2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

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katherine
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2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by katherine »

I am excited to announce that 2021 ACF Fall will take place on October 16, 2021. It is being edited by Sarah Benner, Justin Duffy, Karan Gurazada, Mitch McCullar, Gov Prabhakar, Ethan Strombeck, and Ned Tagtmeier with myself (Katherine Lei) as head editor. Justin Duffy, Matthew Lehmann, Matthew Bollinger and other ACF members are offering oversight.

Format
We hope that ACF Fall can be held in person. However, we acknowledge that many schools are uncertain about the possibility of allowing large events due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, it is possible that some mirrors of ACF Fall will be held online, and we will work to create the most authentic and engaging quizbowl experience possible under these circumstances. We will continue to post updates as we learn more.

Registration
Fill out the central 2021 ACF Fall registration form with all relevant information. The field for each site can be found here.

Fees
Base fee per team: $120
New to quizbowl discount: −$80
Shorthanded discount (1–2 players): −$60
Staffers: −$25 per staffer with functional laptop. Staffers must register with ACF in advance here.

The "new to quizbowl" discount is for schools that did not send a team to any regular collegiate academic tournament (not counting exclusively novice tournaments) since September 2020, and which have no players who competed in non-novice collegiate tournaments during that same period.

Host sites will bill teams as soon as possible after the teams register. Teams should pay their host sites by whatever method is convenient for the hosts, who will in turn pay ACF by check, cash, or PayPal.

Eligibility
To make this tournament more accessible to new teams and players, ACF is enforcing eligibility guidelines for ACF Fall. Players are not eligible to compete at 2021 ACF Fall if, at any point, they:
  • Scored more than 50 PPG in the prelims of a college mirror of ACF Fall, OR
  • Were the top scorer (highest overall PPG) on a team that finished in the top 15% of the field, rounded up, at ACF Fall, OR
  • Scored more than 40 PP20TUH in the prelims of HSNCT or 60 PPG in the prelims of PACE NSC, OR
  • Were the top scorer (highest overall PPG) on a team that finished in the top 30 at HSNCT or top 10 at PACE NSC, OR
  • Finished in the top 12 in IPNCT
Players are responsible for determining their own eligibility; if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to email [email protected]. Failure to abide by these eligibility guidelines may result in disqualification from ACF Fall and/or future ACF tournaments.

Packet submission
Like 2020 ACF Fall, no teams are required to submit questions in order to play the tournament. However, ACF still needs high-quality, half-packet submissions from teams to complete the set.

Below is the submission schedule for ACF Fall. All deadlines are at 11:59 p.m. PT. The maximum packet discounts have increased since last year; furthermore, all submitting teams are eligible for an additional −$20 quality discount if their questions are particularly polished and usable, up to a maximum discount of −$60. Teams may submit a maximum of one half-packet.

August 21: −$50
August 28: −$40
September 4: −$30
September 11: −$20
September 18: −$10

If you would like to submit a half-packet, fill out this form. ACF will respond with a half-packet template specifying which categories you are assigned to write.

Each submission consists of 12 tossups and 12 bonuses. Before writing, please review ACF's packet submission guidelines and stick to the format provided. Answers should generally emphasize playability over creativity – aim for creative and interesting clues with straightforward answerlines. These 5 model tossups reflect the difficulty and style to aim for. When finished, submit your half-packet by emailing it to [email protected].

Your assigned half-packet will ask for questions from more specific categories within the distribution. For instance, instead of being assigned an “American Literature” tossup, you might be asked to write a question on a 20th-century American poem, or an Economics bonus instead of “Social Science/Philosophy.” This should reduce redundancy in submissions and maximize the number of submitted questions we can use, without being too constraining. The submission form offers space to indicate your writing interests in each category, which we will do our best to accommodate.

Hosting
If you are interested in hosting a mirror of ACF Fall or have questions about hosting, please email ACF’s Site Coordinator at [email protected]. Hosts must abide by ACF’s Hosting Guidelines.

Mirrors will by default be regional. ACF reserves the right to move teams and staffers between sites. ACF intends to mirror 2021 ACF Fall in the following regions:

Northeast: MIT
Upper Mid-Atlantic: UMD
Upstate NY: RIT
Lower Mid-Atlantic: Duke
Southeast: Georgia Tech
Great Lakes: Case Western
Midwest: UIUC
North: Minnesota
South Central: UT Austin
California + Northwest (combined): UC Berkeley (online)
Eastern Canada: McGill (online)
United Kingdom: Warwick (online)

High-school-only sites: California and Georgia (online), nationwide (online)

