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2010 NSC Town Hall Meeting

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Revision as of 00:39, 17 July 2010 by Jgrobertson (talk | contribs) (John Robertson, Chair, Canadian Committee)

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The 2010 NSC Town Hall Meeting will take place on Monday, August 9, 2010 from 8:30–10:30 P.M. Although we welcome inquiries throughout the year, this is a good opportunity to talk about NASPA in a public forum.

As stated, our time is limited and we want to ensure that everyone is heard from, please note that we will have a maximum three-minute microphone time. If you have a complicated question to ask, please come prepared to phrase it as concisely as you can.

Panel Members

Representatives from several of NASPA’s committees will be on hand to answer your questions. Booked so far are the following:

The following are not able to attend but have submitted reports, and John Chew will take questions on their behalf:

Meeting Minutes

Minutes for the Town Hall Meeting will be posted here after the event. In the meantime, here are opening remarks from the committee representatives involved.

Chris Cree, Executive Committee

Our committee:

  • has overseen the work of the Advisory Board and other committees
  • fielded hundreds (thousands?) of general inquiries about NASPA
  • continued to negotiate with Hasbro
  • renegotiated liability insurance coverage
  • filed a first tax return
  • kept the association’s financial books
  • sought and received legal advice concerning the association’s affairs
  • recruited committee members
  • held smaller Town Hall meetings monthly (?) across the continent
  • researched venues for the 2012 National SCRABBLE Championship

(more to follow)

Dallas Johnson, Cochair, Tournament Committee

Our committee:

  • Sanctioned over 500 events.
  • Reviewed in excess of 1,300 emails to the committee.
  • Reviewed and acted on 7 incident reports.
  • Reviewed and acted on a complaint stemming from a director’s decision to bar a player from an event.
  • Discussed changes to 200 mile driving distance requirement, and developed new guideline for calculating driving distance using Google maps.
  • Considered reducing distance restriction in highly populated regions (no action to date).
  • Discussed circumstances warranting an exception to 8-week sanctioning lead time requirement.
  • Modified sanctioning requirement for ORT events to 6-weeks, with no exceptions to notice requirement.
  • Initiated sanctioning of Local Club Tournament (LCT )events (beginning September 1, 2010), with 10 day advance notice required without exception, and established the following criteria for sanctioning: 1. Must be sponsored by a sanctioned NASPA club; 2. No more than 1 event per club, per month; 3. Open to all NASPA members in good standing (subject to size limitations of venue).
  • Initiated sanctioning of Team Challenge or Championship (TCC) events (beginning September 1, 2010, with transitional exceptions), with 6-week advance notice required without exception, using the same criteria as for Open Rated Tournaments (ORTs), except that entries may be restricted based on rating or geography.
  • Discussed confidentiality guidelines regarding incident reports and witness statements.
  • Discussed creating an online tournament sanctioning tool for directors to use.
  • Drafted guidelines for sponsorship of tournaments.
  • Drafted a statement on accommodation of disabilities at Scrabble tournaments.
  • Received and acted on requests for accommodation.
  • Coordinated with the Director’s Manual committee to update the sanctioning guidelines for 1-day tournaments.
  • Coordinated with the Club and Directors Committee to review guidelines for minors serving as directors and to discuss responsibilities of directors for keeping order at tournaments.
  • Fielded various questions from directors, including:
    1. Rating all local club games during a month as a single LCT (not permitted)
    2. Barring or placing special requirements on “no show” players (permitted within reason)
    3. Americans with Disabilities Act requirements as they apply to disabled Scrabble players (must provide reasonable accommodations)
    4. NASPA policy on non-discrimination and prohibition on gender-exclusive events (may not discriminate based on gender)
    5. The ability to forbid changes to tally slips once submitted (contrary to tournament rules)
    6. Allowing a player who has been inactive for a long time to return to play in a lower division (not permitted)
    7. Allowing a player who has improved significantly since last rated event to leapfrog other players into a higher division (not permitted)
    8. Standards for advertising of Scrabble tournaments (ads should comply with community standards of decency)
    9. Dealing with a “no show” player on the second day of play (remove from event pairings)
    10. Holding rated invitational tournaments (only Team Challenge or Championship events may restrict entries, and restriction must be on approved standards of rating or geography)
    11. Whether or not a NASPA-rated event can also be rated by WGPO (events can be rated by any outside organization the director wishes, if that organization’s requirements are met)

Jan Dixon, Chair, Rules Committee

Our committee:

  • rewrote the entire rule book
  • added an index

There were several rules changes, most notably the rule regarding blank declaration. Many others were simplified and/or clarified.

John Chew, Chair, Web Committee

Our committee:

  • Maintained NASPAWiki, including
    • pages for all committees
    • pages for all committee members
    • Breaking News
    • Press Releases
  • Developed an online membership payment system
  • Developed an online membership renewal system
  • Ported the rating system from John’s laptop to our main server
  • Implemented substantial turnaround improvements in rating events
  • Implemented a database for tracking upcoming rated events
  • Began moving the NASPA website to a higher-performance dedicated host
  • Developed a large number of member, director and committee services
    • print your own membership card
    • submit account payments
    • submit profile photos
    • edit profile photo
    • view current Bulletin
    • add new members
    • list current members
    • submit rating data
    • edit director, member or calendar databases
    • list accounting records
    • view championship registrations
    • etc.
  • Developed a new, streamlined NSC registration system
  • Developed in-house accounting tools
  • Developed and supported better data exchange with cross-tables.com
  • Began documenting all committee maintenance procedures
  • Continued to develop graphics related to NASPA’s corporate identity and events
  • Provided technical support for our website users

Mary Rhoades, Chair, Club/Director Committee

Our committee has:

  • Received fees for sanctioning two clubs in Hawaii but have not certified the clubs yet since they don’t have certified directors.
  • Administered 27 director tests to new directors and assigned mentors.
  • Retested two who failed the first time and they passed the second time.
  • Fully certified 7 directors whose mentors approved their readiness.
  • Administered 3 director tests to already-certified directors for purposes of critiquing the test
  • Certified 15 new or formerly NSA clubs.
  • Counseled numerous club directors wanting advice or regarding conflicts.
  • Committee investigated incident report between player and club director and upheld club director. Although player kept complaining, when I told him he could take it to the AB, he stopped.

Rebecca Slivka/Scott Smith, Cochairs, Technology Committee

Our committee:

  • has been evaluating SSL and game clock phone apps; our preliminary conclusion is that it’s too hard to guarantee that a particular SSL app is correctly configured to authorize their official use by players, and that the clock apps they’ve looked at so far interact poorly with use of a device as a phone
  • would welcome volunteer testers for such apps

John Robertson, Chair, Canadian Committee

Our committee...

  • set the size of the CC at six members with provisions for minimum and maximum regional representation
  • established the length of terms for CC members at three years, with two members' terms expiring on December 31 of each year
  • established annual CC elections (and their regulations) in which all Canadian NASPA members can participate
  • organized the 2009 CC election (which was unnecessary because the candidates won by acclamation)
  • established the qualification rules for the next Canadian Championship tournament, and for the Canadian team at the next World Championship tournament and Causeway Challenge tournament
  • established John Robertson as the financial liaison for Canadian NASPA members who wish to pay their membership fees in Canadian dollars.