Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Old college threads.
User avatar
The King's Flight to the Scots
Auron
Posts: 1451
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2009 11:11 pm

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by The King's Flight to the Scots » Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:35 pm

quizbowllee wrote:I've been following this with some interest. While I'm no longer affiliated with the college game - and haven't been for nearly 10 years (Wow...), this definitely has a ripple effect across all levels of the game.

Unfortunately, I think that cheating may be a bigger problem than we want to admit. I've seen a lot of it over the years - even if it couldn't be proved.

Some anecdotal examples:

*I once had a student transfer from another local school, where he had played on that school's team. When we did the Knowledge Master, he asked me why I didn't help them like his old coach did. He went on to explain that his coach had sat in with them and openly given them answers. So much so, that he actually thought the coach was allowed to help. I called Knowledge Master and told them this. They said that the team I was accusing had an exemplary record of year-over-year high scores and that they didn't see a statistical reason to expect cheating. Well, duh. They'd had the same coach for all of those years. This is why I no longer bother with the Auk.

*At one HSNCT, my team was 5-4 going into our last match. The moderator in the room was barely two feet away from the opposing team due to the tiny game rooms in the hotel. That wouldn't have been a problem, except that when a tossup was answered, the mod would put the tossups down, face up on the table. We could actually see the other team craning their necks to see the answers to the upcoming tossups. My team captain asked no less than three times that the moderator please stop doing this. The opposing team kept it close enough to make it convincing. But, they managed to power one or two at key times after ridiculously few words. To his credit, R. looked into this situation. There was no way to "prove" it without having been there to see how obvious it was that they were reading the upcoming tossups, so I have to ill will toward NAQT. But, that did keep my team out the playoffs.

*I remember a middle school tournament many years ago wherein the hosting team played. And, their coach had written the questions. WOW. It was so blatant. The team I was coaching made it to the "championship" match against the host school. We got the first two or three tossups really fast. The host team then literally answered the next several in a row after no clues. I vividly remember one tossup going "This pres... <buzz> 'Ford'" Their coach looked panicked because it was so obvious they'd been coached on the questions in order. I actually saw her mouth to her team "slow down."

There are several more.

Why am I sharing this now? I'm not entirely sure. I think, basically, that I want to point out how pervasive this actually is and to vent a little bit. This seems like the appropriate thread, hence the name.

Unless we, as a community, make a very strong stand against this, then it's likely to continue. At the same time, though, we don't need a "witch hunt" mentality. I've been through that before, too. I'm very interested in reading about how the quiz bowl community as a whole is going to take steps to keep this from happening in the future.
Sorry, I think this kind of attitude is more likely to cause harm than good. Sure, if somebody buzzes before any clues, that's blatant, but in my experience lots of teams will be shocked seeing someone buzz in on the first clue. Encouraging people to "make a very strong stand" solely on the basis of anecdotal evidence will result in many false accusations against good players.
Matt Bollinger
UVA '14, UVA '15
Communications Officer, ACF

STPickrell
Auron
Posts: 1501
Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2003 11:12 pm
Location: Vienna, VA
Contact:

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by STPickrell » Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:35 pm

With regards to what Lee was posting:
Back in 1997, I set up a quizbowl team at the school I taught at. This was the days of Patrick's Press.

I scheduled a scrimmage against our main athletic rival, who proceeded to whip us fairly badly. The kids were saying that [SCHOOL] must have cheated, etc., etc. I told them, hey maybe they practiced better, maybe they just have a good player or two, etc.

So the day they're supposed to come up to my school to play, they cancel on me. I'm a little disappointed and I leave a voicemail asking when we can have a rematch.

They call back and ask where the questions were going to come from and I said, "Oh I wrote them, but don't worry, none of my team have ever seen these questions. If that's a problem, I can get questions from somewhere else ... "

It turns out they took the questions for our first scrimmage from a Patrick's Press book the team had been studying. They canceled because I wasn't going to use "their" source of questions.

I also thought of Dimitri, the player from BCC that created an entirely fake tournament and got me to send him one of the HSAPQ question sets.
Shawn Pickrell, HSAPQ CFO

User avatar
Matt Weiner
Sin
Posts: 8411
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 8:34 pm
Location: Richmond, VA

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Matt Weiner » Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:38 pm

OK, let's calm down and stop with whatever happened at the top of this page, Charlie. Turning this into gender politics isn't going to help anybody.

