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Old June 14th 06, 08:35 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Why class prizes are wrong?
======================

Chess players are often divided into
classes according to their playing strength.
E.g. in the US there are, in the increasing
order of strength, classes E D C B A then
experts, then masters (never mind details
and variations/extensions). There is also
the harmful custom of providing the class
monetary awards at USCF tournaments
which are open to more than one class.

The class prizes (in mixed competitions)
are wrong for the following reasons:

1. It is unethical for a player to win $$,
when another player who had a better
result won less or nothing;

2. Class prizes induce some players into
the unethical sandbagging;

3. Class prizes cause a higher entry fee;
on the total, more chess players are pushed
away from the tournament chess by the extra
cost than are attracted by the gambling on
winning the prize; the true chess enthusiast
play for the pleasure of chess and not for
winning $$; actually, the class prizes affect
some chess players, especially the young ones,
in a negative way--thus the tournament
atmosphere suffers.

*******

However, if one insists on something like
class prizes, then, in order to avoid the
sand-bagging, one could apply my solution,
proposed in 1995:

http://groups.google.com/group/rec.g...f56781c?&hl=en

or http://tinyurl.com/q2jtl

It goes as follows:

USCF should keep track of how much $$
each player has won in all USCF rated
tournaments. Then participants of the
tournament, for the purpose of class prizes,
can be divided into those who until then
won nothing; the next class would be
those who won a total up to $50, then
those who won more than $50 but less
than $200; etc.

*****

Amateurs should strive for cheap tournaments
without monetary rewards rather than at
winning $$ even for a relatively lousy performance.

Wlod

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Old June 14th 06, 01:59 PM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

On 14 Jun 2006 00:35:55 -0700, "Wlodzimierz Holsztynski (wlod)"
wrote:

Why class prizes are wrong?
======================

Chess players are often divided into
classes according to their playing strength.
E.g. in the US there are, in the increasing
order of strength, classes E D C B A then
experts, then masters (never mind details
and variations/extensions). There is also
the harmful custom of providing the class
monetary awards at USCF tournaments
which are open to more than one class.

The class prizes (in mixed competitions)
are wrong for the following reasons:

1. It is unethical for a player to win $$,
when another player who had a better
result won less or nothing;


I think it's aesthetically rather than ethically offensive. When you
enter a tournament, you accept the conditions, including the prize
structure. It's no different than a brilliancy prize, a greatest
upset prize, a prize for the entrant who traveled the greatest
distance, etc.

2. Class prizes induce some players into
the unethical sandbagging;


Here, we *have* moved into an ethical problem.

3. Class prizes cause a higher entry fee;
on the total, more chess players are pushed
away from the tournament chess by the extra
cost than are attracted by the gambling on
winning the prize


Can you cite evidence for this? (BTW, I'm *not* in favor of large
class prizes).

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Old June 14th 06, 03:36 PM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Wlodzimierz Holsztynski (wlod) wrote:
1. It is unethical for a player to win $$, when another player who
had a better result won less or nothing;


Why? If you're going to ban class prizes, you're probably also going
to have to ban rating-based grouping in tournaments. Who's going to
play in the U2000 section if there are no prizes except in the open?
If every tournament has only one (open) section, you're going to need
at least one extra round to compensate for the fact that the first
round is now just an exercise in sorting out the strong players from
the weak ones. That probably means that the tournament will have to
go on for an extra day, which means more accommodation and/or
travelling and/or living expenses for the players, and greater fees
for hiring the venue.


2. Class prizes induce some players into the unethical sandbagging;


Any system of rewards can induce people to cheat in order to gain
those rewards. However, I agree with you that class prizes are an
incentive to sand-bagging because they reward people for having
ratings just below class boundaries. On the other hand, is sand-
bagging a serious problem in practice? (I mean `do a lot of people do
it? ', not `is it bad when it happens?') I don't think we need to
worry about sand-bagging unless it is a serious problem.


