Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

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Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Theodore » Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:49 pm

Each and every member of my team enjoys good pyramidal Quizbowl, and we are frustrated by the numerous glaring flaws of Reach for the Top, the bad non-pyramidal format that plagues Canada (think of it as the :chip: of the North)

Our coach simply refuses to steer away from Reach or play Quizbowl at practices. I've explained the merits of good pyramidal questions numerous times, and I think the main reason for refusing to make the full transition to pyramidal is simply history/tradition (the only thing she's said is that we play Reach because it's Reach). We have club funds that our teacher only allows us to use ONLY for Reach tournaments.

I've managed with playing both Reach and Quizbowl for my first two years only because a) our coach never showed up for practices, allowing us to play Quizbowl, but we recently got a new additional coach that consistently reads us Reach packets at senior practices, preventing us from practicing Quizbowl and b) I've always been fine with paying $5-20 out of pocket to attend a Quizbowl tournament, but now that my team is strong enough to attend nationals, the money going to the obscenely-high Reach entry fees now have a much better use.

Since logical reasoning doesn't seem to work very well with my coaches, I've been thinking of alternate ways to get my school to stop playing and wasting money on Reach (this is not to say that I won't keep trying in explaining the merits of good pyramidal Quizbowl to my coaches). One of my ideas was to boycott the upcoming regional tournament, but I'm not sure if this would be a good idea or not, since my team would probably do very well at this tournament. I'm also open to switching teacher coaches so we'll be able to play Quizbowl at practices, but this may leave us without the club funds entirely. I can't really think of any other ideas, and would like suggestions (feel free to be bold/radical, as long as it's not too crazy).

I think I've waited far too long to incite this major positive change in my team. I understand that converting the entire Ontario circuit from Reach to good pyramidal Quizbowl may require a gradual transition, but I see no reason for my school's transition to take that long. I really don't want to waste any more money on bad Quizbowl we don't enjoy, since my teammates and I will have to pay $1000+ each out of pocket to attend HSNCT or NSC (or NASAT if Ontario can field a team) next year.

Thoughts/advice?
Ted (Ze Feng) Gan

Pennsylvania State University, 20??
Carleton University, 2019
Colonel By Secondary School, 2015

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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by cruzeiro » Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:00 pm

I'd argue at this stage in the game that, while frustrating, to keep bothering with Reach, even though the money is ridiculous (but nobody ever knows about it since at most schools admin handles it without blinking and the students never hear about it) and this is prejudicial to going to more tournaments.

The reason I say this is because while in Ottawa I think most high schools now know about quizbowl, most of the rest of the province has never heard of it. I hadn't when I was in high school in Waterloo. I know ONQBA will send out our letters every year, but those aren't going to get through most of the time to the students. The best way for you (and other high schools) to spread the word about quizbowl to the rest of the province is to go to Prov. Reach and talk to other teams about it. That was how I found out about quizbowl (from Patrick Liao and the other Lisgarites there). Coming from a team and school that we knew to be extremely successful in Reach (and, frankly, that we held up as a standard of we want to be like them getting into the Top 10 every year), it told us that this is something that would be worth trying, since it clearly works for other schools. While that was in my last year and so I couldn't really get much going before I left (since we always shut down after the season ends in May), it still got a good number of people in my club to go play in university.

The best way to convince people quizbowl is good for you (and better than Reach) is to go out and beat them at their own game. And then credit it to playing quizbowl stuff that's more challenging academically. If you go to Reach Nationals or win Provincials or whatever, credit it to normally playing harder quizbowl stuff, including if you have to deal with admin types in congratulations. Other teams will be interested in what you guys do to win, especially the ones that do well.

I know this isn't the best thing to hear since I know you guys are frustrated and would rather spend the money on QB, but you also lose the chance to evangelize for quizbowl if you don't play Reach outside Ottawa. And we know that quizbowl outside Ottawa in this province is a struggle, to put it mildly. Doing that can pay dividends for spreading quizbowl to the rest of the province.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Camelopardalis » Tue Mar 11, 2014 5:58 pm

cruzeiro wrote:I'd argue at this stage in the game that, while frustrating, to keep bothering with Reach, even though the money is ridiculous (but nobody ever knows about it since at most schools admin handles it without blinking and the students never hear about it) and this is prejudicial to going to more tournaments.

