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 Post subject: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 4:49 pm 
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I have sent the following message to all of this year's Eurobowl captains. Happy for open discussion too of course, but many of them don't use TFF so I took the direct route.

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Hello,

As one of the national captains for this year’s Eurobowl, I am writing to you regarding the subject of future hosting rights. There never seems to be time to discuss it properly in the Saturday morning captains’ meeting, so I thought we might discuss a few things in advance (Purplegoo is English captain this year but is aware of this message). I have no problem with the rules for this year: that the top placed nation who have never held a Eurobowl get to host the next one. But there is a concern that eventually this will not be suitable, and I strongly feel that we should think about this before we encounter problems. With a gap before the next Eurobowl in 2017 because of the World Cup, we have a natural pause where we might think about how we want to move forward.

The Belgians look to have done a fantastic job this year, with a record 258 coaches attending the Eurobowl and Europen side event. But this very success means that the event may outgrow the ability of some smaller nations to cope with. There are a number of nations who have yet to host, but perhaps might struggle to put on an event of the size we are now seeing. I believe Austria felt a lot of pressure in their efforts to put on the 2013 event, with a number of volunteers dropping out along the way. Putting on an event approaching 300 people requires a huge community infrastructure, and I wonder in hindsight how willing they would be to take on the task again? I don’t want single out Austria in particular, but there was a distinct lack of communication in the months leading up to the event. For the English it was very much a case of turning up in another country and hoping everything was okay (and it turned out to be). This year the Belgians have designated someone specifically to the task of communications, and it has been most welcome.

It is clear that there are three nations who seem very keen to host in the future: Scotland, Sweden and Wales. I don’t want to deny them this, and this is not about getting the Eurobowl back into the ‘big’ nations. These three nations would no doubt do a great job, and should be allowed the opportunity. As should any other nation who wants to in the future, even those who at the moment feel they would not be able to do it. But at the moment hosting is awarded before any real planning can be done. In three week’s time one nation will be told “you have to run a 300 man event, you have 6 months to organise it, everyone is relying on you”. Pretty scary stuff.

I think it is time to give nations the opportunity to know in advance what they are letting themselves in for, and also for the other nations to have some confidence in advance that what will be an expensive event is in good hands. There seems to be one obvious way to do this: move to a bidding process. That way everyone involved can have confidence that the Eurobowl and Europen will be in good hands.

So I propose the following.

Proposal :
1) Retain the existing hosting rules to determine the 2016 event (based on placings at the 2014 event).

2) For hosting of the 2017 events onward, use a bidding process similar to the World Cup. The process would need to complete at least 18 months prior to an event in order to give the hosts time to prepare. This means the break for a World Cup is the only time we could introduce this system.

3) This process should include a view that nations who have never hosted should be given preference (assuming a sound bid).

4) Each nation that played in the Eurobowl previous to the bidding process would get one vote.

5) Each nation would decide for itself how to use that vote (national poll, captain’s pick, team of 8 pick etc.).

This process would allow the traditions of Eurobowl to continue, with the added benefit of potential hosts knowing in advance what is involved, and giving the community viable back up plans should a nation need to pull out.


Thanks

Joe Hainstock (Joemanji)

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Last edited by Joemanji on Mon Oct 20, 2014 5:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 5:13 pm 
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One small point. You got the years wrong I think.

The next eurobowl, after this one, is in 2016. World cup in 2015.


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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 5:15 pm 
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Cool, cheers!

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 5:38 pm 
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A few thoughts if I may...

Did I recall there being talk about the Belgians creating some kind of a guide to hosting Eurobowl?

Seemed like a very good idea. I think it would be good to have a list of *basic requirements*, then a list of organisational *suggestions*.

The most important basic requirement (in my opinion) would be that it should meet the NAF requirements on being a NAF approved selection based tournament – namely it should include a fundamentally open side tournament, and ask EB teams to be selected by consensus / community discussion / democratic means.

Further to that I’d argue EB and EO should be given equal status as a basic requirement. So EO would not just be an afterthought, added in at the last minute, but integral to the concept from the outset. Organisers should expect a 250-300+ player field to accommodate 100+ tournaments for both EB and EO.

