Refs statement

#1 by slivek , Thu Aug 09, 2018 4:14 pm

Hi! On behalf of ref team 2018:

"Below a short recap of events and ref decisions leading up to and following the controversy between team Poland and the ref team in T9A, written by the refs.

Before the tournament we realize it's not defined how exactly penalties are to be handled. We then decide that we add them to the so-called "capped points", for maximum impact. We declare this during the captain's meeting before game 1.

After game 6 the refs started adding team penalties into tourney keeper for late result reports for game 6, as well as for yellow cards. Due to Poland having 2 yellow cards they got a penalty. This has been called a "surprise penalty", but really it was not. Poland was informed about receiving a 2nd yellow card before game 6 and it is clearly stated in the Tournament Pack in 2 places that there is penalty for each yellow card in whole team after first one.

This additional penalty for yellow cards makes Poland tie with Spain for first place, and forces us to use tie breakers. Tourney keeper first look at capped points (which refs had agreed is where penalties go), and if equal look at uncapped points. This is what was done last year and what (iirc) has been standard procedure for ETC in the last 8+ years. This is probably what people would tell you if you asked a veteran ETC player about tie breakers.This means that Spain takes the title for first place.

Tourney keeper results are updated and Polish players start realizing they will miss first place due to extra penalty and tie breakers. Cue lots of polish players arguing with refs about tie breakers and yellow card penalties. Trying to get the leg up through various different approaches and view points (pretty much "angle shooting"). Perhaps the most promenent argument was the one carried by the polish chairman (and player), that in fact result should be calculated on:
1, capped battle points with penalties
2, capped battle points without penalties
3, uncapped battle points

As far as refs were concerned at this stage, no one agreed that there should be any difference between capped points with and without penalties. The polish judge did not take part in the beginning of discussions since he was busy organising the award ceremony. The spanish and greek judges had to catch early flights and were no longer at the venue. The swedish and Danish refs make the call to stick to our original ruling of tie breaker and hand results over so that the award ceremony can be started.

About 10 minutes later, during the award ceremony, Polish players had found a sentence in the T9A tournament pack that could support their view of tie breaker. At this point the Polish judge declares he agrees with polish player's point of view, but that he isn't impartial and cannot vote on this. He in turn assumed that decision is made since both other refs clearly stated that they disagreed (when he said that we need to follow TP despite it being ... unexpected to say the least). After it was made clear that other two judges hold different opinion he left other refs to pass on ruling to the Polish Team and Chairmen. He is then busy with other things and not present for remaining discussions after this. The remaining refs assume this was deliberate decision to remove himself from discussions where he saw himself as biased.

In the Tournament Pack there are 2 ways of determining a winner - one for singles and one for teams. Singles being:
1. battle points with soft scores and penalties 2. battle points 3. Victory points
(I.e. first two point agreeing with polish chairman's original claim, but 3rd differs*)
Teams being:
1. battle points 2. victory points 3. coin flip**
This part of the tournament pack was not directly created by judges. It is a standard doc from T9A download site (with optional rules and guidelines for tournament play) that were copy-pasted into the ref pack by chairman Frederick.

At this point the award ceremony has started and we have to make a decision. There is no time to talk to chairmen, try to contact the missings refs that had to leave early, double check etc charters or other documents, old results from years ago, etc. We have make a call and we have to do it now. Our assessment of the tournament pack is that using victory points as tie breaker would be crazy. "Everyone" knows it's uncapped points! It's been like that for years and changing it to victory points and coin flips without properly telling people about it is clearly a mistake. The fact that the sections on singles tournaments differs so much from teams also indicates no one looked at this before copying it into the tournament pack. We therefore decide that we cannot use tie breakers from the tournament pack and instead use our initial ruling:
1. Capped battle points, to which penalties are added
2, Uncapped battle points
(3, Victory points)

Spain remains the winner. We announce this to the polish players and then leave in order to avoid dragging this discussion further (already 30+ minutes). A few minutes later the Polish captain comes up to the swedish ref in a very threatening manner and verbally insults him, the type of behavior that would have been an instant red card if it happened during the tournament. Refs decide to give him a yellow card (because at this point in time yellow card is more harsh than red card). This now puts Poland at one point below Spain and the whole discussion on tie breakers is now pointless).

The polish chairman wants to keep on discussing this with various chairmen and refs, and after another 30 minutes discussions where we mostly end up repeating the same arguments over and over with different constellations of refs and chairmen we end up agreeing that refs should make a written statement and chairmen will continue the discussion from there.

* The fact that 3rd tie breaker differs shows that polish players were grasping for straws initially. And the fact that uncapped points was assumed to be 2nd tie breaker even by polish players strengthens the claim that it's common knowledge and what most players would assume is the tie breaker.

