Moderators at HSNCT

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Moderators at HSNCT

Post by cchiego » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:23 pm

I had never before experienced the HSNCT from a coach's perspective and I was rather disappointed by the quality of the moderation that I saw on the whole.

One moderator was barely able to get through 16 tossups and kept mispronouncing and tripping over words while speeding up and slowing down in a seemingly random fashion. Another spoke so incredibly softly the players were nearly falling over the table to try to hear them and did not speak up despite repeated requests.

Yet another moderator blabbed on for several minutes before every match with his fairly worthless and self-serving "advice" to the teams, including telling them to immediately say "pass" if they had no idea on the bonuses so that he could keep his average questions high. I immediately told my team to ignore that and to actually think and guess on bonuses. Professionalism definitely was not a strong point there.

Is there any way to actually hold these moderators accountable and/or increase the quality of moderation? Would more feedback at the Friday night scrimmages help? Would more moderator workshops focused at college players/potential volunteers help? The feedback cards are probably a good idea, but it seems like something more needs to be done to help either eliminate ones who are incapable of improving and showing ones capable of improving the light.

I did want to take the time though to recognize Dave Madden as the best moderator I saw all day. Props to Dave for keeping the Jeopardy references to a minimum and moving the match along swiftly.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Adventure Temple Trail » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:39 pm

cchiego wrote:The feedback cards are probably a good idea, but it seems like something more needs to be done to help either eliminate ones who are incapable of improving and showing ones capable of improving the light.
Is there a brief comments section at the bottom, or an email address that teams might be able to report egregious violations to? Either of those might help give NAQT a better idea of who not to invite back in future years.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:19 pm

I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by quizbowllee » Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:12 pm

We had one moderator who forgot to start the clock at the beginning of the second half. We called it to his attention after he had already read an entire tossup/bonus cycle that our opponents got. He started the clock after that first cycle. We preceded to lose by 15 points when our opponents got the last tossup as time expired....

While that was egregious in my eyes, that was the only real complaint we had all day. It was an honest mistake, but something needed to have been done to correct the off-the-clock tossup/bonus cycle.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jonah » Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:27 pm

Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
In many cases it is by request of the couple. Additionally, we endeavor to ensure that in each room staffed by a member of the protest committee (i.e., Seth and Selene's room from your example), the second staffer is someone who can read competently if the protest committee needs to deliberate at length.

If you and Bernadette, or other pairs of people often put together but both of whom are good readers, are content to read in separate rooms, please communicate that to the logistics or staffing directors of future tournaments you help out at.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Steeve Ho You Fat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:33 pm

I had one team come in talking about how their previous moderator was very bad and kept delaying the game to check Snapchat. They had written all 1s on the card and thought that would get the message across, but I told them to write a comment with their complaint so NAQT didn't misinterpret it as them not knowing how to fill out the card and so NAQT could share that feedback with the moderator. I think a dedicated comments field on each card would help encourage this.

In addition to Rob's obvious suggestion, is it logistically feasible for NAQT to look at evaluations from early in the day and make on the fly adjustments as needed? Another team complained to me about their previous round's moderator (reading too fast and too quietly, explicitly trying to get through more questions to boost his evaluation); when I looked on the staff grid I saw that their previous room had one good moderator and one guy I have never heard of who were listed as switching off. Knowledge like that could help NAQT tell that room to stop switching off.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Cheynem » Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:37 pm

Yeah, I think encouraging "please explicitly list a problem" would help. There's always going to be anal teams that give people low rankings because they irrationally blame the moderator or teams who take out their frustration on a protest/neg not going their way. These complaints should be distinguished between the very real complaints in this thread.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Susan » Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:42 pm

I haven't been at any HSNCTs in a while (something I'm hoping to rectify next year), so maybe NAQT's already on top of this and I don't know about it, but would it make sense to make it very clear at the moderator meeting that someone who's getting through 21 tossups per game while reading clearly, enforcing timing rules fairly, etc. is doing WAY better than someone who's getting through 24 unintelligible tossups per game? That is, I assume that whoever runs the moderators' meeting tells people that they need to read clearly and enforce rules fairly and all that, but it might make sense to emphasize that when moderators are being rated, the number of tossups per game doesn't matter as much as the overall quality of the reading (of which getting through lots of tossups is only one part).
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:03 pm

Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
As far as I've known, going back several years, I have a request from you and Bernadette to share a game room. If you would prefer to split up and each read a room separately, I would be more than happy to accommodate this.