3. Class prizes cause a higher entry fee;


But not very much so. In the sorts of tournaments I play in, I'd
guess that the total amount of prize money in my class is usually not
higher than the entry fee of, say, ten players. Since the class very
often includes over fifty, the increase in entry fee is not very
significant in percentage terms.


on the total, more chess players are pushed away from the tournament
chess by the extra cost than are attracted by the gambling on
winning the prize;


Do you have any evidence for this assertion?


USCF should keep track of how much $$ each player has won in all
USCF rated tournaments. Then participants of the tournament, for the
purpose of class prizes, can be divided into those who until then
won nothing; the next class would be those who won a total up to
$50, then those who won more than $50 but less than $200; etc.


That's not the answer. What you're doing is introducing a new
`prize-money rating' and you're using perhaps the worst possible
formula for it -- total amount won. At the very least, you need to
have some kind of moving average of prize money against time.
Otherwise, winning $20 in a rated club tournament fifty years ago
might stop you winning a prize in a tournament today, which sounds
absurd. Also, your system `punishes' players for taking part in
tournaments with high prize funds. If you try to correct for that,
you'll just end up with a rating that looks at the results of the
game. But, wait! -- we've already got one of those.

Because your system is just a rating, it is still susceptible to
sand-bagging. Suppose I've never won any money but am on the verge of
winning a tournament with a $100 prize. If week's tournament has a
$200 prize (for people who've never won before), I might be tempted to
throw my last game in the hope of winning more cash next week. (My
modification is also susceptible to sand-bagging.)

Also, why is it ethical (your word, not mine) that my 4/5 wins me $100
because I've never won anything in a USCF rated tournament but your
4.5/5 (including, say, a win against me) wins you nothing because you
have won prize money before? If you're saying that prize money should
be spread evenly, why bother having it at all?


Dave.

--
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www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~davidr/ smiling garden ornament but it's in
realistic colour!
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Old June 14th 06, 07:21 PM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

"Wlodzimierz Holsztynski (wlod)" writes:

Why class prizes are wrong?
======================

Chess players are often divided into
classes according to their playing strength.
E.g. in the US there are, in the increasing
order of strength, classes E D C B A


False. USCF classes begin with class I and progress through:

I, H, G, F, E, ...

then
experts, then masters (never mind details
and variations/extensions). There is also
the harmful custom of providing the class
monetary awards at USCF tournaments
which are open to more than one class.

The class prizes (in mixed competitions)
are wrong for the following reasons:

1. It is unethical for a player to win $$,
when another player who had a better
result won less or nothing;


Begs the question.



2. Class prizes induce some players into
the unethical sandbagging;


Perhaps.


3. Class prizes cause a higher entry fee;
on the total,


Not demonstrated. Most Organizers believe that class prizes INCREASE
participation.

more chess players are pushed
away from the tournament chess by the extra
cost than are attracted by the gambling on
winning the prize;


Data, please?

--
Kenneth Sloan
Computer and Information Sciences (205) 934-2213
University of Alabama at Birmingham FAX (205) 934-5473
Birmingham, AL 35294-1170
http://www.cis.uab.edu/sloan/
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Old June 15th 06, 02:58 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Why class prizes are good -

1. From a sporting aspect, many players are motivated to compete for
prizes. Having only "open" prizes would reduce participation to the
handful of players who have a reasonable shot at placing high in the
event .. and that won't be the class players. In that case you have
discouraged 95% of the rated population from participating.

2. In chess, segmentation of prize eligibility by rating is more
appropriate than the age-group segmentation used in many other sports.
If age segmentation were used, the only two players who would show up
for the under 18 catgeory for the next two years would be Magnus
Carlson & Sergey Karjackin. The same phenomena would occur at each age
bracket ... just a handful of GMs would find it worthwhile to compete.

