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1
Dominion League / Re: Season 38 - Newsletter: The Last Six-Tier Season
« on: January 21, 2020, 11:15:33 pm »
Full Rules Meeting Minutes:
  • Returning Form Questions
    • Suggested Schedules
      • Poll: Which divisions should get suggested schedules? (Approval voting.)
        • (0) All divisions.
        • (5) All with at least one new player.
        • (4) All with at least two new players.
        • (7) All in E and F.
        • (3) All in D, E and F.
        • (3) No divisions.
      • Consensus was that they were helpful for new players and lower-tier divisions, but useless for experienced and higher-tier divisions. Both factors seemed important, and tier-based conditions are simpler to execute.
      • New Player Seeding
        • Motion to seed New players ahead of Staying players.
          • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
        • Player opinion was pretty muted on this topic. Moderators went with the category with a better track record to reduce the chance of many good players ending up in the same division.
      • Town Hall
        • New Tier Structure
          • Motion to transition to the proposed tier system from the town hall (https://tinyurl.com/dl-tier-sizes) with the proposed transition scheme applying between any seasons <= 38 to >= 39.
            • Result: YES (unanimous)
          • Player opinion, as expressed in the town hall, was abundantly clear. It will take time to adjust to the new system, but it should increase competitiveness.
            • Motion not to worry about seeding comparisons for players with different season breaks across the boundary.
              • Result: YES (unanimous)
            • There will be issues comparing the recent League histories of players who take a break and then return. We will postpone discussion of how to handle the seeding for any such players until after the majority transition.
          • Suggestions from Discord
            • Championship match should affect seeding/display order
              • Should the championship winner be (somehow) listed first in the A1 division standings (with super minor seeding consequences)?
                • Result: YES (unanimous)
              • The only seeding effect is if both players demote with the same record the following season (or after any number of seasons in which they tie). The main ease is that it will mean the player listed first is the winner.
                • If there is a tie for 2nd place (including a 3-3 head-to-head) in the A1 division, should we (1) apply the second tiebreaker to break the tie, or (2) have another tiebreaker match to determine who gets to play in the championship?
                  • Result: Option 1 (1 dissenting)
                • An extra prerequisite match to add before the championship match would just add needless hassle to the end of the season. It also doesn't affect promotion or demotion, following our previous trend.
                  • Dissent (singletee): I'm generally opposed to the use of the second tiebreaker. I feel that the championship match and qualification for it are comparable in importance to promotion/demotion. This applies to A tier only, so the involved players are likely to be able to handle the extra-extra match.
                    • Should (1) the second tiebreaker break a complete tie (same overall record, 6-6 head-to-head) in the championship, or (2) should we have an armageddon game?
                      • Result: Option 2 (1 dissenting)
                    • Following the same rules as other ties atop divisions would require a 2-3 game match, but since they're already playing, tacking one game onto the end is more appropriate.
                      • In the Armageddon game, who should start?
                        • (2) The player who had a better head-to-head in the regular season
                        • (0) The player who has played better in the match so far is P1
                        • (7) Random start.
                      • This treats the regular-season and championship match equally, and also handles the case when both matches are 3-3.
                        • Dissent (nottoobad): In all other divisions, regular season head-to-head decides the winner when 1st and 2nd are otherwise tied. In the A division, it should still have some benefit regardless of championship match game 1-6 performance.
                      • Player Suggestions
                        • Match Announcements
                          • Motion not to make match announcements "mandatory" but to encourage them across the board.
                            • Result: YES (unanimous)
                          • One player suggested making them mandatory, but we decided that we didn't like any possible enforcement mechanisms. Instead, we will be providing instructions in the opening Discord posts to encourage announcements.
                          • Undo Policy
                            • Motion not to change the undo policy.
                              • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • One player wanted to outlaw undo's across the board. Undo's are important for players to play at a reasonable pace, which is why our default policy is fairly generous towards them.

                          2
                          Dominion League / Season 38 - Newsletter: The Last Six-Tier Season
                          « on: January 20, 2020, 11:26:56 pm »
                          Hello everyone!

                          At Season 37's Town Hall, we hammered out the details of a major overhaul of the League's tier system, and then the winning option was overwhelmingly favored over the status quo. Here's a quick synopsis if you missed it: We're adding two new tiers between the current D and E tiers, and E and F tiers, composed of equally many players from each of those neighboring tiers. Instead of calling these tiers "D/E" or "F+", we're just going to relabel all of the tiers A through H (just think of F and H as the old E and F, with the new E and G being those hybrid divisions).

                          With Season 38 as the last season on the old system, there will be special one-time rules for which positions will end up in which tiers in Season 39:


                          Other Changes
                          See the minutes which will be posted below for full details.
                          • Suggested schedules are back for divisions in E and below (both this season and in the future).
                          • New players will now be seeded above players returning to the same tier.
                          • We clarified some rules around the championship match.

                          Moderator Churn
                          For the second straight season, all ten moderators will be continuing on. Hooray for a consistent team!

                          Suggestions?
                          As a reminder, you can reply to this forum post with any reasonably-complete suggestions you would like the moderators to discuss at their next rules meeting, tentatively scheduled for the weekend of March 14-15, and we guarantee we will discuss and vote on your suggestion. (You can also still give feedback in the Returning Forms and through Town Halls as usual.)

                          3
                          Commentary from myself and drsteelhammer:



                          Congratulations to               RTT              !

