Rules of Online Play

INTERPRETATION AND SCOPE

In case of a dispute or inquiry, participants must be truthful and forthcoming when questioned by the tournament director (Director), who shall determine the most appropriate course of action in circumstances not expressly addressed by the Rules. Based on the circumstances of a particular case, the Director may find the solution as dictated by fairness or make narrowly tailored exceptions. The Director may impose penalties for serious or repeated rule violations or for unacceptable behavior. Both players must promptly point out any violation of a mandatory rule and must correct it unless the Rules explicitly allow the opponent to condone the infraction.

ETIQUETTE

Tournament staff and players must engage in good sportsmanship and fair play and comply with the Standards of Ethical Practice for live tournaments (http://usbgf.org/standards-of-ethical-practice/). Players should speak and play in a clear and unambiguous manner and avoid the appearance of impropriety or they will be at a disadvantage if a ruling is needed. Players must respect a request to limit conversation or distraction.

LANGUAGE

Only English or other official tournament language may be spoken by players and spectators while a match is in progress.

SPECTATORS

Spectators must not communicate with players during a match, except when asked by the Director or both players during a dispute. Spectators observing other irregularities should immediately notify tournament staff. Signaling between a spectator and a player is forbidden. A player may request that the Director bar a spectator from watching their match.

PREFERENCE RESOLUTION TERMS

Required: use is required, no player choice;

Preferred: either player may insist on use;

If Agreed: use only if both players agree;

COMMUNICATION

Players are required to maintain and record a video and audio connection with their opponent during the match using Skype. The Skype video/audio file must be sent to the Director after the match is completed and before the score is reported to Challonge, by the winning player.

PLAYING SITE

The required playing site for the event is GRIDGAMMON. Matches may not be played on other sites, even by mutual agreement. Pip count and point numbering may be turned on.

ONLINE TOURNAMENT TECHNOLOGY

Players are responsible for their camera, computer, internet connection, and any other technology to be used for each event. Any assistance or accommodations to this technology must be requested prior to the start of the tournament. The Directors will do their best to assist with technology during the event. The continuity of the event will take precedence over an individual’s needs. Participants may have to resign or be defaulted with no refund of fees if a technology issue prevents them from starting or finishing a match.

MATCH TRANSCRIPT

Players are required to send the match file via Skype or email to the Director upon match completion.

SCOREKEEPING

Although GridGammon keeps score for you, both players should keep their own running, written match score, in the event of a site crash or freeze. In any scoring dispute, if only one player has maintained a written score, then it shall take precedence absent any undisputed evidence to the contrary.

AIDS; OTHER EQUIPMENT

Players must not use any aids during a match, including breaks, except to keep written score. Use of personal electronic devices is restricted to playing the match, communicating with the opponent, and scorekeeping. Pip count and point numbering may be turned on. Listening devices for music or noise cancelling are allowed, subject to Director review. Players may not use or reference backgammon materials or software during matches, including breaks. This includes, but is not limited to, match equity tables, reference positions, doubling cube take points, doubling cube gammon values, eXtreme Gammon, GNU, Snowie, Jellyfish, or other backgammon notes/books.

START OR RESUME TIMES AND BREAKS

Matches must start, or resume following a scheduled suspension, at the designated time and take place on the proper backgammon playing site. Unscheduled matches shall have a designated start time 10 minutes after both preceding matches have been completed. Unless a later start time is posted for a player’s next match, they must have the Director's consent before going offline and being unreachable for more than 10 minutes. Each player is entitled to breaks between games, in general not to exceed 6 minutes per hour elapsed since the start or resume time. Breaks during the first such hour should be limited to urgent need only. The Director shall strictly assess penalty points against any player who fails to start or resume a match on time, or who takes excessive break time. A player shall be assessed one penalty point after causing a cumulative match delay of 10 minutes, and one additional penalty point for every 5 minutes delay thereafter. A player shall be forfeited when the total penalty points assessed exceeds half the posted match length. Stricter policies may apply when times are posted in advance.  Any players experiencing technical issues at the start of Round 1 will be given an extra 20 minutes to fix the issue.  The player must communicate with the director that an issue is occurring in order to receive this special accommodation.  Players that are not  prepared to play the event may be forfeited without refund.

INCORRECT MATCH LENGTH

Both players must verify the posted length of their match and must not knowingly play to another score. Upon discovery that the match length used is wrong, any game in progress shall be completed. The player having the higher score shall be declared the match winner if they have reached or passed the correct match length.  If both players so qualify due to a tie, they shall play one more game to decide the match. Otherwise, the match shall continue to the correct match length.

MATCH SCORE CORRECTIONS

Should the need arise to correct the score of a match (incorrect resignation, software failure, ect.), the players must do so at the earliest opportunity. The opening roll of the game is considered invalid if an impossible resignation or software crash occurs that requires the match score to be corrected.

MATCH COMPLETION & RESIGNATION

All moves, games and matches must be played to completion unless ended either by the pass of a valid double or in non-contact positions by the resignation or valid claim of a single game, gammon, or backgammon. A resignation may be accepted even if continued play could result in a different outcome, however a position that can only result in a single outcome (gin positions) must be resolved for their proper value.

REPORTING RESULTS

Both players are responsible for immediately reporting their match result on Challonge.com and verifying that the correct result has been posted on the Tournament draw sheet. Notify the Director immediately if an incorrect result is posted; it may be corrected even if the next match has started.

DISPUTES; LIMITED RIGHT OF APPEAL

If a dispute arises, players should pause play and contact the Director immediately. An aggrieved player may promptly appeal any ruling and intended corrective action by the Director, except for disqualification. The Director shall convene a ruling committee of qualified and disinterested players to independently consider evidence and argument, and vote to uphold, reverse, or modify the Director’s ruling. The Director may then cast a vote or decline to do so. An absolute majority of votes cast is required to change the Director’s ruling.

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