The reason I say this is because while in Ottawa I think most high schools now know about quizbowl, most of the rest of the province has never heard of it. I hadn't when I was in high school in Waterloo. I know ONQBA will send out our letters every year, but those aren't going to get through most of the time to the students. The best way for you (and other high schools) to spread the word about quizbowl to the rest of the province is to go to Prov. Reach and talk to other teams about it. That was how I found out about quizbowl (from Patrick Liao and the other Lisgarites there). Coming from a team and school that we knew to be extremely successful in Reach (and, frankly, that we held up as a standard of we want to be like them getting into the Top 10 every year), it told us that this is something that would be worth trying, since it clearly works for other schools. While that was in my last year and so I couldn't really get much going before I left (since we always shut down after the season ends in May), it still got a good number of people in my club to go play in university.

The best way to convince people quizbowl is good for you (and better than Reach) is to go out and beat them at their own game. And then credit it to playing quizbowl stuff that's more challenging academically. If you go to Reach Nationals or win Provincials or whatever, credit it to normally playing harder quizbowl stuff, including if you have to deal with admin types in congratulations. Other teams will be interested in what you guys do to win, especially the ones that do well.

I know this isn't the best thing to hear since I know you guys are frustrated and would rather spend the money on QB, but you also lose the chance to evangelize for quizbowl if you don't play Reach outside Ottawa. And we know that quizbowl outside Ottawa in this province is a struggle, to put it mildly. Doing that can pay dividends for spreading quizbowl to the rest of the province.
I understand your points, Dennis, and they are good ones. This strategy is especially useful for the top 10-15 teams in the province that chase wins, and for whom losing to e.g. Lisgar would stoke the fires of participating in a more rigorous test.

However, I would strongly question the utility of evangelizing for mass participation. If this were the case, statistically, we would see large growth in the game in Ontario every year. Some players would play quizbowl, word-of-mouth would spread at Reach provincials the next month, and more teams would join next year. Those teams, as well as the first group, would spread word again. And so on. We are now nearly 10 years in, and we can see quite objectively that this has not been the case. We have had a sporadic pattern of growth with occasional spurts and otherwise cripplingly slow linear growth (but growth all the same, it should be said).

Of course teachers are not immune to evangelizing, and of course the particular interests of their team influence what they do, but remember, TEACHERS choose whether to officially participate in Reach. Not students. As much as talking on message boards is fun, this discussion that we all participate in only supports (rather than creates) concrete change - it's the aggressive targeting of individual schools, administrators, and teachers that results in change. (NHBB is a great example of this). In Ontario, we gained 300% of the total initial high school quizbowl team population in 2009 (Toronto Winter Invitational) by aggressively targeting individual schools, administrators, and teachers. Since that aggressive targeting halted in 2011, there has been little growth.

So when it comes to boycotting, remember that by participating in these games as a credible, respected, reputed quiz team
a) you validate them
b) you provide actual business to them
c) you send mixed messages to your school and its board
d) your teacher/administrator will continue to see it as useful, to a degree (I guarantee that they're not spending their weekend away from their family just so they can help you evangelize)

In short, I personally don't endorse supporting bad quizbowl tournaments. I mean, it's not a "boycott". It's just choosing to participate in good tournaments over bad ones.