                          4
                          Link for streaming?

                          Tune in by friending one of the players on the client (or looking for the game by sorting tables by number of spectators) and listen to our commentary in the Moderated Stream Chat channel on the Dominion Discord.

                          5
                          Dominion League / Season 37 - Newsletter: Changes Afoot
                          « on: November 25, 2019, 10:43:57 pm »
                          Hello everyone!

                          We've now had three town halls, and at the latest, we discussed the biggest changes yet. While most of those changes were not particularly popular, it is still helpful to know where people stand. And in a couple cases, the moderators decided to buck that unpopularity and experiment with the alternative!

                          Summary of (Rules) Changes
                          See the Rules and Regulations Changelog (once it's updated) and/or the minutes below for the full details.
                          • The strength-of-wins second tiebreaker is now removed for Season 37 on an experimental basis for promotion/demotion determination only. This means that if you and one opponent finish with the same number of wins and a 3-3 result in your head-to-head match, and your position matters for promotion or demotion, you will be invited to play a 2-3 game match to break the tie. (Unlike your regular League matches, you are allowed to forfeit.) We expect this to happen to 1-5 pairs of players this season, and hope it will make the end of the season more exciting.
                          • Starting in Season 37, if there are more players seeking to return to a tier than there are positions, we will create one or more 7-player divisions. These flexible division sizes will hopefully make it very rare to be unable to return to the tier that you earned should you take a break of up to 5 seasons.
                          • Returning players will have the opportunity to express your degree of time zone flexibility to better assist moderators in balancing division sizes. There will be a post in #announcements in Discord for you to express this flexibility for Season 37; in the future, it will be added via the Returning Form.
                          • We will remove the suggested schedules from the opening Discord posts for Season 37 to reduce their bloat.
                          • We have spelled out the rules for eligibility and processes for play-in matches for free promotions, which will still prioritize strong 2nd place finishers from the tier below.
                          • Dominion League Champions, both current and former, now have their own dedicated Discord roles.
                          • Starting in the signups for Season 38, a forum.dominionstrategy.com account will be optional for entering the League, which will be handled via a Google form going directly to the moderators.
                          • We are strongly considering the possibility of expanding the number of tiers (adding a G tier and maybe more) by reducing the doubling rate of expansion of the tier sizes. This will hopefully yield more competitive divisions in the lower tiers at the expense of some time zone specificity. We need to work out the details of this proposal and run it by everyone, so we invite you to the next Town Hall, tentatively scheduled for the weekend of January 12th-13th, to do so.

                          Moderator Churn
                          None! We are lucky to have the same set of ten moderators for two seasons in a row: alibby1152, Apostolosoruler, crlundy, Gazbag, Lemonspawn, nottoobad, SamE, singletee, volfied and wharf_rat.

