2009: Minimum number of competitors per event

Tim (2008-11-11 23:47:08 +0000)
The current regulations state[quote:210kvjpw]9q) Events and rounds must have at least 2 competitors.[/quote:210kvjpw] At the very least, I would like there to be discussion of this rule, as I don't believe there was much of a conclusion at the end of last year's discussion. I would like to see this regulation removed. The way that I view cubing, there is little relevance who wins an event; what matters is the times that people set. Taking 4x4 BLD as an example (as this is one event most likely to suffer from 9q), I would much rather coming in tenth in a round with a 15 minute solve than come in first with a 40 minute solve. The idea of a competitor getting a "free solve" is, to me, meaningless. For one, regardless of whether that solve is good or not, the result of that solve will be put in the database and compared against other times in the event. The solve is as free as it would be if ten other people were competing--a person's ranking is independent of whether they won an event or not, and a person's result on an attempt is independent of whether anyone else was simultaneously attempting the same puzzle. For another, any other person can compete in the event if they choose, as guaranteed by [quote:210kvjpw]9k) If an event is held, then all competitors may participate in that event. Events may have a maximum number of competitors.[/quote:210kvjpw] Doesn't 9k handle exactly what 9q is supposed to handle, the chance of someone getting to do an event and someone else not getting to do the event? I suppose 9k could add either "and that maximum may not be less than <x> people" or "and the WCA delegate/board must approve of the means of selecting people to complete when there is a maximum" (to eliminate saying "Person A and Person B can do this event but nobody else can"), but I'm ambivalent about that. Another argument sometimes used in favor of 9q is that someone shouldn't get a prize for an event they won by default. I don't think many organizers would give a substantial prize in a 1-person event anyway, that just seems silly. I don't mind the idea of a minimum number of competitors per round in a multiple-rounded event, though. For instance, having 30 competitors in the first round and 1 in the second and third seems completely unfair--this gives that person way more chances to compete than anyone else and this should be prevented in the regulations.
Lucas (2008-11-12 01:22:31 +0000)
[quote="Tim":2fh2igvz]I don't mind the idea of a minimum number of competitors per round in a multiple-rounded event, though. For instance, having 30 competitors in the first round and 1 in the second and third seems completely unfair--this gives that person way more chances to compete than anyone else and this should be prevented in the regulations.[/quote:2fh2igvz] If we do this, I suggest doing something we haven't done too much: letting this be up to WCA approval. The delegate would have to approve the round format, or alternatively it could get pre-approved by the WCA. This way, we can keep doing what we've been doing, but at least give someone the authority to prevent "bad things."
qqwref (2008-11-12 01:58:53 +0000)
I agree that 9q should be removed. I can think of three related, good reasons for this: 1) The overall official ranks are much more important than the winner of an event at a competition. I think it would be accurate to say that most people who are in the top few for an event are much more excited by the possibility of a national or world record than by the possibility of winning that event at their local competition. So the consideration that a competitor with no competition will win is not a big one. If winning that event really was important, someone else would give it a try. If only one competitor has a desire to try an event, which was announced before the competition, they deserve to win, not to have their attempt annulled. 2) To be fair we should always aim to prevent one person's solve from being disqualified because of the actions of another person. In this case we could have a situation where, if only one person wants to seriously attempt an event, you could prevent their solve from counting just by NOT attempting the event yourself! Or, what if everyone at a competition was jealous of the 5x5 BLD skills of a particular blindfold solver, and decided to deliberately not do 5x5 BLD just to prevent that solver from getting an official time? I think you can see that this regulation will just cause otherwise valid solves to be disqualified. 3) Even if you agree the regulation should be in place, in real life it won't happen anyway, because the sole person doing the event usually has a friend who will just do a DNF solve to let them get an attempt. I think this happened a while back where only Rowe Hessler wanted to do a blindfolded event at a competition, and someone else did a very short (a few seconds) DNF attempt just to make sure Rowe would have a chance at an official success. Edit: Lucas, I agree completely, the delegate should always approve the lists of people who are let into the next round of an event. This way if the organizers are being very unfair (top 2 advance to 3x3 semifinals, or sub-1:30 average on 5x5 to advance, or something silly like that) the delegate can reject it to make sure the competition is acceptable.
Dene (2008-11-12 02:18:29 +0000)
[quote="qqwref":2mx1e1xa] 3) Even if you agree the regulation should be in place, in real life it won't happen anyway, because the sole person doing the event usually has a friend who will just do a DNF solve to let them get an attempt. I think this happened a while back where only Rowe Hessler wanted to do a blindfolded event at a competition, and someone else did a very short (a few seconds) DNF attempt just to make sure Rowe would have a chance at an official success. [/quote:2mx1e1xa] This is what I was thinking. If there was going to be a New Zealand Open, I was going to give multiBLD a lame attempt just so Malcolm could have a decent go at it.