** No polish player argued for using this version (victory points as tie breaker). This was taken as meaning that even they thought vp as first tie breakers were a clear mistake.
And after award ceremony discussions with Polish chairman was similar. He argued that the logical conclusion after discarding team tournament winner conditions was to use single tournament version. Refs argued the logical conclusion was to disregard whole tournament pack and use the traditional way.

As closing statement we want to say that it was an extremely hard decision made in a very stressful situation. For both sides of the argument we were to "lie" to players no matter what we did: either stick to tournament pack (which we all know that in practice no one read during games) and decide to follow unexpected untraditional tiebreakers without having personally and clearly informed anyone about this, or we were to disregard tournament pack and follow traditional, expected tiebreaks as implemented in tourney keeper."


ETC+ESC 2018 Head Referee
ETC+ESC 2017 Head Referee

slivek  
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RE: Refs statement

#2 by Humblr , Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:10 pm

First of all, I'd like to express all my gratitude for the good job you did during the whole ETC.
Refs' decision taking is very difficult and that's why ref's call is final.

You did what you had to. I think that was the right call (as every ETC veteran can say, if not biased, that uncapped BP > VP).

Chairmen did say it was the right decision, even afterwards. This is in their statement...
End of story and congrats to Spain once more !!
H, French ETC player


French ETC player 2012/ 2016/ 2018

 
Humblr
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RE: Refs statement

#3 by berti , Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:54 pm

My thanks to all the refs.
It is a tough job and in most cases one player doesn t like the decisions. So it is a job that doesn t make a lot of friends.

So I am thankful that there are some people who take this job and they did it in a fine way.
Thank you refs.

berti  
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RE: Refs statement

#4 by 9thMD , Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:13 pm

Id also like to thank the refs who take time out to come to ETC. Its not easy to sign up to be in the middle of every controversy. Thanks for making it possible. Your statement makes perfect sense and I hope that with it and the chairmen statement, we can put this matter to rest.

Thanks guys


2017 Team USA
2018 Team USA
2019 Team USA (c)

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RE: Refs statement

#5 by lagerlof , Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:16 pm

Good job to everyone on the ref team. I know how it is to be on that side, not always fun ;)

You did the best you could and made the right call.

lagerlof  
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RE: Refs statement

#6 by Spectator , Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:36 pm

Hi All, I just wanted to sum up all facts for you:
Fact1. Rules stated that vp should be used as tie breaker
Fact2. Refs ignored fact1
Fact3. Refs ignored fact1 when it was pointed out to them i.e. they were fully aware of the rules
Fact4. Rules do not state anywhere that yellow cards also impact battle point score
Fact5. Refs decided that yellow cards will impact bp during the tournament. If that was communicated beforehqnd remains unclear
Fact6. Team Poland won all games
Fact7. Team Spain did not win all games. They lost to Poland
Fact8. There was a penalty applied to team Poland after the end of tournament based on so called verbal assault
Fact9. "Verbal assault" was given privately as feedback to ref as private person commenting his performance
Fact10. It was repeated to refs wife
Fact11. Nothing else happened between Konrad and ref/his wife
Fact12. Teams are voting to ban Konrad based on facts 9-11
Fact13. Teams are not impartial here as the outcome of votr might affect their chances next year
Fact14. Chairmen backed up refs on their ignoting rhe rules
Fact15. Both chairmen and refs should be making sure that the rules are followed
Fact16. Most or all teams congratulated refs and chairmen job well done

Opinion1. Poland team is disliked. If that is because they are so good or so competitive or maybe rude is besides the point.

Fact17. Poland is constantly pointing out above gathered facts
Fact18. Most or all teams continue to ignore / disregard above facts.
Fact19. That might be controversial but I believe there are at least 2 lies in refs statement above: first about the rules:
"In the Tournament Pack there are 2 ways of determining a winner - one for singles and one for teams. Singles being:
1. battle points with soft scores and penalties 2. battle points 3. Victory points
(I.e. first two point agreeing with polish chairman's original claim, but 3rd differs*)
Teams being:
1. battle points 2. victory points 3. coin flip**"
That is a lie1 as the rules - by mistake or not - state that 1st tie breaker are vps
Lie2: A few minutes later the Polish captain comes up to the swedish ref in a very threatening manner and verbally insults him, the type of behavior that would have been an instant red card if it happened during the tournament.
So called verbal insult was nothing more than statement "you are terrible, biased ref".
I'd like to also highlight this part: "the type of behavior that would have been an instant red card if it happened during the tournament" which supports facts 8 and 9, namely it happened between 2 guys not acting as ref and team captain at that time. Which leads me to
Fact20. Ref abused his powers by penalising behaviour he had no right to penalise other than by calling the police if he felt offended
Fact21. Ref admits in his statement they wanted to punish team Poland in harshest possible way for the event outside of tournament ("Refs decide to give him a yellow card (because at this point in time yellow card is more harsh than red card). ")

Gravity of facts 20-21. To put it into context: imagine you argue on chat with ref before or after an evnet and you are not nice to him. He can as a result penalise your team on next or already ended event based on his mood.