                          Moderator Rules Meeting Minutes
                          • Returning Form Questions
                            • Top Candidates for Free Promotions
                              • Plurality (43%) favored giving free promotions to 2nd place finishers; only 25% favored 5th place finishers. Moderator discretion was advocated for, but we are uninterested in that kind of power, preferring to make good rules and stick to them.      
                              • Motion to retain the preference for 2nd place from the lower tier over 5th place from the higher tier when deciding play-in matches (A-C) and free promotions (D-E)
                                • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                              • Dissenting opinion (alibby1152): When considering players for free promotion, choosing 5th place demoters over 2nd place finishers from a lower tier falls directly in line with the new seeding rules. In particular, we determine seeding within a tier by the tier a player played in the previous season. A 5th place demoter would be ahead of the 2nd place finisher in that case. Furthermore, the 5th place demoter would be likely to have had a better most recent performance (1st) at the lower tier than any 2nd place finisher being considered.      
                              • Motion to rewrite the rules of Section IV in accordance with our policies on play-in matches and time zone divisions.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Match Points Before Game Points
                              • This was not a popular change, with a majority (57%) favoring the current total wins-based standings compared to only 21% in favor of match points. The League is not an elimination tournament.      
                              • Motion to retain the total wins-based standings (not switching to match points).
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Time Zone-Based Divisions in the D Tier
                              • This was the clearest of the polls, albeit with a smaller sample. 30 of the 39 players with a preference favored keeping the time zone regions. However, from reading the comments, we realized that some players might be super flexible and therefore helpful in making the division counts work out, so we will be asking players if this fits them on the Returning Form going forward.      
                              • Motion to keep the time zone regions (AM/EU) in D.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to add a question to the returning form asking whether players are super flexible and could play with any time zone division.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                          • Structure Town Hall
                            • Emoji Poll #1: 6- vs 7- person divisions
                              • 47% preferred 6-player divisions, while 34% preferred 7-player divisions. Given how much this would change the league, we decided it was not worth pursuing given that lack of public support.      
                              • Motion to keep a default of 6-player divisions.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #2: Removing Tiebreakers for Promotion/Demotion
                              • A 43% plurality preferred keeping both tiebreakers, with 29% of votes for removing the second tiebreaker. This was a surprising result to the moderators. The moderator team expressed a weariness with explaining the second tiebreaker over and over. We tried to simplify the formula to make it more intuitive, to no avail. Its justiification is rather arbitrary as all players have the same schedule. However, we are uncertain whether the tiebreaking matches resulting from its removal will cause too many extra matches which players will have difficulty finding the time to play. Previous seasons suggest this could happen up to 2-3 times a season, but we wanted to see how that would play out before making a permanent change.      
                              • Motion to remove the second tiebreaker for Season 37 on an experimental basis and re-evaluate at next season's rules meeting.
                                • Result: YES (3 dissenting)
                              • Dissenting opinion (crlundy): Removing the second tiebreaker means more ties will now need to be broken by playing a best-of-3 match. Scheduling an additional match during the season may be difficult for players, especially in tiers E and F. This moderator vote also opposes the results of Poll #2 from the League Structure Town Hall.      
                            • Emoji Poll #3: Tiebreakers for Seeding Purposes
                              • A 48% plurality favored keeping the second tiebreaker around for breaking ties that only affect seeding, essentially elevating the play-in match when promotion or demotion is on the line. We discussed how both of these options would be implemented and determined that both were about equally feasible, so we proceeded to a vote between the two options. However, first, we realized that we needed to handle the seeding of players who were completely tied after all tiebreakers appropriately in the standings, and averaging those positions seemed best.      
                              • Motion to seed players who are tied through all tiebreakers (and whose positions didn't affect promotion/demotion) with the average of the positions they would have received (independent of removing 2nd tiebreaker).
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Should we include the second tiebreaker to break ties for seeding purposes?
                                • (4) Keep the second tiebreaker (technically make it a hidden column, after the result of a play-off match if applicable)
                                • (3) Remove the second tiebreaker (average their finishes for seeding purposes).
                              • Majority opinion (): [to be added]      
                              • Dissenting opinion (SamE): If we're going to remove the second tiebreaker, let's get rid of it entirely. Also, the seeding outcome of breaking or not breaking the tie is pretty small, so it would be playing an even more diminished role out of proportion with its complexity.      
                            • Emoji Poll #4: Opting Out of Discord Tags
                              • Allowing players who fall behind to opt out of being tagged by the moderators' minions was not a popular idea. A full 48% preferred no one to have the ability to opt out. Given that players who are sticking to the ideal pace of matches will avoid being tagged, and how many difficulties we've had with players disappearing, we were not very sympathetic to their plight.      
                              • Motion to not allow anyone to opt out of being tagged if they are behind on their matches.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #5: Seasons Per Year
                              • This poll produced one of the clearest majorities, with 67% of players supporting six seasons per year. This didn't require much discussion among us to agree.      
                              • Motion to keep the current 6-seasons-per-year schedule.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #6: Tier Sizes
                              • And now, we come to the biggest poll of them all, which sparked lots of discussion later in the town hall. Fortunately, we were pretty unified on our perspective, that this should be a much longer discussion taking place in its own dedicated town hall, complete with many more charts and figures to understand the extent of the problem.      
                              • Motion to make the January Town Hall (tentatively January 11th-12th) all about the topic of Emoji Poll #6, i.e. adding more tiers and decreasing the rate at which tier size grows. The expectation is that something will change, but the status quo will be polled against the leading alternative(s). Any changes would not take place until Season 39.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #7: Two promoters / demoters between consecutive tiers of a similar size.
                              • This question will naturally be discussed again as part of the next town hall, but we still discussed its applicability to the current E and F tiers. Given that the F tier sometimes features small divisions, we were wary about promoting second place finishers across the board. However, this decision seemed similar to that of Poll #1, and if 2nd place finishers of the lower tier are preferred, that would suggest promoting and demoting two candidates. In the end, we decided that a change for just one season wasn't worth the work.      
                              • Motion to retain the 1 promoter / 1 demoter rule for E/F for Season 37, but re-evaluate at the town hall for any future pairs of similarly-sized divisions.-
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #8: Ordering of additional 2nd place candidates for promotion.
                              • Another clear poll, with 48% in favor of prioritizing runners-up by winning percentage compared to 13% preferring comparing to how many wins short they were. This is intended as a leveling mechanism to account for the noise in terms of the distribution of opponent performances across divisions.      
                              • Motion to maintain the priority of runners-up by winning percentage.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #9: Length of break before the earned tier expires.
                              • It seemed that no clear alternative emerged to the default maximum break length of 5 seasons, with 2 seasons getting the most votes at 17% still paling in comparison with the 38% that the status quo received. Given the 6 seasons per year, this means that every player must play at least once per 12-month cycle to stay active, which has some attraction for players who have a seasonal schedule. However, it doesn't much matter as not that many players return after 3-5 seasons of break.      
                              • Motion to keep the tier expiration at a 5-season break.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Emoji Poll #10: Champion perks.
                              • Giving the current champion a role was nearly unanimous. The channel was more controversial with a plurality opposed to it. We decided that it would mostly invite unnecessary drama.      
                              • Motion to give the current League Champion a role with a slightly lighter green color.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to give former Champions a non-colored role.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to not give former champions their own private channel.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                          • Feedback from the Returning Form
                            • Add leaderboard level back into standings
                              • A suggestion of Fircoal was to add level information back into the standings as this gave a general sense of the ability of those players. However, this had been a pain to implement successfully, with IMPORTRANGE issues and the leaderboard being as large as it is. We figured it was too much of a hassle.      
                              • Motion to keep the level information out of the standings (too technically "expensive").
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                          • Moderator Suggestions
                            • Remove the suggested schedule
                              • In implementing seven-player divisions, we realized that there is no possible 6-week suggested schedule for a seven-player division with one match per week per player (can't have 3.5 matches each week). Rather than coming up with a more hackneyed schedule, we decided to do away with it for any seven-player divisions. In the process, we looked into whether we could remove it for everyone, as those opening Discord posts are getting quite long.      
                              • Should we remove the suggested schedules (you can vote for more than one)?
                                • (0) Yes, remove it permanently.
                                • (9) Try removing it for a season and see how it goes.
                                • (1) Keep it.
                              • Majority opinion (SamE): We'll see if people have trouble and ask about who they should play first, particularly newcomers.      
                              • Dissenting opinion (Apostolosoruler): [to be added]      
                          • Leftover from last season
                            • Remove forum requirement
                              • A recurring discussion among the moderators. The forum is still used rarely to get in touch with players who go out of contact on Discord; a quick poll of the moderators suggested that half of them had used it in the past season in that way. However, forum communication has become otherwise minimal, and it would be nicer to new players for them to only have to make a Discord account. Given that we've been kicking this can down the road for a long time, we decided to just take care of it now. The proposal is to move to a Google Form signup system starting in Season 38.      
                              • Should we delete the forum requirement starting with signups for Season 38?
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Flexible division sizes
                              • Finally, we get back to the original topic that led to the first proto-town hall discussion in #league. In between our last moderator meeting and this one, the mods had implemented an example seven-player division and changed all of the associated League components. That hadn't been that difficult, but we were now confident that we could do it. The original discussion in #league had led to a Returning Form poll with a clear plurality (45% to 18%) in favor of the change. From a theoretical perspective, this change will mean that we need fewer play-in matches, as the only times the number of players with a claim on a tier changes are play-in matches, players leaving and not returning within a year, and players failing to have the opportunity to return to a given tier. By reducing the last of these, we will also be reducing the number of play-in matches, with the players who leave providing an eventual forcing function (in addition to the season-to-season fluctuations back towards six players. In B, this means that a 7-player division might last 2-3 seasons, while in C, it will likely be gone after just one. But we'll have to see how this plays out in practice. Note that if we have any 7-player divisions, that means no play-in matches into that tier, so we will be able to announce the divisions as soon as signups close, giving those divisions almost an extra week before the season starts.      
                              • Motion to announce that we will implement flexible division sizes if necessary starting in Season 37.
                                • Result: YES (2 dissenting)
                              • Dissenting opinion (alibby1152): I believe that there are still a few issues that need to be fully addressed before implementing the flexible divisions. First, without a forcing back towards six player divisions (i.e., an additional demotion), I feel like we are on our way to making 7 player divisions the norm. Seven player divisions is a topic with mixed opinions within the community. Second, forcing players to play an additional match in the same amount of time as those in six player divisions poses potential scheduling difficulties. Lastly, imbalanced divisions within a tier puts players on unequal footing when it comes to promotion and demotion.               

