Right answers that are counted wrong...

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Right answers that are counted wrong...

Post by fluffy4102 »

There have certainly been :chip: questions where the radicals are not reduced and the moderators are unaware of it and the team with the right answer gets the points, but then you have some very interesting omissions in question writing. For example, at a tournament in this past year during the fall I think, there was a bonus on the currency of China. We reponded with renminbi as it is called by most of the Chinese (including myself). The moderator prompted us, but we protested. The good thing was the moderator was asian himself so he knew it was reminbi and accepted the answer. However, I wonder what if the moderator wasn't Asian? Generally moderators are fari and look it up eventually if you protest, but some very few moderators are relatively lazy in handling these situations. For example, malate for malic acid. Different names for the same substance.The questions is: Is it a matter of the question writer or the moderator?
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Post by Stained Diviner »

Moderators should not spend 30 minutes trying to look something up, because it throws off the rest of the tournament. If there is a resource handy, and somebody can demonstrate the answer in a couple of minutes or less so that people in the room agree, then that is fine.

From Google: "The Chinese currency is the RenMinBi (RMB), generally pronounced Yuan in written form, but spoken as Kuai." In my experience, the answer is always yuan, though you are correct that your answer should have been accepted. Most moderators would not know this, however, and most almanacs say Yuan.

Question writers should try to provide alternative answers and instruction on whether to prompt or reject alternative answers. This is very hard to do, however, because it is impossible to anticipate every reasonable answer that could come up with every question. NAQT and PACE do a good job of this because they have several smart people review each question before it is used. Most questions, however, are written and edited by one and the same person. That person should try to catch everything, but it is unreasonable to expect 100% on their part. I would call this a reasonable miss by the writer because if you look up currencies in a table, you find Yuan and no reason to think that there are alternatives. Of course, it would have been better if they had given the alternatives.

Some writers never give alternative answers--usually their questions are pretty bad anyways.
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Post by Stained Diviner »

http://www.hsquizbowl.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=1525

Here's an old thread that deals with the same issue.
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Post by Tegan »

I don't think you can blame the moderator.....moderators are human, can cannot know every possible alternative that exists for every possible answer.

Questions writers, while I give them some slack, need to be a lot more careful when doing their research. They need to make sure that they look for alternative answers, and ask questions to other people.

When I write questions, I try to make sure that I ask other teachers about areas that I am not familiar with, and find alternative answers.

The only time I think the moderator is at fault is when they know there is a problem, and don't take a moment to check it and correct it....or refuse to take the advice of fellow officials or the concurrent opinion of both coaches...in other words the officials that believe "the paper is right, and no other authority can overrule the paper, because the paper is all knowing, all seeing, and omnivorous."
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Post by quizbowllee »

Tegan wrote:in other words the officials that believe "the paper is right, and no other authority can overrule the paper, because the paper is all knowing, all seeing, and omnivorous."
Sadly, that is actually a RULE in Alabama. The answer on the paper is correct and cannot be protested under any circumstances...

This is a rule that I vehemently exclude from my own tournaments, as we've lost more than a few rounds due to this ridiculous rule.
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Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed »

I'm still miffed about two non-neg negs that I had this year. I bring them up because I believe they demonstrate how sometimes it's one of the poll options, and sometimes its another.

One was at Illinois Open -- they didn't accept "Austro-Prussian War" for a certain 1866 war that lasted six weeks. It was a blowout against my team, so my challenge never got heard. I blame the packet; the moderator looked uncomfortable negging me and later apologized.