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:06 pm

Madagascar Serpent Eagle wrote:I had one team come in talking about how their previous moderator was very bad and kept delaying the game to check Snapchat. They had written all 1s on the card and thought that would get the message across, but I told them to write a comment with their complaint so NAQT didn't misinterpret it as them not knowing how to fill out the card and so NAQT could share that feedback with the moderator. I think a dedicated comments field on each card would help encourage this.

In addition to Rob's obvious suggestion, is it logistically feasible for NAQT to look at evaluations from early in the day and make on the fly adjustments as needed? Another team complained to me about their previous round's moderator (reading too fast and too quietly, explicitly trying to get through more questions to boost his evaluation); when I looked on the staff grid I saw that their previous room had one good moderator and one guy I have never heard of who were listed as switching off. Knowledge like that could help NAQT tell that room to stop switching off.
If you have any more details about the first comment, please send me an email directly. Also, if you know who the "one good moderator" and "one you you have never heard of" was, please let me know.

As for the second, we don't receive the evaluation cards until the end of the day. That said, we do field complaints at the information desk as well as monitor incoming scoresheets to determine whether or not adjustments need to be made throughout the day. Additionally, we do not complete the playoff grid until after Saturday is over.

Thanks for your feedback,

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Ben Dillon » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:07 pm

Not sure if NAQT can spare personnel, but perhaps it should be someone's job to spot-check the new readers during the day (to make sure they're quality) and to follow up when moderator cards come in that are poor.

It occurs to me that logistics could be handled better with an HSNCT app. First, it would handle the numbering system, not the cards, so the tournament couldn't "grind to a halt" and spectators could find teams more easily. (I suggested this on my survey, but other advantages now occur to me.) Second, it could dramatically cut down on the mountain of paper (e.g. Rules, Schedules). And third, the moderator ratings would be electronic and therefore manageable on the fly.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:07 pm

cchiego wrote:I had never before experienced the HSNCT from a coach's perspective and I was rather disappointed by the quality of the moderation that I saw on the whole.

One moderator was barely able to get through 16 tossups and kept mispronouncing and tripping over words while speeding up and slowing down in a seemingly random fashion. Another spoke so incredibly softly the players were nearly falling over the table to try to hear them and did not speak up despite repeated requests.

Yet another moderator blabbed on for several minutes before every match with his fairly worthless and self-serving "advice" to the teams, including telling them to immediately say "pass" if they had no idea on the bonuses so that he could keep his average questions high. I immediately told my team to ignore that and to actually think and guess on bonuses. Professionalism definitely was not a strong point there.

Is there any way to actually hold these moderators accountable and/or increase the quality of moderation? Would more feedback at the Friday night scrimmages help? Would more moderator workshops focused at college players/potential volunteers help? The feedback cards are probably a good idea, but it seems like something more needs to be done to help either eliminate ones who are incapable of improving and showing ones capable of improving the light.

I did want to take the time though to recognize Dave Madden as the best moderator I saw all day. Props to Dave for keeping the Jeopardy references to a minimum and moving the match along swiftly.
Chris,

If you have any more information as to who these moderators were in the first two comments, please let me know. I apologize that the moderators you saw throughout the day were less than ideal.

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:09 pm

RyuAqua wrote:
cchiego wrote:The feedback cards are probably a good idea, but it seems like something more needs to be done to help either eliminate ones who are incapable of improving and showing ones capable of improving the light.
Is there a brief comments section at the bottom, or an email address that teams might be able to report egregious violations to? Either of those might help give NAQT a better idea of who not to invite back in future years.

If anyone has specific comments about moderators (even if you just have a room number/name and not the name of the moderator), you are welcome to email me directly at jgluskinnaqt@gmail.com . I assure you that we take all feedback seriously and there are moderators who either have not been invited back or relegated to scorekeeping duty based on this feedback.

Unrelated, we do try to have new staffers read on Friday night only with an experienced moderator to give both them and us feedback.