                          6
                          Dominion League / Re: Season 37 - Signups
                          « on: November 15, 2019, 09:18:27 pm »
                          Can you request to be in group with someone in the same division?

                          I believe the answer to the question you're trying to ask is no. If the two of you are in the same tier and time zone region, you may or may not end up in the same division. Unless you're in the A tier or the Asia/Australia divisions in E/F, in which case there's only one division.

                          7
                          Dominion League / Season 36 - End of Season Deadlines
                          « on: November 11, 2019, 10:43:10 am »
                          Season 36 officially ends on Sunday, November 24. To account for the westernmost timezones, the deadline for reporting matches is Monday, November 25, at 15:00 UTC.

                          If you need extra time to finish, you must contact your group moderator to request an extension of up to one week. All late finish matches must be reported by Monday, December 2, at 15:00 UTC.

                          If you fail to request an extension or complete the match by the late deadline, the responsible player(s) will be considered to have dropped mid-season. This means that they are banned for the next two seasons, and automatically demoted when they return. If they played at least 18 games (three matches), those are kept for the other players' standings and their remaining matches are "simulated" (see the full rules for how), but if they did not complete that many, their results are removed.

                          In addition to finishing your matches, all players must fill out the returning form to tell us whether they will be back for next season. This form was sent to you in a private message; you can also find it in the pinned post in your Discord division channel. The deadline for filling out the returning form is Monday, December 2, at 15:00 UTC (the Season 37 signup deadline). Any players who have not told us whether they will be back by then will be assumed to be not returning.

                          8
                          Dominion League / Re: Season 36 - Newsletter: Responding to Your Feedback
                          « on: October 13, 2019, 02:51:19 pm »
                          And the season has now officially begun! Head on over to Discord, greet your opponents, and start to schedule your matches! I know it's been a while (the longest break the League has ever taken), so you're probably eager to jump right in!

                          Waiting list folks: Some of you will hear from one of us today about a spot. For the rest, we'll be waiting to see if there are any early-season dropouts or players who do not check in. Late Signups are now open for another week so if anyone wants to join (particularly F-level players in Europe or Asia), please feel free to sign up!

                          As you can see from the meeting minutes below, we've decided to add three more questions to the returning form. We'll be drafting the language for these questions today and tomorrow and will hopefully be able to get that released shortly. Meanwhile, our November Town Hall will be on big picture questions like League size, scale, length, and coordination of breaks with other tournaments. Stay tuned for more details come November!

                          More minutes from our setup mod meeting today:
                          • Setup Meeting
                            • Returning Form Questions
                              • Motion to add "match points before game points" to the Returning Form polls.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to add "preference to 5th place demoters for additional slots over 2nd place finishers" to the Returning Form polls.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to add question about splitting D by time zone to the returning form, open to only players who have played in D in the last year.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Town Halls
                              • Motion to tentatively plan on the next town hall to address the big picture questions about the League size, scale, length, and coordination of breaks with other major tournaments.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Messaging
                              • Motion to add something to the opening Discord posts about using !match and other Bot commands.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)

                          9
                          Dominion League / Season 36 - Standings
                          « on: October 13, 2019, 02:10:01 pm »

                          10
                          Dominion League / Season 36 - Newsletter: Responding to Your Feedback
                          « on: October 04, 2019, 02:08:35 am »
                          Hello everyone!

