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 Post subject: The demotion SAFEZONE
Post #1 Posted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 2:34 pm 
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Dear all,

The demotion system of the ASR League has been slightly tweaked. It has been mentioned that because "kicks" happen first (people removed from the ladder because of not playing the 4 necessary games in a month) and then demotion takes the next x number of places, inactive divisions can suffer from having people who are fairly high up the division still being demotable. In extreme cases, this can include as high as 4th place in a division of 14 in some of the lower tiers.

So, to give assurance to those who don't want to have their demotion dependent on games that don't involve them, anyone that finishes 6th place or higher is always immune to demotion, even if all 8 people below you get kicked for inactivity.

Any position is still open to being kicked for not playing 4 games in a month, but anyone 6th and above who has played the requisite games is guaranteed not to demote.

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Post #2 Posted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 6:58 pm 
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Hi,

when you say 6th, you mean real rank or asr website table rank? (as an example, if 2 players have 10 points, they don't have the same rank on the website (website simply sorts them in alphabetical order and then gives the ranks)).

It might sound obvious that it will be real rank, but since the tables on the website already show a rank, I think it is worth mentioning. Example: you can be ranked 8th according to website, but 6th in score.

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Post #3 Posted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 9:02 pm 
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topazg wrote:
Dear all,

The demotion system of the ASR League has been slightly tweaked. It has been mentioned that because "kicks" happen first (people removed from the ladder because of not playing the 4 necessary games in a day) and then demotion takes the next x number of places, inactive divisions can suffer from having people who are fairly high up the division still being demotable. In extreme cases, this can include as high as 4th place in a division of 14 in some of the lower tiers.

So, to give assurance to those who don't want to have their demotion dependent on games that don't involve them, anyone that finishes 6th place or higher is always immune to demotion, even if all 8 people below you get kicked for inactivity.

Any position is still open to being kicked for not playing 4 games in a month, but anyone 6th and above who has played the requisite games is guaranteed not to demote.


I think this is a positive change which will have a stabilizing influence. Of course, my personal preference is to do promotions (including extra promotions to fill inactive spots) before demotions, and then count inactivity kicks towards demotions -- which I think together would be another few steps in the direction which has already been taken. That way you would be giving players who fought to get to a room the benefit of the doubt over players who had decided not to participate even more than the current (and very appreciated) rule change.

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 Post subject: Re: The demotion SAFEZONE
Post #4 Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:11 am 
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the safe zone obviously counts for the actual 6th ranked in that class.

In case 2 or more people have the same points:
-did they play eachother, if yes then the winner is ranked 6th
-in case they didnt play eachother or a tie, then they are equal of rank thus both will be treated as they are 6th and will not demote.

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 Post subject: Re: The demotion SAFEZONE
Post #5 Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 1:12 am 
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the safe zone obviously counts for the actual 6th ranked in that class.

In case 2 or more people have the same points:
-did they play eachother, if yes then the winner is ranked 6th
-in case they didnt play eachother or a tie, then they are equal of rank thus both will be treated as they are 6th and will not demote.

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Post #6 Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:36 am 
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You should make that official then, stalkor, and also adapt the tables on the website.

That "for same result, if one won more than the other he gets the rank" is a bit tricky, because what do you do if 3 or 4 have the same score?

Honestly, I think you should just drop that or at least think of a more formal way to process this.

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 Post subject: Re: The demotion SAFEZONE
Post #7 Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:15 am 
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no, in the extremely remote case 3 or 4 ppl have the same score all will stay, its an easy rule. Yes i know we look at the played eachother part first but a rule like this is NOT complicated in the slightest! I think youre overthinking it just a tad

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Post #8 Posted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 4:33 pm 
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well, whatever rule there is for that:


1) tables should always show actual rank based on those rules
2) those rules should be written on the website

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Post #9 Posted: Sun May 26, 2013 3:07 pm 
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With the new website coming online this month, perhaps there is now an opportunity to re-open the discussion about promotions, demotions, and inactivity kicks, and perhaps to tweak the promotion/demotion/inactivity procedure a bit.

I very much agree with usagi's position that inactivity kicks should count towards demotions. This for the same reason that the safe zone was originally introduced to address: if the inactivity level in a group is high, people will be demoted who would not otherwise be demoted. In other words, whether a player is demoted or not can depend not on his score relative to the people above him, but on how many inactivity kicks happen below him. I think the original promotion and demotion levels were set based on the assumption that almost everyone would play their minimum games per month. As we have seen, there is always a fair number of inactivity kicks in Gamma, fewer in Beta, hence the need for something like the safe zone to reduce the yo-yo effect.

