2013 Breaking news archive

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These archived news items originally appeared on the Breaking news page.

October 31, 2013: New members at the Tournament Committee

We welcome Pete Zeigler, Rich Baker, Kurt Davies and Paul Avrin to the Tournament Committee; and thank Joe Edley for his long years of service on this committee, which was originally established in 2009 to take over part of his role at the NSA.

October 16, 2013: CC Election Won By Acclamation

Since Bernard Gotlieb and John Robertson were the only two candidates registered at the October 15 deadline for the 2013 Canadian Committee election, each wins by acclamation. Their new three-year terms begin on January 1, 2014. Bernard will replace Jeff Parsons (who chose not to run for reelection).

October 1, 2013: Activity criterion adjusted

The Ratings and Recognition Committee has revised the thresholds for being listed as an active player in the official rating lists. Until June 2007, the requirement for TWL-rated players was one tournament game played in 12 calendar months; it then changed under the NSA to 28 games played in 24 calendar months; it is now 14 games played in 12 calendar months. The same activity requirement was also instituted for CSW-rated players; who had previously had no activity requirement. This change was motivated by a shift in playing patterns to events that are smaller and more frequent, as well as the now annual National SCRABBLE Championship.

September 22, 2013: Director Re-Testing Policy

NASPA's Club/Tournament Committee released the details of its director re-testing policy that had first been announced at the NSC. All directors who have not written an exam since the formation of NASPA are required to write a refresher exam. The deadline for the first attempt is December 31, 2013.

September 10, 2013: New rules published

The newest edition of the official tournament rules have been published; they take effect on September 24, 2013.

September 10, 2013: NASPA server moved

As of 14:45 EDT, we have moved our primary web server host from DreamHost (IP 69.163.223.29) to GoDaddy (IP 208.109.87.224). It can take hours for changes to fully propagate everywhere online; if you want to be sure that you are using the new server, you can specifically choose it by referring to it as www2.scrabbleplayers.org. The old server will remain available for the foreseeable future as www1.scrabbleplayers.org, but serving periodically updated static data. Questions about the move may be sent to info@scrabbleplayers.org.

September 5, 2013: Research links page created

In response to an inquiry, we have created a bibliography of research papers about SCRABBLE topics.

August 31, 2013: Monthly Message posted

Chris Cree's monthly message this month is about Committees and Communications.

August 11, 2013: Tony Leah earns berth

Tony Leah finishes atop the standings at the special qualifying tournament and earns the seventh and final berth on Canada's world championship team that will compete in Prague in December.

July 30, 2013: Message of the Month

Chris Cree's Message of the Month to NASPA Members, National SCRABBLE Championship Wrapup is now available.

July 21, 2013: Director Manual posted

The new edition of the newly renamed Director Manual has been posted to our website.

July 21, 2013: Official Tournament Rules draft posted

A draft of the next edition of our official tournament rules has been posted to our website.

July 4, 2013: Advisory Board Election Results and New Appointees

Congratulations to Judy Cole and Chris Lipe, who won the recently concluded election to the NASPA Advisory Board. And thank you to Art, Jan, Siri and Gary for their willingness to serve and participate in the democratic process.

Following are the results of the election:

   27.9% Cole, Judy
   26.3% Lipe, Chris
   20.1% Moore, Arthur
   14.0% Cardia, Jan
   7.3% Tillekeratne, Siri
   4.5% Moss, Gary 

Congratulations also to Arthur Moore, who has been appointed to the Advisory Board by the Executive Committee, and to Jan Cardia and Kate Fukawa-Connelly, who have been reappointed to the Advisory Board by the Executive Committee.

The Advisory Board thanks all of its members for their service to the organization, and especially thanks Siri Tillekeratne and Shelley Ubeika, whose terms are expiring without reappointment effective August 3, 2013, and Joe Edley, who will be moved to emeritus member status at the request of the Executive Committee effective August 3, 2013.

July 4, 2013: Date Set for Canadian QT for WSC

Based on a poll of interested players, the qualifying tournament (QT) for Canada's final berth at the upcoming World Scrabble Championship in Prague will be held the weekend of August 10-11 at the Earl Bales Community Centre in Toronto. Players have until 11:59 p.m. Pacific time on August 3 to enter the event. The schedule and exact number of rounds will be determined after the deadline. Contact NASPA's Canadian Committee to enter.

June 28, 2013: Advisory Board Election Reminder

The election of two members of the NASPA Advisory Board is currently open. NASPA members in good standing can vote electronically in the NASPA Voting Booth. Full details about the election and the candidates, and information about casting a postal ballot, can be found on the election information page. Voting is open through July 3, 2013 at 11:59:59 P.M. Eastern Time.

June 16, 2013: New Club/Director Committee members

We belatedly welcome new Club/Director Committee members Arthur Moore, Brad Mills and Michael Baker, who quietly joined the committee several months ago.