BryanLogan (2008-11-12 18:15:08 +0000)
I still thinks there's issues with Article 9 that aren't being followed. At the Euro competition, I believe Dror competed in 3x3x3 the day before. This goes against 9l. I'm pretty sure I know why he competed earlier, but the fact is, we need to have the regulations reflect what we actually do, or do what the regulations say. I've had people who have arrived late to a competition, but I didn't give them a separate set of 3x3x3 scrambles and record their results because it wasn't allowed. Another example is 9k. Right there it says that it's open to everyone, but that there can be limits. That makes no sense. In practice, we do limit people to where they may have to make a decision between two events. Either you do FMC or you can do Pyraminx, but not both. Some competitions may put people on a waiting list.
Pedro_S (2008-11-12 20:52:27 +0000)
I also agree with removing 9q I (personally) wouldn't mind not having a prize/medal/certificate/whatever if I'm the only one doing an event the result I may get means much more to me I'm sure others feel the same way some people just like "weird" events, and may not have anyone who likes it too in a radius of hundreds of km why shouldn't they have a chance at getting an official solve? of course, as Michael said, it's not hard to get someone to do a DNF so you can have it official...you may think that is not "fair play"...well, then why "force" people to do that? just give them a chance to make an official attempt without having to do that "cheating" :)
anders (2008-11-13 19:20:37 +0000)
I agree that the rule 9q has funny consequeces. On the other hand, I find an event with only one competitor quite stupid. And I disagree with qqwref, winning is probably more important for some. As I see it, the way of resolve this issue is to make a non-issue of it. One way would be to remove less popular events from the list of official events (Rule 9e3). /Anders
Tim (2008-11-13 19:51:22 +0000)
Are you serious Anders? Which events in particular do you suggest removing? I would guess you're talking about big cubes blind, since those are the events that are most often affected by 9q. I would strongly, strongly oppose removing those events, and I am quite certain many other people would as well. What is stupid about 1-person events? Only one person feels strongly about an event and wants to spend the time to record an official attempt. What is stupid about someone like Mike Hughey trying an event like 5x5 bld that few other people in the area are interested in? We shouldn't be discouraging people from trying challenging events just because there's nobody else nearby who competes in them. Do those people you're talking about care so much about winning that winning a one-person event means something to them?
anders (2008-11-13 20:17:06 +0000)
Yes Tim, I am serious. And yes, big cubes blindfolded are most affected by 9q. We may have different opinion of which events that should or should not be official. What is important is to have a clear process of adding or removing events as offical. For me, a one-person event is a time-trial and should not be a part of a competition. My general opinion is that we ought to have only events with several competitors. I contemplated over to suggest that we should [b:1mrooywe]increase[/b:1mrooywe] the minimum number of competitors per event, but such a rule would suffer the same problems as the current 9q. Instead, I think that 9e3 will make 9q obsolete in the long run. /Anders
qqwref (2008-11-14 05:02:31 +0000)
Firmly NO. Removing events just because they are not popular enough would destroy speedcubing. Look back to WC '03, where there were only two people doing BLD. What if we'd just said "ah, BLD is nowhere near as popular as the 3x3 speed event" and canceled it forever? You wouldn't even have given it a chance to develop into the huge, popular, exciting, and fun event that it is today!Square-1 is another example, it has really exploded in popularity recently, and there are many people who enjoy it. Changing it from official to unofficial would just hurt all those people, and for what? So you can prevent people from winning an event that they are by far the best in the region at anyway? Please. We do unpopular events because we [i:ok3ml4mv]enjoy[/i:ok3ml4mv] them and because cubers spend lots of time to practice so they can compete with others around the globe. Eventually with practice you do get good enough at things that you are actually the best in your region. If you don't let someone get an attempt when you have already announced that you will hold the event, you are unfairly depriving that person of the ability to compete at such a high level against people around the world. So what if it is a time trial? Have you forgotten that the only official results are ones achieved [i:ok3ml4mv]in competition[/i:ok3ml4mv]? This regulation would not matter if you could just call a delegate over to your house, do a dozen 5x5BLD solves, and record the best time and crown yourself the world record holder based on that. Also recall that competition organizers do not [i:ok3ml4mv]have[/i:ok3ml4mv] to provide a huge prize for every event. It's not like, by doing an event that nobody else wants to, they are stealing something from other people. Anyone can join an event, so if you are the only person who wants to do it, you [i:ok3ml4mv]deserve[/i:ok3ml4mv] to win because you really are the best one there. Basically what I am trying to say is that, even if some events are not as popular as others, they are still strongly enjoyed and practiced by many people. Preventing them from competing on the technicality of having no other [i:ok3ml4mv]local[/i:ok3ml4mv]cuber to compete against is just unfair to the people who have spent a lot of time on an official event. Your proposal helps nobody, but hurts people, and as such I find it ridiculous and even evil.