The rest would be suggestions re costing, scheduling, food and drink, communication, results and IT etc. etc. There’s the issue of rules too, but that would effectively be a minor discussion relative to the above stuff. They should also be aware that there are countless people in the community who would be prepared to help if asked.

If potential organisers feel they can meet the basic requirements, prior to the previous EB after considerable thought and community internal discussion, then they should be considered. Their word would be their bond; we’re a strong community and I don’t expect any nation would make a promise they could host if they knew they could not fulfil it.

As to when we restart the current cycle of highest non-hoster hosting…

I’m not sure that waiting until absolutely everyone has hosted is best. It will eventually come down to a dwindling set of potential hosters, and may lack suspense. It may not give us the best quality event.

I think a neat solution would be to restart it from 2018 for the 2020 EB, so after three Eurobowls and a World Cup (2019). That gives three further nations the chance to host. From Switzerland, Sweden, Wales, Scotland, Hungary, Norway, Portugal, Finland, others – I’m sure three out of these eight would do a fantastic job. Gives them a fair shot at hosting, and is a simple way to restart it.

I think I would then favour returning to the ‘winner hosts’ method. Bids are too messy in my opinion.


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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:41 pm 
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Plus one to the lanky Geordie's comments.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2014 11:09 pm 
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Pippy wrote:
Did I recall there being talk about the Belgians creating some kind of a guide to hosting Eurobowl?

Seemed like a very good idea. I think it would be good to have a list of *basic requirements*, then a list of organisational *suggestions*.
I believe this is the case, looking forward to reading it. :)

Pippy wrote:
The most important basic requirement (in my opinion) would be that it should meet the NAF requirements on being a NAF approved selection based tournament – namely it should include a fundamentally open side tournament, and ask EB teams to be selected by consensus / community discussion / democratic means.

Further to that I’d argue EB and EO should be given equal status as a basic requirement. So EO would not just be an afterthought, added in at the last minute, but integral to the concept from the outset. Organisers should expect a 250-300+ player field to accommodate 100+ tournaments for both EB and EO.
All seems very sensible. The sort of stuff that seems obvious but maybe needs to be written down somewhere 'official'.

Pippy wrote:
The rest would be suggestions re costing, scheduling, food and drink, communication, results and IT etc. etc. There’s the issue of rules too, but that would effectively be a minor discussion relative to the above stuff. They should also be aware that there are countless people in the community who would be prepared to help if asked.

If potential organisers feel they can meet the basic requirements, prior to the previous EB after considerable thought and community internal discussion, then they should be considered. Their word would be their bond; we’re a strong community and I don’t expect any nation would make a promise they could host if they knew they could not fulfil it.
My concern is that this is the difficult bit to know if you can do. At the moment many nations will be starting to plan from scratch on November 10th. Christmas comes soon, so maybe not much gets done before then. Then how long does it take for the Estonian volunteer to realise that the logistics don't work or he can't find a venue or the promised help from locals hasn't been forthcoming? Two months? What do we do if come March Estonia bail out? I know some nations have plans in mind - awesome. But my main aim here is that nations know what they are getting themselves in for. Running a 250+ person tournament for international travellers is very different from running a 20 person tournament in a pub.

Pippy wrote:
As to when we restart the current cycle of highest non-hoster hosting…

I’m not sure that waiting until absolutely everyone has hosted is best. It will eventually come down to a dwindling set of potential hosters, and may lack suspense. It may not give us the best quality event.

I think a neat solution would be to restart it from 2018 for the 2020 EB, so after three Eurobowls and a World Cup (2019). That gives three further nations the chance to host. From Switzerland, Sweden, Wales, Scotland, Hungary, Norway, Portugal, Finland, others – I’m sure three out of these eight would do a fantastic job. Gives them a fair shot at hosting, and is a simple way to restart it.