                          I hope you all enjoyed the long break! Best of luck to the players still alive in the championship; there will continue to be plenty of exciting championship matches to watch over the first half of the League season.

                          We are releasing this newsletter a bit earlier than usual in order to announce any changes to the rules prior to the signup deadline, in case these rules affect whether you would like to play. This will be the pattern going forward: Newsletters will now go out during the first week of the usual League breaks, along with announcements of any rules changes for the following season.

                          The other notable change is that we've held two very successful Town Halls, on the important topics of Cardlists and Seeding. These Town Halls have introduced a number of rules changes starting in the upcoming season. Going forward, we will aim to hold about one town hall per season, likely around the middle of the season. While they're obviously very worthwhile for gathering community feedback, they also tend to be very long and not something we can afford to do more frequently than that.

                          Summary of Rules Changes
                          See the Rules and Regulations Changelog and the minutes below for the full details.
                          • The cardlists defaults are: banned on, disliked on, liked off (same settings as tables in Automatch).
                          • Cardlists can only be changed between games if there is a break of 24 hrs or more between those games.
                          • Seeding to determine divisions now depends entirely on previous League performance for returning players.
                          • Games should be unrated by default.
                          • We encourage that spec chat be off.
                          • We clarified that dropped players demote regardless of when during the season they drop.

                          Moderator Churn
                          We say goodbye for now to IrrationalE, our longest-tenured moderator, who is expecting his first child soon -- congratulations! We also welcome back volfied, who took the last three seasons off for health reasons and is also moderating the championship. Glad to have you back, volfied!

                          Moderator Rules Meeting Full Minutes
                          • Cardlists Town Hall (August)
                            • Cardlists
                              • Motion to declare that Ban and Dislike Lists will be default enabled for League matches starting next season.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to add a question (replacing the current Banlist question) on the Returning form about the Like list, offering both complete possibilities and the pros and cons (like other Returning form questions).
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to declare that Cardlists changes may only occur between sufficiently spread-apart sessions of play within a League match.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to postpone the decision about putting rerolling procedures in the rules to the next Moderators' Meeting (after which we will know the result of the Returning form question).
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                          • Returning Form Questions
                            • Tiebreakers
                              • Motion to retain the Final Tiebreaker (2-3 game playoff) for all subsequent seasons.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to not add the third-order tiebreaker.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • The Returning Form vote broke down as follows: 9% strongly in favor, 24% weakly in favor, 45% with no preference, 11% weakly against, 9% weakly against. Given this meager interest in the third tiebreaker, the moderators decided that it was not worth the additional hassle.
                            • Cardlists
                              • Motion to make the Cardlists defaults the following: Ban and Dislike lists are on, but the Like list is off.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Motion to not bother specifying rerolling procedures in the rules.
                                • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Should we define "playing sessions" explicitly (e.g. "breaks longer than an hour")?
                                • Result: YES (2 dissenting)
                              • Poll: What should the maximum time between two matches considered to be in the same session be?
                                • (0) 6 hours
                                • (0) 12 hours
                                • (8) 24 hours
                            • Flexible Divisions
                              • Motion to announce that Flexible Division Sizes will take effect starting with Season 37 (to give moderators time to work out the implementation details).
                                • Result: NO (3 dissenting)
                                • Majority opinion: Flexibly-sized divisions could produce divisions of unequal size within a tier, resulting in players in the smaller division having a better chance to promote (but also to demote). In addition, it does not eliminate the problem of not having enough space for returning players, but only makes it less likely. I feel that the benefits would not outweigh the added complexity as well as the aforementioned potential for unbalanced divisions - singletee
                                • Minority opinion: The players came out clearly in favor of this, with 54% in favor and only 19% opposed. It would not be very difficult logistically. - SamE
                              • Motion to revisit Flexible Division Sizes at the next moderator meeting after spending some time working out the implementation details (with the potential to implement it starting in Season 37 but more likely Season 38).
                                • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                          • Seeding Town Hall
                            • Seeding
                              • With no strong preferences across the moderator team, we decided to go with all of the most popular options as voted upon at the Seeding Town Hall.
                                • Motion to switch to primarily using League results for seeding.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to first (lexicographically) order by previous season's tier: Demoting > Staying > New > Promoting.
                                  • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                                • Motion to, for Demoting/Staying/Promoting players (including those returning from a short break), next look at position in the previous season, followed by Win% as a tiebreaker. If still tied, look at seeding in the previous season.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to sort New Players within the tier by ladder rank.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to maintain this rules-based system rather than investigating a statistical model for the foreseeable future.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                            • Forum Posts
                              • when2meets
                                • Motion not to introduce season-long when2meets (too unwieldy).
                                  • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                            • Discord Discussion
                              • D Tier Divisions
                                • Motion to keep the time zone divisions as they currently are (D is split EU/AM, E+F are split EU/AMW/AME/AS, if possible).
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                              • Feedback Channel
                                • Motion not to introduce a Discord channel dedicated to feedback.
                                  • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                                  • Players seem to be happy with the current methods we introduced for giving feedback, most notably the town halls.
                            • Suggestions
                              • Suggestions from moderators
                                • Motion to extend Late Signups until the Monday of Week 2 (so they are open for two weeks).
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to add two Q/As about spectator behavior to the FAQ.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to add sentence to Section IX of the rules to state that dropped players automatically demote (not a change, just a rules clarification).
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to switch our schedule to posting the Newsletter and Rules Meeting Minutes during Week -1 (about a week and a half before the season starts).
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to remove the "level" column from the standings sheets.
                                  • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                                  • It isn't functional anymore.
                              • Suggestions from players
                                • Motion to add a reminder of the expansion rules to the opening Discord post.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to add a reminder of the Cardlist defaults to the opening Discord post.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to tell the Moderator Minions not to tag anyone who has played a match but not checked in.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to include "How long should I expect a Dominion League match to take?" in the FAQ.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Add the "match points before game points" suggestion to a future town hall.
                                  • Result: YES (1 dissenting)
                                • Motion to add "unrated" to the Rules in the Match Structures and Policies, under "The League standard", and update the corresponding FAQ entry.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to add extra promotions / demotions between E and F (e.g. 2 from each division) to a future town hall.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Motion to open the a1-division channel a week early and allow them to play and report matches during that week.
                                  • Result: YES (unanimous)
                                • Poll: Should we consider dropping the forum account requirement?
                                  • (2) Starting this season
                                  • (6) Revisit another time
                                  • (1) Not for the foreseeable future

