with scoresheet design and format. I wish I had brought a stack of them here for distribution. (while not familiar with Australian scoresheets, I assume they are similar to NZCF's).

There isn't really any uniform format here.

ER
24-04-2013, 11:51 PM
My apologies for the rant but after paperclipping 600+ original-duplicate pairs of scoresheets, attempting to collect (in a futile bid of recycling) 400+ paperclips for reuse AND looking at the prospect of paperclipping 1400+ pairs of scoresheets and then collecting 1600 paperclips, I really need to get this off my chest!


hehe (an arbiter's) life wasn't meant to be easy! :P :owned:

what about leaving an original, a dublicate and a paperclip in front of the players and let the buggers do it themselves! :D

Keong Ang
25-04-2013, 05:51 AM
hehe (an arbiter's) life wasn't meant to be easy! :P :owned:

what about leaving an original, a dublicate and a paperclip in front of the players and let the buggers do it themselves! :D
How bad can things get around here?
There was some kind of TV pop concert being broadcast from the mall atrium here. The sounds from Gangnam Style to Macarena could be loudly heard in the tournament hall... even with all the "soundproof" doors shut. The chandeliers were vibrating to the beat!!:eek: :eek:

I've been told that it wouldn't happen again tomorrow or for the rest of the tournament.

Some good news is that I've managed to get management to turn on the air conditioning AND turn down the temperature from 28degreesC to 20degreesC. The air conditioning is quite underpowered, couldn't lower the temperature below 25degreesC. The Romanians may think I'm a crazy kiwi snowman but my sweat does the explaining for me. :owned: :owned:

On the scoresheet front. I've given up on the idea of getting NZCF scoresheets here. By the time they arrive it may be the last round, perhaps 2nd last round if I'm lucky. Not worth the effort. With courier cost about a third the average monthly wage in Romania, they'd think I'm definitely crazy. So we have resorted to standard practise in this globalised world. OUTSOURCE!!
Some very helpful Indian federation players did all the scoresheet work for us. :clap: :clap: :whistle:

Keong Ang
25-04-2013, 05:55 AM
9.30am till 12.30pm Thursday 25 April 2013 (+3GMT) is the blitz tournament.
Then the standard WACC2013 tournament starts round 4 at the usual 3.30pm time.

Keong Ang
25-04-2013, 09:52 PM
World Amateur Blitz Tournament has concluded.

Results available in:
http://chess-results.com/tnr99168.aspx

The ANZACs (Australia New Zealand Amateur Chessplayers) blitzed on this Anzac day and found the going tough.

On tiebreaks out of 112 players:
Alphaeus Ang (NZL 1853) came 23rd overall with a score of 6 out of 9 and took the 2nd under 12 age group prize.
Vineetha Wijesuriya (AUS 1846) came 88th overall with a score of 3.5 out of 9.

Keong Ang
25-04-2013, 09:54 PM
The blitz tournament started and ended with results published on time.
For a 9 round swiss with 112 players that is quite an achievement, IMHO. :D

Craig_Hall
26-04-2013, 06:54 AM
Good result for Alphaeus! Nice to see some out-sou... co-operation to get things done :).

Keong Ang
27-04-2013, 05:18 AM
After 5 rounds Alphaeus Ang, NZL has finally climbed up to the live broadcast DGT eboards.
http://www.wacc2013.ro/live-games/r6/tfd.htm
Alphaeus would be white on board 5.

Game would start at 3.30pm Saturday 27 April 2013 Romanian time (+3 GMT).
That is 12.30am Sunday 28 April 2013 NZST.

Keong Ang
27-04-2013, 06:41 AM
I don't know why but it is always a bit after the halfway mark of a tournament that the arbiters start having to take disciplinary actions.
We were issuing warnings to players all over the hall... a job that is made harder by language difficulties. I suppose bad habits start to emerge under pressure and that's when players start running foul of the rules.:hmm: :hmm:

We've had to tell players that are table vibrators to leave the board after completing their move.

We've had to tell players to stay at their boards when it's their turn to move.
(due to spectators being allowed in the playing area, players are not allowed to leave the board when it is their turn to move).

We've had to stop players from the same federation from punching each other. :eek: (I will NOT name the federation).

We've had to force players to record all moves in algebraic notation on the scoresheet, even to the extent of threatening loss of game. Some players are taking advantage of this requirement by reporting their opponent's non-recording of moves just before the time control when in severe time trouble. The arbiters hands are tied in this case, we have to make the offending player record all their missed moves in their own time and one live board player nearly lost on time due to that. I just don't know how these players could believe that all they need to do when less than 5 minutes remains on the clock is just tick the scoresheet!
It is not a pleasant experience to have to fill out the last couple of moves before making another move while the clock is ticking down the last few seconds remaining... in such cases the clock is never paused because it is the way to make sufficient time decrease to account for time that should have been used for recording moves. If a player loses on time due to this, that's just too bad.

We've had to explain to worried players to not panic when the clocks did not add 30minutes after 40 moves.
We've also helplessly watched numerous players unnecessarily blitz and blunder won positions due to mistakenly thinking they are in time trouble.
I know that budgets are tight but in future, a FIDE event like this should only use FIDE approved clocks and not these obsolete Saiteks that cannot add 30 minutes on the 40th move but instead needs to get to zero first.

The clocks must comply with the FIDE regulation that they always display the exact amount of time left for a player. We arbiters can easily correct clocks that players had incorrectly pressed, whether by exceeding or forgetting. No such problems happen on the liveboards that use DGT XL clocks that have been correctly set to use their move counters.

We've just had a very tiring round explaining to worried players to not be concerned about the measly couple of seconds left on the clock because when it gets to zero the 30 minutes would be added for both players automatically.

Then on the opposite side of the spectrum there are those players who think the 30 minutes would be added automatically who then went away and lost on time because they did not complete the required 40 moves.

In general the players, even those who we took action on, accepted and respected our decisions. In good humour too!
I'm just glad that they still know that this is just a game and life will go on.

There's also some comfort for the arbiters against any troublesome sorts (of whom none have surfaced so far) by having the appeals process less likely to be resorted to. Any appeal must be made in writing within 30 minutes of the end of the game accompanied by a fee of EUR100 that is only waived upon the appeal being successful. Essentially we arbiters would have to really stuff up big time before anyone is going to appeal.

ER
28-04-2013, 04:04 AM
This relaxed, friendly, and devil may care attitude of some players should be stopped!

Kick them out if they don't abide by the rules!

This is a FIDE official tournament and not a cafe for socialising individuals!

I know this kind of "culture" in certain parts of Europe where tournaments containing the word "amateur" are mistaken for some kind of a village fair!

While the rules of the tournament are announced players talk with each other not only ignoring what is said by the organisers but not letting others who want to listen hear what the announcements are about!

That's unfair for people who have paid mega bucks to participate in such tournaments.

I know of at least three Australian international arbiters who wouldn't take any of that rubbish!

Kevin Bonham
29-04-2013, 12:37 AM
We've had to force players to record all moves in algebraic notation on the scoresheet, even to the extent of threatening loss of game. Some players are taking advantage of this requirement by reporting their opponent's non-recording of moves just before the time control when in severe time trouble. The arbiters hands are tied in this case, we have to make the offending player record all their missed moves in their own time and one live board player nearly lost on time due to that.

I don't agree that your hands are tied at all. There is nothing in the Laws that says you must impose this in a case in which a player has been persistently failing to record but an opponent has also failed to protest. I would respond by warning the non-scorer that they must record each move up to the time control, and then requiring that after the time control was reached, they must update their scoresheet including all missed moves on their own time before moving again.

Keong Ang
29-04-2013, 06:26 AM
I don't agree that your hands are tied at all. There is nothing in the Laws that says you must impose this in a case in which a player has been persistently failing to record but an opponent has also failed to protest. I would respond by warning the non-scorer that they must record each move up to the time control, and then requiring that after the time control was reached, they must update their scoresheet including all missed moves on their own time before moving again.
There is also nothing in the Laws that prevents the arbiter from imposing the strictest interpretation either.

Prior to the tournament start the Chief Arbiter had been instructed by FIDE about the various interpretations of the Laws and deputies like me are then instructed by the CA on how the Laws are to be implemented.

The point about this interpretation is that it is neither the opponent's job to protest nor the arbiter's job to catch non-recording of moves early. When a player persistently fails to record the moves and the opponent does nothing until the last minute, the opponent cannot be faulted for taking advantage of the offending player's negligence.

The fairest way to implement compulsory recording of moves is to make a player record all the missing moves in their own time. No consideration about the possibility of the player losing on time is taken into account. If the player cannot complete recording all the required moves before losing on time, it simply means the player would have already lost on time if moves had been properly recorded, move after move. Either that or the quality of the moves played so far under time pressure would have been poorer. After all, if a player had not recorded the last 10 moves, that's an advantage of 5 minutes extra thinking time.

At this tournament, the players are actually applauding such strict actions by the arbiters. I think the numerous federations represented here dislikes lenient arbiters. I'd have been shot down in flames if I had responded the way you would.
You would have suspended a compulsory requirement to record moves and unfairly helped a player escape losing on time. You may as well have paused the clock for the player to update the scoresheet. There is also the added complication of treating such infringements differently due to timing of the infringement. What if the infringement happened in the final time control? There cannot be one law for those who infringe in the first time control where they are given every chance to make the time control before updating their scoresheet while those who infringe in the final time control have no choice but to update their scoresheet in whatever time was left.

The rule here is implemented in the harshest and simplest way. Bring the scoresheet up to date immediately in their own time regardless of time pressure. This also serves as their final warning for all remaining rounds of the tournament. Another non-recording of moves infringement would result in immediate loss of game.