Another one was at ICT. The answer on the paper was "Magellan", but I buzzed in early with "Magellan's voyage across the world". I got negged. That was just gross, gross moderator incompetance. Sure, the packet probably didn't list any alternatives, but, come on.
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Post by pakman044 »

Bruce wrote:Another one was at ICT. The answer on the paper was "Magellan", but I buzzed in early with "Magellan's voyage across the world". I got negged. That was just gross, gross moderator incompetance. Sure, the packet probably didn't list any alternatives, but, come on.
When I moderate, that is the exact same thing I would do. I wouldn't be happy per se about doing that, but it has been my experience that when a moderator takes extensive liberties with what a correct answer is, bad things can happen. Strictly speaking, if the question said "name the so and so that did so and so" at the end, accepting your answer would be to change what the question was asking (even if it is common policy to accept certain similar answers before they are ruled out later in the question). I usually prefer to err (if I must) on the safe side. I should say that I haven't seen the text of this question, so I have no idea whether I have guessed correctly what the question was about.

This is the reason why most of the time the policy about resolving protests if they make a difference at the end of the game is useful. If you don't like the ruling, the reader can just flag the question and go on.

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Post by jewtemplar »

I believe NAQT has a specific rule allowing such answers with additional correct information.
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Post by solonqb »

NAQT Rule I.1.3 wrote:Harmless or inadvertent embellishment of responses will not be penalized, so long as the embellishment does not make the response wrong.
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Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed »

pakman044 wrote: When I moderate, that is the exact same thing I would do. I wouldn't be happy per se about doing that, but it has been my experience that when a moderator takes extensive liberties with what a correct answer is, bad things can happen. Strictly speaking, if the question said "name the so and so that did so and so" at the end, accepting your answer would be to change what the question was asking (even if it is common policy to accept certain similar answers before they are ruled out later in the question). I usually prefer to err (if I must) on the safe side. I should say that I haven't seen the text of this question, so I have no idea whether I have guessed correctly what the question was about.
At the time I buzzed, the question had gone on for a few lines describing the Magellan's ships. If there was a pronoun other than "it" (in reference to a ship), I missed it.
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Post by jrbarry »

Not that anyone cares much (save an old Euro AP teacher like me!), but the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 was known as the SEVEN Weeks' War.

I tell my players to use the most common English term for any answer. Give an answer that is most likely to be counted right and earn you points.
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Post by Captain Sinico »

Bruce wrote:One was at Illinois Open -- they didn't accept "Austro-Prussian War" for a certain 1866 war that lasted six weeks. It was a blowout against my team, so my challenge never got heard. I blame the packet; the moderator looked uncomfortable negging me and later apologized.
Why we're still discussing this one, I'll never know, but I suppose I'd better make clear what happened a third time. As I've said before, the answer you gave was serendipitously both unknown to me and in neither of the two references that I checked the answers for alternatives in while editing; make of both those facts what you will (I, for one, blame my own stupidity, as usual.) Had the ruling on this question mattered, you would have been given points with unit probability on protest on account of your being verifiably right.

This brings me to a point of actual interest. This whole thing shouldn’t be a major issue when anything like a reasonable protest system exists. Not only should it always be the case that protests are heard and seriously considered, but it seems to actually happen almost all the time outside of terrible tournaments (NAC and others where protests are apparently intentionally resolved by the means most likely to result in travesty) and sundry others (Alabama, apparently.) Even the otherwise draconian, "as a player, you don't know anything; shut-up" rules in Illinois high school allow protests (by the coach only, of course; when I played, my attempt to raise a protest somehow was construed as disallowing a protest by our coach. Of course, I was right and lost us the match.) Hell, even CBI will occasionally check their facts for you if you ask at the appropriate time. What I'm trying to say is this: buzzes that were right but counted wrong, as such, should only rarely decide a game, unless your team conscientiously decides to play a format with a terrible protest procedure.

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Post by Stained Diviner »

Here's a related question for the group...

In Illinois the rule is that any protest has to be resolved before going on to the next question. No protests will be considered at halftime or after a match is over, even if they affect the outcome of the match. Once the moderator starts the next question, the last question is over and done with.

If protests are allowed at the end of a match, is it generally true that they are only allowed if they were flagged while the match is in progress, or can a team that lost by five points mention that Tossup #6 twenty minutes ago really was unfair and thus initiate a protest? I'm just curious as to what is typically done and whether it seems to work.