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Steeve Ho You Fat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 5:27 pm

I forgot to ask beforehand, but I'd be interested in hearing someone from NAQT's (semi-official) opinion on this: Let's say that I can read n words in 18 minutes at an appropriate speed, and that n corresponds to either 24 tossups or 22 tossups and the number of points on each bonus and "tossup x" before each tossup. I normally go with the latter to keep the course of the game clear to both my scorekeeper, coaches keeping score, and players who want to know how many questions are left, but I can see the argument for getting through as many tossups as possible.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by njsbling » Mon Jun 02, 2014 6:15 pm

A team coach told me on Saturday that this year's moderators were the best she and her team had ever had (I was very happy to hear that).
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Dominator » Mon Jun 02, 2014 6:52 pm

From my experience, the moderating was better than I remember from the past. Out of the dozenish we had, none we incompetent and only one was unpleasant. There were plenty of moderators we did not have, clearly, though.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Sniper, No Sniping! » Mon Jun 02, 2014 7:02 pm

quizbowllee wrote:We had one moderator who forgot to start the clock at the beginning of the second half. We called it to his attention after he had already read an entire tossup/bonus cycle that our opponents got. He started the clock after that first cycle. We preceded to lose by 15 points when our opponents got the last tossup as time expired....

While that was egregious in my eyes, that was the only real complaint we had all day. It was an honest mistake, but something needed to have been done to correct the off-the-clock tossup/bonus cycle.
Mistakes happen, although nothing in the rules says you can't tell the moderator he/she forgot to run the clock.

All of our moderators were very good. The only bad moderator I encountered was in a scrimmage room Friday, and was terrible to a T: couldn't pronounce many words, read too fast then slow, slurred words together and basically morphed the final syllables of one word with the first syllables of a proceeding word to make an incomprehensible sound. If Joel wants, I can tell him what room he was in / who he was with.

One other thing: for some ballrooms, is it possible to bring the tables closer since the acoustics are rather poor?
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Mon Jun 02, 2014 7:21 pm

jagluski wrote:
Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
As far as I've known, going back several years, I have a request from you and Bernadette to share a game room. If you would prefer to split up and each read a room separately, I would be more than happy to accommodate this.

Joel
Huh! As far as I know, we'd only ever requested to stay in a hotel room together, and I think we both independently mentioned on our staffing responses this year that it'd make sense to have us read separately. While we do love spending time together, I think we agree that it's a better use of NAQT's resources to split us up and keep us both reading. I certainly didn't intend to accuse you of malfeasance or stupidity, and thanks for your response!
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Joshua Rutsky » Mon Jun 02, 2014 7:32 pm

Just wanted to add that my experience this year with moderators was excellent. Only one I would consider to have been less than polite, and he was still an excellent reader. I had my first experience on the moderator side of the table at MSNCT this year, and it really made me empathize more with the effort and discipline it takes to read a full day of sixteen rounds professionally, clearly, and at a steady fast clip. Thanks to everyone who volunteered to do this.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Steeve Ho You Fat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:16 pm

Sniper, No Sniping! wrote:
quizbowllee wrote:We had one moderator who forgot to start the clock at the beginning of the second half. We called it to his attention after he had already read an entire tossup/bonus cycle that our opponents got. He started the clock after that first cycle. We preceded to lose by 15 points when our opponents got the last tossup as time expired....

While that was egregious in my eyes, that was the only real complaint we had all day. It was an honest mistake, but something needed to have been done to correct the off-the-clock tossup/bonus cycle.
Mistakes happen, although nothing in the rules says you can't tell the moderator he/she forgot to run the clock.
I'm not exactly sure what this is supposed to mean - the best thing is, of course, for someone to yell out "yo start the clock" if a moderator forgets to do this (I made that mistake once, had someone immediately point it out, and was able to quickly fix the problem while ensuring the correct amount of time was subtracted). If noone does that until after a whole tossup has passed, though, then the moderator needs to subtract the correct amount of time from the clock, presumably by rereading the portion of the question that was read and waiting a reasonable amount of time to account for the buzz and answer while the clock is running.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by TylerV » Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:27 pm

Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
I had this thought when we had Fred Morlan scorekeep in our room. Having heard Fred read at Kentucky's SCT mirror(which used clocks) I think he is a very clear reader who can fit in 22-24 toss ups in any given game.(that being said I'm not sure the exact circumstances around his placement and unsure if he perhaps requested to be a scorekeeper.)