I think the lesson that it is compulsory to record every move till the end of the game sunk in well during that busy round for arbiters. When I forced a local Romania star player who was playing on an electronic board to record all the 12 missing moves on the scoresheet in his remaining 42 seconds before the time control, all doubt about this requirement was erased.

Keong Ang
29-04-2013, 07:01 AM
This relaxed, friendly, and devil may care attitude of some players should be stopped!

Kick them out if they don't abide by the rules!

This is a FIDE official tournament and not a cafe for socialising individuals!

I know this kind of "culture" in certain parts of Europe where tournaments containing the word "amateur" are mistaken for some kind of a village fair!

While the rules of the tournament are announced players talk with each other not only ignoring what is said by the organisers but not letting others who want to listen hear what the announcements are about!

That's unfair for people who have paid mega bucks to participate in such tournaments.

I know of at least three Australian international arbiters who wouldn't take any of that rubbish!
I can report that all the arbiters here are strict. That's why we had a lot of work to do.
I can also happily report that the workload has reduced considerably since almost everybody sticks to the straight and narrow now. Also, the previously silent majority have come out of the woodwork and commended the arbiters for being exactly what they hoped, strict and no-nonsense.
I think the locals realised that the crazy kiwi arbiter meant business when a big name(?) journo and TV cameraman were shown the door for talking in the tournament hall (distracting players) and filming (after the no-cameras time has come into force)!!:eek:

Admittedly, I did not know who they were when I charged up to confront them for poking a very distracting big camera at the more photogenic players... Not knowing how to speak Romanian, I just told them "NO Camera! NO Talk! Get OUT!" and proceeded to march them out and shut the door before they could say anything. I then wondered why the more photogenic players and other Romanians around were looking at me dumbstruck. :hmm:

ER
29-04-2013, 08:34 AM
I can report that all the arbiters here are strict. That's why we had a lot of work to do.
I can also happily report that the workload has reduced considerably since almost everybody sticks to the straight and narrow now. Also, the previously silent majority have come out of the woodwork and commended the arbiters for being exactly what they hoped, strict and no-nonsense.
I think the locals realised that the crazy kiwi arbiter meant business when a big name(?) journo and TV cameraman were shown the door for talking in the tournament hall (distracting players) and filming (after the no-cameras time has come into force)!!:eek:

Admittedly, I did not know who they were when I charged up to confront them for poking a very distracting big camera at the more photogenic players... Not knowing how to speak Romanian, I just told them "NO Camera! NO Talk! Get OUT!" and proceeded to march them out and shut the door before they could say anything. I then wondered why the more photogenic players and other Romanians around were looking at me dumbstruck. :hmm:

Good work! And let me clarify that by stating


I know of at least three Australian international arbiters who wouldn't take any of that rubbish

I did not mean that you or your colleagues didn't do the job properly.
In fact I was very impressed by the performance of Kiwi arbiters (yourself included) and DOPs during the Queenstown Classic last year! :clap:

Kevin Bonham
29-04-2013, 10:55 AM
There is also nothing in the Laws that prevents the arbiter from imposing the strictest interpretation either.

That doesn't mean you are obliged to do so as you claim. ("The arbiters hands are tied [..]")

I don't think it's fair that a player benefits more from deliberately or even accidentally withholding their complaint and making it at a strategic time later in the game rather than from making it as soon as the situation arises. If the non-scoring player had made a deliberate and systematic decision to not score that is one thing, but it sounds like some of your players are used to stopping scoring when they get below 5 minutes (at other time controls) and just don't realise that when there is a 30 second increment you cannot do that.


If the player cannot complete recording all the required moves before losing on time, it simply means the player would have already lost on time if moves had been properly recorded, move after move. Either that or the quality of the moves played so far under time pressure would have been poorer.

Far more likely the latter, but not necessarily to a game-losing degree.


After all, if a player had not recorded the last 10 moves, that's an advantage of 5 minutes extra thinking time.

Just because 30 seconds increment is the minimum at which move-recording is enforceable does not mean it takes 30 seconds to record each move. I just wrote down 10 moves for both sides of a hypothetical game in slightly less than one minute. And often some moves are recorded on the opponent's time anyway.


You would have suspended a compulsory requirement to record moves and unfairly helped a player escape losing on time.

The player is still required to score each new move as they make it. The question is only of when the player is required to catch up on a backlog of missed moves that they failed to record and that the opponent did not complain about until much later.


What if the infringement happened in the final time control?

Even here there are plenty of alternative options to making a player sit there writing extremely fast even if they lose on time. One option is to require them to try to catch up every time they get above a certain amount of remaining time (say a minute) until they fall below that time. Of course, it may be that the player is playing all their moves with a few seconds remaining so that is not a real penalty in such cases. Another is to award the opponent generous time compensation, say ten minutes, for the infringement. A third is to waive the scoring requirement for the opponent for an equivalent number of moves (this is only really a good idea if an arbiter is available to score). One could even combine some of these options.

Personally, I haven't had this problem at all in games with increments. In games without increments it used to happen rather a lot and what we used to do was simply require the player who had missed lots of moves to catch up on their own time until they got below 5 minutes, at which point they could stop. One of my opponents who was trying to blitz me in a lost but not absolutely hopeless position resigned when required to catch up on his scoresheet.


This also serves as their final warning for all remaining rounds of the tournament. Another non-recording of moves infringement would result in immediate loss of game.

A player might infringe once early in the tournament and then do it again unintentionally several games later. Defaulting them on the spot the second time in the event is way too harsh in my view.


When I forced a local Romania star player who was playing on an electronic board to record all the 12 missing moves on the scoresheet in his remaining 42 seconds before the time control, all doubt about this requirement was erased.

And it sounds like he did it successfully, yet you still claim that "if a player had not recorded the last 10 moves, that's an advantage of 5 minutes extra thinking time".

Keong Ang
29-04-2013, 03:16 PM
That doesn't mean you are obliged to do so as you claim. ("The arbiters hands are tied [..]")
I'm not obliged to do so at every tournament, but for this one I am. This is a clear instruction that I received during the pre-tournament arbiters briefing. We are supposed to make a player who did not record moves catch up on his/her own time even if it means losing on time.

I don't think it's fair that a player benefits more from deliberately or even accidentally withholding their complaint and making it at a strategic time later in the game rather than from making it as soon as the situation arises. If the non-scoring player had made a deliberate and systematic decision to not score that is one thing, but it sounds like some of your players are used to stopping scoring when they get below 5 minutes (at other time controls) and just don't realise that when there is a 30 second increment you cannot do that.
I think every one of the arbiters here had at least one player lose on time because of this rule. There was one lower board player who was desperately short on time, 20 seconds I think when I spotted that he had not recorded for the last 7 moves, but just ticked them off. I had to prevent him from making his move until he recorded all moves till his opponent's previous move.

Initially I thought this was an unfortunate bad habit by most players, but it seems like a common tactic to test the boundaries of an arbiter's leniency. Enforce the Laws strictly and everyone suddenly magically loses their "bad habits". Apparently they test the boundaries to set some precedents for the arbiters. If we were lenient to one, we would have to be lenient to all. It is much easier to be strict to all.

Far more likely the latter, but not necessarily to a game-losing degree.
I think some players are quite badly affected by the interruption caused by recording the moves. Seems to break their concentration on the move combination whenever they have to write down the move. After enforcement, the majority of these players tend to make a series of bad moves that loses the game. Having to record moves under time pressure seems to totally distract them.

Just because 30 seconds increment is the minimum at which move-recording is enforceable does not mean it takes 30 seconds to record each move. I just wrote down 10 moves for both sides of a hypothetical game in slightly less than one minute. And often some moves are recorded on the opponent's time anyway.
It is possible to write down 10 moves in less than a minute. That's why no leniency is given when enforcing the requirement to record moves. The offending player actually had the advantage of more thinking time through skipping recording and then being forced to record all missing moves in one go. Even saves time from having to pick up pen only once, and copying everything from the opponent's scoresheet and therefore not required to check the squares the moves happened on.

The player is still required to score each new move as they make it. The question is only of when the player is required to catch up on a backlog of missed moves that they failed to record and that the opponent did not complain about until much later.
The answer to this is clear when "...A player may reply to his opponent’s move before recording it, if he so wishes. He must record his previous move before making another..." is read in the context of the intent of the whole of Article 8.1. They must catch up on the entire backlog of missed moves before making another move.

An arbiter would be intentionally misreading the rule if just each new move was to be recorded and the backlog of missed moves were allowed to be caught up on at some more convenient time. This is very unfair to the player who had diligently recorded every move when in time trouble.

Even here there are plenty of alternative options to making a player sit there writing extremely fast even if they lose on time. One option is to require them to try to catch up every time they get above a certain amount of remaining time (say a minute) until they fall below that time. Of course, it may be that the player is playing all their moves with a few seconds remaining so that is not a real penalty in such cases. Another is to award the opponent generous time compensation, say ten minutes, for the infringement. A third is to waive the scoring requirement for the opponent for an equivalent number of moves (this is only really a good idea if an arbiter is available to score). One could even combine some of these options.
All these options you've mentioned are biased towards allowing the game to continue when a player would have lost on time if the moves had been recorded. What we want to see here is whether the offending player would have had time left if the moves had been properly recorded as the Laws prescribed. The CA thinks we are being very lenient by not requiring the offending player to put down the pen and pick it up again each time his/her own move has been recorded!! :lol:

Personally, I haven't had this problem at all in games with increments. In games without increments it used to happen rather a lot and what we used to do was simply require the player who had missed lots of moves to catch up on their own time until they got below 5 minutes, at which point they could stop. One of my opponents who was trying to blitz me in a lost but not absolutely hopeless position resigned when required to catch up on his scoresheet.
When 30 seconds (or more) increments are used in NZ, I've never had huge issues with players not recording their moves.
I had wondered about the relevance of all arbiters needing to be specifically briefed about how to handle such cases here. After the experience, I'm thankful for having such detailed instructions. The whole point is for consistency in implementing the rules.