What we have seen happen since the safe zones were introduced is that they have gradually been extended to the point where in Beta they currently produce the same effect as if inactivity kicks counted as demotions. Beta is currently at 20 people per group and 10 demotions; the safe zone is now up to 10 (group size minus demotions). We are not quite there in Alpha and Gamma, so we still have a bit of the old Gamma-Delta shuffle happening, though not quite as much as before. At one point if your group had a high inactivity level very few people could actually manage to to stay in Gamma -- you either moved up to Beta or got demoted back to Delta.

I would suggest one of two changes; both have almost the same effect:

  1. Count inactivity kicks as demotions. This is a more general solution, and would not need tweaking on the basis of the group sizes.
  2. Each month, set the safe zone in each level to the average group size minus demotions. For example, with Alpha now at 18 players and 8 demotions, the safe zone should be set to 10 (it is now 8); in Gamma, with 26 players in each group and 10 demotions, the safe zone should be set to 16 rather than 12.

A player quitting part way through the month should also count as a demotion.

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 Post subject: Re: The demotion SAFEZONE
Post #10 Posted: Mon May 27, 2013 9:57 am 
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I am also thinking of doing that but if i set safe zone in gamma to 15 wouldnt that create a lazier atmosphere(im ok if i play 4 games, no hurry to play more...)?

Granted gamma has been more active the last few months but still about 90+ ppl drop from the league each month and about 1/3 is gamma.

I think part of the fun is finding the players who are still grey and play them so there are more active players and the safe zone grows by your effort.

I am ok setting alpha safezone to 10 in june if no one disagrees for some reason.

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Post #11 Posted: Tue May 28, 2013 12:08 am 
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stalkor wrote:
I am also thinking of doing that but if i set safe zone in gamma to 15 wouldnt that create a lazier atmosphere(im ok if i play 4 games, no hurry to play more...)?


I think that would only be a consideration in extreme cases where the inactivity kicks account for all of the expected drop downs -- about 10 or more in a 25 or 26 member gamma group. In this month's gamma groups, as they stand now, there is only one person who would be able to stay in gamma with only 4 games under my suggested change (that would be Gamma II). However, there are still four days to go, and his group has another four people who only need one more game to stay in. If a couple of them get their fourth game in, they would bump in into the demotion zone, even with my change. Normally four games in gamma isn't enough to guarantee staying, even with this change.

stalkor wrote:
Granted gamma has been more active the last few months but still about 90+ ppl drop from the league each month and about 1/3 is gamma.

I think part of the fun is finding the players who are still grey and play them so there are more active players and the safe zone grows by your effort.


A side effect of the current system is that there are always more than 40 promotions from Delta to Gamma each month; with 25-26 players in each Gamma group, that means 52-56 promotions normally. Since Delta has a lot of people who end up dropping out, that means that it is very easy to move up from Delta - almost everyone in Delta who plays their games will end up promoting. I wonder if those easy promotions account for some of the drop outs from Gamma -- people who sign up, play a few games the first month, get promoted, and then either lose interest or find they really don't have time to play enough to stay in Gamma. Perhaps if 40 was the actual number of promotions out of Delta, and people had to work a bit harder to get to Gamma, they might be more likely to stay committed in Gamma.

With the current safe zone level, and the current size of the Gamma groups, we're fairly close to a system of counting inactivity kicks as demotions already. About 3 or 4 people per Gamma group would be affected, 12-16 in total, who would be able to stay in Gamma; not a really large change.


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Post #12 Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 6:51 pm 
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I agree with Wayne on this, and I think some of the inactivity problems may be caused by the amount of movement between groups. The demotion zone should be there to allow movement between groups, not scare members in to playing more. We want to avoid situations in which either people who are active can't move up despite those in higher groups being less active, or in which active players from higher groups regularly get replaced by less active players from lower groups, and if we get that balance right we should start to see the gamma groups fill up with those who are consistantly active.

stalkor wrote:
I am also thinking of doing that but if i set safe zone in gamma to 15 wouldnt that create a lazier atmosphere(im ok if i play 4 games, no hurry to play more...)?


The value of the ASRleague is in the quality, not quantity, of the games, and the most desirable classmates aren't necessarily those who play the most. I can't think of a better system for rewarding hard work than giving points for number of games played, but it seems very wrong to assume that those who only meet the minimum quota are lazy. It's easy to play lots of games, but finding time to genuinely devote yourself to a careful game & thoughtful review is much harder.