As in previous years, ACF is willing to provide the ACF Fall set for high-school-only tournaments. If you are interested in hosting a high-school-only mirror of 2021 ACF Fall, email [email protected] and cc [email protected]. However, we do not plan to offer mixed mirrors that include high school and college teams.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please email [email protected].
Last edited by katherine on Tue Sep 21, 2021 6:27 pm, edited 9 times in total.
Katherine Lei
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by person361 »

katherine wrote: Fri Aug 13, 2021 11:37 pm
Eligibility
To make this tournament more accessible to new teams and players, ACF is enforcing eligibility guidelines for ACF Fall. Players are not eligible to compete at 2021 ACF Fall if, at any point, they:
  • Scored more than 50 PPG in the prelims of a college mirror of ACF Fall, OR
  • ...
I don't think this is a good criterion to exclude players on. PPG by itself is not a good enough indicator of skill to exclude someone from a tournament irrevocably. For example, if someone plays on a 1-or-2-person team, which can often happen in the beginning of the year when players drop out last minute, it's rare to see a team WITHOUT a 50-point scorer. For a specific example, at the Harvard mirror of ACF Fall last year, Daevan Mangalmurti, a player who doesn't appear to have played in high school, scored 57 PPG on a team that placed 13/18. By these strict rules, this true novice is excluded from all future years. All this is especially true since there is no way to petition for exceptions.

We should also think about what types of people this criterion excludes, that the other criteria don't already take care of. A hypothetical player would have to not be an experienced high school player, and not have placed on a team that finished in the 15% of a previous ACF Fall*. I think that in most cases, such a hypothetical player would be considered a novice. Even if you disagree with me on my estimate of "most", you'd probably agree that a big enough percentage exists to make a blanket ban on 50 PPG scorers ill-advised.

As a solution to this problem, I propose that this criterion either be scrapped, or changed to "Scored more than 50 PPG in the prelims of a college mirror of ACF Fall on a team that scored >20 PPB". This takes shadow effect, or the lack thereof, into account when determining skill, while at the same time maintaining objectivity.

* Assuming that 50 PPG is the top scorer.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by katherine »

The trade-off with creating eligibility guidelines is keeping the rules simple while trying to account for all possible scenarios. Although PPG is not a perfect metric for novices, we believe that this guideline, in conjunction with the others, helps narrow down the field to what we hope will create a tournament field that is welcoming for less-experienced players.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by person361 »

katherine wrote: Wed Aug 18, 2021 12:51 pm The trade-off with creating eligibility guidelines is keeping the rules simple while trying to account for all possible scenarios.
I'm arguing above that having the PPG guideline neither keeps the rules simple (compared to removing the rule), nor accounts for enough scenarios.
katherine wrote: Wed Aug 18, 2021 12:51 pm ...this guideline, in conjunction with the others, helps narrow down the field to what we hope will create a tournament field that is welcoming for less-experienced players.
The least welcoming thing possible is to ban less-experienced players with no appeal.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by FillorianCandidate »

person361 wrote: Sat Aug 21, 2021 8:01 pm The least welcoming thing possible is to ban less-experienced players with no appeal.
I think this argument is somewhat misleading given that this restriction obviously does not apply to novices. A player who has played ACF Fall already and done well has already been welcomed into the community (at least to the extent that the tournament can accomplish by itself) and clearly has a solid base of knowledge that will allow them to be reasonably competitive at the EFT level with a little bit of more in-depth studying, and there are very few people who could put up 50 ppg on a quizbowl set without figuring out how to study for quizbowl in some form. I'm not really sure how your counterexample of Daevan rebuts this. Ultimately, what we want to avoid is creating incentives for players to learn a bunch of easy clues for common answerlines and spend their quizbowl career using that to get late 10s against novices at Fall rather than actually challenging themselves at the next level. For that reason, I think the decision to prioritize creating an fair competitive environment for novices over giving upperclassmen a stomping grounds is a reasonable one.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by person361 »