Overall we ran into no terrible moderators.(with the worst case being someone who slightly slurred their words on science toss ups which really didn't take away from the game)
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by AKKOLADE » Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:44 pm

TylerV wrote:
Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
I had this thought when we had Fred Morlan scorekeep in our room. Having heard Fred read at Kentucky's SCT mirror(which used clocks) I think he is a very clear reader who can fit in 22-24 toss ups in any given game.(that being said I'm not sure the exact circumstances around his placement and unsure if he perhaps requested to be a scorekeeper.)
I was paired with Jason Loy, who is a competent guy. Also, let me be honest - this was the first time I ever did HSNCT, and reading 16 timed rounds in one day might have just killed me.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant » Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:44 pm

Sniper, No Sniping! wrote:One other thing: for some ballrooms, is it possible to bring the tables closer since the acoustics are rather poor?
I was going to post on this very topic. Before one of the Sunday afternoon rounds that I staffed in Rosemont C, a player remarked that he preferred that room's setup with the two team tables right against the moderator table. I agree with him; perhaps all of the game rooms should be set up like that. Suite lounges with spiral staircases right smack in the middle of them excepted, of course.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by AKKOLADE » Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:51 pm

I'd also like to pitch in as an addendum that the sound for the last 3 games in the Grand Ballroom were generally poor, to the point that I wonder if Seth Teitler just hates microphones. It's very frustrating as a spectator to know that things are being said, but generally the only ones you can pick up on are the correctness of the answer and possibly a teammate shouting NICE.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat » Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:38 pm

When compiling information from the evaluations, it's probably worth looking at the trend throughout the day in addition to the average score. Everyone will probably start to fade towards the end of the day as their voices get tired, but some people will only be able to make it 5 rounds before getting a sore throat, some 10, and others may make it a full 16. Obviously it's a limited data set, but it could help set future assignments between a straight reader and scorekeeper, a "must trade," and a "may trade."

It would also be useful to have some blank moderator evaluation cards in the folders for times when a moderator forgets to hand them out in one room. I had one team mention that their previous moderator wasn't very good, but that the team never received a card. The team wasn't interested in writing comments on scratch paper, but they probably would have filled one out if a card was provided with blanks for room and round information. In this case the feedback was negative, but there were probably just as many teams who had good moderators and lost / never received a card.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by tiwonge » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:31 pm

Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat wrote:It would also be useful to have some blank moderator evaluation cards in the folders for times when a moderator forgets to hand them out in one room. I had one team mention that their previous moderator wasn't very good, but that the team never received a card. The team wasn't interested in writing comments on scratch paper, but they probably would have filled one out if a card was provided with blanks for room and round information. In this case the feedback was negative, but there were probably just as many teams who had good moderators and lost / never received a card.
I think we messed ours up, too. Early in the day (the 2nd or 3rd round), a team came in without a moderator card filled out, so I gave them one of the ones in our room. I didn't realize until later that they were specifically designated for a round and moderator. Later on, I fixed it by explaining the mistake to the teams, and one offered not to fill one out, so that my cards were back on track for last half of the tournament. I unwittingly messed up ours a bit because of that. (Jason and I switched off once or twice during the time, or it would have been fine since all the messed up rounds would still refer to me.) Having one or two blank cards (and maybe a clear explanation that they were designated by round and room--I'm not sure if I heard that explained, although it makes sense) would definitely be helpful.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by Banned Tiny Toon Adventures Episode » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:57 pm

In my room our moderator card stack appeared to have only one copy of the cards for rounds 15 and 16
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:28 am

Madagascar Serpent Eagle wrote:I forgot to ask beforehand, but I'd be interested in hearing someone from NAQT's (semi-official) opinion on this: Let's say that I can read n words in 18 minutes at an appropriate speed, and that n corresponds to either 24 tossups or 22 tossups and the number of points on each bonus and "tossup x" before each tossup. I normally go with the latter to keep the course of the game clear to both my scorekeeper, coaches keeping score, and players who want to know how many questions are left, but I can see the argument for getting through as many tossups as possible.
I don't think there is an official answer on this. From my personal experience reading, I will tend to announce the bonus points for the exact reasons you mention followed by just the number of the tossup.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:29 am

Sniper, No Sniping! wrote:
quizbowllee wrote:We had one moderator who forgot to start the clock at the beginning of the second half. We called it to his attention after he had already read an entire tossup/bonus cycle that our opponents got. He started the clock after that first cycle. We preceded to lose by 15 points when our opponents got the last tossup as time expired....

