Thursday, July 26, 2007

EBU Strategy document

The EBU has published a new Strategy Document on which it invites comments.

It can be found here:

The first thing to say is that my club and almost all of its members do not subscribe to the EBU and have not done so for a number of years. They are not interested in Masterpoints and do not use any of the other EBU services. This does make me feel guilty as I recognise the EBU plays an important rule especially in respect of the rules of the game. We do, however, purchase their handbooks and so support them in that way.

The first key feature of the new strategy is to abolish annual subscriptions and replace them by a 'pay to play' scheme (P2P). This is likely to involve each player playing an additional 30p table money each time they play at their club.

Additionally, any club member who is not a current EBU member will pay a 'one-off' fee of £5 to join.

This will mean the following for my club. We play twice a week averaging around 5 tables. That means P2P will cost around £12 per week. This will give the EBU around £600 per year from us. The 'one off' subscription for around 50 members will give them a further £250. There will also be a minimum annual affiliation fee of £50 plus an extra £25 for each additional duplicate session, so, in our case, £75.

For an 'average' member playing around 4o times per year, the P2P cost will be £12 but this will obviously vary a lot from member to member.

What are we to receive for this?

  • Free rating software. Explained with a complete lack of clarity so can't say what it means.
  • Free scoring program (we already have paid a 'one-off' fee for our own).
  • Free web site hosting (we pay around £40 annually for this).
  • Free electronic newsletter (big deal!)
  • Free access to online club committee forum. (wow!)
  • Free exclusive on-line club night one night a week (well maybe)
  • Free club directors handbook
  • Free club managers handbook
  • Free services of club liaison officer
  • Free computer deals and hand records (possibly)
  • Free club constitution (already available)
  • Club insurance discounts (not needed)
  • Bridge Shop discount (buy from Mr Bridge)
  • Discounts on club director training (not likely to use)

Alan Chapman wrote on 11/04/08:

"Having been a vociferous opponent of the EBU's policy for change I feel I should record my change of view.I have to acknowledge the EBU's willingness to alter its proposals in the face of considerable opposition (some might say they had no choice!), in particular dropping the one-off £5 fee for new members.Appreciating a lot of Clubs are still uncomfortable and are considering dropping their EBU affiliation, may I urge them to reconsider.Yes, the EBU will still have to make strides to be more open and adopt a degree of democracy, but will the game of Bridge be better or worse off if we lose it altogether?As to the cost: it should be cheaper for existing EBU members. Non-members will have to pay 30-50p extra each time they play - hardly a fortune. Surely this would be a small price to pay for retaining an umbrella organisation and to have the chance to demand that it takes more notice of ordinary Club members in the future.Alan Chapman, Marlborough, Wiltshire."


Anonymous Anonymous said...

We agree with the comments made. Our club runs once weekly but our tables numbers are approximately 7, therefore the costs would be very similar. Most of our members do not want to pay to play and would prefer the existing system to continue as many of them are not members of the EBU and dont want to be they just want to play Bridge.

8:37 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with the comments on this site. In addition we had a visit by the EBU rep. - Kris. The EBU appear to be saying.

'Whatever your views we are going ahead. If Clubs leave the EBU so be it - they will re-join.'

I think they are living in Cloud Cuckoo land. By all means encourage people to join EBU - but the EBU should bite the bullet and not charge an initial £5 fee. All new co-opted members should not receive a magazine and diary until after 1st 12 months- this will reduce initial costs. The table monies should be re-costed so that Clubs are not financially penalised for either staying affiliated or joining EBU. The feeling against these present proposals should not be dismissed by EBU as many present members are expressing doubts - let alone NON members.

The comments that 30p means little to most players may be correct but the scheme has been poorly marketed and has just caused resentment amongst players.

3:39 am  

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