I think I would then favour returning to the ‘winner hosts’ method. Bids are too messy in my opinion.
That is quite an elegant solution, very simple. I could live with it. In an ideal world we'd go round everybody once. But because of climate and relative cost of living that may not be possible or desirable.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 3:36 pm 
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I agree with most of what Bren said, however I still believe that it would be essentially wrong for a country that has already hosted to host again over a country that hasn't had the chance.

I understand there is a big difference in running a 25 man torni in a boozer from running a 300+ man EB, but as far as I know, only Holland and the UK have done that before? (apologies to any nation if they have done this, not sure how big the last EB in Denmark was). So does that mean only the two nations who have proved they can do it (3 after this year and 4 after next EB if successful) can apply?

I agree that every nation wanting to host should maybe put a proposal forward before the EB to see if they are eligible and then those nations eligible can playoff for the right? Some nations out of these 8 mentioned have not actually said they would so we maybe talking about something that may not matter.

With Brens suggestion, if 4 out of those want/can host one would almost certainly miss out for around 10 years before they have any chance of hosting which doesn't sit right with me, the majority of those nations are not going to be challenging the power houses anytime soon.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 3:53 pm 
Rapdog - formally known as Pippy
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So you favour everyone getting the right to host if they want to. Shouldn't you have to win the right? After all, the original right of 'winner hosts' was generously handed down to the next highest nation by the Italians way back when they won for the third time - the tradition of having another nation win the opportunity to host was born.

That model will eventually lead to there bring just one willing/able nation left in the pot i.e. the right being automatically bestowed regardless of where they finish. Is that the best way? It would be pretty suspenseless if you ask me.

I do think restarting after the 2019 world cup is a neat solution...


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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:20 pm 
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Valen wrote:
I understand there is a big difference in running a 25 man torni in a boozer from running a 300+ man EB, but as far as I know, only Holland and the UK have done that before? (apologies to any nation if they have done this, not sure how big the last EB in Denmark was). So does that mean only the two nations who have proved they can do it (3 after this year and 4 after next EB if successful) can apply?
I guess not. But there are some nations who have never hosted a single NAF tournament of any size. Whereas there are nations with good experience to draw upon: running multiple medium-sized events, regularly attending large events such as the majors, large player base. So this isn't a catch-22 of "need it to get it", but rather "have experience of it to understand it". There are plenty of 80, 90, 100+ coach events around.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:25 pm 
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Pippy wrote:
So you favour everyone getting the right to host if they want to. ... That model will eventually lead to there being just one willing/able nation left in the pot i.e. the right being automatically bestowed regardless of where they finish. Is that the best way? It would be pretty suspenseless if you ask me..


Yes - we would be guaranteed to host eventually and that is important to the Scots! Imagine if there was just one slot left and 3 teams going for it before it reset, how gutted would two of those teams be having strived for years for the prize the smaller Blood Bowl nations aspire to (having no realistic chance of winning Eurobowl). Hosting is the "smaller" national teams realistic ambition and a coming of age for that nation in the Blood Bowl community.

What is driving the other nations who have already hosted to take this away from the "smaller" nations?

If it is capability then Edinburgh, Scotland's capital city hosts the largest international festival in the world, the largest hogmanay (new year's eve) festival in the world, the longest continuously running film festival in the world etc. etc. I am semi retired and would be happy to devout considerable time to the organisation of a Eurobowl in Edinburgh.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:35 pm 
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If I understand correctly (and apologies if I'm missing something), the interested nations are countries that are eligible to host (having not previously hosted) and have expressed an interest in hosting. Would it be asking too much for the interested nations to submit a hosting plan prior to the EuroBowl (starting 2016 I guess) in order to be eligible to win the right to host? Not sure what should be included, but I guess we'd be looking to see evidence of a team in place with plans prepared to host. Something sufficient to reassure the community that they will be ready to host if they win the right but not too onerous to raise an obstacle.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2014 10:53 pm 
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I think the important is a the team who want to organize the Eurobowl more than the nation.
For us, in the Portuguese group the majority have already organise tournaments (blood bowl or other).
We are already thinking in the organisation (place, software, events...)