While that was egregious in my eyes, that was the only real complaint we had all day. It was an honest mistake, but something needed to have been done to correct the off-the-clock tossup/bonus cycle.
Mistakes happen, although nothing in the rules says you can't tell the moderator he/she forgot to run the clock.

All of our moderators were very good. The only bad moderator I encountered was in a scrimmage room Friday, and was terrible to a T: couldn't pronounce many words, read too fast then slow, slurred words together and basically morphed the final syllables of one word with the first syllables of a proceeding word to make an incomprehensible sound. If Joel wants, I can tell him what room he was in / who he was with.

One other thing: for some ballrooms, is it possible to bring the tables closer since the acoustics are rather poor?
Thomas,

As for the moderator, please let me know. Your feedback on the ballrooms is interesting because I've also received comments that the tables were too close to the moderator in various rooms! We will take this into account, though.

Joel
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NAQT Vice President for Logistics

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:29 am

Ukonvasara wrote:
jagluski wrote:
Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
As far as I've known, going back several years, I have a request from you and Bernadette to share a game room. If you would prefer to split up and each read a room separately, I would be more than happy to accommodate this.

Joel
Huh! As far as I know, we'd only ever requested to stay in a hotel room together, and I think we both independently mentioned on our staffing responses this year that it'd make sense to have us read separately. While we do love spending time together, I think we agree that it's a better use of NAQT's resources to split us up and keep us both reading. I certainly didn't intend to accuse you of malfeasance or stupidity, and thanks for your response!
We'll fix this for next year!
Joel Gluskin
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NAQT Vice President for Logistics

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Tue Jun 03, 2014 8:30 am

tiwonge wrote:
Quantum Mushroom Billiard Hat wrote:It would also be useful to have some blank moderator evaluation cards in the folders for times when a moderator forgets to hand them out in one room. I had one team mention that their previous moderator wasn't very good, but that the team never received a card. The team wasn't interested in writing comments on scratch paper, but they probably would have filled one out if a card was provided with blanks for room and round information. In this case the feedback was negative, but there were probably just as many teams who had good moderators and lost / never received a card.
I think we messed ours up, too. Early in the day (the 2nd or 3rd round), a team came in without a moderator card filled out, so I gave them one of the ones in our room. I didn't realize until later that they were specifically designated for a round and moderator. Later on, I fixed it by explaining the mistake to the teams, and one offered not to fill one out, so that my cards were back on track for last half of the tournament. I unwittingly messed up ours a bit because of that. (Jason and I switched off once or twice during the time, or it would have been fine since all the messed up rounds would still refer to me.) Having one or two blank cards (and maybe a clear explanation that they were designated by round and room--I'm not sure if I heard that explained, although it makes sense) would definitely be helpful.

There were extra blank moderator evaluation cards in the control rooms all day.
Joel Gluskin
WUSTL '04
NAQT Vice President for Logistics

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by mtn335 » Tue Jun 03, 2014 2:43 pm

Ukonvasara wrote:
jagluski wrote:
Ukonvasara wrote:I've always wondered why NAQT continues to do things like putting Seth and Selene, or Bernadette and I, in the same room, when either of them/us are more than capable of competently reading a round and would mean one fewer room getting through 16 tossups per game.
As far as I've known, going back several years, I have a request from you and Bernadette to share a game room. If you would prefer to split up and each read a room separately, I would be more than happy to accommodate this.

Joel
Huh! As far as I know, we'd only ever requested to stay in a hotel room together, and I think we both independently mentioned on our staffing responses this year that it'd make sense to have us read separately. While we do love spending time together, I think we agree that it's a better use of NAQT's resources to split us up and keep us both reading. I certainly didn't intend to accuse you of malfeasance or stupidity, and thanks for your response!
I just wanted to add, Rob, that I did see your staffing responses that it might make sense to separate you, but I have a note in my files that you two REALLY prefer to read together, so that's what I went with. As Joel said, we'll fix it next year. :-)

As for Seth and Selene, that was deliberate, both to save Seth's voice for Sunday and to allow him to be replaced by a scorekeeper if it looked like Seth might be held up for a very long time with protests.
Nathan Murphy
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Gonzaga University 2007

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by sbfromcopley » Tue Jun 03, 2014 3:21 pm