FillorianCandidate wrote: Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:36 am
person361 wrote: Sat Aug 21, 2021 8:01 pm The least welcoming thing possible is to ban less-experienced players with no appeal.
I think this argument is somewhat misleading given that this restriction obviously does not apply to novices.
My whole point is that there are novices who are being restricted. Perhaps we disagree on what "novice" means.
FillorianCandidate wrote: Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:36 am A player who has played ACF Fall already and done well has already been welcomed into the community (at least to the extent that the tournament can accomplish by itself)
I don't think the extent is very far. No one will feel welcomed into the community from playing just 1 tournament.
FillorianCandidate wrote: Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:36 am A player who has played ACF Fall already and done well ... clearly has a solid base of knowledge that will allow them to be reasonably competitive at the EFT level with a little bit of more in-depth studying, and there are very few people who could put up 50 ppg on a quizbowl set without figuring out how to study for quizbowl in some form.
I agree with this, but I don't see how it helps your point. I don't think someone who is nearly "reasonably competitive" at EFT or someone who potentially knows how to study should be banned from Fall.
FillorianCandidate wrote: Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:36 am Ultimately, what we want to avoid is creating incentives for players to learn a bunch of easy clues for common answerlines and spend their quizbowl career using that to get late 10s against novices at Fall rather than actually challenging themselves at the next level.
I don't think this is up to ACF to decide. Quizbowl is ultimately a hobby. As long as they aren't killing others' enjoyment (I don't consider getting late 10s to be an example of this), people should be allowed to do whatever they want. ACF should not be forcing people to challenge themselves. Even if you disagree with this, ACF Fall isn't below the level of someone who's almost reasonably competitive at EFT.
FillorianCandidate wrote: Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:36 am For that reason, I think the decision to prioritize creating an fair competitive environment for novices over giving upperclassmen a stomping grounds is a reasonable one.
I agree that providing "stomping grounds" would kill others' enjoyment, and ACF should try to stop this from happening, but getting five late 10s a round isn't a "stomping". The other 4 rules already prevent any true "stompings". I'm not arguing against those rules.

Since no one else has responded, I concede that I'm in the minority, so this will probably be the last post I make in the thread. I wanted to get my opinion out one last time (especially the bolded part).
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by Subotai the Valiant, Final Dog of War »

I have absolutely no stake in this, but the high school nationals eligibility rules seem to have the effect of letting many top specialists/players with substantial shadow effects play while being very harsh on top players of lower-placing teams. Just for an example, half of PACE-finalist Hunter A would be eligible to play by these rules, while the top scorer of the 203rd place team at HSNCT would be ineligible without appeal.

In other words, these rules seem to only restrict a small number of players from top teams (who could just be excluded on a case-by-case basis, considering not many of them would be signing up anyhow) at the price of restricting a large number of top scorers of weaker teams who would certainly not be too good for Fall. They exclude far more people they shouldn't exclude than people they should.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by Cheynem »

I do think if there isn't already that an appeals system should be allowed.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by benchapman »

The main problem with determining whom to exclude is that the criteria are mostly based on statistics, and statistics are a very imperfect measure of a player's strength. Considering that most teams neg at least 2-3 times a game, a player could conceivably put up around 25 PPG just by picking up the other team's negs. That means that they would only need to get 2-3 contested buzzes per game to make themselves ineligible (and at the bottom of HSNCT, there are a fair amount of questions going to the giveaway).

Another issue is the shadow effect, as Daniel pointed out. To use me as an example, I got 28.75 PPG at HSNCT during the prelims. I'm confident that I would have put up more than 40 PPG if I was on a significantly weaker team (from picking up negs and buzzing outside my main categories more). I'm essentially being rewarded with eligibility for Fall because I am fortunate enough to have gone to one of the best high schools at quiz bowl and had very good teammates. Following from this, a player on a 2-6 team who went 3/50/6 (not referring to anyone in particular) is essentially being punished for not having good teammates. Their statline indicates that their knowledge is more broad than deep, and so they are probably getting most questions near the end. I think most people would agree that this person shouldn't be excluded from Fall.
Cheynem wrote: Tue Aug 24, 2021 1:08 pm I do think if there isn't already that an appeals system should be allowed.
Mike Cheyne is absolutely right. I think ACF have a good idea of the type of player they want to be eligible for Fall, but the limitations of quiz bowl statistics mean that they can't create a one-size-fits-all set of rules that is effective.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by entropy »

i think the eligibility criteria should be loosened so i can get paid more
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by VelarApproximant »

Any news on when registration will open?
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by tnyowheoma »

Hi everyone,

For any teams interested in hosting a mirror of ACF Fall, please fill out this bid form, the official deadline for which is next Friday, September 17. Because of varied COVID regulations, we are allowing for in-person and online mirrors, with a priority on in-person mirrors that can be safely held. Feel free to send questions on this to [email protected].
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by tnyowheoma »

VelarApproximant wrote: Sat Aug 28, 2021 9:58 pm Any news on when registration will open?
Sorry for the delayed response. We're still hoping to get a good number of bids in within the next week, so expect team registration to open up soon after the 17th.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by tnyowheoma »

Hi everyone, a reminder that the bid form for ACF Fall closes tomorrow at 11:59 PM PDT. We're still looking for bids in the Florida, South Central and Mountain West, and UK regions. If your school is located in those regions, or you're up to host an online mirror for them, reach out to [email protected] and bid.

Additionally, registration is now open for teams and staffers! The forms for both are linked in the main announcement post.
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Re: 2021 ACF Fall: Global Announcement (October 16)

Post by katherine »

A reminder that tomorrow is the final day to submit a half-packet!
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