I feel the current system puts too much emphasis on quantity at the expense of quality. Some of my ASR games have been worse than the average automatch, and I think this was because, despite being well placed within the group, they felt the need to rack up more points to avoid being demoted. Perhaps if they they knew they were safe they would have played less games, but maybe they would also have been games worth playing.
stalkor wrote:

Granted gamma has been more active the last few months but still about 90+ ppl drop from the league each month and about 1/3 is gamma.


Sorry to be blunt, but what do you expect if you kick active players and fill it with new members who've only ever played four ASR games?

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Post #13 Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 9:54 am 
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When I am in the league, I have the following conversation literally 30 or 40 times a month:

Code:
usagi: Would you like to play an #ASR, player?
player: sry not today i leave soon for the local go Club
usagi: Don't you want to win the league? :)
usagi: U can win~
player: dont know. if it happens it happens and if not its fine too^^


Of course this isn't my league, but if you say that active players are being hurt by inactive players, and then make a "safe zone" rule because you don't want to raise the game limit to 8 or 9, you're only going to make it worse. Seriously, isn't it a joke to complain about inactive players and to try to fix the problem by allowing more inactive players to stay in the league? Without doing the math to see who falls between the safe zone and 4 games per month, you will almost certainly make this worse by allowing people who play 5-6 games a month to stay at the same room.

The absolute best thing for this league is to raise the game limit to 8 or 10. It would cut 100 people from the league, who really don't need to be there. Then you will end up with a league with 80-100 quality people in it. But right now when I hear slogans like "the league is for quality not quantity" I have to laugh, because that isn't really true. The league lets anyone in and has so many rules to keep low quality players in it, that it is obviously hurting serious players. In this case, letting people in just because they want to be in the cool kid's club was the big mistake. No, you do NOT want players who only plan to play 4 or 5 games a month in your league. I am sorry but that is just ridiculous, why is this called the ASR if everyone is allowed to join it and do nothing? Until that sort of idea is removed from management, you will have this cycle of "gee, how can we fix the league". It's too big. See? There are too many people in the league who don't belong there.

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Post #14 Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 11:58 am 
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usagi wrote:
When I am in the league, I have the following conversation literally 30 or 40 times a month:

Code:
usagi: Would you like to play an #ASR, player?
player: sry not today i leave soon for the local go Club
usagi: Don't you want to win the league? :)
usagi: U can win~
player: dont know. if it happens it happens and if not its fine too^^


Of course this isn't my league, but if you say that active players are being hurt by inactive players, and then make a "safe zone" rule because you don't want to raise the game limit to 8 or 9, you're only going to make it worse. Seriously, isn't it a joke to complain about inactive players and to try to fix the problem by allowing more inactive players to stay in the league? Without doing the math to see who falls between the safe zone and 4 games per month, you will almost certainly make this worse by allowing people who play 5-6 games a month to stay at the same room.

The absolute best thing for this league is to raise the game limit to 8 or 10. It would cut 100 people from the league, who really don't need to be there. Then you will end up with a league with 80-100 quality people in it. But right now when I hear slogans like "the league is for quality not quantity" I have to laugh, because that isn't really true. The league lets anyone in and has so many rules to keep low quality players in it, that it is obviously hurting serious players. In this case, letting people in just because they want to be in the cool kid's club was the big mistake. No, you do NOT want players who only plan to play 4 or 5 games a month in your league. I am sorry but that is just ridiculous, why is this called the ASR if everyone is allowed to join it and do nothing? Until that sort of idea is removed from management, you will have this cycle of "gee, how can we fix the league". It's too big. See? There are too many people in the league who don't belong there.


Leave you lazy good-for-nothings! Usagi says you don't belong! He doesn't think you deserve to be in the ASR! Out, Out! Get off his lawn!

The ASR is not for people are serious about the ASR, it's for people who are serious about studying and improving - a group that is not defined by the number of ASR games they can play in a month. Right now there are 345 people signed up for the October league. They signed up because they want to be in the league, because they see some benefit for themselves by being in the league. You think the league would be better off by telling 250 of them to shape up or ship out? I don't.

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Post #15 Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 3:26 pm 
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usagi wrote:
When I am in the league, I have the following conversation literally 30 or 40 times a month:

Code:
usagi: Would you like to play an #ASR, player?
player: sry not today i leave soon for the local go Club
usagi: Don't you want to win the league? :)
usagi: U can win~
player: dont know. if it happens it happens and if not its fine too^^


Of course this isn't my league, but if you say that active players are being hurt by inactive players, and then make a "safe zone" rule because you don't want to raise the game limit to 8 or 9, you're only going to make it worse. Seriously, isn't it a joke to complain about inactive players and to try to fix the problem by allowing more inactive players to stay in the league? Without doing the math to see who falls between the safe zone and 4 games per month, you will almost certainly make this worse by allowing people who play 5-6 games a month to stay at the same room.