A player might infringe once early in the tournament and then do it again unintentionally several games later. Defaulting them on the spot the second time in the event is way too harsh in my view.
The level of harshness here shows how seriously things are being taken over here. A championships at FIDE World level is expected to have the highest standards. The locals have some trouble getting into a serious mindset and getting into a World champs mental zone. The foreigners have no problem with that. I suppose those who have paid big money and/or had gone through all the trouble to get selected to represent their federation expect the highest standards here.

This is not some local club tournament but a World champs where the top prize is a FM title with 2200 rating points. Everyone expects disciplinary actions to be quick and fast. We do not warn anyone twice. There is only a first and final warning for unintentional offences. Intentional offences are punished high up the scale immediately.

And it sounds like he did it successfully, yet you still claim that "if a player had not recorded the last 10 moves, that's an advantage of 5 minutes extra thinking time".
He did successfully manage it with just 2 seconds left and completed the move with 1 second remaining (resulting in 31 seconds remaining). Obviously his opponent replied immediately. The experience was so harrowing that the player subsequently blundered the won position and lost the game. I was told that he never managed to increment back to a minute and found having to record every move under severe time pressure such a big distraction that he couldn't think.

We try to ensure that the arbiter involved in an infringement does not come from the same federation as the players involved. This usually means that the kiwi arbiter gets lots of disputes experience since more than half the players are from Romania!
Having the kiwi FA make rulings while the CA just translates makes it look like the CA (who is a very competent and respected IA) is taking orders...! :doh: :rolleyes:

Keong Ang
29-04-2013, 03:21 PM
Good work! And let me clarify that by stating



I did not mean that you or your colleagues didn't do the job properly.
In fact I was very impressed by the performance of Kiwi arbiters (yourself included) and DOPs during the Queenstown Classic last year! :clap:
Thank you for the compliment.

Only two more rounds to go. The top boards are on edge while those in the lower boards are trying to salvage some respectable results.

Meanwhile, I'm soon going to earn my final IA norm. :cool: :cool:
Pity the tournament ends so close to the FIDE Presidential Board meeting. Will have to wait until the FIDE Congress to get the IA title awarded.

Kevin Bonham
29-04-2013, 05:22 PM
I'm not obliged to do so at every tournament, but for this one I am. This is a clear instruction that I received during the pre-tournament arbiters briefing. We are supposed to make a player who did not record moves catch up on his/her own time even if it means losing on time.

Well in that case the hands of whoever gave the instruction are not tied.

I'd be interested to know if this interpretation is widespread. I've never seen it before.


Initially I thought this was an unfortunate bad habit by most players, but it seems like a common tactic to test the boundaries of an arbiter's leniency. Enforce the Laws strictly and everyone suddenly magically loses their "bad habits".

Funny that I don't enforce rules that harshly and yet I don't get continually plagued by boundary-testers trying to find new ways to test or push my limits. Now that may be because our chess scene here is a small and friendly place (I've noticed people seem to be more sporting and less inclined to brinksmanship than in larger scenes) but I can also think of lots of Australian arbiters who aren't especially strict yet don't seem to get plagued with these sorts of problems.


The answer to this is clear when "...A player may reply to his opponent’s move before recording it, if he so wishes. He must record his previous move before making another..." is read in the context of the intent of the whole of Article 8.1. They must catch up on the entire backlog of missed moves before making another move.

No, there is nothing in the intent of Article 8.1 that tells you that you must cause a player to lose on time as a penalty for being in a situation where they have too little time to record a backlog of moves. If FIDE had intended such a penalty to be applied they could easily have made it explicit. They haven't.

And indeed, 8.4 may provide a useful analogy. A player who, through poor time management, leaves themselves with too little time to score moves in a phase without increments, is not forced to record moves at that time - although it could easily be argued that requiring them to still record moves (even if they lose) would be a just punishment for bad time management. It often is argued that 8.4 is unfair to players who manage their time better, because their opponents get out of recording more moves than they do.


All these options you've mentioned are biased towards allowing the game to continue when a player would have lost on time if the moves had been recorded.

Indeed and Article 8.4 has the same bias - it saves a player from losing on time in a case in which he would have lost on time if he had had to record all his moves.

There are cases where you can't save a player from losing on time for a single innocent technical error, eg if a player forgets to press their clock and their time runs out. But in most cases the rules do not create a situation in which a player loses automatically for doing something wrong that is off the board and for which they have not had a warning.


This is not some local club tournament but a World champs where the top prize is a FM title with 2200 rating points.

Can't say either of those impress me too much as arguments for extra seriousness. If you have a good rating system you shouldn't need to go altering people's ratings for winning a given tournament. And FIDE has been known to award higher titles softly.

Keong Ang
30-04-2013, 07:09 AM
Well in that case the hands of whoever gave the instruction are not tied.

I'd be interested to know if this interpretation is widespread. I've never seen it before.
I just follow the CA's instructions. I don't know how widespread this interpretation is but I'm told that it applies to all FIDE events.

Funny that I don't enforce rules that harshly and yet I don't get continually plagued by boundary-testers trying to find new ways to test or push my limits. Now that may be because our chess scene here is a small and friendly place (I've noticed people seem to be more sporting and less inclined to brinksmanship than in larger scenes) but I can also think of lots of Australian arbiters who aren't especially strict yet don't seem to get plagued with these sorts of problems.
I can say that I'm hardly plagued by boundary-testers in NZ.
Also can report that the problems had disappeared after that one round. Everybody knows that the arbiters mean business now.
For the vast majority of the players here who comply with all the rules and regulations, they probably don't notice anything different from the arbiters.

No, there is nothing in the intent of Article 8.1 that tells you that you must cause a player to lose on time as a penalty for being in a situation where they have too little time to record a backlog of moves. If FIDE had intended such a penalty to be applied they could easily have made it explicit. They haven't.
You've got the intent wrong here. When I discussed the harshness of this interpretation, every European arbiter here thought I didn't understand 8.1. The only thing that matters in applying 8.1 is to ensure that the moves are recorded and up to date. We are not causing a player to lose on time as a penalty. In fact we are applying NO penalty since the player is merely made to update the scoresheet to the way it should have been if the player had simply complied with the rules.

As for FIDE, the point of view here is that if leniency is intended, it would have been made explicit, otherwise the Laws are to be applied strictly. On this the view is straightforward, Article 13.1 The arbiter shall see that the Laws of Chess are strictly observed. It is very explicit to all the other arbiters here that strictness is expected and in this regard, the arbiters hands are really tied. Ensuring that Article 8.1 is strictly observed is exactly what we are doing here.

And indeed, 8.4 may provide a useful analogy. A player who, through poor time management, leaves themselves with too little time to score moves in a phase without increments, is not forced to record moves at that time - although it could easily be argued that requiring them to still record moves (even if they lose) would be a just punishment for bad time management. It often is argued that 8.4 is unfair to players who manage their time better, because their opponents get out of recording more moves than they do.
Article 8.4 is an example of FIDE needing to explicitly show where leniency can be applied. If leniency is not explicitly stated, strictness is assumed. Anyway, in this case, Article 8.4 is irrelevant and to be disregarded/ignored since there is a 30 second increment.

Indeed and Article 8.4 has the same bias - it saves a player from losing on time in a case in which he would have lost on time if he had had to record all his moves.

There are cases where you can't save a player from losing on time for a single innocent technical error, eg if a player forgets to press their clock and their time runs out. But in most cases the rules do not create a situation in which a player loses automatically for doing something wrong that is off the board and for which they have not had a warning.
The view is that the rules are not at fault here. They are simple, when there is at least 30 seconds increment in the time control, players are required to record every move. It is obligatory.

With 30 seconds increment, if a player does not record the moves, the reason for not doing so is irrelevant. Also irrelevant is the timing of the opponent reporting it, or the timing of the arbiter spotting the infringement, or the amount of time remaining on the clock, etc. The scoresheet must be brought up to date before the player makes the next move. All fault rests solely with the player and it is not the arbiter's problem (or anybody else's) if a player is unable to do so in the remaining time available.

Players here are lucky that no time is being subtracted for infringing Article 8.1. They are actually benefiting more from not recording the moves since the opponent is doing it for them and it is much faster to copy a series of moves down in one go than to record them move after move.
This is why a final warning is given when such an infringement is initially made. The next time it happens, it is viewed as a deliberate act to gain an unfair advantage, nearly equivalent to cheating. That's why the penalty is immediate loss of game.

Can't say either of those impress me too much as arguments for extra seriousness. If you have a good rating system you shouldn't need to go altering people's ratings for winning a given tournament. And FIDE has been known to award higher titles softly.
Being a FIDE World event makes it a top event where things are taken very seriously.
It costs a lot to come to events like this and the people who are here really appreciate the fact that the arbiters and organisers take things very seriously. It may be the World Amateurs, but the expectation on the arbiters and organisers are anything but amateur standard.

Keong Ang
30-04-2013, 07:20 AM
Better report something about the tournament than to get bogged down in arbiters regulations.