At the same time... "lol joke's on you for taking quizbowl seriously" is a fucking pisspoor response to anything. What's the total cost of airfare, hotel rooms, and entry fees for players and staffers at the three ICTs that Andy ruined? Like in the neighborhood of half a million dollars? This flippant "he didn't cheat and if he did it doesn't matter anyway because you're all idiots for expecting people not to cheat at something as silly as quizbowl" bullshit from Hannah is nearly as infuriating as the underlying incident.
Matt Weiner
Founder of hsquizbowl.org

User avatar
Not That Kind of Christian!!
Yuna
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 10:36 pm
Location: Manhattan

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Not That Kind of Christian!! » Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:42 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:At the same time... "lol joke's on you for taking quizbowl seriously" is a fucking pisspoor response to anything. What's the total cost of airfare, hotel rooms, and entry fees for players and staffers at the three ICTs that Andy ruined? Like in the neighborhood of half a million dollars? This flippant "he didn't cheat and if he did it doesn't matter anyway because you're all idiots for expecting people not to cheat at something as silly as quizbowl" bullshit from Hannah is nearly as infuriating as the underlying incident.
This is exactly what I was trying not to say, so I apologize if it came across that way. What I'm trying to say is that, gender politics aside, there is a way to express your righteous anger about this that doesn't involve... exactly the things I enumerated. See: last sentence of penultimate paragraph.
Hannah Kirsch
Brandeis University 2010
NYU School of Medicine 2014

"Wow, those Scandinavians completely thorbjorned my hard-earned political capital."

User avatar
quizbowllee
Auron
Posts: 2154
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2004 2:12 am
Location: Alabama

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by quizbowllee » Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:57 pm

Vernon Lee Bad Marriage, Jr. wrote:
Sorry, I think this kind of attitude is more likely to cause harm than good. Sure, if somebody buzzes before any clues, that's blatant, but in my experience lots of teams will be shocked seeing someone buzz in on the first clue. Encouraging people to "make a very strong stand" solely on the basis of anecdotal evidence will result in many false accusations against good players.
I think maybe I wasn't clear or that you misunderstood my point. I agree about false accusations based on legitimately good play. I've been there plenty of times. It's not fun to be accused of cheating just because you've got a freshmen who can power tossups on obscure authors. That's why I said we don't need to have a "witch hunt" mentality. We shouldn't assume that great play is suspect.

My anecdotes I included are examples wherein I am not speculating based on what might have been legitimately good play. I am 100% certain in the three cases that I mentioned that cheating occurred. I didn't mention the dozens of times when I thought things were "fishy."

The "very strong stand" I was referring to is in regards to situations, like those recently uncovered, where cheating was proven. I think a lot of players - high school players in particular - think that cheating at quiz bowl is like cheating at a board game with your buddies. They don't THINK about the enormous money and time invested by those affected by their actions. We need to make sure that all players are aware that there can be serious consequences.
Lee Henry
AP English Teacher
Quiz Bowl Coach
West Point High School
Cullman, AL

Edmund
Wakka
Posts: 175
Joined: Sun Feb 07, 2010 8:25 pm

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Edmund » Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:19 pm

The evidence of this thread to me as an observer on the periphery of all this would be that the elimination of faction and schadenfreude from US quizbowl would be an excellent follow-up to the excision of cheaters.

I spent a lot of my own money to fly across the Atlantic in two successive years to attend NAQT ICTs. In those two trips I met a lot of nice and enthusiastic people, and I was delighted that some of them made the return trip to Oxford in early 2012. I am upset by these events, together with some in the recent past, more because of what they imply and in turn reveal about a community and a sport than because of the still regrettable actions of individuals.
Edmund Dickinson
BuzzerQuiz
University of Oxford '11

User avatar
Cheynem
Sin
Posts: 6558
Joined: Tue May 11, 2004 11:19 am
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Cheynem » Fri Mar 22, 2013 7:29 pm

I agree that in terms of the cheating, Hannah is unconnected and the only reason I responded to her was because she posted a (now deleted) post, so I was not attempting to drag her into this for no reason.

