"BLUNDERS"- Dec 1 - TOPIC # 3: Should chess organizers participate?

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #2


    Sure, why not?  Why shouldn't the organiser be able to play?

    There may be some shallow n00bs who decide to accuse them of 'rigging', but they should just be ignored.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #3


    There's a few points I want to make. The first one I made during the broadcast, but can elaborate more on here:

    To play or not to play isn't the first question you need to ask. The first question you need to ask yourself as a tournament director is where your priorities lie. If your top priority is to run a great tournament, or even to change the way professionals look at tournaments, then that's your starting point. I am going to assume for the moment that every tournament director has this view, or they wouldn't put in the work to run a tournament. 

    The next question is: What do you want to get out of playing? Do you want to play to try for a GM norm? Do you want to play to have fun and create memorable sacrifices against the great chess players you have attending (David)? Are you playing to prove something? 

    Once you have the second question answered, you can go on to the third one. It isn't "should I play?" but instead is "How can I achieve my goal without sacrificing the quality of the tournament?" 

    David seems to place his TD duties first, and play for fun, not being too serious about the results. This works for him. If you want to play more seriously, figure out how to make sure the tournament runs smoothly even if you aren't spending time as a TD. This brings me to the comment of another user in the channel, quoted here:

    madhattery: surround yourself with competent help...let them handle the particulars during play

    Who ever said that the tournament organizer had to also be the tournament director? Can't you handle the organization, production, advertisement, etc, and appoint someone else (or a few someones) to be in change during the tournament? If you could, would this give you the freedom to play to your full strength? 
    Maybe I'm way off here, but perhaps the above questions are at least some sort of help for this decision. 
  • 6 years ago · Quote · #4


    Fezzik wrote:...the TD should drop out half-way through the tnmt in order not to influence the distribution of prizes...

    How does that not effect the outcome?  Everyone scheduled to play the organiser after they drop out gets a free win.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #5


    In post one it clearly says round robin.

    And, BS imo, even if it is a round robin I see no reason why the organiser can't participate.

    If Magnus Carlsen organises an event, why the hell should he not be able to play in it and win?  I don't understand why people think otherwise.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #6


    Yeah, it would be pretty difficult for the TD to be playing!

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #8


    Fezzik wrote:

    However, they should seriously consider disqualifying themselves from any prize fund.


    I disagree. Why would they consider that? I don't see how being the organizer of an event affects the competition. If anything, it would put the organizer at a disadvantage because they cannot focus exclusively on chess.

    Moreover, if we are talking about a round robin, the case if even clearer. If it's a Swiss tournament, as long as there is an impartial party in charge of overseeing the pairings, it shouldn't be an issue either.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #10


    Who would adjudicate in a dispute between the TD and his/her opponent ? It would be awkward for all concerned.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #11


      Aren't there assistant/associate directors or some kind of arbiter a little further down in the food chain than can help out these kinds of duties or am I just mistaken?  Undecided


  • 6 years ago · Quote · #13


    That would create at least the appearance of impropriety IMO.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #14


      True. That's just more money out of your pocket. And having someone to deal with these things may not be the way you deal with them, so that is an added hassle too.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #15


    This is why I wonder if I should try and start a chess club in my area. I have no problem doing all the work and certification necessary to be a TD, but it would stink to only be able to play in the 2 or 3 events a year that occur within driving distance of me.


  • 6 years ago · Quote · #17


      Eniamar - I myself want to have a chess club at some point in my life. It's one of the big dreams that I have and I really want to get it done in my life before I forget what chess actually is LOL.  I actually haven't played much OTB at all lately, just do some opening study, endgame puzzle things on my sets.

       But I am split on the organizers participating. It's great for the events that they host so people can see them OTB, but if you have situations that arise and you wind up flagging a game you might've been winning, then I guess you just have to take your medicine and deal with it.  Undecided


  • 6 years ago · Quote · #18


    The only thing holding me back from starting a club and/or doing some version of scholastic chess(I think it'd be a hoot) is that I'm such a weak player. I don't want to run things or have to adjudicate situations if I don't understand what's going on.

    Who knows, maybe I'll make the 45 minute drive to the closest club and see how they do things there.

    On the topic at hand, so long as there's always an objective 3rd party around, I see no problem with a TD playing in his/her own tournament.

  • 6 years ago · Quote · #19


    In a professional event, the issues are different than those in a smaller club ran event. In my area, we used to have a TD that would organize and TD the events. However, he had to move and I took up that responsibility instead. Here is what I have been doing (with the exception of my first event).

    1. I only play if there are an odd # of players
    2. I don't pay an entry fee and I am not eligible for prizes (so, I'm essentially a house player)
    3. I enlist the help of a stronger player in the club if there ever would be a question on any of my games that needed adjudicated.

    In smaller areas like mine, if the TD couldn't play then they would have very few chances to play in any events, unless they traveled. I'm lucky now, we have another player that has stepped up to be a club level TD. Initially he will help run events but eventually he will be able to run events himself (his choice).

    The USCF rules specifically allow for a playing TD, even if it is discouraged. There is even a rule that a TD can stop his clock if he/she has to leave the game in an official capacity.

    I hold my stance on prizes in order to hopefully eliminate any chance of problems or claims of unfairness, event though it isn't required by the rules. However, I also want to be able to play and I want to be sure that no one has to sit out a round, if at all possible.

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