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Re: FICS Rating System

 David Granik ( wrote:
 >          I found it somewhat disturbing that ratings so permiate the ics. 
 > Many of the statistical features are provided, just because they can be 
 > programed. Playing for ratings, even meaningless ratings, always warps 
 > the competitive aspect of chess. My complaint is that the presence of a 
 > rating system encouraages poor sportmanship. Because there is a rating 
 > system, many players shamelessly play until the bitter end, refusing to 
 > resign even in a game w/ incremental time controls! Playing such garbage 
 > chess greatly reduces my enjoyment of chess. Further, playing for a stake 
 > (ratings gain or drop) does increase a player's incentive to cheat. In 
 > this way, players who play with fewer points at risk are less likely to 
 > have as great an incentive to cheat or exhibit poor sportsmanship!
 If you take away ratings, however, it would make it very difficult for
 players to find matches with people of approximately their own
 ability.  Playing someone who is very much better or worse than you
 tends to not be very much fun.
 Also, ratings give you a way to judge how good your chess is and how
 much it improves.  Without any sort of metric, it would be very
 difficult to judge your progress.
 It is not fair to complain about the rating system because people
 abuse it.  For those who are on the server to have fun and improve
 their chess, it serves as a helpful tool.  If someone wants to inflate
 their rating by cheating, they are only lying to themselves.  If you
 think that someone is exhibiting poor sportsmanship because of ratings
 or whatever, that is what your noplay and censor lists are for.
 						Mike Allen