ECF Membership Reform

Debate directly related to English Chess Federation matters.
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Paul Cooksey
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Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2016 4:15 pm

ECF Membership Reform

Post by Paul Cooksey » Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:39 pm

I assume everyone on this forum knows that the ECF is working on new membership options. As-is, flat fee, merged gold-silver seem like fair descriptions.

Splitting off a discussion from government funding, although they are related:
Roger de Coverly wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:19 pm
Paul Cooksey wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:02 pm
The plan in the last ECF budget was to grow membership income from 235k to 306k by 2025.
How would they plan to do that without putting prices up and perhaps abolishing the freebies? Are there signs of a 1972 style boom or even a 1993 one?
Growth was ahead of projections. I am uncomfortable calling it a boom, but some people do.

I suspect we will see the three membership proposals all the last minute and all will assume that the ECF Council wants the ECF to have as much income as the membership can be persuaded to give it. In fairness, if you view ECF politics as amateur chess organisers and professional chess organisers trying to find agreement, this is something they tend to agree on, and that is an overwhelming majority.

Ian Jamieson
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Ian Jamieson » Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:52 pm

Paul Cooksey wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:39 pm
I assume everyone on this forum knows that the ECF is working on new membership options. As-is, flat fee, merged gold-silver seem like fair descriptions.

Splitting off a discussion from government funding, although they are related:
Roger de Coverly wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:19 pm
Paul Cooksey wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:02 pm
The plan in the last ECF budget was to grow membership income from 235k to 306k by 2025.
How would they plan to do that without putting prices up and perhaps abolishing the freebies? Are there signs of a 1972 style boom or even a 1993 one?
Growth was ahead of projections. I am uncomfortable calling it a boom, but some people do.

I suspect we will see the three membership proposals all the last minute and all will assume that the ECF Council wants the ECF to have as much income as the membership can be persuaded to give it. In fairness, if you view ECF politics as amateur chess organisers and professional chess organisers trying to find agreement, this is something they tend to agree on, and that is an overwhelming majority.
Persuaded or forced?

Roger de Coverly
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:04 pm

Paul Cooksey wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 12:39 pm
I suspect we will see the three membership proposals all the last minute
The most recent minutes of Board meetings https://www.englishchess.org.uk/wp-cont ... d-2023.pdf suggest divisions

12. Membership Options (MT/RW)
Further work was required in order to be able to submit a more detailed proposal on membership options for consideration by Council at the AGM in October, and a face-to-face/hybrid Board meeting would be arranged as soon as that work was substantially complete to discuss the subject further. It was hoped that the Board as a whole would be able to lend its support to a proposal to Council, but it was accepted that such a consensus might not be achievable

Mike Gunn
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Mike Gunn » Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:37 pm

I don't know what the current proposals would be but one idea would be:

Club/ league players (only): £20
Congress players (only): £20
Play in both: £40.

This would remove what seems to be a minor injustice to some congress players (those who only play in congresses) under the current system.

Ian Thompson
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Location: Awbridge, Hampshire

Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Ian Thompson » Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:52 pm

Mike Gunn wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:37 pm
I don't know what the current proposals would be but one idea would be:

Club/ league players (only): £20
Congress players (only): £20
Play in both: £40.

This would remove what seems to be a minor injustice to some congress players (those who only play in congresses) under the current system.
That suggestion definitely has merit, but "play in both" perhaps ought to be less than the sum of the other two to avoid complaints of having to pay twice for the same thing where there is overlap between what is provided by the other two categories.

Angus French
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Angus French » Tue Aug 08, 2023 3:02 pm

Mike Gunn wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:37 pm
I don't know what the current proposals would be but one idea would be:

Club/ league players (only): £20
Congress players (only): £20
Play in both: £40.

This would remove what seems to be a minor injustice to some congress players (those who only play in congresses) under the current system.
When the membership scheme was introduced about 10 years ago, the adult fees for the categories were set based on the average number of graded games played. When I last checked, for the 2016/17 season (when decent grading data was still provided to local result officers), the correlation was still good. The fee for adult Bronze membership was £15 and adult Bronze members played an average of 14.2 standard play games (or the equivalent, counting rapidplay games as half a standardplay game). The figures for adult Silver membership were £22 and 24.0. And for adult Gold membership they were £32 and 33.7.
I think this is the sort of thing that ought to be taken into account when discussing changes to the membership scheme.