Also, how are protests usually dealt with at local tournaments that allow protests after a match? Is it just up to the TD, or do some tournaments have a procedure/panel to deal with such things?
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Post by steven-lamp »

At most tournaments I've been to, the protest is lodged immediately after the question and is resolved at the end of the match, should it affect the match's outcome. Sometimes I've seen coaches try to protest questions at the end of the match, and usually those protests are sent to the TD or ignored. It makes the most sense to me for the moderator to simply note the protest and then allow the captain and/or coach to make his argument after the round if it would affect the outcome.
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Post by Golden Tiger 86 »

quizbowllee wrote:
Tegan wrote:in other words the officials that believe "the paper is right, and no other authority can overrule the paper, because the paper is all knowing, all seeing, and omnivorous."
Sadly, that is actually a RULE in Alabama. The answer on the paper is correct and cannot be protested under any circumstances...

This is a rule that I vehemently exclude from my own tournaments, as we've lost more than a few rounds due to this ridiculous rule.
We lost a tournament either my freshman or sophomore year, because the answer on the paper said that the Acropolis was in ROME...I haven't quite gotten over that.
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Post by cvdwightw »

ReinsteinD wrote:If protests are allowed at the end of a match, is it generally true that they are only allowed if they were flagged while the match is in progress, or can a team that lost by five points mention that Tossup #6 twenty minutes ago really was unfair and thus initiate a protest? I'm just curious as to what is typically done and whether it seems to work.
My experience is that with untimed tournaments it is almost always the case that a protest is noted before the next question starts and resolved at the end of the match if it makes a difference.

With timed tournaments more protests are noted when the clock is not running, i.e., the end of a half or a timeout. This is mainly because the moderators are usually reading faster and may already be midway into the next question before the protesting team realizes there is something they want to protest and tries to get the moderator's attention. However, typically, a good moderator will stop the clock at the mention of the word protest, will note the nature of the protest, and continue on the clock, resolving the protest at the end of a half.

For what it's worth, CBI requires all "requests for review" (the nice way of saying protest) to be submitted at the end of the half and will not even note protests until then. At CBI Regionals this year we would have lost our first game to UC Davis except that they lost 65 points when we protested their answers to the first two tossups of the second half, and the staff agreed with us. This is more in line with the "we're going to find something to protest to give us a chance to win" idea, though a team may not remember the exact reason they want to protest something by the end of the match.
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Post by mentalchocolate »

As Bruce said, things like "Another one was at ICT. The answer on the paper was "Magellan", but I buzzed in early with "Magellan's voyage across the world"". This is a terrible thing in Kentucky...any little bit of xtra information is counted wrong even if it is correct.
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Post by STPickrell »

ReinsteinD wrote:Here's a related question for the group...

In Illinois the rule is that any protest has to be resolved before going on to the next question. No protests will be considered at halftime or after a match is over, even if they affect the outcome of the match. Once the moderator starts the next question, the last question is over and done with.

If protests are allowed at the end of a match, is it generally true that they are only allowed if they were flagged while the match is in progress, or can a team that lost by five points mention that Tossup #6 twenty minutes ago really was unfair and thus initiate a protest? I'm just curious as to what is typically done and whether it seems to work.

Also, how are protests usually dealt with at local tournaments that allow protests after a match? Is it just up to the TD, or do some tournaments have a procedure/panel to deal with such things?
In Virginia we originally had 'make your protests at the end of your period.'

I then explained to my VHSL contact why this wasn't the best idea (namely, we don't want people making a laundry list of things to protest) and then we took a coaches' survey. IIRC, the idea to make a protest on the spot was approved by one vote and then we put it in the VHSL manual.

Here's the language I use in my interpretations of the VHSL handbook. VHSL handbook entries (which require an act or two of God to get changed) are in bold. My writing is in italics.

126-9-10 Contesting-A team coach must contest or appeal a decision of the quizmaster or judges and note the reason for his/her protest at the time he/she believes there has been an error.

