ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

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cwasims
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ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by cwasims »

As a host for both ACF Regionals and SCT, I found that both tournaments had one very unusual feature of their fee schedules that ended up creating strange incentives for teams and hosts.

For ACF Regionals, I'm very unclear what the rationale is behind providing a massive shorthanded discount for a team of 1-2 players ($75, split $45/$30 host/ACF). There is absolutely no way I would ever provide a shorthanded discount this large because costs are hardly lower for shorthanded teams and in my mind it's mostly a nicety to teams who can't find more players at their school. This kind of discount even makes it non-trivially more expensive on a per-person basis to go from a 2-person team to a 3-person team, which is an extremely bizarre incentive to create (it's even not much less expensive to have a full team than a two-person team in these circumstances, which is a very bad incentive for cost-minimization). In my mind, a much better policy than this would be a small ($10-$15) discount per missing player, which has the added benefit of also helping teams that are short-handed with three players.

For SCT, the staffer discount at $40 per school-provided staffer is also substantially larger than what I would otherwise provide (and what I can get local staff for providing). Of course, there's a broader question about compensation in QB that I don't want to wade into, but at least at U of T we have lots of staffers who are generally willing to staff tournaments for a staffer pay mostly to cover lunch costs and the like ($10 or $15). I realize that I can reject staffers affiliated with a school, but this is presumably intended so that all staff can be vetted not so that they can be rejected if their marginal contribution to the event's success is less than the discount you have to provide, and furthermore I would generally be very keen on these individuals staffing if I could just pay them the standard rate I pay staffers. In future, I think a better policy would be a substantially lower staffer discount (ACF does $15) along with the potential to increase the discount if necessary to attract enough staffers to run the event. (I will note that I did accept all staffers offered for SCT, although I wouldn't have accepted many more than I did.)
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vinteuil
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Re: ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by vinteuil »

cwasims wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:07 am
at U of T we have lots of staffers who are generally willing to staff tournaments for a staffer pay mostly to cover lunch costs and the like ($10 or $15).
Congratulations!

(I like the idea you have for shorthanded team discounts.)
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Re: ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by Cheynem »

Some of the discounts might also be holdovers from the clock format in which you needed even more staffers (and a scorekeeper would not inherently have to be a good reader).
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Re: ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by Cody »

One thing I cleared with NAQT when I ran SCT in 2016 was a -$30 moderator discount and -$10 scorekeeper discount. (This was determined by capabilities, not final assigned roles. At the time, -$30 was the standard staff discount.) I think formalizing such a discount structure is a good solution if NAQT requires hosts to offer a large staff discount rate.
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Re: ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by Important Bird Area »

The general idea here is that SCT (even untimed SCT) needs lots and lots of staff, and we want to make sure we provide teams with an incentive to bring qualified staffers along to the tournament.
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Zealots of Stockholm
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Re: ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by Zealots of Stockholm »

cwasims wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:07 am
For SCT, the staffer discount at $40 per school-provided staffer is also substantially larger than what I would otherwise provide (and what I can get local staff for providing). Of course, there's a broader question about compensation in QB that I don't want to wade into, but at least at U of T we have lots of staffers who are generally willing to staff tournaments for a staffer pay mostly to cover lunch costs and the like ($10 or $15). I realize that I can reject staffers affiliated with a school, but this is presumably intended so that all staff can be vetted not so that they can be rejected if their marginal contribution to the event's success is less than the discount you have to provide, and furthermore I would generally be very keen on these individuals staffing if I could just pay them the standard rate I pay staffers. In future, I think a better policy would be a substantially lower staffer discount (ACF does $15) along with the potential to increase the discount if necessary to attract enough staffers to run the event. (I will note that I did accept all staffers offered for SCT, although I wouldn't have accepted many more than I did.)
This is very generous of the local staffers in your area. $40 is what I generally give staffers who aren't affiliated with our club, and I would probably go higher if they requested (and had legitimate reason to do so). Also with the ability to accept/deny staffers, I have always interpreted this as a discount only for moderators (and last year I think I added a small discount for staff who were only able to scorekeep (?), don't really remember). $40 is a pretty fair price for a quality moderator, and SCT already has higher entry fees than most tournaments (deservedly so IMO since its a premier event, this year's subpar quality aside).
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Re: ACF Regionals and SCT Fee Schedules

Post by cwasims »

100% Clean Comedian Dan Nainan wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 1:42 am
cwasims wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:07 am
For SCT, the staffer discount at $40 per school-provided staffer is also substantially larger than what I would otherwise provide (and what I can get local staff for providing). Of course, there's a broader question about compensation in QB that I don't want to wade into, but at least at U of T we have lots of staffers who are generally willing to staff tournaments for a staffer pay mostly to cover lunch costs and the like ($10 or $15). I realize that I can reject staffers affiliated with a school, but this is presumably intended so that all staff can be vetted not so that they can be rejected if their marginal contribution to the event's success is less than the discount you have to provide, and furthermore I would generally be very keen on these individuals staffing if I could just pay them the standard rate I pay staffers. In future, I think a better policy would be a substantially lower staffer discount (ACF does $15) along with the potential to increase the discount if necessary to attract enough staffers to run the event. (I will note that I did accept all staffers offered for SCT, although I wouldn't have accepted many more than I did.)
This is very generous of the local staffers in your area. $40 is what I generally give staffers who aren't affiliated with our club, and I would probably go higher if they requested (and had legitimate reason to do so). Also with the ability to accept/deny staffers, I have always interpreted this as a discount only for moderators (and last year I think I added a small discount for staff who were only able to scorekeep (?), don't really remember). $40 is a pretty fair price for a quality moderator, and SCT already has higher entry fees than most tournaments (deservedly so IMO since its a premier event, this year's subpar quality aside).
It's interesting to me that people distinguish between moderators and scorekeepers - I almost always leave double staffed rooms to their own devices, which in practice means alternating reading and scorekeeping (granted, all of our regular staffers are competent readers). If this is an assumption NAQT is making about the accepting/denying staffers policy, then I would note that this kind of distinction is by no means universal, and at least for our site potentially resulted in more discounts being given out than NAQT intended.

I must say, I still don't really understand why it's preferable to impose a blanket higher discount to ensure enough staff: the team hosting the tournament has by far the best information about what their staffing situation is like and what kind of discount will guarantee enough staff. I do think teams have the right to some discount for providing staff, but $40 is just far more than any non-national tournament I typically see.
Christopher Sims
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