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Thread: Half-point Byes

  1. #1
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    Half-point Byes

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Hopefully the organisers would not allow any player to take multiple half-point byes as multiple half-point byes are against the Swiss rules under C.04.1(d).
    C.04.1 says - 'The following rules are valid for each Swiss system unless explicitly stated otherwise' and C04.2 says - 'The pairing system used for a FIDE rated tournament shall be either one of the published FIDE Swiss Systems or a detailed written description of the rules shall be explicitly presented to the participants.'

    Is it permissible to use the Dutch Swiss System with the alteration that players may take up to two half-point byes, as long as the players are presented with a description of the bye rules (for example on the tournament website, by email, and/or on a notice at the event)?

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    Quote Originally Posted by David Webster View Post
    Is it permissible to use the Dutch Swiss System with the alteration that players may take up to two half-point byes, as long as the players are presented with a description of the bye rules (for example on the tournament website, by email, and/or on a notice at the event)?
    Yes. I thought there might be some interest in that comment I made. At the FIDE Congress in 2011 there was a long discussion about the whole business of half-point byes, a practice which is widespread in some countries and more or less unheard of in others (some of the delegates called them "arbiter byes".) The main concern was the question of whether a player who has already received a half-point bye in the Swiss system can later receive a bye for being the unpaired player or vice versa.

    Eventually it was agreed that under the Swiss system proper a player can only be intentionally allowed one unplayed game for which they score points - though of course it may happen that a player unintentionally receives more than one, for instance because of an unexpected forfeit.

    There is no problem with the tournament rules allowing multiple half-point byes if this is specified; it just means that the event is then not strictly following the Swiss system but rather a variant of sorts. It can still be rated. Most likely there would be no problem even if it wasn't specified, unless somebody complained to FIDE.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Yes. I thought there might be some interest in that comment I made. At the FIDE Congress in 2011 there was a long discussion about the whole business of half-point byes, a practice which is widespread in some countries and more or less unheard of in others (some of the delegates called them "arbiter byes".) The main concern was the question of whether a player who has already received a half-point bye in the Swiss system can later receive a bye for being the unpaired player or vice versa.

    Eventually it was agreed that under the Swiss system proper a player can only be intentionally allowed one unplayed game for which they score points - though of course it may happen that a player unintentionally receives more than one, for instance because of an unexpected forfeit.

    There is no problem with the tournament rules allowing multiple half-point byes if this is specified; it just means that the event is then not strictly following the Swiss system but rather a variant of sorts. It can still be rated. Most likely there would be no problem even if it wasn't specified, unless somebody complained to FIDE.
    I can recall playing in a 7-round event taking 4 half point byes back in 2013. After this, the club decided that it may not be a good idea to allow players to take multiple byes. Personally, I feel that byes become a problem when they impact final standings (prize money). Other than that, no reason why they should not disallowed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelBaron View Post
    I can recall playing in a 7-round event taking 4 half point byes back in 2013. After this, the club decided that it may not be a good idea to allow players to take multiple byes. Personally, I feel that byes become a problem when they impact final standings (prize money). Other than that, no reason why they should not disallowed.
    Four half point byes is very funny. An organiser here allowed a (not especially strong) player travelling from interstate two full-point byes for rounds 1 and 2.

    Half-point byes are an issue when it comes to weekenders because players who take them may gain an advantage in freshness for later rounds even if the byes are not right at the end of the event. For instance the Tas Open has a 2 round - 3 rounds - 1 round schedule. We banned half-point byes for rounds 5 and 6 of this year's event but if I run it again and we allow half-point byes they will be on the first day only. I notice a lot of events on the Australian north island still let players take two half point byes out of seven.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Four half point byes is very funny. An organiser here allowed a (not especially strong) player travelling from interstate two full-point byes for rounds 1 and 2.

    Half-point byes are an issue when it comes to weekenders because players who take them may gain an advantage in freshness for later rounds even if the byes are not right at the end of the event.
    I think half point byes are ok but full point byes are simply unacceptable.
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    The Rule Commission report, if voted at the next Presidential Board meeting, would restric half-point byes from Level 1 competitions only. They would be allowed for Level 2 norm tournaments except in the last round. Bye is sigular in the text which raise a question about the number of byes allowed.

    This is dangerous because if a bye are not requested in advance, this could be used to avoid a disadvantageous pairing or to give another player a specific opponent. Arbiters' seminars in the province of Quebec, where half-point byes are numerous in local non FIDE rated tournaments, already instruct arbiters about this strategic bye. An half-point bye is guaranteed to a player only if askd before the beginning of the tournament for a round for which byes ara authorised. During the tournament, it is at the discretion of the arbiter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pierre Dénommée View Post
    The Rule Commission report, if voted at the next Presidential Board meeting, would restric half-point byes from Level 1 competitions only. They would be allowed for Level 2 norm tournaments except in the last round. Bye is sigular in the text which raise a question about the number of byes allowed.

