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Removal of the Three-Judge System

James Lee

Two years ago, the DCI introduced the opportunity to run sanctioned events using a three-judge system. This was done in order to help areas where the small number of regular Magic players made it difficult for local organizers to run sanctioned events that fulfilled DCI requirements. Further, it gave opportunities to judges in those areas to participate in tournaments where they were the only ones available to officiate them.

Effective September 1st, 2002, events may no longer be sanctioned under the Three-Judge System. After two years of experience, the DCI has decided to withdraw this tournament format. First, our data shows that the majority of tournaments run using the three-judge system did not require it. Most three-judge events were run in locations where there were more than the minimum number of required participants. Second, the three-judge system resulted in additional confusion for organizers. Many events that did not qualify for the three-judge system were reported erroneously to the DCI. This resulted in tournaments being cancelled and frustration for local players who believed the events in which they played were sanctioned. Finally, as player enthusiasm increases in a region, we have found that the number of those who desire to improve the play environment as judges also increases.

As such, the DCI wishes to promote the training and education of new judges rather than encourage them to play in the events where they are judging. The DCI recognizes that this change will burden a few areas and individuals for whom the three-judge system most met their needs. As we are committed to ever increasing the number and quality of sanctioned events, we will continue to work on new solutions which include as many of our players as possible. Also, to continue to recognize our judges for their efforts, please see the announcement on the DCI Judge website regarding the New Judge Rewards.



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