1. You do not need superior maths skills to realize how much easier is to cheat now.
Under 6.0 the judges had only two scores which they could manipulate, but now the possibilities are countless.
There are between 9 and 13 elements in a LP, each of them being awarded a certain GOE.
With the exception of the cases when a skater falls or makes a blatant mistake, the judges can actually give any GOE they want since the criteria is ambiguous enough to allow them to justify almost anything.
13 elements mean 13 possibilities of influencing GOE.
And this is not the only opportunity when it comes to GOE. Since the range of GOE varies between -3 and + 3, again here there’s plenty of room to manoeuvre. For an OK-ish done element that maybe deserved 0 GOE it is not hard for a judge to justify that he actually thought it deserved + 1 or maybe + 2.
Then of course we have the components where a 0.25 – 0.5 points more than deserved wouldn’t raise any question marks.
Now the only question remains on how to make several judges to favour the same skater.
I think that this is where the power and influence of a federation comes into play .
Like Nietzsche used to say: “All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.”

2. Under 6.0, a judge could place skaters in whatever order they wanted on their own card, regardless of the quality of the skating. To avoid being tagged as incompetent or biased, even if the judge was trying to manipulate the results, it was best to keep their rankings at least close to what the judge thought the skaters really deserved and to be able to justify their decisions afterward. They couldn't control whether their rankings would end up in the majority, unless they were part of a bloc. Working alone, they just added one vote in the direction they wanted, which could end up being a deciding vote in close contests.

If several judges made deals in advance and worked together to bring about a specific result, they had a much higher chance of succeeding.

With IJS, judges can give GOEs and PCS to favor the skaters they want to win and to hold down the skaters they want to have finish lower. They can't control the base marks that the skaters earn by what they actually do and how the tech panel calls it. They don't even know what levels the tech panel calls, although they could make a good guess if they want to try to keep track of the features in addition to their own judging tasks. They also don't have time to add up the scores for each element and component precisely, although they can make rough estimates.

If one judge wants to manipulate the results, s/he can systematically give the favored skater(s) slightly higher scores than s/he thinks they really deserve, and can systematically give slightly lower scores to the expected rivals. They can't use numbers that are too far above or below the rest of the panel, though, because if their scores are consistently dropped in the trimming of high and low they will not have much effect and will also get flagged as out of line. But if they're consistently on the high end of the legitimate range for the favored skater and consistently on the low end for the rivals, even if their scores are trimmed that means some other judge's high and low scores, respectively, will not get trimmed and will count. Essentially a judge on a 9-judge panel can force GOEs up or down by about 1/7 of a point per element, and components up or down maybe a 1/7 of a point but probably a little less (doubled in the freeskate) for each component. So if they do this systematically it can add up to several points and can decide a close contest.

If two or more judges work together to manipulate scores in a coordinated manner, they can be even more effective.

If the skater they want to favor just doesn't deliver the technical elements at all, they can't force a win. But they can nudge that skater to finish higher than the performance objectively deserves.

The best way to force an undeserved win would be for two members of the technical panel to collude always to give skater A the benefit of the doubt on all level features and jump rotation questions, and always rule against the rival skater on all borderline calls -- especially anything that would allow them to throw out a whole element for the rival, should the skater provide such a questionable element. But that's the tech panel, not the judging panel.

Judges and one or two tech panel members working together could be extremely effective. That would be a major conspiracy. No reason to believe such an effect has ever existed.

However, in either system, if we see a close contest and believe that, in theory, judges may have been being dishonestly favoring one of the skaters, it's still hard to know from the outside whether judges in favor of skater A succeeded in boosting A's placement even though if they'd judged honestly skater B would have come out ahead, or whether a different set of judges might have been trying to boost skater B and didn't quite succeed. Clearly, if you think skater B was better you would believe that the judges who gave higher scores to A were wrong and more likely to be cheating. But since the nature of the sport invites legitimate differences of opinion, there's no way of knowing from the scores alone whether skater A's supporters were acting dishonestly or whether they just honestly disagreed with your opinion.