Remember that "we have decided to suspend participation in Reach due to their unethical and negligent attitude towards modern academic competition" is a strong, bold statement that school boards will notice. "We have decided to participate in Reach provincials in order to demonstrate, through the fact that we're gonna crush these guys, that other game formats are better for them to practice" does not ring as clearly to decision-makers.
Last edited by Camelopardalis on Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Theodore » Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:15 pm

Camelopardalis wrote: TEACHERS choose whether to officially participate in Reach. Not students.
I think this is an extremely important aspect of spreading good Quizbowl. Take my school for example: all of our players love Quizbowl and find Reach to be downright comical with its poor quality questions. Despite this, our teachers still strongly support Reach. You can have an entire club of 16+ students be 100% for Quizbowl and 100% against Reach and still it won't sway the opinions of the teachers. The ONQBA sends numerous outreach emails and letters, and it's the teachers & admin choosing to ignore them, not the students.

Dennis is correct in that beating Reach-only schools at their own game would help convert some teams, but I still don't think it's the best option for the reasons Chris stated.
Ted (Ze Feng) Gan

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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by bsmith » Tue Mar 11, 2014 8:45 pm

Ted, I believe your concern is being raised because you spent most of the season thinking Colonel By didn’t pay the entry fee, only to discover recently that the administrators did. If the money was spent, it’s not being (easily) refunded, so you may as well field a team. Take a pass on provincials/nationals if you wish to spend no further money, although “boycotts” will not really be noticed by the community unless a school with a big Reach reputation (think UTS, KV, Cobequid) does so.

Don’t expect your school’s Reach funds to just get transferred to another championship, though. Reach for the Top is a Canadian cultural institution. The average adult on the street has heard of it. Important people in Canada have played it. Universities give scholarships for it. All of my past managers and supervisors knew about it. It has far more reputation and clout in Canada than any quizbowl championship does in the US: a Congressman won’t make a plea to save the NSC if PACE is at risk of folding, for example.

More specifically for you: Colonel By administrators know what Reach is. A top 3 finish at Reach Nationals would be plastered all over their promotional and alumni material, while a top 3 at a quizbowl nationals would be unnoticed. Telling your school not to spend $1000 on Reach could just mean “OK, we won’t spend money, then”. Be careful and diplomatic, lest you bite the hand that feeds you.

More generally, I disagree with the “viva la revolucion” attitude that Ottawa quizbowlers have toward Reach (yes, I was like that too). Reach is not an evil empire out to destroy quizbowl- the historical dirty laundry we raise was done by people who are now passed away. Reach today is fine with coexisting with quizbowl: some QBers write questions, Jay and I have run leagues, etc. If you have constructive criticism (like my CEGEPs beef from a few years ago), tactfully tell them. They have mail and email addresses.

Don't get me wrong, I'm part of a quizbowl association, not a shill for Reach. I know quizbowl is the superior format, but Reach is a business making a product that the vast majority of Canadians are willing to buy, and they are perfectly entitled to keep doing that.

The problem with quizbowl’s growth in Ontario is not Reach the company. As Chris might have implied, it is an issue of quizbowl not being an appealing product to Ontario teachers, and that is a whole separate discussion that I need to hold off on until after provincials.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by bmcke » Tue Mar 11, 2014 9:50 pm

Reach for the Top is just someone else's weird party, at this point. It seems to serve a completely separate function and separate audience from quizbowl.

Ted, you might have more of a grievance with your high school. Colonel By's Reach club has evolved into a pretty worthwhile unofficial quizbowl club. Since there are now dozens of students who want quizbowl practice, the school might owe it to you to adapt the club's mission to something involving quizbowl, or to provide the means of founding an official quizbowl club.

(Reach makes money by having a popular brand and a very lazy product, and it uses volunteers to staff "community events" that are quietly for-profit. This is pretty awful, but I don't think it really dilutes the quizbowl scene in Canada. Reach teams cross over into quizbowl way more than the other way around.)
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Camelopardalis » Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:49 pm

bmcke wrote:Reach for the Top is just someone else's weird party, at this point. It seems to serve a completely separate function and separate audience from quizbowl.
I agree with this wholly. But given that Reach's party is very large, I think that growing our party aggressively and separately from Reach is important. Considering the competition is, essentially, a poorly-run Trivial Pursuit tournament that as others have alluded to, is an order of magnitude more expensive than quizbowl, this is feasible.
bsmith wrote:Ted, I believe your concern is being raised because you spent most of the season thinking Colonel By didn’t pay the entry fee, only to discover recently that the administrators did. If the money was spent, it’s not being (easily) refunded, so you may as well field a team. Take a pass on provincials/nationals if you wish to spend no further money, although “boycotts” will not really be noticed by the community unless a school with a big Reach reputation (think UTS, KV, Cobequid) does so.