Round 9, final round is 3.30pm Tuesday 30 April 2013 (+3GMT).

There is a 4 way tie of players on 7 points with another 2 players on 6.5points.
This would possibly mean a tie for 1st place.

In the event of a tie, tiebreak criteria in descending order are as follows:
1. Direct Encounter
2. Buchholz
3. Sonneborn-Berger
4. Sum of Progressive Scores

Kevin Bonham
30-04-2013, 11:49 AM
When I discussed the harshness of this interpretation, every European arbiter here thought I didn't understand 8.1. The only thing that matters in applying 8.1 is to ensure that the moves are recorded and up to date.

But then we need to ask why that is important. The reason players are required to record is so that relevant data are available to resolve various situations that may arise later during a game - reconstructing after illegal move, number of moves made, clock press issues, draw claims and so on.

Forcing a player to lose on time (in a case in which such a ruling causes them to do so) means there is no "later". It defeats the purpose of forced recording and should only be applied for a player who keeps breaking the rules after repeated warnings in the same game, or who you have reason to know is not recording in order to deliberately cheat.


As for FIDE, the point of view here is that if leniency is intended, it would have been made explicit, otherwise the Laws are to be applied strictly. On this the view is straightforward, Article 13.1 The arbiter shall see that the Laws of Chess are strictly observed.

That doesn't tell you how you should patch up any specific failure to observe them that has gone undetected for some time, where there are many possible solutions. It isn't a licence to cause someone to lose a game in a situation just because the laws do not specify that they do not lose.


Anyway, in this case, Article 8.4 is irrelevant and to be disregarded/ignored since there is a 30 second increment.

It is relevant by analogy for a situation not specifically covered. It presents a case in which there is an arguably valid reason why a player should not be required to score in a given situation and provides a remedy: they update their scoresheet when they have time. The same should in my view apply here unless there is evidence the non-scoring player was cheating deliberately.


Players here are lucky that no time is being subtracted for infringing Article 8.1.They are actually benefiting more from not recording the moves since the opponent is doing it for them and it is much faster to copy a series of moves down in one go than to record them move after move.

Then give the opponent extra time.

peter_parr
30-04-2013, 11:56 AM
The following article was published in the Sydney Morning Herald Monday 29th April 2013.

Dr Vineetha Wijesuriya (WCM 1846) Australia’s sole representative in the World Amateur Championship (207 players from 37 countries, 9 rounds) has scored 3/6 so far in Iasi, Roumania . Dr Wijesuriya represented Sri Lanka in five chess Olympiads 1992-2008 before moving to Ballarat,Victoria.

Keong Ang
04-05-2013, 10:11 PM
But then we need to ask why that is important. The reason players are required to record is so that relevant data are available to resolve various situations that may arise later during a game - reconstructing after illegal move, number of moves made, clock press issues, draw claims and so on.

Forcing a player to lose on time (in a case in which such a ruling causes them to do so) means there is no "later". It defeats the purpose of forced recording and should only be applied for a player who keeps breaking the rules after repeated warnings in the same game, or who you have reason to know is not recording in order to deliberately cheat.
We are not penalising the player who did not record moves here. All we are making the player do is record all the missing moves before making the next move. This is way too lenient in the opinion of the Eastern European arbiters (who were everyone else other than me). The CA would have made the offending player put down his pen and pick it up again with every move to best replicate the amount of extra time that should have been used if it was permitted in the rules. The whole point is that if a player is incapable of recording all the missing moves in the time remaining, it simply means that player should have lost on time already.
No penalty is being applied to the offending player. The player simply proves that all moves could have been recorded in the time available and is warned to never do this again and that is the end of the matter.

That doesn't tell you how you should patch up any specific failure to observe them that has gone undetected for some time, where there are many possible solutions. It isn't a licence to cause someone to lose a game in a situation just because the laws do not specify that they do not lose.
If they had missed recording one move, that could be taken as an innocent omission. If they had missed recording a series of moves, it is a deliberate act of breaking the Laws. The Laws are very specific (and probably drafted by a fluent English speaker, I was told that Nigel Short wrote all/part of article8.1) and there is no mistake here, a player must record every move before making the next move. The only exception is the move the opponent just played. We are very lenient in allowing a whole series of moves that were not recorded to be let off with just a final warning.

We are not making anyone lose a game. They are proving that they would not have lost on time if moves were recorded. In the context of a FIDE World level event here, nobody is ignorant of the Laws. I also observe those who claim ignorance here are surprisingly quick to point out the Laws (quoting article and sentence!) to an arbiter who does not seem to be strict enough!

My observation is that a player who stopped recording a series of moves had done so deliberately. When caught out, they feign ignorance by saying they had less than 5 minutes left. The other arbiters here seem to be used to such behaviour and seem to view it as players testing an unknown arbiter's knowledge of the Laws. It is part of the game here to test the boundaries of what you can get away with and try to unsettle the Laws complying opponent by doing so. They seem to play the arbiter as another piece that moves outside the board!

It is relevant by analogy for a situation not specifically covered. It presents a case in which there is an arguably valid reason why a player should not be required to score in a given situation and provides a remedy: they update their scoresheet when they have time. The same should in my view apply here unless there is evidence the non-scoring player was cheating deliberately.
The Turks seem to insist that not recording less than 5 moves is atoned with a warning and the requirement to record all missed moves from memory. Miss more than 5 moves, and it is immediate loss of game since it is evidence of deliberate cheating. Their delegation sees us as being too lenient here by allowing an offending player to use their opponents scoresheet to record the missing moves. That's probably why the Turkish players reported these offences after the 6th move is not recorded and don't seem to care about a missed move or two here and there. I don't know how they implement the Laws in Turkey but their actions seem to match with their claims.
Romanian players seem to test the boundaries by stopping recording after getting below 5 minutes. Then they claim bad habits (on a level equivalent to chain smoking!) and appeal for leniency when rule is enforced. You know this is all an act because all such "bad habits" instantly disappear upon receiving their first and final warning. :hmm:
Now you may be able to picture the situation I was in when a Turk complained about a Romanian not recording 7 moves in a row! :lol: :lol:

The view here is that leniency applies only when less than 30 seconds increment is given. With 30 seconds or more increment, the Laws demand absolute compliance with recording moves. Article 8.4 is viewed over here as evidence that FIDE does not allow leniency with Article 8.1. This is due to Article 8.4 actually detailing the only situation where the requirements of Article8.1 do not need to be met.

Then give the opponent extra time.
I'd be eaten alive by all parties here if I did that!!! :eek: :eek:
The way players who are not too fluent in English see it is that if an article in the Laws had "must" written in it, it is absolutely compulsory, unlike "shall" which means compulsory. From my experience here in Romania, Article8.1 seems to be taken so seriously here due to having a "must" placed in it and phrased with good English. This is probably taken as higher reason for compulsory loss of game than even the mobile phone making a noise rule that has a mere "shall".:hmm:

Kevin Bonham
04-05-2013, 10:28 PM
We are not penalising the player who did not record moves here. All we are making the player do is record all the missing moves before making the next move.

This "not penalising" business is a bit repetitive so I'm not sure it is still worth debating, but please, whatever you do, just stick to arbiting and don't even think about a career in justice or corrective services. :lol:


The CA would have made the offending player put down his pen and pick it up again with every move to best replicate the amount of extra time that should have been used if it was permitted in the rules.

As I hinted before, the basis for this is that the opponent is disadvantaged by spending longer recording. So just give the opponent extra time.


The whole point is that if a player is incapable of recording all the missing moves in the time remaining, it simply means that player should have lost on time already.

That doesn't even follow. If the player had used up the time recording earlier he would likely have played his moves slightly faster. He might have even spent a couple of minutes less on just one particular move and even ended up playing the same thing. The assumption that a player who didn't record moves would have otherwise spent the same time on each move as he did in the game (but for recording) is absurd.


If they had missed recording one move, that could be taken as an innocent omission. If they had missed recording a series of moves, it is a deliberate act of breaking the Laws.

Not true. Many players are not aware of certain aspects of the Laws. Plenty of players are used to stopping recording at 5 mins and don't realise that the increment affects whether that is allowed or not. (I still get some players who think you can stop if your opponent stops, many years since that was changed.)


I also observe those who claim ignorance here are surprisingly quick to point out the Laws (quoting article and sentence!) to an arbiter who does not seem to be strict enough!

If a player has already shown a very detailed knowledge and memory for the rules several times when they break the rules you might be entitled to take that into account. Not otherwise.


The view here is that leniency applies only when less than 30 seconds increment is given. With 30 seconds or more increment, the Laws demand absolute compliance with recording moves. Article 8.4 is viewed over here as evidence that FIDE does not allow leniency with Article 8.1. This is due to Article 8.4 actually detailing the only situation where the requirements of Article8.1 do not need to be met.

No one is arguing the requirements do not need to be met. The question is when they need to be met in the specific and not explicitly covered case that a failure to do so is discovered after many moves.


The way players who are not too fluent in English see it is that if an article in the Laws had "must" written in it, it is absolutely compulsory, unlike "shall" which means compulsory. From my experience here in Romania, Article8.1 seems to be taken so seriously here due to having a "must" placed in it and phrased with good English. This is probably taken as higher reason for compulsory loss of game than even the mobile phone making a noise rule that has a mere "shall".:hmm:

The must/shall difference is a very real thing in the FIDE laws culture; I know this having been at RTRG meetings. But "must" only means that not doing something is a clear rule breach; it says nothing about what you do about it.

Contrast the case where a player stops scoring and is warned. The player starts scoring again, and a few moves later stops, and is again warned. The player starts scoring again, and a few moves later stops (all the while while being required to score.) I would declare the game lost after the third offence for persistent refusal to comply (even despite warnings.)

