3. What would the league provide?
The league would provide a number of services to affiliated clubs and individual player members.
1) Standardized rules
It is presumed that all clubs in the country today are using generally accepted rules of the game, regarding both checker play and doubling cube. But this may not be true, as there are many variations of the game. And probably, maybe even certainly, not all clubs in the country use the same rules for conducting a tournament. A set of "United States Backgammon Tournament Rules and Procedures" was drafted in March of 1990, and some are currently making an effort to update these rules. The March 1990 rules are currently posted on a few club Web sites, but are not enforced by any governing body. The USBL ensures that all affiliated clubs use the same set of rules, which include the rules drafted in March 1990 plus some additional clarifications.
2) National Elo ratings
As mentioned before, ratings are a fun way to receive some kind of non-monetary reward for good play and are an integral part of online backgammon today. The U.S. Chess Federation uses the Elo rating system developed by statistician Arpad Elo. The Elo system has already been adapted to backgammon for use on various online backgammon sites, such as FIBS, GamesGrid, and DailyGammon, so the USBL uses the Elo system as well.
3) USBL portal Web site
- Links to affiliated clubs
- Calendar of events
- Tournament results
- Tournament materials
4) Web site presence for local affiliates
One of the main costs of running a local club is hosting a Web site. Web sites are crucial to promoting a club as many people find out about a club from doing an Internet search and finding the Web site. The U.S. Backgammon league provides affiliate clubs their own Web page to post tournament information, results, photos, and more.
5) Later, the organization could possibly also provide:
- Newsletter/magazine for all members (also currently done by both Chicago Bar Point and Flint Area Backgammon Clubs)
- National event organization