Don’t expect your school’s Reach funds to just get transferred to another championship, though. Reach for the Top is a Canadian cultural institution. The average adult on the street has heard of it. Important people in Canada have played it. Universities give scholarships for it. All of my past managers and supervisors knew about it. It has far more reputation and clout in Canada than any quizbowl championship does in the US: a Congressman won’t make a plea to save the NSC if PACE is at risk of folding, for example.

More specifically for you: Colonel By administrators know what Reach is. A top 3 finish at Reach Nationals would be plastered all over their promotional and alumni material, while a top 3 at a quizbowl nationals would be unnoticed. Telling your school not to spend $1000 on Reach could just mean “OK, we won’t spend money, then”. Be careful and diplomatic, lest you bite the hand that feeds you.

More generally, I disagree with the “viva la revolucion” attitude that Ottawa quizbowlers have toward Reach (yes, I was like that too). Reach is not an evil empire out to destroy quizbowl- the historical dirty laundry we raise was done by people who are now passed away. Reach today is fine with coexisting with quizbowl: some QBers write questions, Jay and I have run leagues, etc. If you have constructive criticism (like my CEGEPs beef from a few years ago), tactfully tell them. They have mail and email addresses.

Don't get me wrong, I'm part of a quizbowl association, not a shill for Reach. I know quizbowl is the superior format, but Reach is a business making a product that the vast majority of Canadians are willing to buy, and they are perfectly entitled to keep doing that.

The problem with quizbowl’s growth in Ontario is not Reach the company. As Chris might have implied, it is an issue of quizbowl not being an appealing product to Ontario teachers, and that is a whole separate discussion that I need to hold off on until after provincials.
I don't think a "viva la revolucion" attitude has really been sought, to be honest, but I would say that there's some justified anger there. I have gone the tactful route with them in the past - with constructively criticized, positive, hopeful emails, and have literally never heard back once.

Perhaps it's too optimistic Ben, but I believe that Canadians are only willing to buy Reach because it's all they know. The two can exist comfortably together, but ought to exist in a much different ratio, I'd think!
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by zachary_yan » Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:55 pm

bsmith wrote: Don’t expect your school’s Reach funds to just get transferred to another championship, though. Reach for the Top is a Canadian cultural institution. The average adult on the street has heard of it. Important people in Canada have played it. Universities give scholarships for it. All of my past managers and supervisors knew about it. It has far more reputation and clout in Canada than any quizbowl championship does in the US: a Congressman won’t make a plea to save the NSC if PACE is at risk of folding, for example.
American passing by... I don't know if this would have trademark issues, but why don't you guys just hold independent quizbowl events and market them as "reach". I mean in America, College Bowl was known as quizbowl ( :chip: is also "quiz bowl" for that matter) and good quiz bowl just claimed to be a better version of the same activity.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Theodore » Wed Mar 12, 2014 8:05 am

bmcke wrote: Ted, you might have more of a grievance with your high school. Colonel By's Reach club has evolved into a pretty worthwhile unofficial quizbowl club. Since there are now dozens of students who want quizbowl practice, the school might owe it to you to adapt the club's mission to something involving quizbowl, or to provide the means of founding an official quizbowl club.
When our teacher coach isn't at practice (which used to be 100% of the time, but now it's almost never), we're effectively 100% a Quizbowl team.
zachary_yan wrote: American passing by... I don't know if this would have trademark issues, but why don't you guys just hold independent quizbowl events and market them as "reach". I mean in America, College Bowl was known as quizbowl ( :chip: is also "quiz bowl" for that matter) and good quiz bowl just claimed to be a better version of the same activity.
I hope this thread doesn't appear to be exclusionary to Americans! I really want to hear American perspectives, as you guys down south have achieved a significant amount of success spreading good Quizbowl in the last few years.