                            11
                            Dominion League / Re: Season 35 - Newsletter: Seeking Feedback
                            « on: July 27, 2019, 05:45:28 pm »
                            Currently, a When2Meet schedule is posted in the division channel only late into the season (I don't know the exact mechanics.) I don't see why it shouldn't be there the whole season. It's easier to write the times I'm free on a spreadsheet-type thing than it is to describe it with just text.

                            Here is an example of what that would look like. Does that look like something you think you would use?

                            I have also looked into the idea of doing a days-of-the-week when2meet, but those do not support different time zones.

                            12
                            Dominion League / Season 35 - Standings
                            « on: July 21, 2019, 06:20:05 pm »

                            13
                            Dominion League / Season 35 - Newsletter: Seeking Feedback
                            « on: July 21, 2019, 03:24:11 am »
                            Hello everyone!

                            Season 35 has begun and will run through Sunday, September 1st. Log into Discord, meet your opponents, and schedule your matches!

                            As moderators for the League, we're constantly looking for ways to make the League better. We have many ideas ourselves, but we also strive to make it easy to offer feedback through the Returning Form every season. We read carefully over all of those responses and reply individually to anyone with substantive suggestions.

                            This season, we're even expanding the use of the Returning Form to poll continuing League players on some possible future changes. These are topics that have been raised with the moderators that we don't all agree on, so we're asking your thoughts.

                            That said, the Returning Form isn't always well-tuned to the timing of when new ideas pop into your head. It's also only once a season, and the best ideas are sometimes worth acting on more quickly than that timing affords. So we'd like to highlight some additional options (new and old) for presenting your ideas to the moderator team, depending on what you feel comfortable with:
                            • Reach out to any moderator individually, preferably on Discord. If you're unsure which one to reach out to, a good default is the moderator of your division.
                            • If you have a complete idea that you'd like to present, just reply to this post (or any future newsletter posts like this one). This guarantees that your idea won't be lost in the constantly flowing stream of Discord. We'll discuss all such posts before the next season starts, as we do with Returning Form suggestions, but the more well-thought-out it is, the easier.
                            • Starting in the coming weeks, we will hold a number of Town Halls to gather feedback on suggested changes to the Dominion League. These will be dedicated periods of time for any Dominion League players and fans to discuss topics that the moderators would like more input from the community on. More information will be forthcoming when we announce the first one.
                            • For urgent matters, you can still use the Dominion League Hotline to get in touch with a moderator ASAP. This is still the best solution for any mid-match disputes.

                            Rules Changes
                            We have a handful of rules changes to offer for the coming season. All changes are now logged in the Rules and Regulations Changelog, which used to be in a private moderator subforum but which we have moved to the main Dominion League subforum.
                            • We have changed the rules around the final tiebreaker for Season 35 to require a short match between any players tied after both tiebreakers. We are also interested in hearing your feedback on this rule change -- there is a question in the Returning Form about this solution.
                            • We have further clarified the rules around undo's by moving them from the FAQ into the main rules document. We are striving to keep any operational rules in the main Rules & Regulations document while relying on the FAQ as a secondary resource.
                            • We have also clarified the process for amending the rules to specify that it requires a majority vote of the moderators.
                            • If you haven't heard, the online client will soon be releasing a banlist feature allowing players to ban a small number of cards from appearing in their matches. The default for Season 35 will be for this feature to be in the same configuration it currently is (only Possession is banned), although players can choose to play games with kingdoms respecting their banlists once the feature is released if they both agree to. We will be holding a Town Hall to brainstorm further clarifying rules for subsequent seasons once the feature is released.
                            • We discovered that despite existing since Season 1, there is no mention of the Championship Match in the official rules, so we added a complete description.
                            • And finally, starting this season, we are releasing outlines of all of our meetings, including all votes that took place. In just the rules portion of this season's meeting, we voted 40 times! The minutes are posted as the second post of this thread.