3. Large $$$ class prizes are a core piece of creating that chess
fantasy experience that a certain segment of chess amateurs enjoy. For
a weekend you get to pretend like you're chess pro ... intense
competion, the dream of winning thousands of dollars, rubbing shoulders
with GMs, etc.

4. As in any recreational activity, amateurs pay their own way. Hence
the need for the large entry fees .. to create the big prize fund.
Those who think it is worth it will pay the fees. And they will accept
some risk of sandbagging, as long as the organizers make strong efforts
to minimize that exposure. In fact, without the entry fees from the
amateurs, the open prizes would not be as big ... the former subsidizes
that latter.



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Old June 15th 06, 07:47 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Uzytkownik napisal w wiadomosci
oups.com...
Why class prizes are good -

1. From a sporting aspect, many players are motivated to compete for
prizes. Having only "open" prizes would reduce participation to the
handful of players who have a reasonable shot at placing high in the
event .. and that won't be the class players. In that case you have
discouraged 95% of the rated population from participating.


Sure, but weaker player should win weaker prizes. That`s not the case in the
USA. Therefore the US team consists manly of immigrants :-)


2. In chess, segmentation of prize eligibility by rating is more
appropriate than the age-group segmentation used in many other sports.
If age segmentation were used, the only two players who would show up
for the under 18 catgeory for the next two years would be Magnus
Carlson & Sergey Karjackin. The same phenomena would occur at each age
bracket ... just a handful of GMs would find it worthwhile to compete.


No, you are wrong, age segmentation is proper and class segmentation is
improper. Youngsters have the chance to develop their abilities rapidly and
playing in classes someone cheats on purpose to win the prize for amateurs.
It`s common not only in Europe but in the USA as well, I believe.

3. Large $$$ class prizes are a core piece of creating that chess
fantasy experience that a certain segment of chess amateurs enjoy. For
a weekend you get to pretend like you're chess pro ... intense
competion, the dream of winning thousands of dollars, rubbing shoulders
with GMs, etc.


So class players are just great pretenders not real and serious players and
they do not play with GMs, they are much too weak to compete with profis,
they play with each other in the backyard of the tournament, never on the
main scene :-)

4. As in any recreational activity, amateurs pay their own way. Hence
the need for the large entry fees .. to create the big prize fund.
Those who think it is worth it will pay the fees. And they will accept
some risk of sandbagging, as long as the organizers make strong efforts
to minimize that exposure. In fact, without the entry fees from the
amateurs, the open prizes would not be as big ... the former subsidizes
that latter.


Amateurs (class players) should pay larger etry fees when they want to play
in professional tournaments that`s an ultimate condition for paying the
lessons the profis give them. If it is not so then they should compete in a
separate tournaments :-)


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Old June 15th 06, 09:56 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Jerzy wrote:
Amateurs (class players) should pay larger etry fees when they want
to play in professional tournaments that`s an ultimate condition for
paying the lessons the profis give them. If it is not so then they
should compete in a separate tournaments :-)


Amateurs already do pay mo titled players usually get free (or
reduced) entry in tournaments, in the UK, at least.


Dave.

--
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www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~davidr/ hammer but you can see right through
it!
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Old June 15th 06, 10:08 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Wlodzimierz Holsztynski (wlod) wrote:
Wlodzimierz Holsztynski (wlod) wrote:
The class prizes (in mixed competitions) are wrong [...]


If under the umbrella of one event there are several parallel
tournaments held, e.g. open, for under 2000, etc, then of course
it's fine for the winners of each tournament to receive an award.


OK. Here we are agreed.


It's not ok when two players play in the same competition, and the
one with the weaker result "wins" more $$.


Why not?


I didn't write it earlier but let me do it now. Organizers in
principple can do whatever they please. Nevertheless, the prizes to
patzers are wrong. For instance, players below level D can hardly
make a couple of moves without hanging a piece. In my opinion prize$
should start at the expert level of play (regardless of the title of
the player-- it's the performance that should count), and not lower.