In terms of Andy, I do not wish to see his "life in shambles" if you mean I want him to be homeless or divorced or dead or whatever. I admit to wanting to see him expelled and I stand by that--I didn't contact NYU about it nor do I plan to press the issue any further, but if I were running an academic program, I would not want a known liar and cheater in my department.

I'm not going to apologize for anything else I said about Andy. Maybe in a few years I can forgive him but right now I think his behavior was despicable, I think he's despicable, and I really don't care if he feels embarrassed.
Mike Cheyne
Formerly U of Minnesota

"You killed HSAPQ"--Matt Bollinger

Rothlover
Yuna
Posts: 816
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 8:41 pm
Contact:

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Rothlover » Fri Mar 22, 2013 9:23 pm

So, I have more venting later, but I guess this is my immediate anger. Andy, as far as I'm concerned you are entirely deplorable. You won't even do the one thing that could even bring you one millionth of the way towards being redeemable, which would be confronting this in an open and honest manner and admitting that you cheated.

The idea that you would hide behind bizarre excuses and plausible deniability shows me that there is ZERO chance you have grown at all as a human being. People who make mistakes (whether they view them as their own mistakes or others call it a mistake for them,) reflect on said mistakes for themselves and for others. The reaction you've deemed appropriate for yourself is to plow through the irrefutable statistical and other evidence that you cheated (I won't mince words regarding your guilt) is to hide in a bunker.

Obviously, you have reason to, because admitting the scope etc of what you did might make you liable to consequences in areas of your current life. However, a real person doesn't let their fear of such consequences outweigh the moral imperitive in extreme cases, and cases rarely get as extreme as your cheating.

So, yes, I am saying you are a coward, through and through, to go along with the FACT that you are a cheater, and that your inability to do one objectively right thing at least shows an immoral consistency...

(Hey, I'm an optimist, I gotta find that silver lining.)

So, yeah, while NAQT (who has been incredibly open) and news media sources word it like your wrongdoing is ambiguous, there is no ambiguity. Calling your cheating '"alleged" is akin to putting "alleged" before any wikipedia holocaust page.

I hope you suffer real world consequences in all relevent walks of life if you can't "hu(man) up" to your actions. Luckily for you few professional avenues reqiure honesty...

Until that time,
Du zol kakn mit blit un mit ayter
(You should defecate blood and pus)

PS. My heart goes out to the rest of Harvard
Dan Passner Brandeis '06 JTS/Columbia '11-'12 Ben Gurion University of the Negev/Columbia '12?

gyre and gimble
Tidus
Posts: 717
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 2:45 am

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by gyre and gimble » Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:23 pm

Hey so I understand why my last post got Forbidden Zoned but the second half was fine for this thread (it was my "venting"). Could we get that part back?

Yes. Here it is. --Mgmt.

I was waiting to post in this thread until I heard from Andy, because I thought he should have the chance to come to his teammates about this first. So I heard from Andy because he's still on our email list for some reason, I asked him to explain himself, and he gave me an explanation before saying I should make the judgment I saw fit. Here's my judgment: his explanation sucked balls, made no sense, and I hope for the sake of his moral self that he was actually mentally unstable at that point in his life because that might make understandability of this situation 1% instead of 0. (And if that was the case, I hope his health is better now.)

I've spent all day unable to think about much more than this whole thing, fielding questions about it from media, and worrying how people will think of Harvard quizbowl in the future. (One of our freshmen asked me if I was cheating, too, though I think he was joking.) It sucks, and I guess the worst part is that while everyone else can sit back and feel vindicated or crack jokes, Dallas, Ted, Bruce, Dennis, and I can't. So yeah, I'm pretty pissed off. Fuck this. And I don't even care about losing the natinoal title, so I can't imagine how Dallas, Ted, and Bruce feel (I think Dennis has already said the title didn't mean that much to him, either). But I bet their disappointment is a lot greater than mine.