June 3, 2013: National SCRABBLE Association to shut down

According to an exit statement by John D Williams, our partner organisation, the National SCRABBLE Association, will cease operations on July 1.

May 29, 2013: Message of the Month

Chris Cree's Message of the Month to NASPA Members, Production of the National SCRABBLE Championship is now available.

May 9, 2013: 2012 Form 990

The organization's 2012 Form 990, providing financial information for the previous fiscal year, has been uploaded to the website.

April 30, 2013: Message of the Month

Chris Cree's Message of the Month to NASPA Members, The History and Future of the NASPA Lexicon is now available.

March 13, 2013: 2013 Can-Am Qualification Standings Online

The 2013 Can-Am qualification standings are now online and being updated automatically.

February 12, 2013: Tournament Guideline Changes

The NASPA Advisory Board approved two new guidelines pertaining to tournament sanctioning in its February 12, 2013 conference call.

Effective June 1, 2013 through the end of the year, the distance restriction for one-day tournaments will be reduced to 100 miles with respect to other one-day tournaments (one-day tournaments still must be more than 200 miles from multi-day tournaments). Consecutive one-day tournaments will be treated as multi-day tournaments for the purpose of this policy. The Advisory Board will review this change at its December meeting, and determine whether to revoke, retain, or modify it.

The following Tournament Scheduling Policy was also approved. This policy will apply to tournaments scheduled on or after January 1, 2014:

1. Tournaments currently on the calendar will have first right of refusal to their traditional date (same weekend of the month, same holiday weekend, etc.).

2. If more than one tournament within a conflicting radius has rights to the same date, the competing directors may each apply to the NASPA Tournament Committee (TC), which will determine which tournament may be held on the conflicting date (brief, but sufficiently detailed, applications are preferred). The TC will consider all factors it deems relevant, including without limitation:

a. The history of the respective tournaments (how many years running, average attendance, etc.).

b. Other dates traditionally available to the respective directors.

c. How far in advance the respective requests are received (subject to Item 3 below).

3. Directors who have previously held tournaments may request tournament dates up to 3 years into the future, but such tournaments are subject to being delisted if a director with rights to the same date also requests a tournament, and prevails in the TC application process. For that reason, directors are encouraged to communicate with other directors in their region with competing rights to a date, in order to coordinate scheduling.

4. If a director wishes to secure a date, and other directors also have first right of refusal to that date, the director may elect to identify the other directors to the TC when requesting sanctioning. The TC will contact those directors specifically identified in the request, and provide them with a 30-day period in which to submit a competing request. If the other directors decline to request the date, or fail to respond within the 30-day period, their first right of refusal to the date will lapse.

5. Tournaments not previously held can be scheduled no more than 10 months in advance. Tournaments that take more than a 2-year hiatus will be considered tournaments not previously scheduled for the purposes of this policy.

6. Certain tournaments will be accorded special status, as determined from time to time by the NASPA Executive Committee, and may be scheduled without reference to this policy (currently including: NSC; CNSC; Can-Am; WSC Qualifier).

7. The TC may remove a director’s first right of refusal if, in the judgment of the committee, such removal is in the best interests of tournament SCRABBLE, considering all relevant factors.

8. The TC may grant other exceptions to this policy in exceptional circumstances.

February 1, 2013: Pete Zeigler breaks 700

Pete Zeigler booked a 722-240 win over Dan Stock at Akron, Ohio NASPA Club #653 on Thursday, January 31, 2012. A review of the game with Quackle showed an adjusted score of 725-238. The plays in the game (racks were not recorded) can be viewed here. Congratulations, Pete!

January 15, 2013: New values for SCRABBLE tiles?!

Our page about Valett describes reasons why the values of SCRABBLE tiles won’t be changing anytime soon.

January 9, 2013: Canadian WSC Qualification Standings

WSC 2013 Team Canada qualification standings are now online.

January 8, 2013: NSC 2013 Online Hotel Booking Available

The correct URL for online NSC hotel bookings has been posted to the 2013 National SCRABBLE Championship page.

January 8, 2013: State of NASPA

Chris Cree has posted the 2013 State of NASPA report.

January 4, 2013: NSC 2013 Registration Goes Live

Online registration is now available for the 2013 National SCRABBLE Championship.

January 4, 2013: New member joins Technology Committee

Reese Daniel has joined the Technology Committee, the NASPA working committee tasked with evaluating playing equipment.

January 3, 2013: New ex officio member of NASPA committees

The NASPA Executive Committee has determined that all members of that committee should serve as ex officio members of all other NASPA committees. Accordingly, Dallas Johnson has been added as an ex officio member of all NASPA committees on which he was not already a member, and Chris Cree and John Chew have been added to the International Committee, so that they are now ex officio members of all committees as well.