Pitzu (2008-11-14 09:04:04 +0000)
Anders, imagine the following situation: Competitors A and B is registered for a competition in 5x5 bld. Competitor A practises a lot, buys flight ticket, books hotel. At the competition day competitor B decides to cancel his 5x5 bld. In this case would you cancel the event?!
anders (2008-11-14 09:17:49 +0000)
Well, according to the current regulation, the [i:1qexdp6f]only[/i:1qexdp6f] criterion for removing an event is its popularity (9e3). It seems that you are not happy with this rule. You may consider to start a thread discussing it? I am happy with it. It will be interesting to see how the WCA Board implements it. Blindfold at WC '03 is an interesting example. 3x bf survived as official event after the competition, but not 3x speed bf. Square-1 has not been affected by 9q. But yes, if it only attracted single competitor, it would be under consideration. The presence of an event in a competition indeed increases its popularity. The problem as I see it is that the big cube blindfolded events were accepted as official immediately without any prior discussion. I think that they should have started as unofficial events to grow momentum. If I show up on a competition and want to do 4x one-handed, should I be allowed to do that and immediate make the event an official one? On the other hand, I am in great favour of holding unofficial events, and I do so regularly at competitions that I organise; now these events have their own database at speedcubing.com/results. If we acknowledge the existence of both official and unofficial events, an event will never be cancelled or deleted, and the organiser can let a competitor compete in whatever event and the results will be registered either in the WCA database or in the unofficial events' database. I find it being a way of promoting and trying out new events, without immediately taking the big step of making the event official. 6x, 7x, Rubik's Snake and Skewb are perfect examples of events that have been held unofficially and have attracted quite a few competitors. I think that they are ready for consideration of being promoted to official events. /Anders
anders (2008-11-14 09:30:33 +0000)
If being the organiser, I would still hold the event. If being the WCA delegate, I would advice to cancel the event, since the delegate has to surrender to the WCA regulations. If the organiser still hold the event, I would report it to the WCA Board and they would make the final decision if accepting the event. /Anders [quote="Pitzu":3vr7bq5h]Anders, imagine the following situation: Competitors A and B is registered for a competition in 5x5 bld. Competitor A practises a lot, buys flight ticket, books hotel. At the competition day competitor B decides to cancel his 5x5 bld. In this case would you cancel the event?![/quote:3vr7bq5h]
qqwref (2008-11-14 21:03:19 +0000)
You're completely missing the point of Pitzu's example, anders. He wasn't asking "what would you do if you were following the regulations", but "what do you think it is morally correct to do". And of course the answer is to let competitor A do the event. You also don't know what you are talking about when it comes to official events. The WCA board has already decided that they become official. It's not the WCA's problem if you think it is not popular enough. Once an event has been official for a long time, and held at many tournaments, it would be ridiculous to remove it on the grounds that not enough people have completed it. (By the way, big cube BLD is much more popular than you think. It's just really difficult to complete.) Removing an event because only ten people have done a successful solve would be like deleting the WCA forums because not enough people post there. I will repeat myself, making an official event unofficial helps nobody and hurts everyone who has competed in it or has plans to.