Keong Ang
05-05-2013, 04:11 PM
This "not penalising" business is a bit repetitive so I'm not sure it is still worth debating, but please, whatever you do, just stick to arbiting and don't even think about a career in justice or corrective services. :lol:
I'm really just reporting on what was being practised here and by necessity need to speak from their point of view.
Obviously I have to follow the CA's directives and interpretations in the tournament.

I never considered myself cut out for a career in justice or corrective services since I'm "too soft". :lol:

[.....]
Contrast the case where a player stops scoring and is warned. The player starts scoring again, and a few moves later stops, and is again warned. The player starts scoring again, and a few moves later stops (all the while while being required to score.) I would declare the game lost after the third offence for persistent refusal to comply (even despite warnings.)
I suppose the real difference is how much the arbiters are willing to tolerate non-compliance. At WACC2013, with more than 200 players from 37 countries, tolerance towards non-compliance is practically nil. It's probably a human thing, while it might be the first problem by a particular player, the arbiter has already become jaded with the umpteenth dispute.

They work the arbiters hard around here! We were constantly on our feet patrolling the tournament hall. We even have to patrol the restrooms, and all areas of the playing venue. Considering that all arbiters were walking around from 3pm till 9pm keeping things orderly, by the time most disputes start from 6pm, the chance of finding a cheerful smiling and understanding arbiter attending to a dispute is nil.

The arbiter attending to the dispute would have already spent the last 3 hours throwing out spectators with mobile phones, preventing photos from being taken and granted nearly a hundred requests for permission to go to the restrooms. We would have been talked at impolitely (to put it diplomatically) at least 10 times. I'm "lucky" that I'm a slow learner of swear words in a foreign language and different cultural body language cues, so remained blissfully ignorant of most of the impoliteness. The local arbiters probably mistakenly thought I had the patience of an immortal by being able to remain calm and cheerful through all the "abuse" when the real reason was because I was clueless through it all!!:lol: :lol:

Disputes also come thick and fast. All arbiters could be patrolling around with nothing to do when suddenly all hell would break loose and players from boards all over the place would be calling out for an arbiter. We need to make decisions fast and move on to the next dispute. Coupled with the reality that every chess arbiting decision will have only one satisfied player at best, we know there is a trail of dissatisfied players left behind as we move from one dispute to another.

Given such a situation, and the not insignificant consideration that we could miss dinner and go hungry if the round does not end in a timely fashion, the arbiter's stomach instead of brain may have more influence in decision making. Decisions that speeds up the conclusion of a game tend to be made rather than those that prolongs it. We never bother to add time unless the Laws explicitly say so. Any legitimate reason to declare a game lost is very tempting to be utilised.

Knowing that the appeals committee would be even more impatient than the arbiters also means hardly any player would even consider appealing an arbiter's decision. Appeals are practically a revenue collection system since it costs EUR100 to lodge an appeal and it must be lodged in writing within 30 minutes of the end of a game. The EUR100 would be refunded if and only if an appeal is successful, and the unwritten rule is that no appeal will be successful. An appeals committee that is made out of federation delegates is hardly going to be sympathetic to a player from a different federation since that players loss would benefit their own federation. Note that the timing of any appeal would cause them to miss dinner too! ;)

AFAIK the CA had consulted with the people who would make up the Appeals committee on the interpretation and penalties to be imposed on all the Laws that we arbiters were subsequently instructed to carry out. No debate or discussion (like we are in now) was contemplated. When I questioned the harshness of the rules, I quickly realised that the session was for us to receive our instructions (marching orders) that were not to be questioned. Informal "debates" happened off-duty but whatever the outcome counts for nothing when back on-duty.

The impression I got was that arbiters were expected to interpret the rules through the lens of getting the quickest outcome. Efficiency rules and as long as everyone is treated the same, that's fair. I felt like I was the arbiter from the other side of the world, both literally and figuratively!! :uhoh: :uhoh:

Keong Ang
05-05-2013, 04:58 PM
World Amateur Chess Championships

Results available in:
http://chess-results.com/tnr91568.aspx

The ANZACs (Australia New Zealand Amateur Chessplayers) both scored 5 out of 9.

On tiebreaks out of 207 players:
Alphaeus Ang (NZL 1853) came 65th overall.
Vineetha Wijesuriya (AUS 1846) came 73rd overall.

New Zealand specific results can be seen in:
http://www.newzealandchess.co.nz/results.html

It was quite a tough tournament for everyone.
Since players with FIDE ratings above 2000 are prohibited from entering, this translated into a tournament where every foreign player would essentially be above 1900 strength.
For most players above 1800, they would experience a tournament where they would face 9 evenly matched opponents. With such a large field, there was little chance of being paired with a much weaker opponent. Veterans of previous World Amateurs commented that this was the toughest World Amateurs they have played in.

From the perspective of the organisation and running of the event, on the whole things were done well.
Iasi, Romania is a good place to host such an event. The location is superb and the views are really something to wake up to.
The people here are friendly and helpful.

The venue, the congress hall on top of Palas Mall is excellent.
Very well located around the Palace of Culture and less than 100 meters from the hotel we were in.
We became very fond of their gelato which costs 3lei (about AUD1 or NZD1.2) and would consume it every day!! :P :P

The organisers worked really hard to achieve an excellent event and they accomplished it. Logistics were well taken care of.

The players are a great bunch of people to be with.
No matter what occurred during a round, they all knew it is just a game and the dining room was a great and friendly place to be in. Generally people enjoyed themselves. Many of us parted with "See you in Singapore next year my friend!"

Most of us who flew out of Romania needed to get to Bucharest airport and it was quite a sight to see a corner of the airport taken over by chessboards in an impromptu blitz tournament that lasted until we had to catch our flights out.

I'll need to work out how to post photos. Words alone do not do justice to what a fantastic event and place this is.

Kevin Bonham
05-05-2013, 05:49 PM
I'm really just reporting on what was being practised here and by necessity need to speak from their point of view.
Obviously I have to follow the CA's directives and interpretations in the tournament.

It's not so much the policy I was reflecting on there but rather your idea that it isn't a penalty or punishment to make a player catch up even at a time when forcing them to do so then causes them to lose on time.

If that's really a non-punishment, it must be a "cruel and unusual" non-punishment. :lol:

While I don't agree with the policy, the background to it has been very interesting. And I understand the bit about being run off your feet (etc). But how many arbiters are there for 200+ players?

I agree with the EUR100 deposit for appeals, by the way. I've mentioned before here that the ACF imposes a $200 deposit for selection appeals, though we refund it if the appeal is upheld or if the appeal is dismissed but considered to have some merit. Frivolous/vexatious/groundless or even merely arguable appeals should be strongly deterred. However there should be a reasonable path to natural justice if an appellant has been genuinely wronged. So it is important to be careful about not selecting someone for an appeals committee who has a strong vested interest in the outcome. If they only have a weak and unavoidable one (like being from another federation) then that's OK as a really unjust case would hopefully still be taken seriously.

Keong Ang
05-05-2013, 09:39 PM
It's not so much the policy I was reflecting on there but rather your idea that it isn't a penalty or punishment to make a player catch up even at a time when forcing them to do so then causes them to lose on time.

If that's really a non-punishment, it must be a "cruel and unusual" non-punishment. :lol:
Not sure if I've made it clear enough, but it surely isn't my idea to force a player to catch up even if it would cause them to lose on time. It was policy that we arbiters were instructed to do. I'm generally repeating (hopefully in better English) what their explanations, reasoning and point of view was over here. Then I try to reason with them our relatively equivalent point of view to them during the off-duty "debates" while there. Exchange of ideas or viewpoints is usually good.

We may view it as "cruel and unusual" non-punishment but they see it as letting an offender off the hook. Their opinion is that not subtracting time from the offending player is being very lenient. The CA thinks that the offender should even be made to put the pen down before picking it up again for every recording cycle to best simulate the actual amount of time taken to record the moves. They take a stricter view of things and they think they are lenient! This is especially so when compared to the Turks who have the position that not recording for 5 moves in a row is sufficient evidence of deliberate and repeated non-compliance that must result in the penalty of immediate loss of game. :hmm: :hmm:

While I don't agree with the policy, the background to it has been very interesting. And I understand the bit about being run off your feet (etc). But how many arbiters are there for 200+ players?
There are 4 arbiters (including myself) during the tournament, i.e. the CA and 3 deputies. We were all on duty at the start of each round. After 2 hours have passed, we start taking turns having breaks depending on workload. There is also the need to patrol the restrooms and other playing venue areas. Restroom patrol requires the one female and one male arbiter. That leaves only 2 arbiters in the playing area if all 4 are on duty during that time. When half the arbiters are taking a break, there could only be 1 arbiter in the playing area while the other is going on restroom etc. patrol. During such a time it only takes 2 disputes to stretch arbiting resources! We also need to note that some disputes occur outside the playing area.

I do find the policies "interesting" in the sense that they seem to approach the Laws from a very different starting point of view compared to us. There are groups of players who seem to compare notes amongst themselves about which arbiter could be lenient. They seem to probe the boundaries of how much they can get away with. Such behaviour sorts of confirms the very strict policies. I observe that when enforcement of the Laws is done once or twice by each arbiter, like magic the players automatically become most compliant. ;)

This experience has left me with a deeper understanding of the way arbiters work around here. But it does not necessarily mean that I agree with them. I just suppose the situation on the ground forges the policies being implemented.