If questions are raised about the correctness of an answer and there is easy agreement of players, coaches and/or judges on the appropriate response, the issue may be resolved immediately and the score adjusted as appropriate.

No more than one additional question may be asked prior to raising a question about the correctness of an answer. If the appeal comes at the end of a round, it must be made prior to the beginning of the next round.

If agreement is not easy or immediate (10-15 seconds), once a decision has been made, a coach or player active in the game may make a formal protest.


However, the protest will be resolved only at the end of the match and only if the outcome of the match could be changed by that decision.

The largest possible score difference would be if there was a margin of victory of 25 or fewer points, or 20 if there was no 5-point penalty for an incorrect interrupt.

The judges will consult both head coaches before reaching a decision. The judges' decisions are final.

The quizmaster or judges may elect to consult an outside source (a reliable Internet source, reference book, or other authorities present) before reaching a conclusion. The tournament director may be called on to help adjudicate a protest and deliver a decision to both coaches.
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Post by rcline »

According to the rule as stated (Harmless or inadvertent embellishment of responses will not be penalized, so long as the embellishment does not make the response wrong) the Magellan answer would be counted wrong because it DOES make the response wrong with regards to the question being asked...

"The answer on the paper was "Magellan", but I buzzed in early with "Magellan's voyage across the world". I got negged."

The question was looking for the person, Magellan, and the answer specified the voyage, not the person.

It seems to me that this is the tradeoff for buzzing in early - you might beat the other team to the punch, but you might not hear crucial information as to what the question is asking. It's a question of risk vs. reward.
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Post by Howard »

rcline wrote:"The answer on the paper was "Magellan", but I buzzed in early with "Magellan's voyage across the world". I got negged."

The question was looking for the person, Magellan, and the answer specified the voyage, not the person.
In many of the formats I've seen/played, this answer would have been acceptable (if Magellan and his voyage are both pertinent to the question). It gives two pieces of related information, which is often the criteria for a "blitz" being allowable.
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Post by harpersferry »

How about wrong answers counted right? We were playing at Questions Unlimited whose policy fo protests is that nobody speaks, except the moderator who looks it up. The qyestion was to explain covalent bonding, except they described it without telling you what it was. So the other team buzzed with "covalent bonding" the answer was "sharing electrons" or to that effect. So the moderator tells nobody to talk while he calls up his science guy and asks him if sharing electrns is the same as covalent bonding. Of course the guy says yes and he acepts their answer. If we had spoken, we would have been penalized. we couldn't explain that the difference is that the question wanted you to explain, not name the bonding form. It didn't matter anyway but that was a bit annoying that there was no real reasonable protest system. So what do you all think of that?
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Post by AKKOLADE »

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Post by insaneindian »

i dont even want to start...last year we had an issue that gave us the last seed in the playoffs even though we were a very high scoring team. the year b4...same exact thing. Image :chip:
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Post by Zip Zap Rap Pants »

StPickrell wrote:
126-9-10 Contesting-A team coach must contest or appeal a decision of the quizmaster or judges and note the reason for his/her protest at the time he/she believes there has been an error.

If questions are raised about the correctness of an answer and there is easy agreement of players, coaches and/or judges on the appropriate response, the issue may be resolved immediately and the score adjusted as appropriate.

Yeah, speaking of vhsl, last year at regionals I buzzed in really early on a tossup and said "oxbow," which was counted as a neg, but the end of the tossup read "For ten points, name this common feature of many rivers, synonymous with oxbow." the answer on paper was meander, but the moderator didn't give it to me. Didn't affect the outcome of the game, but still, it was just really annoying.

Once nice thing about vhsl in this regard though is that since bonus questions aren't tied to tossups a protested tossup doesnt affect the game as immensely, so it's not nearly as complicated.
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Post by Summoned Skull »

My experience with these types of problems have rarely been poor ones; even though our teams is occasionally on the recieving end of an erroneous paper answer, the moderator is usually willing to at least consider any arguments. Often, if it is a math question, we usually get the problem fixed and points are awarded as normal.
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