If there's recorded evidence of judges making deals in advance, etc., that's a different story.

3. Originally Posted by nubka
I was there all week long and saw many empty seats...
Yes, but empty seats aren't the same thing as unsold seats. From what I was told by a volunteer, all seats were sold for the FS events - but I too could see that not all seats were occupied. Who knows what the reasons for that were: could be corporate giveaways that recipients didn't use, scalpers who didn't manage to resell their tickets, people who didn't make it to the arena because of lousy weather or other travel interruptions, choosy fans who only wanted to see the last group or two of skaters, and/or many more possible reasons.

4. I was there too. It was sold out. The sections above the judges (and thus in camera range) were reserved for ISU and VIPS as usual. They are always only partially filled and those people come and go according to their schedules and what else is happening behind the scenes at the competition (sponsor receptions, presentations, meetings, etc). There were a couple of sections in the top bowl reserved for the athletes and coaches, and they also come and go. There was a section in the top bowl reserved for the media who also come and go. So in a 7000 seat arena it may have looked as though a lot of seats were empty but that was not the case in the sellable seats. There were some of those empty during the weekday daytime when the local people must have been at work. But other than that, it was packed and LOUD. The concourse was very crowded. The atmosphere was amazing!

5. The fault with this system is just too simple: falls are not penalized like falls. For any lay viewer the only thing that matters is if a skater falls or not. URs can not easily be perceived, nor is skating skill. Popping is bad but aesthetically it's still better than a fall. Two-footing is bad but it is a step up than a fall, meaning you can at least save it. I'm quite sure that if a fall is a 5 points bonus deduction (only almost equal to popping a quad to a triple), no one would ever complain again. Some will say then no one would try for a quad anymore, but it's not as if people only fall on quads, and this has something to do with other disciplines as well. I love Caro, but she had two falls. She should have placed under Murakami, so as Patrick under Ten and S/S under D/R.
For me, as a long time gymnastics fan, it's always amazing to see skaters fall and get back up thinking they still have a shot to win. It doesn't happen in any other discipline I can think of.

6. Originally Posted by analia
The fault with this system is just too simple: falls are not penalized like falls. For any lay viewer the only thing that matters is if a skater falls or not. URs can not easily be perceived, nor is skating skill. Popping is bad but aesthetically it's still better than a fall. Two-footing is bad but it is a step up than a fall, meaning you can at least save it. I'm quite sure that if a fall is a 5 points bonus deduction (only almost equal to popping a quad to a triple), no one would ever complain again. Some will say then no one would try for a quad anymore, but it's not as if people only fall on quads, and this has something to do with other disciplines as well. I love Caro, but she had two falls. She should have placed under Murakami, so as Patrick under Ten and S/S under D/R.
For me, as a long time gymnastics fan, it's always amazing to see skaters fall and get back up thinking they still have a shot to win. It doesn't happen in any other discipline I can think of.
100% agree with you, analia. Falls are not penalized enough; and clean performances are not rewarded enough. They (ISU) should start from here.

7. Originally Posted by analia
Popping is bad but aesthetically it's still better than a fall.
I disagree here. I watched US nationals with 6 people who are totally non-skating fans (mostly men...) They were watching because it was my birthday party and I insisted we get to watch! They all could tell that pops were a huge mistake. When a skater fell on a difficult jump and did that roll over get back up as if nothing happened (not a US skater but Brezina often does this- it is almost as if he never fell) they were still really impressed with the jump. Possibly because they are used to basketball players falling all the time in games? There was a lot of "how did they get up so fast?"

I feel like it would be too subjective to be realistic, but I feel like the penalty for falling should be greater if you take longer to stand back up. With the tech panel, maybe they can slo-mo and actually set a time for it? Because I really do think it is better to do a full rotated quad and fall, than pop a quad to a double and land. Pops look ridiculous.