                            Moderator Churn
                            Season 34 was unfortunately the last for two of our longest-tenured moderators, Burning Skull and tracer. Both have meant a lot to the League in their time as moderators: Burning Skull's 32 seasons of experience as a player and nearly as many as a moderator adds gravitas to any discussion, while tracer set a high bar for how attentive moderators should be to their divisions. In fact, it was seeing the bar tracer was setting that inspired the moderator bot assistants across the League with messages modeled off of his. We will miss them both dearly.

                            In their place, we have recruited new moderators Apostolosoruler and nottoobad. Welcome them!

                            SamE

                            14
                            Dominion League / Season 35 - Call for New Mods
                            « on: July 02, 2019, 10:07:42 pm »
                            Hello everyone!

                            The League is run by a team of volunteer moderators, and due to the normal ebbs and flows of availability, we're expecting to be a little short next season. So we're looking for more!

                            Fortunately, over the last few seasons, we've built league-wide systems for some of the more automatic portions of moderation like checking players in and reminding them of their matches. This leaves the main responsibilities of moderators as the following:
                            • Meet with fellow moderators the weekend before the season. Discuss and decide on any changes to the rules, help set up the League's systems, assign players to divisions, and send out messages.
                            • Answer any questions from players in your ~5-6 divisions.
                            • Resolve any disputes between players that arise in your divisions.
                            • Message players in your divisions who have fallen behind and remove them if they don't reply or can't finish.
                            In general, especially with the automated messaging, the moderator role tends to be a reactive responsibility. Accordingly, we expect moderators to be responsive within 24 hours on Discord throughout the season. We also require new moderators to have played at least two full League seasons (which can include Season 34).

                            To apply, send the current mods a PM by clicking this link some time in the next 48 hours from this post. The application period has now closed.

                            15
                            Dominion League / Season 34 - Newsletter: Friendliness
                            « on: June 21, 2019, 12:21:38 am »
                            Hello everyone!

                            Season 34 has begun! Log into Discord and say hello. :)

                            "Friendly and competitive" -- that's how we advertise the League, and a description that we do think the League achieves. But there are always ways that we can strive to be friendlier, some of which I'd like to highlight here.

                            Most of all, friendly League players are easy to schedule matches with. This is by far the most frequent complaint we get, that someone isn't responding to messages in a timely fashion or didn't show up at an agreed-upon time. Of course, life and mistakes happen, but please don't be the one to ruin the League experience for someone else.

                            In fact, there's something you can do right now to make all of this easier if you haven't already: Go to Discord and describe your general availability in your division channel. Are you going to be unavailable any of the weeks of the season? What time of day do you like to play?

                            It might seem like a small thing, but it's also friendlier to your opponents to use the same username in Discord as in the client. If you already have a Discord account with a different name, you can (and should!) change your nickname within the Dominion Discord to match your dominion.games username.

                            And finally, it's friendly to finish out the season and give all of your opponents the matches they signed up for. I posted some statistics last season showing overall improvement on that front, which thankfully continued: 92% of players successfully completed Season 33. In terms of total games played (to account for players who drop out near the end), we set a modern record of 93.5%, third-most ever after the much smaller Seasons 6 and 7.

                            Rules Changes

                            None of the rules have changed, but we have clarified and codified some details around player respectfulness and how moderators resolve conflicts. If you're curious, check out Rules & Regulations, sections VII and X.

                            Moderator Churn

                            We bid farewell to GreyEK, who did a great job moderating the last three seasons. In her place, we've recruited alibby1152 and crlundy, two experienced League players who are also spreadsheet gurus and have already been a big help on that front.

                            Here's to another successful League season!

                            SamE

                            16
                            Dominion League / Season 34 - End of Season Deadlines
                            « on: June 21, 2019, 12:17:39 am »
                            Season 34 officially ends on Sunday, July 7. To account for the westernmost timezones, the deadline for reporting matches is Monday, July 8, at 15:00 UTC.

                            If you need extra time to finish, you must contact your group moderator to request an extension of up to one week. All late finish matches must be reported by Monday, July 15, at 15:00 UTC.

                            If you fail to request an extension or complete the match by the late deadline, the responsible player(s) will be considered to have dropped mid-season. This means that they are banned for the next two seasons, and automatically demoted when they return. If they played at least 18 games (three matches), those are kept for the other players' standings and their remaining matches are "simulated" (see the full rules for how), but if they did not complete that many, their results are removed.

                            In addition to finishing your matches, all players must fill out the returning form to tell us whether they will be back for next season. This form was sent to you in a private message; you can also find it in the pinned post in your Discord division channel. The deadline for filling out the returning form is Monday, July 15, at 15:00 UTC (the Season 35 signup deadline). Any players who have not told us whether they will be back by then will be assumed to be not returning.

                            17
                            Dominion League / Season 34 - Standings
                            « on: May 26, 2019, 03:52:21 pm »

                            18
                            Dominion League / Re: Season 34 - Late Signups
                            « on: May 20, 2019, 09:23:49 pm »
                            I noticed that in the B level, there is negative space left. What happens there? Does an extra player go down to level C? Just curious how that works.

                            There will be a playoff between the two returning players (Freaky and Sicomatic) for the one available position. Both have decided to wait to return another season if they lose.

                            Tune in Thursday at 18:00 UTC!

                            19
                            The officially commentated version:


                            20
                            Dominion League / Season 34 - Call for New Mods
                            « on: May 10, 2019, 01:33:02 am »
                            Hello everyone!

                            The League is run by a team of volunteer moderators, and due to the normal ebbs and flows of availability, we're looking to be a couple short next season. So we're looking for more!