Oh, and by the way, since Andy is still maintaining his innocence we've yet to hear an apology from him.
Stephen Liu
Torrey Pines '10
Harvard '14
Stanford '17

User avatar
AKKOLADE
Sin
Posts: 15258
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2003 8:08 am

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by AKKOLADE » Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:26 pm

I don't think you can split posts. You might just want to copy & paste the key stuff over into a new post.
Fred Morlan
PACE President, 2018-19
International Quiz Bowl Tournaments, co-owner
University of Kentucky CoP, 2017
hsqbrank manager, NAQT writer (former subject editor), former hsqb Administrator/Chief Administrator, 2012 NASAT TD

User avatar
Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
Auron
Posts: 1948
Joined: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:53 pm
Location: New York, NY

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:32 pm

STPickrell wrote:I also thought of Dimitri, the player from BCC that created an entirely fake tournament and got me to send him one of the HSAPQ question sets.
I was completely shocked when it was announced that Dimitri had cheated because by all signs Dimitri was enthusiastic about the game, had been studying hard (or so it seemed), and was actively working to become a better player - though we were completely blown away by how well he actually did (I recall him powering the first five questions of the tournament in a row). I was extremely disappointed because as a result of this incident, our school didn't go to any quizbowl tournaments for a whole year - a shame since we managed to qualify for HSNCT in our second time ever playing as a team. However, though the incident basically killed our quizbowl program in its infancy (we went on to attend two tournaments the next year, but nobody really cared about the game except me), I don't really harbor much resentment against Dimitri, though maybe I should since I do regret not being able to play more quizbowl in high school. I certainly understand anyone who did/does harbor resentment against him for this, though.
Will Alston
Bethesda Chevy Chase HS '12, Dartmouth '16, Columbia Business School '21
NAQT Writer and Subject Editor

User avatar
Cheynem
Sin
Posts: 6558
Joined: Tue May 11, 2004 11:19 am
Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Cheynem » Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:23 am

My last thoughts on the subject:

-First, I want to specify that despite any wishes I may have expressed in this thread, I did not contact NYU and attempt any in way to get Andy expelled. I have not spoken to Andy or Hannah; I have made no comments about Andy's personal life other than his activities within quizbowl. I have no intention of "destroying Andy's life" and after doing some soul-searching last night, I regret some of the more vengeful things I said in this thread. My perceptions were obviously colored by its impact on myself, as I bear no ill will at all towards Shantanu or Josh for instance.

So Andy or Hannah or whoever is reading this, I'm still obviously mad and disgusted at your actions, but I hope I guess you can learn and be changed from it. The rather disingenuous statement you gave suggests you haven't, but I hope you do because if not and you keep up your pattern of behavior you're going to get into more serious trouble or you're going to hurt other people on a grander scale. So to the limit that I can say this with a straight face, I hope you can improve as a person.

However, I do wish to address a few comments I've heard regarding it, which seemed to suggest that it was monstrous to suggest Andy be expelled for cheating at a "hobby." I do not believe that an activity that requires thousands of dollars to play is a hobby in the same way that playing miniature golf or non competitive Scrabble is a hobby. This was not just someone peeking at a page of questions in practice or even cheating to win some intramural tournament; for better or for worse, ICT is built around collegiate teams that are competing in (true) good faith--cheating makes these competitions moot and wastes time and money. So when people say quizbowl is a "hobby," to me that severely underestimates the time and money and effort spent at this hobby.

Furthermore, Andy's cheating is not just the same as "peeking at a page" or "using his phone to Google a question" (both of which are obviously bad, but in no way would deserve the invective/furor shown here). Andy betrayed an employer who was paying him to do a job. He did not do this once but over a period of years. He parlayed his cheating/fake accomplishments into a full membership/job for that employer. He lied up and down about what he was doing, crowed about his victories, and never sincerely apologized or seemed to care after he was exposed. I might just be naive here, but I sincerely believe that there is something bothersome about a person who obtains a job on false pretenses, betrays the trust of his employer to exploit it for his gain (effectively ruining thousand dollar enterprises), shows a pattern of lying about that behavior, and shows no concern/remorse/guilt about it. That is something that as an academic institution or an employer I would be concerned about regardless if you interpret it as "cheating at a hobby." Again, I'm not going to track down Andy's future employers or schools and demand that they read about this scandal, but I think this pattern of behavior is a peep into a person's character.