I agree with you that it is a big thing to organise a Eurobowl.
I think that is very good thing that each year we visit a new country.

Why don't organise a committee that help the organisator (we can make procedures, documents, softwares) that can be reuse and improve at each eurobowl.

The committee can also check that the preparition is gooing well.

Instead of opposing the countries we can make things better together.

What do you think?

I think that winning the organisation of the Eurobowl is a good thing that can motivate the players.

Why don't use Jomanji system to validate (or no) the projects.

After the teams who have a selectionned project and don't have yet organised the eurobowl and have the better result , will organise next eurobowl.

Maybe, we can say if we have less than a minimum of 5 or 8 countries we complete the list with countries having already winning with a minus of by exemple 10 points by eurobowl organisation.

Another consideration is to organise in a city where no Eurobowl have been done.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:46 am 
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If there is concern around the lack of competition to host, or lack of suspense rather than restarting the process it might be better to introduce a time limit. Therefore, countries become eligible to host if they haven't hosted in the previous 10 years (for example). This would mean that every year, one country would become eligible again.
Based on this year's competition with 17 countries competing, a ten year limit would mean a regular pool of 7 countries competing to host. Increasing that to 12 years would reduce it to a pool of 5 giving the smaller countries a better chance to host. It would also fit in nicely with the EuroBowl schedule as they are run in blocks of three skipping World Cup years.
Bear in mind the eligible pool cold be smaller still as I'm assuming all countries want to host.

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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 11:35 am 
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On reflection, I wouldn’t say that I’m absolutely set on there being competition and suspense. I just feel the 2020 restart might be an elegant way to do it, so everyone knows where they stand.

If the EB community decides it would prefer to let the current hosting method roll until every nation gets the chance to host, then that’s fair enough by me. I do agree that visiting different countries is a fantastic tradition to uphold. We’d just have to make sure we all work together so EB and EO continue to meet the high standards that the Belgians seem to be setting.

Obviously feels like one for the communities themselves to decide through their captains. I’d say we need to agree a clear plan now so we all know the score going into EB/EO 2016.


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 Post subject: Re: Open letter re: the future of Eurobowl hosting
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 4:23 pm 
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Ok so to summarise from my perspective there are two topics:

1. Competition for hosting
or everybody eventually will host.

This is a choice. There is no true or false, both has merits.
Competition means we can reset sometime and introduce older nations to the pool and have "suspense".
Everybody hosts, means the nation who has not hosted and attended gets to host, if there are more than one, only then there is a competition between those.
Later own some process to repeat when everybody hosted at least once etc ...
We don't have to go into details of the two aspects.
We can go on for ages here and formulate opinions.
I am fine with both approaches.
For me it boils down to how do we come to a decision!

Because the one thing I do want is to have this clarified for next eurobowl and not discuss without deciding once again in two years.
So question: how to vote / decide ?

2. Prerequisites for having the right to host.

So initially a proposal from joe was a bidding process, and I do understand the reasoning.
I think the "special" bloodbowl events are the ones everybody wants to join and they are getting bigger and bigger on size (just look at world cups and eurobowls, which as mentioned got bigger due to Europen, which indeed should stay part of eurobowl)

So I do also think this MAY be for a "new,small" country a challenge and burden.
My proposal would be just to slightly increase the prerequisite of hosting:
Besides attending 2 out of the last 3 eurobowls (btw. Where does it say that?),
They should come to eurobowl with a document showing their plans and arrangement they have already done for the "what-if" scenario.
So this is no bid, but just some pass/fail gate
E.g. If one nation has not even thought of a location or wants to do it in the backyard of a friend etc. they may not compete.
the bar for something like that is not that high, but it forces a nation to have already formed a team and discussed options.
So as I understand nations that are eager to host like the welsh , anyway have this in the cupboard.
So all that would be asked that everybody shows a reasonable plan, that's all.
How reasonable is reasonable and who decides that , we can discuss in the upcoming 2 years.

For now we just need to decide if we want this criteria (or something like that)to be added
And similar to above, how to come to a decision.

Cheers
Oventa

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