8. Originally Posted by Skittl1321
I feel like it would be too subjective to be realistic, but I feel like the penalty for falling should be greater if you take longer to stand back up. With the tech panel, maybe they can slo-mo and actually set a time for it? Because I really do think it is better to do a full rotated quad and fall, than pop a quad to a double and land. Pops look ridiculous.
Or that part of the penalty -- taking off for the amount of disruption to the flow of the program, in addition to the GOE reductions and fall deduction -- could be written into GOE guidelines.

It's still going to be subjective because "how disruptive was it?" is not really quantifiable. And different falls that have body parts in addition to blades touching the ice for the same amount of time might vary based on how well the skater stays in the character of the program while down on the ice and how well s/he maintains body alignment on the way down and the way up. Counting the seconds won't give a straight linear correlation with the degree of disruption.

Also sometimes skaters stumble around for a couple of seconds trying not to fall and succeed in keeping anything but the blades off the ice. That can be more disruptive, but it wouldn't get a fall deduction. Still, judges should have the discretion to penalize it in PCS, and GOE when applicable, if they find it disrupts the performance of the program.

9. Originally Posted by somcutza
100% agree with you, analia. Falls are not penalized enough; and clean performances are not rewarded enough. They (ISU) should start from here.
Falls result in a 1.00 deduction in addition to a minus 3 from the judges and if in the Short Program it is a missed element. What numerical deduction would like to see?

10. Originally Posted by Morry Stillwell
Falls result in a 1.00 deduction in addition to a minus 3 from the judges and if in the Short Program it is a missed element. What numerical deduction would like to see?
One that wouldn't allow to win if your fall/falls are an obvious disruption of the program. This will probably lead to a certain degree of precaution in the performance; but I'll happily take that instead of a fall.
l

11. Originally Posted by somcutza
One that wouldn't allow to win if your fall/falls are an obvious disruption of the program. This will probably lead to a certain degree of precaution in the performance; but I'll happily take that instead of a fall.
l
Serious questions .. not snarks .. just want to understand where you're coming from:

- you would rather see a male skater do the jumps they're most comfortable with, e.g., 3T or 3L, even if they're not as difficult so they won't fall vs pushing themselves and the sport further and trying the more difficult jumps with the possibility of a fall?
- what if everyone falls in one of their programs, short or long? How do you determine the degree of fall and the degree of disruption to the program to then determine a winner?

12. Speaking only for myself . . .

I don't want to see rules that forbid a win just because the program contains a fall or two. And sometimes the undisputed best skater falls. Sometimes everybody falls.

But I do think it would be appropriate to penalize falls more, and especially to penalize programs with many falls more heavily.

I think the problem at the highest levels is that a 1.0 deduction is not significant compared to all the other areas in which the top skaters are able to earn points.

So I'd like to see

*larger negative GOEs for quads and triple axels, so that -3 would take away at least 50% of the base value

*fall deductions as a percentage of total segment score rather than a flat 1.0 for all disciplines, all levels, all competition phases

*increased penalties for a second, third, etc., fall in the same program

*explicit guidelines to judges encouraging them to lower P/E and other component scores for falls and stumbles, and encouraging them raise P/E scores for clean programs with all positive GOE

All that would make it less likely for messy programs with multiple falls to win competitions. But sometimes they still would, because a skater who falls a couple times is just that much better than everybody else.

13. Originally Posted by somcutza
One that wouldn't allow to win if your fall/falls are an obvious disruption of the program. This will probably lead to a certain degree of precaution in the performance; but I'll happily take that instead of a fall.
l
General terms, such as reflected in this post, do not address the deductions that should be automatic and not up an official's individual interpretation. The current deductions are automatic. If this is a real problem? then hard numbers should be requested through your Federation and sent to the ISU Technical Committees.

14. Many of the deductions people are requesting will bring us back to the Vancouver Olympics- where playing it safe won. If you lose 50% or more in a fall, skaters will not be doing quads.