I agree with the EUR100 deposit for appeals, by the way. I've mentioned before here that the ACF imposes a $200 deposit for selection appeals, though we refund it if the appeal is upheld or if the appeal is dismissed but considered to have some merit. Frivolous/vexatious/groundless or even merely arguable appeals should be strongly deterred. However there should be a reasonable path to natural justice if an appellant has been genuinely wronged. So it is important to be careful about not selecting someone for an appeals committee who has a strong vested interest in the outcome. If they only have a weak and unavoidable one (like being from another federation) then that's OK as a really unjust case would hopefully still be taken seriously.
The usual policy for FIDE World events is that members of the appeals committee must not come from the same federation as the appellant. However it is easy to see that this means every member of the appeals committee would come from a federation that would tend to benefit if the appellant loses the appeal. Then the organiser/delegate is usually on the appeals committee, and it is quite obvious that upholding the arbiters decision is financially beneficial. Effectively every appeal is a bit like the arbiters sending EUR100 to be shared between the organiser and FIDE. I could be wrong here but I certainly got the vibes that the thirst for revenue is stronger than the thirst for justice/fairness. :uhoh:

In the whole tournament the arbiters are perceived to be fair. We don't really have a vested interest in the outcome of our decisions and generally arbiters don't like making decisions that would go to appeal. Tends to make for more bothersome paperwork when we'd rather go for dinner. Much easier to submit a tournament report that says "no issues" rather than supply appeals committee decisions on a list of issues. We also get to earn our arbiter norms without controversy.

Something else I've learnt is that arbiters actually undergo quite an extensive training program just to become a "National Arbiter". It is actually quite prestigious to be a top grade NA. I did not think that being a FA was viewed that high up the ladder. Here we are in NZL virtually having a shortage of arbiters while they actually ration the arbiter positions there. I'm starting to wonder how they would perceive me when I next go there as an IA. :cool:

Ian_Rogers
06-05-2013, 02:14 AM
I have to say Keong Ang paints a depressing picture here, of a corrupt appeals system and arbiters who, not competent enough to make sure that players do not miss recording moves, then effectively forfeit them when they finally notice the omission many moves later. (Keong has already said that opponents exploit the arbiters' failures by deliberately delaying their complaints until their opponents are many moves behind - and get rewarded for this.)
In my experience, Appeals Committess uphold complaints about 50% of the time, and a player's deposit may be refunded if they had a valid case even if their complaint was ultimately rejected. To have an Appeals Committee that says no automatically because of the federation of the complainant is dreadful and certainly not typical of other top FIDE tournaments.

ER
06-05-2013, 03:27 AM
... I'll need to work out how to post photos. Words alone do not do justice to what a fantastic event and place this is.


http://i1230.photobucket.com/albums/ee481/jak_jak1/100_7566-1_zpsf3c3467d.jpg (http://s1230.photobucket.com/user/jak_jak1/media/100_7566-1_zpsf3c3467d.jpg.html)

Queenstown Classic - NZ 2012. Photo: Elliott Renzies

Hi Keong, that's the way you do it! :lol: :owned:

Kevin Bonham
06-05-2013, 10:15 AM
I think a big problem here is not enough arbiters. Four arbiters on duty with two patrolling the restrooms (whatever that involves) for 200+ players just seems grossly inadequate, especially for a supposedly serious tournament, when you have adults from a mix of nationalities, language issues etc. I'd consider four for 200 manageable for local junior tournaments (and we've done it) but not if two of them are often out of the playing area. Patrolling the restrooms does not sound like something an arbiter should need to do; organisers should be able to find volunteers who report any problems to the arbiters for this.

Keong Ang
06-05-2013, 11:16 AM
I have to say Keong Ang paints a depressing picture here, of a corrupt appeals system and arbiters who, not competent enough to make sure that players do not miss recording moves, then effectively forfeit them when they finally notice the omission many moves later. (Keong has already said that opponents exploit the arbiters' failures by deliberately delaying their complaints until their opponents are many moves behind - and get rewarded for this.)
In my experience, Appeals Committess uphold complaints about 50% of the time, and a player's deposit may be refunded if they had a valid case even if their complaint was ultimately rejected. To have an Appeals Committee that says no automatically because of the federation of the complainant is dreadful and certainly not typical of other top FIDE tournaments.
We cannot say this appeals system is corrupt. I think it is a standard system for a FIDE World event.
Quite normal to have an appeal to cost EUR100 and need to be lodged in writing within 30 minutes of the end of the game. The EUR100 would only be refunded upon an appeal being successful.
Also quite standard to make sure no member of the appeals committee is hearing an appeal from an appellant from the same federation.

What I observe is that the appeals system is essentially designed to ensure only the most controversial decision by an arbiter is ever going to be appealed. In that part of the world, EUR100 is about half a month's income. From where I was seated on the stage during the Technical meeting, I could see that most of the players are not going to pay.

Looking at the people who made up the appeals committee, FIDE technical delegate being the chair and organiser being a member. The remaining member and two reserves, all of whom elected at the technical meeting made the arbiters come to the conclusion that they are the sort of people who would only let an appeal succeed if the arbiter made a decision that was absolutely wrong. The arbiters did not have any involvement in the setting up of the appeals committee other than observing the proceedings.

In the event, no appeal was made. Every arbiter's decision was accepted as correct by the players. This is over more than 900 standard and 500 blitz games. Considering that the arbiters were constantly patrolling and actively enforcing rules, this indicates that the decisions were accepted as correct.

I don't know why you would think arbiters would be incompetent if they did not detect non-recording of moves until many moves later. Non-recording of moves tends to happen when the player has less than 5 minutes left. A series of moves tend to be played before an arbiter on patrol arrives. It can take 3 minutes to complete a patrol circuit if there were no enforcements required. By the time non-recording is detected by an arbiter on patrol, the offending player is usually deep in thought with only 1 minute left with a series of unrecorded moves.

If the arbiters were sitting around doing nothing and did not detect non-recording of moves, you could say they were being incompetent. However at this tournament, we were all actively patrolling on our feet constantly. If anyone is being incompetent, it is the offending player who is fully responsible for not following the rules and would face the consequences.
That is why the policy is simple, 1st detection of non-recording and the player is made to correct the omission in own time before making next move. 2nd detection at any other time in the tournament results in immediate loss of game. The policy is very effective, nobody gave us a chance to enforce immediate loss of game. After that horror round I described initially, we had 100% compliance.
Sort of speaks volumes about the claims of non-recording being caused by incorrigible bad habits on the level of chain smoking. Never knew chain smoking to be so easily broken through strict enforcement. IMHO the local arbiters were correct, these offending players were testing the boundaries of what they can get away with.

I should stress that our actions as arbiters were very popular with the players. The arbiters were very much applauded and complimented. It is as if players from all over the world are fed up with arbiters who do not enforce the rules strictly. We've been repeatedly told by the players that lenient arbiters are destroying the game because lenient arbiters are punishing players who follow the rules.

Keong Ang
06-05-2013, 11:38 AM
I think a big problem here is not enough arbiters. Four arbiters on duty with two patrolling the restrooms (whatever that involves) for 200+ players just seems grossly inadequate, especially for a supposedly serious tournament, when you have adults from a mix of nationalities, language issues etc. I'd consider four for 200 manageable for local junior tournaments (and we've done it) but not if two of them are often out of the playing area. Patrolling the restrooms does not sound like something an arbiter should need to do; organisers should be able to find volunteers who report any problems to the arbiters for this.
1 arbiter per 50 boards is the standard FIDE recommendation.

We did have other people who were "crew" but only arbiters are allowed to enforce rules. Patrolling the restrooms and other areas of the playing venue had to be done because of concerns over cheating.

Players were not allowed to leave their seats when it was their turn to move. They needed to obtain the permission of the arbiter before they could leave the playing area to go to the restroom. The restrooms were recognised as the prime risk area for cheating and that's why arbiters needed to patrol them frequently.

Allowing spectators into the playing area made arbiter's workload higher. It would have made the arbiters job much easier to just lock spectators outside and escort every player whose game is finished out. However it was nice to have spectators around and helps with the image of chess.

I think the suspicion of cheating was taken way to seriously, especially by players. Why would anyone bother to cheat at board ninety something towards the end of the tournament? We had to keep performing ridiculous patrols to the restrooms because "my opponent has been gone a long time" to check things out. C'mon what amount of cheating can turn a KQRR vs KB game around??? :doh: Usually the problem is that the opponent is still sobbing uncontrollably in the privacy of the restroom!:rolleyes:

Kevin Bonham
06-05-2013, 12:09 PM
1 arbiter per 50 boards is the standard FIDE recommendation.

I don't think this envisages arbiters continually patrolling restrooms though.

Ian_Rogers
06-05-2013, 12:33 PM
Keong Ang
"What I observe is that the appeals system is essentially designed to ensure only the most controversial decision by an arbiter is ever going to be appealed.... In the event, no appeal was made. Every arbiter's decision was accepted as correct by the players... this indicates that the decisions were accepted as correct."

Or perhaps it indicates that the players, like you, understood that any appeal would be pointless because the Appeals Committee was stacked with people who would refuse appeals out of hand. That is not the reason you have an Appeals Committtee.

Keong Ang
"I don't know why you would think arbiters would be incompetent if they did not detect non-recording of moves until many moves later... 1st detection of non-recording and the player is made to correct the omission in own time before making next move...After that horror round I described initially, we had 100% compliance....I should stress that our actions as arbiters were very popular with the players."