                            Fortunately, over the last few seasons, we've built league-wide systems for some of the more automatic portions of moderation like checking players in and reminding them of their matches. This leaves the main responsibilities of moderators as the following:
                            • Meet with fellow moderators the weekend before the season. Discuss and decide on any changes to the rules, help set up the League's systems, assign players to divisions, and send out messages.
                            • Answer any questions from players in your ~5-6 divisions.
                            • Resolve any disputes between players that arise in your divisions.
                            • Message players in your divisions who have fallen behind and remove them if they don't reply or can't finish.
                            In general, especially with the automated messaging, the moderator role tends to be a reactive responsibility. Accordingly, we expect moderators to be responsive within 24 hours on Discord throughout the season. We also require new moderators to have played at least two full League seasons (which can include Season 33).

                            To apply, send the current mods a PM by clicking this link some time in the next 48 hours from this post. Applications have now closed.

                            21
                            Dominion League / Season 33 - End of Season Deadlines
                            « on: April 29, 2019, 01:05:55 am »
                            Season 33 officially ends on Sunday, May 12. To account for the westernmost timezones, the deadline for reporting matches is Monday, May 13, at 15:00 UTC.

                            If you need extra time to finish, you must contact your group moderator to request an extension of up to one week. All late finish matches must be reported by Monday, May 20, at 15:00 UTC.

                            If you fail to request an extension or complete the match by the late deadline, the responsible player(s) will be considered to have dropped mid-season. This means that they are banned for the next two seasons, and automatically demoted when they return. If they played at least 18 games (three matches), those are kept for the other players' standings and their remaining matches are "simulated" (see the full rules for how), but if they did not complete that many, their results are removed.

                            In addition to finishing your matches, all players must fill out the returning form to tell us whether they will be back for next season. This form was sent to you in a private message; you can also find it in the pinned post in your Discord division channel. The deadline for filling out the returning form is Monday, May 20, at 15:00 UTC (the Season 34 signup deadline). Any players who have not told us whether they will be back by then will be assumed to be not returning.

                            22
                            Dominion Videos and Streams / Re: SamE Old Dominion
                            « on: April 15, 2019, 04:01:19 pm »
                            rsilverstein12 and I played a new kind of Judgment Match, a "retro" match featuring only cards released by January 1, 2012. Was Sea Hag really as good as we thought it was, and Spice Merchant as middling as we thought it was? Or was reality actually closer to how we evaluate them today -- Spice Merchant as top-tier, Sea Hag as middling?


                            23
                            Dominion League / Season 33 - Newsletter: Building Consistency
                            « on: March 30, 2019, 08:05:17 pm »
                            Hello everyone!

                            Season 33 has just begun, about a day earlier than usual. Check your division Discord channel or your private messages for all of the details.

                            Since the League expansion of Season 27, we've been trying to build consistency: More players completing the entire season and deciding to come back for the next season. I'm happy to report that we've made some good progress on those metrics:
                            Season272829303132
                            Total Players at Start271255264262261281
                            % Completing the Season85%85%89%87%90%91%
                            % Returning Next Season66%64%66%68%71%73%

                            To put those completion numbers in context, a rate above 89% means that a division of 6 players is more likely to stay entirely intact through the whole season than not. Indeed, 29 of the 47 divisions in Season 32 finished the season with all 6 players. And a higher number of players returning the next season means that the player pool grows more and more experienced, lessening the risk of future players dropping out. It's a positive feedback loop working in the right direction. :)

                            Rules Changes
                            As usual, we have a few minor tweaks to the rules:
                            • Late Matches: Each season lasts for six weeks. If you need more time to finish, you are allowed to request more time, up to one week. Starting this season, we are requiring that you make this request of your moderator before the season ends. There is also no longer any point penalty for finishing late, as long as you communicate your plan to finish with your moderator ahead of the end of the season.
                            • Undo Policy: We clarified our rules and added an FAQ question around undo requests to say that we encourage, but do not require, players to grant undo requests which do not give new information, like drawing cards. If any player plans to deviate from this, they should discuss this with their opponent ahead of time.
                            • Signup Deadline: To allow for earlier planning, we're pushing the signup deadline for all future seasons up to the Monday before the season starts, at 15:00 UTC. For Season 33 players, this is the deadline to tell us whether you'll be back for Season 34 by filling out the returning form.
                            Moderator Churn
                            Seprix and volfied, who have been part of the moderating team since Season 28, are stepping down. We'd like to thank them for their service these last five seasons! To take their place, we've added wharf_rat, who had applied previously. Also, as many of you could tell from last season, we've been expanding our use of Discord bots (technically webhooks) to handle the more automatic parts of moderation. Please give us feedback on how those are working!

                            SamE

                            24
                            Dominion League / Season 33 - Standings
                            « on: March 30, 2019, 05:17:32 pm »

                            25
                            Hello everyone!

                            The Champion Match in the A Division of Season 32 will take place today (Thursday, March 21st) at 19:00 UTC, about an hour and a half from this post (apologies for the short notice!). It will feature 2-time champion and 6-time runner-up markus and Season 30 Champion tracer, who will be playing in his second championship. After a commanding regular season, markus just needs to win 1.5 games to be crowned champion, while tracer needs at least 5. Even if someone clinches early, they will be playing out the full six games.

                            There will be commentary on Discord by Seprix and xyrix. (We won't be streaming on Twitch this season, but will post the video to YouTube afterwards.)

                            SamE

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