We ran into situations in two of the rooms we played in where we would be conferring on bonuses at a pretty normal speaking volume which were accepted quickly, even if we did not direct the answer to the moderator. In some of those cases we were trying to use up more time and we were basically shut down by what I would assume to be a moderator who was unaware of timing strategies. It did not end up effecting the outcome of the game, but was still pretty weird. Also, this should be strictly avoided since when teams are conferring lots of different answers could be thrown out, and the correct answer may not always be decided upon.
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Ohio State '19

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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by jagluski » Tue Jun 03, 2014 4:00 pm

sbfromcopley wrote:We ran into situations in two of the rooms we played in where we would be conferring on bonuses at a pretty normal speaking volume which were accepted quickly, even if we did not direct the answer to the moderator. In some of those cases we were trying to use up more time and we were basically shut down by what I would assume to be a moderator who was unaware of timing strategies. It did not end up effecting the outcome of the game, but was still pretty weird. Also, this should be strictly avoided since when teams are conferring lots of different answers could be thrown out, and the correct answer may not always be decided upon.
The moderators were instructed to take the first answer directed towards them. Often times, when I'm reading on the clock, I rarely look up from the page unless absolutely necessary so that I can get more questions in, so if they heard the correct answer, they probably assumed it was being directed towards them.

In the future, I would suggest not speaking in your normal voice if you're trying to kill the clock to avoid any confusion.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by etchdulac » Tue Jun 03, 2014 5:30 pm

I'd like to credit NAQT for the method they've taken up for evaluating new staffers on Friday night. For those unaware, volunteers who had not read at an HSNCT before were paired with experienced HSNCT readers for the practice rounds, allowing the older volunteers to determine who should only be scorekeeping and who should be reading long-term, if not right away. In our room, we had a graduating player for an elite college program who just hadn't been at the event before; he was great and we told organizers that he was ready to read even the next day if needed, and he was given a room to split Saturday. I would encourage organizers to retain this part of the process.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by sbfromcopley » Tue Jun 03, 2014 6:01 pm

jagluski wrote:
sbfromcopley wrote:We ran into situations in two of the rooms we played in where we would be conferring on bonuses at a pretty normal speaking volume which were accepted quickly, even if we did not direct the answer to the moderator. In some of those cases we were trying to use up more time and we were basically shut down by what I would assume to be a moderator who was unaware of timing strategies. It did not end up effecting the outcome of the game, but was still pretty weird. Also, this should be strictly avoided since when teams are conferring lots of different answers could be thrown out, and the correct answer may not always be decided upon.
The moderators were instructed to take the first answer directed towards them. Often times, when I'm reading on the clock, I rarely look up from the page unless absolutely necessary so that I can get more questions in, so if they heard the correct answer, they probably assumed it was being directed towards them.

In the future, I would suggest not speaking in your normal voice if you're trying to kill the clock to avoid any confusion.
I understand what you are saying, but I think the problem is that it wasn't just one person who said the answer which would allow for the reader to assume that it was directed towards them, it happened while we were all conferring. It was just odd that they felt comfortable taking one answer of many being said, assuming that we would arrive at the correct answer. I do understand that during a timed match there is more pressure put on the readers to be quick about what they do. It wasn't a big problem as it was only one or two readers, it was just strange that it happened at all.
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Re: Moderators at HSNCT

Post by mtn335 » Tue Jun 03, 2014 7:17 pm

etchdulac wrote:I'd like to credit NAQT for the method they've taken up for evaluating new staffers on Friday night. For those unaware, volunteers who had not read at an HSNCT before were paired with experienced HSNCT readers for the practice rounds, allowing the older volunteers to determine who should only be scorekeeping and who should be reading long-term, if not right away. In our room, we had a graduating player for an elite college program who just hadn't been at the event before; he was great and we told organizers that he was ready to read even the next day if needed, and he was given a room to split Saturday. I would encourage organizers to retain this part of the process.
For general information: nobody was actually promoted from Friday feedback, and it was never the plan to do that. For the most part, this feedback is to:
(1) identify who ought to be reading next year, and
(2) make sure that no first-time officials who got good recommendations from other people we trust (and were thus put into the grid) are actually really bad.

Several people will be promoted next year from (1), but everybody who read on Saturday was already in the plan on Friday night. (2) has never happened, to my knowledge.
Nathan Murphy
NAQT Member
HSNCT/ICT Logistics Director
Gonzaga University 2007

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