Shooting a player who failed to keep score would get 100% compliance even more quickly - it doesn't make it right. Effectively the arbiters were punishing players for their own slackness in being unable to notice immediately a player stopped keeping score. The slacker an arbiter was, the more chance a player would not have time to update his scoresheet and would be forfeited. The sneakier the opponent was in pointing it out, the more chance they would get a free point. If you don't notice the breach immediately, you should not punish the player for this.
Clearly you did not have manpower to do the job properly - FIDE rules ideally need one arbiter per board watching at all time for breaches of the rules - but why take your manpower shortage out on the players?
This is not dissimilar in spirit to the zero forfeit rule - unnecessarily increasing stress on players for the convenience of arbiters/organisers.

Jesper Norgaard
06-05-2013, 03:18 PM
We cannot say this appeals system is corrupt. I think it is a standard system for a FIDE World event.
Quite normal to have an appeal to cost EUR100 and need to be lodged in writing within 30 minutes of the end of the game. The EUR100 would only be refunded upon an appeal being successful.
...

The standard operation is that the fee is returned if the application had some merit. It is not meant to be an arbitrary penalty even if the appeal is lost on a technicality. This is abuse of power IMHO.



What I observe is that the appeals system is essentially designed to ensure only the most controversial decision by an arbiter is ever going to be appealed. In that part of the world, EUR100 is about half a month's income. From where I was seated on the stage during the Technical meeting, I could see that most of the players are not going to pay.
...

Obviously by setting the possible penalty at an unreasonable amount, equivalent to a months salary, will absolutely scare anybody away from an appeal regardless if they had a legitimate quarrel or not. Obviously you will get a sincere compliment for the arbiting - from 50% of the claimants/involved for which the decision is favorable. That doesn't say anything about due process and fairness.


In the event, no appeal was made. Every arbiter's decision was accepted as correct by the players. This is over more than 900 standard and 500 blitz games. Considering that the arbiters were constantly patrolling and actively enforcing rules, this indicates that the decisions were accepted as correct.
...

It just shows that the corrupt setting of fees worked well, just like Saddam Hussein always received 99.9% of the votes. Ordnung muss sein. QED.

Keong Ang
06-05-2013, 03:41 PM
Or perhaps it indicates that the players, like you, understood that any appeal would be pointless because the Appeals Committee was stacked with people who would refuse appeals out of hand. That is not the reason you have an Appeals Committtee.
I think from the way the players selected the members of the Appeals Committee, they wanted to ensure no appeal against an arbiter's decision would succeed. I think it was quite political, the larger federations wanted to make sure that an arbiter's decision would not be overturned because they think their players never break the rules. Overturning an arbiter's decision on appeal would disadvantage their player and benefit the opponent (who made the appeal).

Shooting a player who failed to keep score would get 100% compliance even more quickly - it doesn't make it right. Effectively the arbiters were punishing players for their own slackness in being unable to notice immediately a player stopped keeping score. The slacker an arbiter was, the more chance a player would not have time to update his scoresheet and would be forfeited. The sneakier the opponent was in pointing it out, the more chance they would get a free point. If you don't notice the breach immediately, you should not punish the player for this.
Clearly you did not have manpower to do the job properly - FIDE rules ideally need one arbiter per board watching at all time for breaches of the rules - but why take your manpower shortage out on the players?
This is not dissimilar in spirit to the zero forfeit rule - unnecessarily increasing stress on players for the convenience of arbiters/organisers.
Shooting the players who failed to keep score would cause absolute disadvantage their previous opponents Buchholz scores. :lol:

I think the view there was that the longer a player had not recorded the moves, the more the law was broken by the player. We did announce to players about this compulsory requirement in multiple languages. When discussing this while off duty, the arbiters and other interested players hanging around have the view that the offending player did not deserve sympathy, if the game is lost on time, that's just too bad. What concerned them was that all the advantage must belong to the opponent who had complied with the rules all the time. The concern was whether the opponent could lose the game by being distracted by an offending player being let off lightly. The free point potential was a non-issue to them. People there preferred that those who did not comply with the rules were punished rather than be given a second chance.

It is ridiculous to suggest an arbiter was slack when infringements were not caught early enough to prevent loss on time. All fault belongs solely to the offending player. None of these issues would arise if the player had complied with the rules anyway.

After this experience, I can guess where harsh rules like zero forfeit come from. It comes from players who are fed up with the slackers who turn up late. The arbiters/organisers don't really like the zero forfeit rule. When we announced that the default time is 30 minutes, there was a huge sigh of disappointment. It was very strange to me that when harsh penalties were announced there was much cheering.

I guess their attitude is due to the media presence there. These players probably don't want their 10 seconds of fame ruined by their opponent not being present. I also find that the further away a player came from the more they wanted the zero forfeit rule. They didn't travel so far to a tournament to have to put up with a disrespectful opponent who does not extend the courtesy of turning up on time. Lots of players refused to shake the hand of an opponent who turned up after the round started!! This is especially so if a TV news camera was filming them. In that situation, an unfriendly scowl towards the late arrival seemed de rigour.

Kevin Bonham
06-05-2013, 09:03 PM
I think from the way the players selected the members of the Appeals Committee, they wanted to ensure no appeal against an arbiter's decision would succeed. I think it was quite political, the larger federations wanted to make sure that an arbiter's decision would not be overturned because they think their players never break the rules.

This raises the question of whether players should be allowed to select their own appeals committee if they are (supposedly) going to abuse the system by playing political games. Better in that case that the arbiters appoint an appeals committee of players of good repute and sound judgement with a good understanding of the Laws (frequently done here by the way.)


The concern was whether the opponent could lose the game by being distracted by an offending player being let off lightly.

If distraction is an issue, give the opponent extra time to regain composure.

Keong Ang
07-05-2013, 08:54 AM
This raises the question of whether players should be allowed to select their own appeals committee if they are (supposedly) going to abuse the system by playing political games. Better in that case that the arbiters appoint an appeals committee of players of good repute and sound judgement with a good understanding of the Laws (frequently done here by the way.)
The appeals committee was set up with the usual FIDE process used at events like this. Main pre-requisite for selection for membership onto the appeals committee was that the nominated member had functional English. After that it usually came down to which federation had the larger delegation. Political games are unavoidable at an event where national pride is involved.

While it is common for an appeals committee to be appointed by the arbiters, it is not good practise. The appeals committee basically judges an arbiter's decision. Having a higher judge being appointed by the lower judge who is going to be subjected to the higher judge's scrutiny is not good practise. If the arbiters had appointed the members of an appeals committee, everyone would know that all appeals are futile, the arbiters would surely appoint people who would see things the same way as themselves.

As an arbiter I am very uncomfortable with having to even facilitate the process of appointing members of an appeals committee. Logically the arbiter would ensure that any committee that would judge his/her own decisions would agree fully. The potential for abuse of process or accusations of abuse of process would be too great.

We've already had comments made on this thread that the appeals process is flawed just because of me reporting my personal observation of the workings of the appeals committee in reality. If this could be said of a standard FIDE process of forming an appeals committee where the members were appointed in a transparent and democratic fashion, imagine what would happen if the arbiters had appointed the members of the appeals committee. In that situation we may as well not have an appeals committee because they would just be arbiter clones.

If distraction is an issue, give the opponent extra time to regain composure.
This suggested remedy would never even be considered in the event. The assumption is that the player who had not recorded moves during time pressure would have made better moves than the opponent who had complied with the requirement. Extra time will not remedy a bad position. That's why the next time a player is caught not recording moves, the penalty is immediate loss of game.

The only situations where extra time is given at this event is where the Laws make it compulsory (eg. illegal move). The push is to end games and get a result. We even start the clocks at boards where players are still dawdling around at their leisure exchanging souvenirs when the CA starts the round. Like I said earlier, prolonging games is discouraged and a reasonable end time to a round is worked to. Any arbiter who gave extra time in optional situations about 4 hours after the start of a round (the normal time recording infringements occur) would have been shot. The simple remedy is to let the offending player prove that the moves would have been able to be recorded anyway without losing on time. If unable, and quite a number could not, the game is lost on time.

I add that when I tried to be a smartypants and suggested "let's give the opponent extra time to compensate for distraction..." the other arbiters, members of the appeals committee and other players (many of whom were also arbiters/organisers) shot that idea down as plain stupidity from a small country village bumpkin. As far as they were concerned, the worst thing to do is prolong a game. They view not complying with the rules as tantamount to cheating. The minimum penalty for cheating is loss of game. We were seen as spineless arbiters for allowing 1st time non recording transgressions to be let off with a final warning and requiring offenders to just catch up in the remaining time.

I guess all this hardline attitudes resulted from all the irritants that were beyond the control of the organisers/arbiters...

Kevin Bonham
07-05-2013, 10:03 AM
While it is common for an appeals committee to be appointed by the arbiters, it is not good practise. The appeals committee basically judges an arbiter's decision. Having a higher judge being appointed by the lower judge who is going to be subjected to the higher judge's scrutiny is not good practise. If the arbiters had appointed the members of an appeals committee, everyone would know that all appeals are futile, the arbiters would surely appoint people who would see things the same way as themselves.

My mistake there, I said "arbiters" when I meant to say "organisers". I agree the arbiters shouldn't appoint their own appeal committee (and they generally don't).

Sorry about that; I will try that one again:

Better in that case that the organisers appoint an appeals committee of players of good repute and sound judgement with a good understanding of the Laws (frequently done here by the way.)

Keong Ang
07-05-2013, 10:16 AM
The standard operation is that the fee is returned if the application had some merit. It is not meant to be an arbitrary penalty even if the appeal is lost on a technicality. This is abuse of power IMHO.
That's how I understand the appeals process to normally work.
However something must have been mistranslated when "EUR100 appeal fee will only be refunded when an appeal is successful." followed by the standard clause giving the English version primacy over all others, basically meant no refund for lost appeals.