There don't seem to be prizes in British tournaments for players that
weak: the lowest is usually around the 90BCF mark, which is well above
the regular piece-hanging phase. (OK, they'll often fall for
relatively simple tactics but they're not complete beginners.)

Perhaps I'm arguing against you from a dramatically different
experience? In the UK, a typical class prize (in a separate section
tournament) would be maybe 60-150ukp for first place, 30-60ukp for
second, and $20-40 for third. Entry fees for a tournament would be
somewhere in the 20-25ukp range. From other posts in these threads, I
get the impression that the numbers (both prize values and entry fees)
in the US are considerably larger than this (say, by a factor of
ten?).

Rating prizes within a section are typically quite small: in a section
for people rated, say, 100-140BCF, there might be a prize (to about
the value of third place overall) for the best performance by somebody
rated under 120. I don't think that's much of an incentive for
sandbagging: the prize is little more than the entry fee.

Also, I get the impression that US tournaments have very fixed class
boundaries. In the UK, it depends very much on what the organizer
thinks are reasonably boundaries for the local population. In recent
tournaments, I think I've played (rated 107BCF) in sections for U-110,
U-115, U-125, U-130 and U-135 (the last one playing a class up). So
there's much less incentive for sandbagging because your carefully
manipulated rating of exactly 124BCF doesn't help you if the
tournament organizer decides to go for boundaries of U100 and U140
rather than U90 and U125.


Dave.

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Old June 15th 06, 10:12 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

Użytkownik "David Richerby" napisał w
wiadomo¶ci ...
Amateurs (class players) should pay larger etry fees when they want
to play in professional tournaments that`s an ultimate condition for
paying the lessons the profis give them. If it is not so then they
should compete in separate tournaments :-)


Amateurs already do pay mo titled players usually get free (or
reduced) entry in tournaments, in the UK, at least.


Okay, amateurs should pay much more then they pay today for the possibility
to play with a profi. A profi can charge you e.g. 40 USD per hour for a
chess lesson and that`s a reasonable price for such an encounter.


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Old June 15th 06, 11:18 AM posted to rec.games.chess.politics,rec.games.chess.misc
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Default class prizes

David Richerby wrote:

Wlodzimierz Holsztynski (wlod) wrote:

It's not ok when two players play in the same
competition, and the one with the weaker result
"wins" more $$.


Why not?


As a rule, under most of the circumstances,
it is not. Why should mediocrity be awarded?
Especially, when superior skills are not?

There don't seem to be prizes in British tournaments for players that
weak: the lowest is usually around the 90BCF mark, which is well above
the regular piece-hanging phase. (OK, they'll often fall for
relatively simple tactics but they're not complete beginners.)


Occasionally there would be just one junior or one
unrated player and s/he would still win a few bucks.
It's silly and wrong.

Perhaps I'm arguing against you from a dramatically different
experience? In the UK, a typical class prize (in a separate section
tournament) would be maybe 60-150ukp for first place, 30-60ukp for
second, and $20-40 for third. Entry fees for a tournament would be
somewhere in the 20-25ukp range. From other posts in these threads, I
get the impression that the numbers (both prize values and
entry fees) in the US are considerably larger than this (say,
by a factor of ten?).


I am not following the USCF tournament life for years.
A time ago there were some big open Swiss torunaments
where class prizes exceeded a $1000, and even the
very low classes still had prizes as high as a few hundred
dollars. More than that, some of those events had prizes
for each of the half-range like 1500-1599. That's lottery.
The organizers could overcharge the chessplayers
by luring them into a lottery, especially unbalanced
youngsters. For the chess society such short-term
chess organizers' successes are long-term defeats.

Somehow I associate the rudeness and the outside
the chess board cheap trickery of many US players
with these class prizes (also with the perception how
Fischer acted, the "crush his ego" nonsense and similar).

***

Wlod

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