Dragoljub Sudar
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Dragoljub Sudar » Tue Aug 08, 2023 4:26 pm

Mike Gunn wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:37 pm
I don't know what the current proposals would be but one idea would be:

Club/ league players (only): £20
Congress players (only): £20
Play in both: £40.

This would remove what seems to be a minor injustice to some congress players (those who only play in congresses) under the current system.
So we should have to pay £13 extra to be able to what we currently can for £27?

The most sensible thing to do is merge Bronze and Silver and charge about £23

Mike Gunn
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Mike Gunn » Tue Aug 08, 2023 4:40 pm

You would get the added benefit of FIDE rated games.

Angus French
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Angus French » Tue Aug 08, 2023 4:59 pm

Dragoljub Sudar wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 4:26 pm
Mike Gunn wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 1:37 pm
I don't know what the current proposals would be but one idea would be:

Club/ league players (only): £20
Congress players (only): £20
Play in both: £40.

This would remove what seems to be a minor injustice to some congress players (those who only play in congresses) under the current system.
So we should have to pay £13 extra to be able to what we currently can for £27?

The most sensible thing to do is merge Bronze and Silver and charge about £23
Can I refer you to the post which preceded yours? Bronze members play less rated chess. Proposals to merge Bronze and Silver categories have twice come before Council and been rejected. The feedback I got as a Bronze members' rep was that Bronze members aren't interested in paying more to allow them to play in non-FIDE-rated tournaments. If they were, they'd be Silver members already.

Mick Norris
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Location: Bolton, Greater Manchester

Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Mick Norris » Tue Aug 08, 2023 5:09 pm

Based on past experience, if simplification means some people paying more, they are going to complain as Angus has indicated

I think the best you could do is to freeze the higher category membership (silver in that example) and gradually increase the lower (bronze) to catch up

Have the members (not delegates/voters) agreed there is a problem with the current membership structure?
Any postings on here represent my personal views

Dragoljub Sudar
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Dragoljub Sudar » Tue Aug 08, 2023 6:37 pm

I didn't' realise Mike's idea above included FIDE rated games. However, if I wanted to play FIDE rated games I would become a Gold member. Currently I don't, so I'm happy to remain at Silver.

I would be interested to know during the past few pre lockdown seasons how many Bronze members upgraded to Silver and Gold and how many Silver members upgraded to Gold.

Paul Cooksey
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Paul Cooksey » Tue Aug 08, 2023 6:40 pm

I think Angus is asking a relevant question. But I have a different point of view - I think it is important that the ECF spends more than 2/3 of its income on admin. If single tier membership changed that significantly I would be happy to break the relationship between games played and membership tiers.

Ian Jamieson
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Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2007 4:00 pm

Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Ian Jamieson » Tue Aug 08, 2023 6:52 pm

Paul Cooksey wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 6:40 pm
I think Angus is asking a relevant question. But I have a different point of view - I think it is important that the ECF spends more than 2/3 of its income on admin. If single tier membership changed that significantly I would be happy to break the relationship between games played and membership tiers.
Is there a word missing here?

I can see why it would be prudent that the ECF spends NO more or less than 2/3 of its income on admin but I can’t personally see why it is important that the ECF spends more than 2/3 of its income on admin.

Paul Cooksey
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Paul Cooksey » Tue Aug 08, 2023 7:05 pm

Just a lack of clarity due to poor writing. Maybe I should have said significant or relevant rather than important.

Hok Yin Stephen Chiu
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Re: ECF Membership Reform

Post by Hok Yin Stephen Chiu » Sat Aug 12, 2023 8:37 pm

Dragoljub Sudar wrote:
Tue Aug 08, 2023 4:26 pm
The most sensible thing to do is merge Bronze and Silver and charge about £23
This is just objectively sensible.
G. Secretary, https://WarwickChessAlumni.blogspot.com/
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