So Andy: I hope you really have changed. Because I think if you haven't, it's not going to go well for you or for others in the future.
Mike Cheyne
Formerly U of Minnesota

"You killed HSAPQ"--Matt Bollinger

User avatar
Matt Weiner
Sin
Posts: 8411
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2003 8:34 pm
Location: Richmond, VA

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Matt Weiner » Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:59 am

Yes, Mike's sentiments are correct. The time for sympathy and forgiveness is not even close to being at hand. The people trying to flog their own piousness by downplaying what Watkins did and the attempts of certain people including Hannah to deny or minimize it are supremely misguided. So far Watkins has suffered no consequences whatsoever for this and does not acknowledge either his guilt or the scope of what he has done. We are still firmly in the Old Testament phase of this affair. Justice and punishment only.
Matt Weiner
Founder of hsquizbowl.org

samer
Wakka
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2003 3:01 pm

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by samer » Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:48 pm

Matt Weiner wrote:So far Watkins has suffered no consequences whatsoever for this and does not acknowledge either his guilt or the scope of what he has done. We are still firmly in the Old Testament phase of this affair. Justice and punishment only.
For what little it's worth, he did have to resign his membership in NAQT (or, I'm fairly sure, face expulsion). So while people's definitions of "justice and punishment" will obviously vary, there are at least some future economic consequences to his actions.
samer dot ismail -at- gmail dot com / Samer Ismail, PACE co-founder, NAQT editor

User avatar
Theory Of The Leisure Flask
Yuna
Posts: 843
Joined: Fri Aug 29, 2003 11:04 am
Location: Brooklyn
Contact:

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Theory Of The Leisure Flask » Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:52 pm

cdcarter wrote:Hey y'all,

It sucks that this is why I'm coming back to HSQB this week. This totally sucks, in general.
Word. Fucking word.

It's really kind of surreal to find out that our third-place showing at the 2010 ICT, which I had always thought was really far better than a player of my caliber could ever hope for, should have been a chance to play for the national championship instead. It was hard for me to really be personally upset at first, but that sense of what could have been has been burrowing more and more the past couple days. We could have been in the title match. We should have been in the title match? And now I find out years later? Fuck you, Andy! This is some bullshit!

And, of course, why? Why? There aren't any monetary prizes, nobody really knows about quizbowl in the outside world, so there's not really any glory. It's just so baffling that anyone would do this, since the only reason to play quizbowl really is the love of the game.

I will admit to one personal silver lining- this incident has brought back a huge wave of nostalgia, the vast majority of it pleasant. So many of my favorite memories are quizbowl-related- both in terms of comeptition and learning- and while I feel like I've gotten too old for the circuit now, it'll always have a pretty central place in my heart. A place that just got a little more complicated.

I'm lucky. A retroactive second-place finish at ICT is more than I ever could have asked for going into this activity. I really think that my teammates on that 2010 Penn team were hurt far worse- Eric, of course, who is easily the best quizbowler I ever had the privilege to play with, and deserved a shot to win the whole thing against Chicago, and our other teammates Sid Chandrasekar and Sam Brown, who were less connected to the hsqb community and may still not know that we're technically second now.

Jeez. I guess that's enough rambling for now. What a weird, awful reason to say hi again.
Chris White
Bloomfield HS (New Jersey) '01, Swarthmore College '05, University of Pennsylvania '10. Still writes questions occasionally.

User avatar
Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant
Yuna
Posts: 849
Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2008 11:05 pm
Location: Evanston, IL

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant » Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:54 pm

I don't have any spite to direct at any of the recently-caught individuals, though I'm certainly glad NAQT took care of them and is making sure it doesn't happen again in the future. That said, I do think this excerpt from this morning's Boston Globe is funny enough to be immortalised here (especially since it's behind a paywall after one viewing, at least for me):
“NAQT’s accusations are false and based purely on circumstantial evidence,” he said. “I competed in good faith, but I will have nothing further to do with them after the way they treated me.”
MIT’s acting team president, Stephen Eltinge, said by e-mail that Alman was a dedicated team member but unexceptional competitor, before inexplicably becoming a superstar during last year’s postseason.
“[He] answered very few questions incorrectly, which was surprising — even the best players mess up on occasion. Statistically speaking, his performance was many, many standard deviations above the average,” Eltinge said.
Farrah Bilimoria
Formerly of Georgia Tech and Central High School (Macon)

