I know I'm probably the least qualified person on this thread to give an opinion on this topic, but I'm going to do so anyway, because I have a strong opinion on this issue.
As I understand it (and I certainly don't speak for ACF or anyone else), ACF's packet submission guidelines applied to high schoolers because they were being treated like collegiate teams. They were playing in collegiate events against collegiate teams, so if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck...
Going on a more logical tangent, I will use two assumptions, a caveat and a clarification to make an accompanying conclusion:
ASSUMPTION 1. For collegiate-level events, seasoned participating teams should contribute to the creation of the packet set. (Contrapositive: For non-collegiate events, participating teams should not contribute to the creation of the packet set.)
ASSUMPTION 2. Teams considered collegiate teams write questions for collegiate-level events.
CAVEAT. High school mirrors of collegiate-level events don't count as collegiate-level events, even though they're run on the same questions.
CLARIFICATION. Any team playing at a collegiate-level event is defined as a collegiate team.
CONCLUSION. Teams playing at a high school mirror of ACF Fall should not write questions for it, as under Assumption 1 and the Caveat, it isn't a collegiate event.
That's the logic of the matter as I see it. It's a tangled web, but it boils down to this: until recently, ACF held high schools that participated in its tournaments to the same standards as colleges in terms of ability to participate and expectation of contribution to the packet set. Now that the standard isn't the same (high schools aren't able to participate in collegiate-level ACF Fall, see the Caveat), so should that expectation.
On the monetary issue, I agree with most of the people in this thread: if ACF wants to charge high school teams $120 to play a collegiate set, even if they aren't playing against other collegiate teams, then they have every right to do that, and it's a reasonable notion. However, ACF should perhaps consider
a drop in the fee if they want to expand the set's target audience to high schools.
At the end of the day, I think ACF is in a somewhat uncomfortable position caused by the evolution of quiz bowl in general. There's a good number of high schools that are looking for something harder to play than NAQT-IS or your average HS housewrite, and HSNCT and PACE are only once (twice?) a year. ACF Fall quenches that thirst, but it's target audience is collegiate teams. The problem is that ACF is run on the philosophy that participating, seasoned teams submit questions, which is toxic to high school participation.
heterodyne wrote:If you've played enough to meet ACFs packet submission requirement then I think you can handle a half packet of fall level questions.
OK, but take a team like ours for example. Our team wouldn't want to play against collegiate teams (we're still at a point in our development when we'd be totally crushed by them) even if we could. But a competitive high school mirror of ACF Fall would be enticing, as we've qualified for PACE and need to prepare in order to contend in a smaller field that generally speaking consists of the top 100 teams at HSNCT without the other 172 teams as a buffer, and PACE's questions are tough in comparison to HSNCT. None of our players have ever played ACF, so we wouldn't have to worry about packet submission for our first tourney of this type. However, after that, we'd be expected to submit a half-packet. Our team doesn't have the infrastructure to create a half-packet that's subject-balanced, so we'd go to an NAQT invitational instead. Other teams may be in the same scenario. To rephrase, "enough" means "one ACF Fall tournament". I'm simply not sure that's fair.
EDIT: So ACF's Global announcement says that HS-only mirrors don't have to submit packets for ACF Fall. Mea culpa. No grievance on that front anymore, so no grievance whatsoever.
That's my two cents. Thank goodness I'm not entitled to three.