Thankfully, there shouldn't trademark issues; lots of schools host Reach-like events each year independent of the organization. Still, I'm unsure of the advantages this would bring (elaborate please). It just sounds to me that this would create confusion, but it would get coaches and admin to actually read the outreach emails and letters.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Benin Rebirth Party » Wed Mar 12, 2014 1:44 pm

zachary_yan wrote:
American passing by... I don't know if this would have trademark issues, but why don't you guys just hold independent quizbowl events and market them as "reach". I mean in America, College Bowl was known as quizbowl ( :chip: is also "quiz bowl" for that matter) and good quiz bowl just claimed to be a better version of the same activity.
In Ontario I think most active teams know about both and we treat independent run tournaments as either "Reach like" or "Quizbowl/NAQT like" tournaments. "Quizbowl like" up here is exclusively the 20(24)/20(24) format written by NAQT or independents such has Ladue's LIST. I think if we mirrored IS-133A this year and called it Southern Ontario Reach Tournament, people and coaches would not be happy. I don't think we have ever referred to Reach as "quizbowl".
bsmith wrote: Don’t expect your school’s Reach funds to just get transferred to another championship, though. Reach for the Top is a Canadian cultural institution. The average adult on the street has heard of it. Important people in Canada have played it. Universities give scholarships for it. All of my past managers and supervisors knew about it. It has far more reputation and clout in Canada than any quizbowl championship does in the US: a Congressman won’t make a plea to save the NSC if PACE is at risk of folding, for example.
Yup, this is the mentality we have here. No matter how many quizbowl tournaments I direct, how many quizbowl provincials I won, the time Lisgar came 3rd at Reach Nationals will always be, to an outsider, the biggest accomplishment in my trivia history.
bsmith wrote: More generally, I disagree with the “viva la revolucion” attitude that Ottawa quizbowlers have toward Reach (yes, I was like that too). Reach is not an evil empire out to destroy quizbowl- the historical dirty laundry we raise was done by people who are now passed away. Reach today is fine with coexisting with quizbowl: some QBers write questions, Jay and I have run leagues, etc. If you have constructive criticism (like my CEGEPs beef from a few years ago), tactfully tell them. They have mail and email addresses.
But Reach thinks Quizbowl is an evil empire out to destroy Reach! I'm fairly sure Reach is well aware of Quizbowl's benefits and their own shortcomings. There's nothing wrong with the idea of a short questions tournament with a large trash distribution, but there's absolutely something wrong with their question selection, editing, format, inconsistent distribution and many others. There's nothing we can to to make them change without doing something drastic. It's been too long with complaints and no responses. If they're not going to improve their company and their image, there's nothing we can do but to be a bit aggressive.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by zachary_yan » Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:06 pm

TedGan wrote: Thankfully, there shouldn't trademark issues; lots of schools host Reach-like events each year independent of the organization. Still, I'm unsure of the advantages this would bring (elaborate please). It just sounds to me that this would create confusion, but it would get coaches and admin to actually read the outreach emails and letters.
Joe sums up what I was talking about pretty well.
pandabear555 wrote: In Ontario I think most active teams know about both and we treat independent run tournaments as either "Reach like" or "Quizbowl/NAQT like" tournaments. "Quizbowl like" up here is exclusively the 20(24)/20(24) format written by NAQT or independents such has Ladue's LIST. I think if we mirrored IS-133A this year and called it Southern Ontario Reach Tournament, people and coaches would not be happy. I don't think we have ever referred to Reach as "quizbowl".
Why would people be unhappy, I mean just like in the states, "quizbowl" means "academic competitions featuring buzzers", and in Cananda "reach" is synonymous, I'd think it'd be okay to call a tournament "Southern Ontario Reach Tournament", especially since you said that people already hold independent "reach" tournaments. I don't know what more confusion there would be unless you openly tried to impersonate the Reach for the Top organization or something. Worst case scenario, Reach for the Top would just ask you guys to stop using their name but it probably won't be as bad as when College Bowl threatened to sue some people for running TU/bonus quiz bowl.