User avatar
Longstride
Lulu
Posts: 20
Joined: Mon Jun 06, 2011 7:32 pm

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Longstride » Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:18 pm

Out of curiosity, is there anything to form the basis of a legal case against Andrew Watkins? He violated the terms of his employment contract at the very least, I presume. Can any one of those Quizbowlers who are in Law School/Law-grads tell me if any of the issues raised here about "wasted money" by teams who never had a chance of winning are grounds for legal actions?
Venu Katta
Clover Hill High School '13
College of William & Mary '17

"Having hit a wall, the next logical step is to not bang our heads against it." - Stephen Harper

User avatar
Excelsior (smack)
Rikku
Posts: 379
Joined: Sun Jan 25, 2009 12:20 am
Location: Madison, WI

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Excelsior (smack) » Sat Mar 23, 2013 11:20 pm

Speaking of Josh Alman...
I, in the player poll last year wrote:Josh Alman is really really good
Man do I feel like a dunce now. Honestly, I'm not really angry about the whole Josh Alman dealio (which is the only one that personally affected me), particularly given that it seems to have spurred NAQT to look into the Watkins/etc cases.

I'm curious to know whether there were rumblings in IRC/etc that Alman had cheated - in retrospect, it seems blatantly obvious, but at the time, I didn't consider the possibility that someone who would cheat would do so in such an egregious manner (10 standard deviations!), hence my dumb posts about the ascendancy of Josh Alman.
Ashvin Srivatsa
Corporate drone '?? | Yale University '14 | Sycamore High School (OH) '10

User avatar
jonpin
Forums Staff: Moderator
Posts: 2028
Joined: Wed Feb 04, 2004 6:45 pm
Location: BCA NJ / WUSTL MO / Hackensack NJ

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by jonpin » Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:55 am

Marble-faced Bristle Tyrant wrote:I don't have any spite to direct at any of the recently-caught individuals, though I'm certainly glad NAQT took care of them and is making sure it doesn't happen again in the future. That said, I do think this excerpt from this morning's Boston Globe is funny enough to be immortalised here (especially since it's behind a paywall after one viewing, at least for me):
“NAQT’s accusations are false and based purely on circumstantial evidence,” he said. “I competed in good faith, but I will have nothing further to do with them after the way they treated me.”
MIT’s acting team president, Stephen Eltinge, said by e-mail that Alman was a dedicated team member but unexceptional competitor, before inexplicably becoming a superstar during last year’s postseason.
“[He] answered very few questions incorrectly, which was surprising — even the best players mess up on occasion. Statistically speaking, his performance was many, many standard deviations above the average,” Eltinge said.
Wait, is that first quote from Josh? Holy crap, the air-quote-needing use of the phrase "good faith" has just got to stop, people.
Jon Pinyan
Coach, Bergen County Academies (NJ); former player for BCA (2000-03) and WUSTL (2003-07)
HSQB forum mod, PACE member
Stat director for: NSC '13-'15, '17; ACF '14, '17, '19; NHBB '13-'15; NASAT '11

"A [...] wizard who controls the weather" - Jerry Vinokurov

User avatar
Tees-Exe Line
Tidus
Posts: 622
Joined: Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:02 pm

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Tees-Exe Line » Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:42 am

Longstride wrote:Out of curiosity, is there anything to form the basis of a legal case against Andrew Watkins? He violated the terms of his employment contract at the very least, I presume. Can any one of those Quizbowlers who are in Law School/Law-grads tell me if any of the issues raised here about "wasted money" by teams who never had a chance of winning are grounds for legal actions?
I was going to ask this myself. The man abused his position as NAQT's employee (and partner? Is that what "member" means?) to destroy your product and severely harm the company. The same is true, to a lesser extent, of Shantanu and the others. Does NAQT plan to pursue any financial/legal recourse about this? If not, I suggest at the very least creating some kind of formal commitment to question security as a condition of employment in future.
Marshall I. Steinbaum

Oxford University (2002-2005)
University of Chicago (2008-2014)

Get in the elevator.