    This is dangerous because if a bye are not requested in advance, this could be used to avoid a disadvantageous pairing or to give another player a specific opponent. Arbiters' seminars in the province of Quebec, where half-point byes are numerous in local non FIDE rated tournaments, already instruct arbiters about this strategic bye. An half-point bye is guaranteed to a player only if askd before the beginning of the tournament for a round for which byes ara authorised. During the tournament, it is at the discretion of the arbiter.
    Usual practice in Sydney (and I think most of Australia) is that they must be asked for before the start of the previous round (i.e. before Round 3 for a Round 4 bye) and are not allowed in the last two rounds. They have been allowed in tournaments where norms are possible (and achieved)

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    The Rules Commission report has been approved. After July 1st 2015, half-point byes will be officially permitted.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Yes. I thought there might be some interest in that comment I made. At the FIDE Congress in 2011 there was a long discussion about the whole business of half-point byes, a practice which is widespread in some countries and more or less unheard of in others (some of the delegates called them "arbiter byes".) The main concern was the question of whether a player who has already received a half-point bye in the Swiss system can later receive a bye for being the unpaired player or vice versa.

    Eventually it was agreed that under the Swiss system proper a player can only be intentionally allowed one unplayed game for which they score points - though of course it may happen that a player unintentionally receives more than one, for instance because of an unexpected forfeit.

    There is no problem with the tournament rules allowing multiple half-point byes if this is specified; it just means that the event is then not strictly following the Swiss system but rather a variant of sorts. It can still be rated. Most likely there would be no problem even if it wasn't specified, unless somebody complained to FIDE.
    I notice that in the FIDE-rated 2019 Qld Championship, several players received a full-point computer bye after receiving a half-point 'arbiter bye'. I thought that this wasn't allowed, or was at least not supposed to happen, under the FIDE Rules?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    I notice that in the FIDE-rated 2019 Qld Championship, several players received a full-point computer bye after receiving a half-point 'arbiter bye'. I thought that this wasn't allowed, or was at least not supposed to happen, under the FIDE Rules?
    Now it is different. The rules now are:

    Basic rules:

    C.04.1.d

    A player who has already received a pairing-allocated bye, or has already scored a (forfeit) win due to an opponent not appearing in time, shall not receive the pairing-allocated bye.

    Dutch rules:

    C.2

    see C.04.1.d (A player who has already received a pairing-allocated bye, or has already scored a (forfeit) win due to an opponent not appearing in time, shall not receive the pairing-allocated bye).

    Note that this does not preclude a player who has won a game by default (eg mobile phone) from receiving a pairing-allocated bye.

    I don't remember the reason for the change, but in small tournaments with lots of half-point byes being taken, a prohibition on a half-point bye taker later getting a full-point bye can sometimes result in a full-point bye going to a player who is on a high score.
    Last edited by Kevin Bonham; 07-10-2019 at 08:46 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    Now it is different. The rules now are: ...
    Thanks. I had seen those rules, but couldn't find any specific mention of 'arbiter byes' in them. Which was obviously deliberate, to indicate that there are no restrictions on them in relation to a computer bye.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    I don't remember the reason for the change, but in small tournaments with lots of half-point byes being taken, a prohibition on a half-point bye taker later getting a full-point bye can sometimes result in a full-point bye going to a player who is on a high score.
    True, but I would have thought that it should still have been desirable, where possible, to avoid a player receiving 1.5 points (or even more) from unplayed games.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Bonham View Post
    I don't remember the reason for the change, but in small tournaments with lots of half-point byes being taken, a prohibition on a half-point bye taker later getting a full-point bye can sometimes result in a full-point bye going to a player who is on a high score.
    I agree with the concept that as soon as a player has taken an 'arbiter bye', that they are no longer eligible for a full point bye. But couldn't the situation you describe be covered with a rule stating:

    If a player is on a score of 50% or over and has taken 'an arbiter bye/half point bye', they are not eligible for a full point bye.

    This would then mean that the lowest ranked player on the cross table would get the full point bye, which would then have the least effect on the tournament as a whole.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    Thanks. I had seen those rules, but couldn't find any specific mention of 'arbiter byes' in them. Which was obviously deliberate, to indicate that there are no restrictions on them in relation to a computer bye.
    Half-point byes are mentioned in the General Regulations for Competitions, but not in the pairing rules:

    (4) In an L2 or L3 tournament the rules may permit a player to take a half point bye in a
    given round. It is only allowed once during the tournament, if adequate notice has
    been given and is agreed to by the arbiter. Such permission might not be granted to a
    player who receives conditions, or who has been given a free entry to the tournament.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garvinator View Post
    I agree with the concept that as soon as a player has taken an 'arbiter bye', that they are no longer eligible for a full point bye. But couldn't the situation you describe be covered with a rule stating:

    If a player is on a score of 50% or over and has taken 'an arbiter bye/half point bye', they are not eligible for a full point bye.

    This would then mean that the lowest ranked player on the cross table would get the full point bye, which would then have the least effect on the tournament as a whole.
    That seems to me like a good solution to the issue.

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    I remember looking at this in January when I was updating the entry form for the South Island Championships as we have 3 half-point byes available (not that anyone has taken more than 1) - discussing with various arbiters at NZ Congress, it was news to most of them that people could now take organiser byes (organisers decide on these types of tournament conditions, not arbiters) and then get the computer bye.
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