It almost seems like the confusion right now is that coaches and players don't know what to make of there being two separate competitions, Reach and QB. I think if good quizbowl can just be the same thing as Reach (or for that matter Knowledge Bowl, CAC or whatever else exists), it'd be a good way to promote quiz bowl, and plus in the end they're honestly the same thing anyways.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Theodore » Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:39 pm

zachary_yan wrote: Why would people be unhappy, I mean just like in the states, "quizbowl" means "academic competitions featuring buzzers", and in Cananda "reach" is synonymous, I'd think it'd be okay to call a tournament "Southern Ontario Reach Tournament", especially since you said that people already hold independent "reach" tournaments. I don't know what more confusion there would be unless you openly tried to impersonate the Reach for the Top organization or something. Worst case scenario, Reach for the Top would just ask you guys to stop using their name but it probably won't be as bad as when College Bowl threatened to sue some people for running TU/bonus quiz bowl.

It almost seems like the confusion right now is that coaches and players don't know what to make of there being two separate competitions, Reach and QB. I think if good quizbowl can just be the same thing as Reach (or for that matter Knowledge Bowl, CAC or whatever else exists), it'd be a good way to promote quiz bowl, and plus in the end they're honestly the same thing anyways.
Sorry, this is a language problem I really should've clearly stated at the beginning of this thread. My apologies. In Canada, "Reach" refers to speed-check/short questions; "Quizbowl" refers to pyramidal questions. So calling a Quizbowl tournament running on pyramidal questions a Reach tournament is both incorrect and misleading, and I don't think tricking people into playing pyramidal questions is the solution here.

Unfortunately the two can't be seen as separate, as one is tradition and one is not. One of the main reasons Reach has its stronghold is that it's strongly rooted in the culture. My coach doesn't really think about the merits of each format, or why we play Reach or Quizbowl. She wants us to play Reach because it's the long-standing Canadian tradition that all schools compete in, and she sees Quizbowl as "some game" because it's not tradition/in our culture, and she doesn't look at the merits of neither Reach nor Quizbowl.
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by zachary_yan » Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:24 pm

So it's tradition to have bad questions and promote shallow knowledge? Think about it this way: "Good Reach" = "Good Quizbowl". What you're saying about Reach is same here in the states, if you'd ask the average adult what they thought of quizbowl, they'd think of a Reach like game show with quick questions, bad quizbowl. Even still, newcomers to pyramidal quiz bowl are able to accept the fact that ultimately, answering questions that reward deeper knowledge is the way makes for better gameplay than who can press a buzzer faster.

Also I'm sure it's possible to have a "pyramidal Reach" event without being tricking people into playing it by using the Reach name. As long as people know ahead of time that they're going to play on pyramidal questions, I don't suspect anyone would really have a problem with it.

Edit: spelling
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by bsmith » Wed Mar 12, 2014 7:54 pm

zachary_yan wrote:"pyramidal Reach"
The most logical way to incorporate "Reach" and "pyramidal" is to have Reach tender its question writing to bids (with stipulations for Canadian content, number of rounds, etc) rather than keep doing their in-house work. If NAQT, HSAPQ, or other groups can offer the service for a better price than what Reach pays their writers, I'm sure they'd consider pyramidal. Money talks (unless the switchover would lose 50% of their customers…).
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Re: Boycotting Bad Quizbowl?