The absolute best thing for this league is to raise the game limit to 8 or 10. It would cut 100 people from the league, who really don't need to be there. Then you will end up with a league with 80-100 quality people in it. But right now when I hear slogans like "the league is for quality not quantity" I have to laugh, because that isn't really true. The league lets anyone in and has so many rules to keep low quality players in it, that it is obviously hurting serious players. In this case, letting people in just because they want to be in the cool kid's club was the big mistake. No, you do NOT want players who only plan to play 4 or 5 games a month in your league. I am sorry but that is just ridiculous, why is this called the ASR if everyone is allowed to join it and do nothing? Until that sort of idea is removed from management, you will have this cycle of "gee, how can we fix the league". It's too big. See? There are too many people in the league who don't belong there.


Why does it matter what people in other groups are doing? The problem isn't that the league contains people who only want to play 4 games a month, it's that those players aren't separated from the ones who want to play lots of games, and as I pointed out in my previous post, this is because of the excessive movement between groups caused by the overly punishing demotion system. Remember:

Quote:
To every demotion there is always an equal and opposite promotion.

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Post #16 Posted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:43 am 
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daal wrote:
The ASR is not for people are serious about the ASR, it's for people who are serious about studying and improving - a group that is not defined by the number of ASR games they can play in a month. Right now there are 345 people signed up for the October league. They signed up because they want to be in the league, because they see some benefit for themselves by being in the league. You think the league would be better off by telling 250 of them to shape up or ship out? I don't.


So your going to let 100 inactive people sit in the league all month doing nothing and ruining it for everyone again?

Let's assume what you said is true -- the ASR is not for people who are "serious about ASR", but for people who are "serious about studying and improving". So why is the membership requirement a minimum number of games, instead of giving a review or teaching someone?

Maybe, if you want the league to be about studying and learning, then instead of pretending it isn't a league, you could state the membership requirements in another way. Here's one suggestion: "You have to participate in at least four reviews of your own games per month in order to remain in the league." A better way might be to state this in a positive and have games which are reviewed count for an extra half-point. That is probably better than punishing people for not making a quota.

For as long as you run the league based on activity rewards with special rules to keep inactive players, is as long as you will have inactivity problems. Come on, it's been six or seven years now. There are so many initiatives that you guys could do to solve these problems it's not even funny anymore. Like timezones or game scheduling. You know, easy stuff, that could be automated on the site. Here's another idea, use a total points system (SODOS overlay or something) to decide who gets into what # room -- the most active players being placed into the 1-room and the others into the 2-room and subsequent rooms. I understand that this might create a Gamma-4 of inactive people (a room full of 4 game players and safe zone retainees). Well then, there's your problem, isn't it?

Here's another interesting solution. Have a "click to request bye" and "click to accept bye" button, which gives each player a half point for the first game and quarter point for the second. And have it so byes cannot be requested on the last day of the month. So that it would be worth it to play your games, but if you couldn't, then active players could get more points. And if you were inactive it would push you down faster. This would be easy to implement and would require zero administrative oversight.

As I am sure you are aware there are quite a number of other solutions which have been presented over the years. None of them are perfect but come on, this is not about "get off my lawn", that is patronizing and shows you don't really understand the depth of this problem. It's been a while now, daal -- simply stating "this is a place to study and learn" has revealed itself a poor strategy in isolation.

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Post #17 Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 10:00 am 
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In this one i'm with usagi.
4 games per month seem far too few, it's less than one game per week...

Also this goes to the admins, for October the league seems particularly inactive. Just check the percentages of games played in the lower categories.