anders (2008-11-14 23:45:46 +0000)
I do not understand in which way I miss the point in Pitzu's question. He asked "In this case would you cancel the event?", and I answerd: No! Maybe we should let Pitzu be the arbiter. But it is important to understand the difference between the role of the organiser, who really decides what will take place, and the role of the WCA delegate, who should give advice and report back to the WCA board. Again, as an organiser, I will hold the events that I have scheduled, regadless if the WCA regulations allow it or not. I will do this in practise, and I think it is the morally correct thing to do. As an WCA delegate, I will base my advices on the WCA regulations, which I also find morally correct. And if being both (which has happend quite a few times) I would hold the event, and report to the WCA Board that some rules were not followed at the competiton. You are correct, my thoughts about popularity is not of interest for the WCA board. But the popularity of an event is indeed a matter for the WCA Board. I did not write the 9e3-rule, even if I support it. But it exists, and, thus, the WCA Board endorses that the popularity of an event should be used when considering of removing an event from the list of official ones. Please do not patroize me regarding what I might know or think. /Anders
Tyson (2008-11-19 18:15:22 +0000)
I'm going to approach this rule from a different angle. Sure, competitor A is competitive in 5x5x5 BLD, and competitor B decides to drop out. That could be terrible for competitor A. The reason, however, why this rule should be eliminated, I feel is very straight forward. Let's not even consider things regarding time-trials against people from around the world or anything... or how sad competitor A is. This rule, simply cannot be enforced. It's really silly, and I'm sure you probably know what I'm getting at now. If Competitor B drops out, you simply find someone to just DNF their 5x5x5 BLD solves, and you have your "two person competition." Because this rule cannot be enforced, we shouldn't have it at all. Having this rule doesn't actually prohibit people from having a one-person event. It simply requires that a one-person event have a partner who DNFs everything. Why bother having a rule when it doesn't do anything?
Pedro_S (2008-11-19 21:02:14 +0000)
[quote="Tyson":1mhst1k1]I'm going to approach this rule from a different angle. Sure, competitor A is competitive in 5x5x5 BLD, and competitor B decides to drop out. That could be terrible for competitor A. The reason, however, why this rule should be eliminated, I feel is very straight forward. Let's not even consider things regarding time-trials against people from around the world or anything... or how sad competitor A is. This rule, simply cannot be enforced. It's really silly, and I'm sure you probably know what I'm getting at now. If Competitor B drops out, you simply find someone to just DNF their 5x5x5 BLD solves, and you have your "two person competition." Because this rule cannot be enforced, we shouldn't have it at all. Having this rule doesn't actually prohibit people from having a one-person event. It simply requires that a one-person event have a partner who DNFs everything. Why bother having a rule when it doesn't do anything?[/quote:1mhst1k1] perfectly said :)
Ron (2008-12-21 20:29:16 +0000)
[quote:3shfzzja]Why bother having a rule when it doesn't do anything?[/quote:3shfzzja] I disagree with this. It does work if people play a fair game. There are plenty of rules that can be by-passed. Some examples: - if we want to have 4 rounds of an event, I just gather 90 random people who cannot solve the cube at all, and then the real 10 competitors can do 4 rounds - if a judge is not paying attention, then how can he decide whether I stop the timer correctly The point is that it is not sportsmanlike to find a fake competitor and still do the event with a real competitor and a fake competitor. My proposal is to change 'must' to 'should' in article 9q. This will solve most of the problems mentioned above, except the fact that there is really only one registered competitor who wants to do the event.
Pedro_S (2008-12-22 12:23:05 +0000)
[quote="Ron":18oq58bc][quote:18oq58bc]Why bother having a rule when it doesn't do anything?[/quote:18oq58bc] I disagree with this. It does work if people play a fair game. There are plenty of rules that can be by-passed. Some examples: - if we want to have 4 rounds of an event, I just gather 90 random people who cannot solve the cube at all, and then the real 10 competitors can do 4 rounds - if a judge is not paying attention, then how can he decide whether I stop the timer correctly The point is that it is not sportsmanlike to find a fake competitor and still do the event with a real competitor and a fake competitor. My proposal is to change 'must' to 'should' in article 9q. This will solve most of the problems mentioned above, except the fact that there is really only one registered competitor who wants to do the event.[/quote:18oq58bc] so, what does "must -> should" actually changes? an event should have at least 2 people, but, if not, it's fine anyway?
BryanLogan (2009-01-03 14:14:47 +0000)
[quote="Ron":1py3uard]My proposal is to change 'must' to 'should' in article 9q.[/quote:1py3uard] Just get rid of it completely. Unlike the minimum number of competitors for a competition, there's situations there where I could see allowing less than 12 in certain circumstances, and rejecting if it has less than 12 in others. So "should" works there. But for this, I can't see any reason you'd reject an event with a single competitor. Unless you can explain some scenario where you would reject a single competitor, don't have the rule. It just makes the regulations longer, and someone just reading the regulations isn't able to determine when and when is not a valid time to have one competitor.
Stefan Łapicki (2009-01-05 22:36:43 +0000)
What if 110 competitors register to 3x3 in some competition and in a day of competition arrive only 95. If organizator planed 4 rounds, he should change to 3 rounds?
Bob (2009-01-05 23:08:49 +0000)
Unless someone can provide a reason why somebody in an event should not compete (as the only person in the event), I think this regulation should be removed.