WDC Digest 2023-Q2

Announced by Sebastiano Tronto on

Dear WCA Community,

As the number of competitions around the world continues to increase rapidly, this unfortunately has meant that there has also been a dramatic rise in the number of disciplinary cases. In the last 3 months, the WDC has opened 20 new investigations, and has closed 17. Below you can find a summary of some notable cases from this period.

  1. Since our last digest, we have published 3 public statements detailing the outcome of some investigations. These include an investigation into a competitor’s online behavior, a case of repeated misscrambling, and an investigation regarding sexual harassment from a delegate. You can view these statements on the Disciplinary section of the WCA site.
  2. Earlier in the year, the WDC was contacted regarding an altercation between two parties due to a stolen cube. After being contacted by the WDC, the party accused quickly admitted to stealing the cube, and seemed remorseful for doing so. The competitor in question was given a 5 month ban. We would also like to remind everyone that in cases like this, it is best to immediately contact the competition’s delegate, and refrain from confronting others directly.
  3. A competitor was caught making moves beneath the table during the inspection phase of their solve. This was discovered to have occurred at least 8 times across two competitions. The competitor was given a ban from WCA competitions, and the affected solves were disqualified. The competitor later requested for their ban duration to be reconsidered after providing an apology. The WDC honored this request, taking into account the competitor’s young age as part of the decision.
  4. The WDC was informed by a delegate of a case of two competitors colluding to write down false times on their scorecard when judging each other. This was caught after discrepancies were noticed between the times shown on the display and those written down. The competitors initially claimed that this was due to a timer malfunction, however after reviewing available video evidence, this was determined not to be the case. Shortly after, the competitors admitted to cheating by writing down faster times when judging each other. Due to their young age, both competitors were given 3 month bans. The solves which they had judged each other for were disqualified.
  5. A delegate contacted the WDC after noticing that a result on a scorecard was scratched out and replaced by a faster time. The judge stated that they had written the original, slower time on the scorecard, and the scrambler for the subsequent attempt also claims they saw the slower attempt written down as well. The competitor denied modifying their scorecard, however, after analyzing the handwriting of the competitor, in addition with the earlier testimonies, it was determined that the competitor had altered time on their scorecard. The competitor was issued a 9 month ban.
  6. An organizer was caught making edits to an unannounced competition page in order to post offensive remarks about another competitor. While the changes were never officially saved, screenshots of the edits were distributed. The competitor was given an official warning form the WDC. The competition’s delegates independently decided to remove the organizer from their role during the course of this investigation.

Another topic we would like to discuss is the result of the community survey. At the end of 2022, we received feedback from the WCA Community in the form of an anonymous survey. Here are some facts that we have extrapolated from the results:

  1. The community and the staff are generally satisfied with the work of the WDC and have, on average, a moderately positive opinion of us. We are happy about this, and will do our best to improve even further.
  2. The WDC digest is quite popular, especially among staff members. We find it is a nice way to keep the community informed about our work, so we will keep publishing it regularly.
  3. Many delegates have asked for us to prepare some documents or an F.A.Q. to help them handle common disciplinary incidents without our assistance. We are working on it!
  4. About 1 out of 5 competitors reported that someone else has made them feel uncomfortable at least once during a competition. This number goes up to almost 1 in 2 among our fellow staff members. This shows that, even though we take pride in being a welcoming and friendly community, not everyone always feels comfortable at WCA competitions. We would like to take this chance to remind you to always be respectful of people around you and mindful of how they feel around you.

To conclude this Digest, we would like to remind everyone to make sure they fully understand the WCA Regulations and competition procedures. If you have any questions, or are unsure about how to do something, please do not hesitate to ask the Delegate(s) of the competition. In addition, if you ever think the competition results are being compromised in any way, or if you see suspicious behavior or feel uncomfortable at a competition, please find the nearest Delegate immediately and/or contact the WDC to report the incident.

Do you have questions for the WDC? Feel free to send us an email, or ask on the Disciplinary section of the WCA forum.

Best Regards,
The WCA Disciplinary Committee

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