User avatar
Louis XIV and Twenty Million Henchmen
Wakka
Posts: 238
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2008 11:18 pm
Location: Binghamton, NY

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Louis XIV and Twenty Million Henchmen » Sun Mar 24, 2013 3:15 pm

Excelsior (smack) wrote:Speaking of Josh Alman...
I, in the player poll last year wrote:Josh Alman is really really good
Man do I feel like a dunce now. Honestly, I'm not really angry about the whole Josh Alman dealio (which is the only one that personally affected me), particularly given that it seems to have spurred NAQT to look into the Watkins/etc cases.

I'm curious to know whether there were rumblings in IRC/etc that Alman had cheated - in retrospect, it seems blatantly obvious, but at the time, I didn't consider the possibility that someone who would cheat would do so in such an egregious manner (10 standard deviations!), hence my dumb posts about the ascendancy of Josh Alman.
He fooled me, too: I wasn't at ICT, but I read at PENNance, and his insane powers tended toward such a specific cluster of categories (certain math/CS, video games and other such trash, and of course anything Canadian) that I got the impression that he was just that sort of player. And then, when the cheating stuff came out, I figured that his cheating at ICT had produced a statline that was just an exaggerated version of himself.

Of course, there's now the possibility that PENNance didn't reflect actual reality either, as they've been saying in that other thread (and, due to the recency effect, I was actually a bit shocked when I looked up the stats from MAGNI again). But wasn't PENNance the tournament that had the question [topic that appeared in a PENNance question], for instance? Josh first-lined that in my room and I thought nothing of it, unless I'm thinking of some other tournament.

Removed the specific Pennance question content. --Mgmt.
M(ir)ia(m) Nussbaum
Former player for Ithaca High School, Cornell, MIT

User avatar
AKKOLADE
Sin
Posts: 15258
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2003 8:08 am

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by AKKOLADE » Tue Mar 26, 2013 11:29 am

This just kind of hit me, but Watkins was an editor on the 2010 NSC, and still allegedly looked at questions in 2011.
Fred Morlan
PACE President, 2018-19
International Quiz Bowl Tournaments, co-owner
University of Kentucky CoP, 2017
hsqbrank manager, NAQT writer (former subject editor), former hsqb Administrator/Chief Administrator, 2012 NASAT TD

User avatar
Sima Guang Hater
Auron
Posts: 1849
Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2007 1:43 pm
Location: Philadelphia, PA

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Sima Guang Hater » Tue Mar 26, 2013 11:42 am

Distance model wrote:Removed the specific Pennance question content. --Mgmt.
You don't have to do this; the set is clear.
Eric Mukherjee, MD PhD
Washburn Rural High School, 2005
Brown University, 2009
Medical Scientist Training Program, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, 2018
Intern in Internal Medicine, Yale-Waterbury, 2018-9
Dermatology Resident, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, 2019-

Member Emeritus, ACF
Member, PACE
Writer, NAQT, NHBB, IQBT

"The next generation will always surpass the previous one. It's one of the never-ending cycles in life."

User avatar
marnold
Tidus
Posts: 705
Joined: Wed Jan 17, 2007 12:32 pm
Location: NY

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by marnold » Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:36 pm

Let's just try to rebuild and preserve our most precious memories.

Image
Michael Arnold
Chicago 2010
Columbia Law 2013

2009 ACF Nats Champion
2010 ICT Champion
2010 CULT Champion
Member of Mike Cheyne's Quizbowl All-Heel Team

Fundamental Theorem of Quizbowl (Revised): Almost no one is actually good at quizbowl.

User avatar
Habitat_Against_Humanity
Rikku
Posts: 450
Joined: Sun Jan 21, 2007 8:51 pm
Location: Syracuse, NY

Re: Venting rage: Cheaters edition

Post by Habitat_Against_Humanity » Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:55 pm

marnold wrote:Let's just try to rebuild and preserve our most precious memories.
Derail:

If we're going to get into quiz bowl revisionism, this is how I choose to remember the 2009 ACF Nationals in addition to suggesting a future tournament format:
Image.

Hee Hee. Look at Seth and Selene's Happy Dance.
Nolan -
UChicago 09
Michigan State Well-wisher

Locked