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Make a ruling--easy

Posted By: phil simborg
Date: Friday, 7 March 2014, at 6:24 a.m.

In Response To: Make a ruling (Bob Koca)

The player made a legal move and picked up his dice. Neither player noticed an illegal move, and there is no justification within the rules that the role should not stand.

The same is true when a player rolls a 6-4 and hits a checker with the 4 but forgets to pick it up, and he picks up his dice and it was obvious he intended to hit, but the hit was not required as he could have played the 6 first.

These are not illegal moves. The are bad moves.

Now, should the other player allow him to correct it? That is an entirely different question.

I believe that players only have an obligation to play by the rules and play by the intent of the rules.

With NLM the intent is to be able to use your "option" to your advantage, as has been done thousands of times by a lot more people than just Herb Gurland.

With LM the intent is not to take advantage of a player who makes a silly, innocent slip. If I were playing in a legal moves tournament, and the situation you described happened, I would have no doubt what the rule is and what the ruling should be, but because I am playing in an event that clearly promotes good sportsmanship and not taking advantage of silly errors like this, I personally would give him the game (unless I had reason not to, like his not being a very good sport with me, or if I have a history with that person where I know he would never cut me any slack...but currently I don't know anyone playing in the U.S. today that I would not give the game to in this situation.)

Having said that, if someone else decided not to be so generous, I cannot fault him for following the rules.

Perhaps situations like this should be specifically stated so that there is no ambiguity, and to be consistent with other slips that are of a similar nature, which proponents of LM believe should not be penalized, it's pretty consistent not to penalize this error either.

Now, if you, or anyone things the player should not get to take 2 checkers off, I guess you are a proponent of NLM. It's hard for me to be in favor of not penalizing a player for one and not the other, because they are really the same kind of mistake.

Now, I must add, to defend myself against one or two critics who have made remarks about this: this is JUST MY OPINION I am expressing. I'm not telling anyone else what they should do or they should believe. I am telling everyone else what I think is right and hope that if they agree they will jump on the bandwagon and make their feelings known so that we can change this game to something people who believe this way find fairer and friendly and more sportsmanlike and enjoyable and welcoming to new players. If you don't agree, fine, you are entitled to your opinion too.

Now, if I were a tournament director (MFIC) then when I say this is the rule, that is the rule, and then you could accuse me of telling people what to do. I am trying to "ask" tournament directors to use LM and create that kind of game.

I am pretty sure that this example of Bob's is really no different from the LM approach.

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