Obviously by setting the possible penalty at an unreasonable amount, equivalent to a months salary, will absolutely scare anybody away from an appeal regardless if they had a legitimate quarrel or not. Obviously you will get a sincere compliment for the arbiting - from 50% of the claimants/involved for which the decision is favorable. That doesn't say anything about due process and fairness.
EUR100 is about half the average monthly salary in Romania. EUR100 is also the standard amount required to lodge an appeal in all such FIDE World events. I wouldn't say that there was anything different in regard to what was required to lodge an appeal. It may be an unreasonable amount to some players, but it would also be no big deal to others.

It is also quite clear that there are no grounds for an appeal to be successful in cases that involved enforcement of move recording requirements. This was clearly defined policy that was approved by the appeals committee. Anybody who lost on time due to being unable to update the scoresheet knew that the appeals committee will just reaffirm the arbiter's enforcement action.

With the large mix of nationalities and cultures around, I noticed that fairness is a relative concept. Interpretations of the Laws therefore vary widely. For example, Article13.1 "The arbiter shall see that the Laws of Chess are strictly observed." seems to be taken to mean that arbiters must never be lenient. Looking at the much discussed non-recording of moves, quite a number of players from different federations thought it was unbelievable that we arbiters do not rule immediate loss of game. In their eyes, we were favouring the offending player and ignoring an absolutely compulsory requirement in the Laws. This means we were being very unfair to the opponent, who now has to continue a game with a player who cheated.

Keong Ang
07-05-2013, 10:29 AM
My mistake there, I said "arbiters" when I meant to say "organisers". I agree the arbiters shouldn't appoint their own appeal committee (and they generally don't).

Sorry about that; I will try that one again:

Better in that case that the organisers appoint an appeals committee of players of good repute and sound judgement with a good understanding of the Laws (frequently done here by the way.)
Relieved to learn it was a terminology mistake.
No worries then.

For private tournaments, it is usually best if the organisers handled the process of appointing the appeals committee.
I've had situations (very few) where I was the arbiter and had to lead the process of appointing the appeals committee. Something that was very uncomfortable to do. Thankfully no appeals were made otherwise things would get very controversial.

For FIDE events, there are regulations on how the appeals committee is formed. This World Amateurs followed them.

Oepty
07-05-2013, 04:29 PM
In general I do not think an arbiters decision should be considered best just because it is the decision which brings the game to quickest conclusion.

Also I am not that sure appeals committees should be making it known which way they intend rule on a possible appeal, but maybe I am wrong on this one.

Kevin Bonham
07-05-2013, 05:42 PM
Also I am not that sure appeals committees should be making it known which way they intend rule on a possible appeal, but maybe I am wrong on this one.

I don't think they should either.

Bill Gletsos
07-05-2013, 08:06 PM
EUR100 is about half the average monthly salary in Romania. EUR100 is also the standard amount required to lodge an appeal in all such FIDE World events.That is simply wrong.

The World Amateur is covered by the D.IV.01. General Regulations for FIDE Competitions

Section 31 states:

A protest fee of 200 Euro shall be payable to FIDE which is refundable if the protest is upheld. The Appeals Committee may also decide to refund the fee if it considers the appeal was not frivolous.

Also it appears their 30 minute window to submit an appeal was also in conflict with the applicable FIDE regulations.

Section 30 states:

A protest against the decision of an Arbiter must be submitted in writing to the Chief Arbiter, within two hours after the end of the playing session.

Keong Ang
07-05-2013, 08:44 PM
I don't think they should either.
Prior decisions like "if player x appeals he shall lose." are certainly bad.

However they could agree to policy or specific interpretations.
Nothing wrong with prior agreement between the arbiters, organisers and appeals committee on potential situations as long as it was agreed to before the tournament starts. Removes a lot of uncertainty.

Keong Ang
07-05-2013, 08:45 PM
That is simply wrong.

The World Amateur is covered by the D.IV.01. General Regulations for FIDE Competitions

Section 31 states:

A protest fee of 200 Euro shall be payable to FIDE which is refundable if the protest is upheld. The Appeals Committee may also decide to refund the fee if it considers the appeal was not frivolous.

Also it appears their 30 minute window to submit an appeal was also in conflict with the applicable FIDE regulations.

Section 30 states:

A protest against the decision of an Arbiter must be submitted in writing to the Chief Arbiter, within two hours after the end of the playing session.
You're quoting regulations that do not come into force until 2014.
Check out Section 2.
These Regulations are applicable with effect from 2014 (World Youth & World Children are effective from 2016) unless otherwise stated in the regulations of a specific Competition.

[Edit1]
I see the price to appeal has gone up to EUR200, a 100% increase!
An appeals committee also can still decide not to refund an appeal that failed but is not frivolous. There is still nothing to stop any appeals committee from letting it be known that only appeals that are upheld will see the EUR200 refunded (an all failed appeals are frivolous position).

[Edit2]
What I'd like clarified for future encounters is, how much power does the FIDE Technical Delegate actually have?
He changed the appeal time from "within 30 minutes from the end of the round" to "within 30 minutes from the end of the game".
Then assumed the position of chair of appeals committee and promptly appointed the organiser as a member. Then proceeded to convene the selection procedure of the other member and 2 reserves. etc. etc.

Kevin Bonham
07-05-2013, 08:50 PM
Prior decisions like "if player x appeals he shall lose." are certainly bad.

However they could agree to policy or specific interpretations.

Problem is that then you could get a situation that people think is covered by a policy but is really a special case, and the committee could feel under pressure to conform to the announced policy. Better to just recognise that appeals committees are chosen for their ability to get it right without having to say how they are going to do so in advance.

Of course, if an interpretation is announced by the arbiters or organisers, any competent appeals committee will consider this in making a decision.

Keong Ang
07-05-2013, 09:07 PM
Problem is that then you could get a situation that people think is covered by a policy but is really a special case, and the committee could feel under pressure to conform to the announced policy. Better to just recognise that appeals committees are chosen for their ability to get it right without having to say how they are going to do so in advance.

Of course, if an interpretation is announced by the arbiters or organisers, any competent appeals committee will consider this in making a decision.
A lot depends on the attitude of the appeals people. Some of the members can be very opinionated. I heard through the grapevine that the FIDE technical delegate had to quietly tell some of these hardliners to keep their opinions to themselves. Some people can get overzealous in getting their view made official.

For the record I'm not too keen on detailed policies, instructions and interpretations being given to arbiters prior to the start of the tournament. I think I had mentioned examples of situations where I found such detailed pronouncements rather restrictive and unjust. Kind of runs counter to the bit in the preface to the Laws that says, "Too detailed a rule might deprive the arbiter of his freedom of judgement and thus prevent him from finding the solution to a problem dictated by fairness, logic and special factors."

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:31 AM
This is the view I wake up to while at WACC2013.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1844_zpsb03d82fd.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1844_zpsb03d82fd.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:37 AM
View from the room from right to left.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1755_zpsa4104b48.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1755_zpsa4104b48.jpg.html)

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1757_zpscbbd47a8.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1757_zpscbbd47a8.jpg.html)

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1758_zps227993f6.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1758_zps227993f6.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:39 AM
Tournament hall being prepared before the start of event.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1799_zps8adbf891.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1799_zps8adbf891.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:40 AM
Opening ceremony viewed from tournament hall entrance at top of Palas Mall.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1804_zpsaa06a1c9.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1804_zpsaa06a1c9.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:42 AM
Tournament hall during a round viewed from front.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1814_zpse2c9d21c.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1814_zpse2c9d21c.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:42 AM
Tournament hall during a round viewed from back.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1820_zps9b79df95.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1820_zps9b79df95.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:44 AM
Photo from Closing ceremony.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1936_zpsfac1889c.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1936_zpsfac1889c.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 08:50 AM
World Amateur Blitz Tournament has concluded.

Results available in:
http://chess-results.com/tnr99168.aspx

The ANZACs (Australia New Zealand Amateur Chessplayers) blitzed on this Anzac day and found the going tough.

On tiebreaks out of 112 players:
Alphaeus Ang (NZL 1853) came 23rd overall with a score of 6 out of 9 and took the 2nd under 12 age group prize.
Vineetha Wijesuriya (AUS 1846) came 88th overall with a score of 3.5 out of 9.

Alphaeus receiving Blitz trophy and prize at closing ceremony.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1947_zpsd05e4b8d.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1947_zpsd05e4b8d.jpg.html)

Keong Ang
08-05-2013, 09:04 AM
I like this photo of Trans Tasman cooperation with ally... ;)

Looking from left to right
Germany (with NZ All Blacks supporters jersey), Vineetha from AUS, Alphaeus from NZL.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1923_zpsd3d854ea.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1923_zpsd3d854ea.jpg.html)

Desmond
08-05-2013, 07:41 PM
Tournament hall during a round viewed from back.

http://i1286.photobucket.com/albums/a618/keongang/WACC2013/IMG_1820_zps9b79df95.jpg (http://s1286.photobucket.com/user/keongang/media/WACC2013/IMG_1820_zps9b79df95.jpg.html)
Is that Chris Flynn on the left?

Adamski
08-05-2013, 10:54 PM
Great views from your hotel, Keong. Many thanks for all the pics.

Bollard
09-05-2013, 07:11 AM
Is that Chris Flynn on the left?

If you're thinking Chris Flynn from Brisbane the no. He's been playing at Brisbane Chess Club every Thursday night.