Delta: 0.8
Gamma4: 1.7
Gamma3: 5.9
Gamma2: 4.3
Gamma1: 3.0

Also bear in mind that this is October 12th which means already 40% of the month has passed. Now compare 40% with the above statistics and don't tell me that the league won't get 100% activity. I am aware of that but still these numbers are way too low.
A very simple solution; just close some leagues, let's say delta and gamma4 for 1 month. What i mean by close is this: reduce the number of leagues till the activity (percentage of games) rise to an acceptable number and let the lowest league be your new Delta. You might wanna change the name of the leagues but this is nothing really. The thing that might change is the promotion system between leagues, since you want have power of 2 leagues but this shouldn't be also a problem. For example if you close Delta and Gamma4 and let Gamma3 be your new Delta you will have 5 leagues for November (just name them alph-epsilon or something). Less leagues with more people means higher activity and the thing is this; if you decide that the leagues are active enough you can create a new league for the next month. Consider this as a releasing pressure mechanism. When the activity rises enough you increase the number of leagues so you decrease the activity (pressure). If the activity (pressure) is low you delete a league and thus you increase the pressure. It's pretty fundamental really.


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Post #18 Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2013 1:34 am 
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usagi wrote:

So your going to let 100 inactive people sit in the league all month doing nothing and ruining it for everyone again?


Please explain why the league is being ruined. I really don't understand.

usagi wrote:
Let's assume what you said is true -- the ASR is not for people who are "serious about ASR", but for people who are "serious about studying and improving". So why is the membership requirement a minimum number of games, instead of giving a review or teaching someone?

Maybe, if you want the league to be about studying and learning, then instead of pretending it isn't a league, you could state the membership requirements in another way. Here's one suggestion: "You have to participate in at least four reviews of your own games per month in order to remain in the league." A better way might be to state this in a positive and have games which are reviewed count for an extra half-point. That is probably better than punishing people for not making a quota.


I personally think this is a good idea. The main reason something like this hasn't been implemented however is because it is impractical to enforce.

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Post #19 Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:17 am 
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daal wrote:
usagi wrote:

So your going to let 100 inactive people sit in the league all month doing nothing and ruining it for everyone again?


Please explain why the league is being ruined. I really don't understand.


Due to an excessive and ongoing amount of inactivity, the function of the league has been retarded.

1/2 the people in Gamma 1 are inactive and it's the middle of the month. Gamma 2 is the same. Gamma 3 is marginally better (because i'm in it -- a little light humor). Gamma 4 is worse. So in other words, it would be better for teaching, studying and learning, if you kicked out the 40-50 players in Gamma who haven't even played a game yet, and just made 2 rooms.

As WayneC pointing out that the safe zone was originally meant to address the problem where "if the inactivity level in a group is high, people will be demoted who would not otherwise be demoted." Thus we come to the "demotion safe zone" rule (see thread title). WayneC continues, "What we have seen happen since the safe zones were introduced is that they have gradually been extended to the point where in Beta they currently produce the same effect as if inactivity kicks counted as demotions." In short, the safe zone rule is now exactly equivalent to a rule where you simply demote people for inactivity instead of removing them from the league.

What have we learned. The minimum game rule and the safe zone rule don't really do anything to improve the quality of games played in the league. Actually they don't really do anything that doesn't happen in practice naturally -- especially in alpha and beta rooms.

WayneC raised an interesting point, that it seems most of the inactives are players who are new to the league (Has anyone actually sat down and done the research on what % this is?). Splatted seems to agree. People are just "trying out" the league and join, get promoted to Gamma (because anyone who plays games in delta gets promoted) and then they quit the league. Allow me to rephrase what he said. "Delta and Gamma are a 2 month waiting list to get into the real league". Look at the inactivity levels in alpha and beta. They're minimal. They effectively don't mean much.

Looked at another way, if you just ran a straight normal league, like most other leagues, without all these fancy rules, all you would need to do is screen for activity before allowing players to join the league.

Please look at the system you have, and how it works in practice. In order to get around screening people you screen people by making them jump thru delta and gamma. And then once they get into beta and alpha where inactivity does not matter as much, you impose a set of rules designed to control inactive people in delta and gamma. This does not make sense, but it is how the league works now.

daal wrote:
I personally think [tracking reviews] is a good idea. The main reason something like this hasn't been implemented however is because it is impractical to enforce.


I disagree. The script can handle it and you can do spot checks. The computer can even place reviews with a low filesize increase at the top of the list for spot checks.

Anyways that's not the only solution -- just one I think would work.

In a way, I don't even care. Once I get promoted out of Gamma this won't affect me.

daal wrote:
You think the league would be better off by telling 250 of them to shape up or ship out? I don't.


Then why do we end up kicking 80 people out of the league each month? If a few simple checks and balances could be introduced which would stop the problem before it occurs, wouldn't that be a good thing?

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 Post subject: Re: The demotion SAFEZONE
Post #20 Posted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 9:22 am 
Dies in gote

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Rank: AGA 1 dan
KGS: drgoplayer
adding a 1/2 point for reviews sounds interesting.

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