Please read above. If you still believe everything was great I have nothing to add here.

Ps. Threats about ban to Konrad based on captains vote with diregard to rules is far more outrageous in my opinion than anything he said to ref regardless of how aggresively he did that as ultimately he only stated his opinon as private person to private person (not player to judge)
Ps2. Just to be clear: I have no idea how the game works, I ended up here accidentaly a d was fascinated by the heated discussion and yes, I am from. Poland which is why I concentrated on gathering facts which I believe to be accurate and not debatable. If I got something wrong it was not intentional.
Ps3. I dont want to change the outome of the event as I am aware that similar outrageous unfair treatment also happens on far more important events including Olimpics (can describe last one I remember in cycling if you are interested)

Spectator  
Spectator
Posts: 11
Date registered 08.09.2018

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RE: Refs statement

#7 by Humblr , Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:42 pm

Didnt even read.
Fed up with all this drama.
All grown ups have turn the page.
Only sanctions are still to be determined for Konrad's and Furion's behaviour.
And a seperate thread is there for it.

PS: Be a man and name yourself at least.
H.


French ETC player 2012/ 2016/ 2018

 
Humblr
Posts: 16
Date registered 08.09.2018

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RE: Refs statement

#8 by Spectator , Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:47 pm

I am honestly just a spectator. My name is Filip and I never played this game

"Didnt even read." That suggest your mind is made up and you refuse to even listen to nothing more that facts. That is called fantism in most cases but is nothing more than cognitive bias.

Spectator  
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Posts: 11
Date registered 08.09.2018

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RE: Refs statement

#9 by Humblr , Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:08 pm

No Filip it means I can accept a decision when it is final, and move on. ^^
H.


French ETC player 2012/ 2016/ 2018

 
Humblr
Posts: 16
Date registered 08.09.2018


RE: Refs statement

#10 by Scottish Knight , Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:15 pm

I appreciate the refs coming out with their reasoning. It all sounds perfectly reasonable to me, and I completely understand why the decisions were reached.

Likely the tournament pack can be improved upon for next year, but I am confident the refs acted appropriately and I have complete faith in their decisions.


Captain - Team Scotland T9A 2019

Scottish Knight  
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RE: Refs statement

#11 by Spectator , Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:15 pm

Please read ps3. I understand it's done. However, I believe what I wrote is true. If you read it about any other game you would be most likely surprised to say the least.

Spectator  
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Date registered 08.09.2018


RE: Refs statement

#12 by Albo_Albo , Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:15 pm

Dear Colleagues from ETC and T9A community

I would like to write that please don't consider annonymous and fake accounts.
Any statements from Polish National Team will come only from official named persons.
Thank you

 
Albo_Albo
Posts: 6
Date registered 08.07.2018


RE: Refs statement

#13 by Blonde Beer , Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 pm

Can you name those Albo? I have received several pms on T9A Social Media from Polish Players, would be good to know who are actually the people in charge of representing the Polish team.


T9A NL

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RE: Refs statement

#14 by Albo_Albo , Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:27 pm

Blonde Beer sure.

The captain of our team was Abrasus - Kondrad and charmain is Furion. Except those 2 I would like to recommend to speak with Laik - Tomasz Gegotek and Stanislaw Schneider (Crusader) the rest our team who can eventually speak are: Marek Gmyrek (Szaitis), Michał Rusinek (Shino), Artur Szymała (Xargos), Aleksander Jaworowski (Rince), Bartłomiej (NP) (Eltharion), Tomasz Tutaj (Tutajec).

Please ignor the rest. We have also a lot of our people involved into project from our community so feel free to ask them if necessary.

Thank you

 
Albo_Albo
Posts: 6
Date registered 08.07.2018

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RE: Refs statement

#15 by Fjugin , Tue Aug 14, 2018 11:31 am

I saw in some misinformation in a couple of places recently. And rather than going to each of them and arguing with the people there, I figured its easier to highlight the most common ones here instead.
To be clear, this post is just from me, not from the whole ref-team.

1. Tie-breakers
As described in the statement above, but seems it needs to be repeated: The argument between Polish team and refs wasn't about if we should use VP as tie breaker or not. Everyone agreed that VP as tie-breaker should not be used (or at least did not argue for it). It was clear that what is in the tournament pack is an error. We have had a standard procedure in ETC for at least 10 years to use uncapped BP as tie breaker. Changing this without proper informing anyone seemed like a clear mistake. The line stating it in the tournament pack is repeated twice. This is a sign it's an error. And fact that the tie-breakers differs so much between singles and teams also points towards it being a mistake (no competent person would deliberately include soft scores as tie-breaker in one place but not the other). And now after the event I have talked to the person who created this part of the tournament pack and it was confirmed that changing rules for how the winner of ETC is determined was not intentional (Personal Statement on the Post-ETC-T9A-2018 events by Frederick).