Post by Masked Canadian History Bandit » Wed Mar 12, 2014 8:01 pm

bsmith wrote:Ted, I believe your concern is being raised because you spent most of the season thinking Colonel By didn’t pay the entry fee, only to discover recently that the administrators did. If the money was spent, it’s not being (easily) refunded, so you may as well field a team. Take a pass on provincials/nationals if you wish to spend no further money, although “boycotts” will not really be noticed by the community unless a school with a big Reach reputation (think UTS, KV, Cobequid) does so.
If this year's money has been spent, Colonel By might as well attend regionals, smash the competition, and refuse your invitation to provincials. This abstentionism might be more poignant coming from a team that qualified and cause more chatter among people such as coaches. On the other hand, Reach is so bad, you might not consider it worth skipping a school day for.

After regionals, you should talk to administration about repurposing the funding, though like Ben said, Reach is valued, and quizbowl isn't, so patience and understanding will be key.
Camelopardalis wrote: I don't think a "viva la revolucion" attitude has really been sought, to be honest, but I would say that there's some justified anger there. I have gone the tactful route with them in the past - with constructively criticized, positive, hopeful emails, and have literally never heard back once.

Perhaps it's too optimistic Ben, but I believe that Canadians are only willing to buy Reach because it's all they know. The two can exist comfortably together, but ought to exist in a much different ratio, I'd think!
I think everyone acknowledges Reach for its part in the cultural history of Canada - so deep that knowing someone who did Reach is like knowing someone who was in the Great War during interwar Great Britain - and knows that it's a totally different beast than quizbowl.

In an ideal world, Reach could be repurposed to spread good quizbowl in Canada. This is unlikely to happen since Reach has been ignoring the complaints of its top players and alumni since I was a HS freshman and since Chris was a HS freshman.When one of the higher-ups in Reach unofficially reached out to me after I graduated for opinions on how Reach could be improved, two of my suggestions were having a published distribution and indicating the required parts of an answerline, but evidently no change has occurred.

Ben, I know that you edit the Reach questions used in regionals, yet those edits would never be applied centrally despite the massive improvements they bring. Reach simply has no interest or incentive in reform until its business is at risk. We should not be growing Reach as a prerequisite to growing quizbowl, and if Reach isn't going to reform to even become an acceptable speedcheck format, it's not worth trying to work with except to farm for lists of schools interested in trivia and targeting them for quizbowl recruitment.
zachary_yan wrote: American passing by... I don't know if this would have trademark issues, but why don't you guys just hold independent quizbowl events and market them as "reach". I mean in America, College Bowl was known as quizbowl ( :chip: is also "quiz bowl" for that matter) and good quiz bowl just claimed to be a better version of the same activity.
I would guess that quizbowl is a term that can be generically derived (i.e. a bowl event for quizzing) even before College Bowl was ever a thing, so that was allowed. Reach for the Top and its short form has always referred to the company and their questions and competitions and is definitely trademarked. The way to promote quizbowl is not to fool schools into playing Reach or to get mired in an ugly trademark dispute, it's to improve our outreach, PR, media contacts, production value, expand into MS, get sponsors (?), etc.

EDIT
bsmith wrote:
zachary_yan wrote:"pyramidal Reach"
The most logical way to incorporate "Reach" and "pyramidal" is to have Reach tender its question writing to bids (with stipulations for Canadian content, number of rounds, etc) rather than keep doing their in-house work. If NAQT, HSAPQ, or other groups can offer the service for a better price than what Reach pays their writers, I'm sure they'd consider pyramidal. Money talks (unless the switchover would lose 50% of their customers…).
When I edited Lisgar's PV=NRT reach housewrites, I did so with the philosophy that each question should have at least two clues in order of descending difficulty. It was pretty well-received, but was largely a Reach, and not quizbowl event. I think it would be cool if Reach adopted a 4Q format like National History Bowl, where there's a mix of short tossups, longer tossups with bonuses, and 60 second rounds assigned to one team only. Given that Reach has never tendered writing bids, isn't above reusing old rounds word for word, and sometimes simply doesn't pay people (e.g. Tamara Vardomskaya), this seems unlikely to happen unless the savings for them are steep.
Patrick Liao
Lisgar Collegiate Institute 2011, University of Pennsylvania 2015, University of Toronto Faculty of Law 2019
President, Ontario Quizbowl Association (ONQBA)
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