15. Was it ever announced why Cinquanta wasn't at worlds? Did he know something we didn't? lol And while I am talking about Cinquanta, there should be term limits for the presidents of the federations and the ISU: Two olympic cycles at the most.

16. Originally Posted by Skittl1321
Many of the deductions people are requesting will bring us back to the Vancouver Olympics- where playing it safe won. If you lose 50% or more in a fall, skaters will not be doing quads.
Well I'd rather see a skater win with no quad than win with a quad and multiple falls. The quad isn't everything. Besides I don't think the answer is giving skaters points for Quad Falls, I think the answer to encouraging clean quads by giving more points to clean quads. .. In fact I think its highly unfair that a person who landed a clean quad only gets about a four point advantage over someone who fell on the quad.

And I'm not saying in the sense increasing the quads base value.For example, they could easily start giving rewards for hard combos (ie quad combos). I'd also support a rule that says a skater can repeat two triples, and one type of Quad. So a skater can do a Quad toe, Quad toe, triple axel, triple axel, and triple lutz, triple lutz. If they do their combos right a really nice way to build up some points.....
Quote Originally Posted by Morry Stillwell View Post
Falls result in a 1.00 deduction in addition to a minus 3 from the judges and if in the Short Program it is a missed element. What numerical deduction would like to see?
Its not really appropriate when a skater is still getting 6 points for a quad fall.. I can handle somebody winning one fall, but I think multiple falls, stumbles etc are a real problem...PCS aren't affected to.. I really do agree about it being way more appropriate to make a percentage system.

17. Originally Posted by Iceman
Was it ever announced why Cinquanta wasn't at worlds? Did he know something we didn't? lol And while I am talking about Cinquanta, there should be term limits for the presidents of the federations and the ISU: Two olympic cycles at the most.
Yes it was announced. He was at the Sochi Olympic site for an Olympic Committee site meeting. That is why the Figure Skating First Vice President, David Dore represented the ISU at Worlds.

If anyone wishes to install term limits, following is how you go about it. Make the proposal to the Federation, to which you belong. Get it apporved at that level, then convince your Federation to present the term limit proposal at the next ISU Congress.

18. Originally Posted by bek
Its not really appropriate when a skater is still getting 6 points for a quad fall.. I can handle somebody winning one fall, but I think multiple falls, stumbles etc are a real problem...PCS aren't affected to.. I really do agree about it being way more appropriate to make a percentage system.
You put it in a way like as if the skater falls 10 times and win which is not true.

19. Originally Posted by Morry Stillwell
Yes it was announced. He was at the Sochi Olympic site for an Olympic Committee site meeting. That is why the Figure Skating First Vice President, David Dore represented the ISU at Worlds.

If anyone wishes to install term limits, following is how you go about it. Make the proposal to the Federation, to which you belong. Get it apporved at that level, then convince your Federation to present the term limit proposal at the next ISU Congress.
IOW, term limits in figure skating is unlikely to ever happen.

Can you explain why Mr. Cinquanta has been able to maintain such a stranglehold on the seat of power for so long??? The management of speed skating and figure skating should be separated. They are distinct and separate sports and should not be lumped together, with revenue from figure skating supporting speed skating. But the status quo will likely continue especially after the strategically ill-planned revolt against the ISU was so effectively quashed in 2003.

20. Originally Posted by Morry Stillwell
Yes it was announced. He was at the Sochi Olympic site for an Olympic Committee site meeting. That is why the Figure Skating First Vice President, David Dore represented the ISU at Worlds.

If anyone wishes to install term limits, following is how you go about it. Make the proposal to the Federation, to which you belong. Get it apporved at that level, then convince your Federation to present the term limit proposal at the next ISU Congress.
That wasn't very respectful of them. They have known well in advance the date of worlds and should have scheduled so he could have attended what for him should have been one of the most important events of the year.

#### Posting Permissions

• You may not post new threads
• You may not post replies
• You may not post attachments
• You may not edit your posts
•