I know some might not agree with above at this points in time. But let me be repeat it once for extra measure: No one made the argument that usage of VP was the correct tie-breaker at the time when the decision was made. To all of us there, it was obvious that it was a mistake. This includes the Polish team, and they even confirmed this as a clarification to their statement: Team Poland Statement re: ETC 2018

Quote: Crusader PL wrote in post Team Poland Statement re: ETC 2018
Guys, you don't understand. We know that there is a mistake in rulepack. It's not about exploiting a mistake.

We believe that BP should be used to determine the winner because in singles pack there is written final score > bp > vp . It is uncertain which bp should be used. But other passage claims that "The maximum amount of battle points per round is 100 [...]". Spain wins on BP uncapped and Poland wins on BP capped.


If not even the Polish team* argued for the use of VP as tie breakers, I think it's safe to say it's was a pretty obvious mistake. That is at least what the judges ruled at the time: "What is written for tie-breakers for team tournaments in the tournament pack is a typo/mistake. We cannot use this."

The question is then what do we do now? When tournament pack contains an error, what is the next step?
- The Polish team argued for using the tie-breakers and/or BP-definition as they are defined for singles tournaments in the tournament pack (meaning 1: BP+softscores, 2: BP, 3: VP).
- The judges disagreed that it made sense to look at what is stated for singles tournaments, and instead went with classical expected** tie-breakers.

*At the time when the decision was made. This may have changed later. Claim otherwise is either not truthful or it was not passed onto the judges clearly enough.
**Pretty much everyone who doesn't have a horse in this race and that also have a decent amount of experience with ETC, is saying that it "obviously" is the tie-breaker we use at ETC.

Sidenote: it has later been noticed that ETC 2017 used the same tournament pack with the same text for tie-breakers. They were ignored then, and instead standard traditional tie-breakers were used. Team USA lost the bronze due to this. Where are the people who argue for giving USA bronze?


2. Surprise penalty
I've seen people who keep claiming this was unexpected surprise penalty to the Polish team. As stated above, it was not so. If the Polish team did not know that they have 2 yellow cards, then look no further than to the warned players who apparently failed to inform their team about their warnings.

What happened was, refs kept track of all yellow cards given out during the whole tournament. The first yellow card gives no penalty, while every card after that is -1BP. Thus, before the last game is played and we do not know how many cards each team has, and thus we do not know the size of their penalty. Hence it was easier for us who updates team scores to simply do these penalties after game 6. Espcially considering that we would also add penalties for late result reports for game 6. I.e. after last game is played, refs can sit down and compile penalties for late reports and yellow cards all at once.


3. Moving forward
I would like to take the opportunity to make some comments on where we (refs, chairmen, players, whole community) are and what we should do differently in the future.

Applying the yellow card penalties after game 6: In hindsight it was probably not a smart move. It lead to some emotional turmoil from players who fought they had won only to moments later discover a -1 BP had appeared (there are both good and bad things with using tourney keeper where everyone can see scores being updated in real time). That said, the penalty might as well had been from a late game report, and those cannot be done before the end of the game (we had several instances of teams being surprised about penalties for late reports, but they accepted it once we showed them screen shots of score board and timer).

Anyway, I understand that the feeling must have sucked. I have been a player at ETC many times, I have lost podium placements with very narrow margins and I know it's not fun. I have won the gold once and it was a very happy moment for me. Having that feeling ripped away from you cannot be pleasant.. I get why they are/were upset (not defending anyone's behavior here btw).

I am a bit sad that the Polish team doesn't seem to acknowledge that the yellow cards they got as the primary reasons they did not win the gold. Both of them were mostly for unsportsmanlike behavior. Had they not acted like they did, they would have won. We give these cards to players to show that such actions are not okay on ETC, and we of course hope that the players will learn from their mistakes and try to better themselves in the future. If they don't acknowledge the importance and legitimacy those cards had, I fear the affected players might not improve.

And finally, I'd like to apologize to the ETC community, and perhaps especially the Polish team, for not spotting the mistakes in tie-breakers before the tournament. It seems to me that everyone (refs, chairmen, captains, players, all of us) naively relied too much on someone else to do the work and proof read the whole thing. I accept my (big) share of the blame on this. I'm sure considerable more time will be spent on crafting and reading tournament packs in the future (I know I will if I am still involved in ETC next year).


Erik


ETC judge 2018

Fjugin  
Fjugin
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For the sake of transparency.
Chairmen Statement on the ETC 2018 - Ban Proposal for Konrad

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