CONVENTION CHART CHANGES
Important changes in the Convention Charts were approved by the ACBL Board of Directors in Birmingham in 2000. These changes concern changes on the Mid-Chart.
The main competitive change is in the Convention Chart area. A definition of a natural suited overcall has been normally approved as follows: "An overcall in a suit is considered natural if, by agreement, it shows four or more cards in the denomination named." This definition will be added to the General Convention Chart.
A significant revamping of the Mid-Chart philosophy was approved. Methods permitted by the Mid-Chart require the user to pre-Alert, provide a written description of the method and a competent, written suggested defense. All f the changes to the Mid-Chart involve the above requirements.
1. There will be some methods for which the user will no longer be required to provide a written defense. These methods will be identified by an asterisk (*) next to their number on the Chart. The sections to be noted are numbers 2, 3 and 9 under ALLOWED.
2. Beginning in July 2001, when a Mid-Chart method does require the user to provide a written defense, the defense that must be provided must be available on the ACBL home page - http://www.acbl.org - in the defense database, which is now the Defenses to Artificial Preempts pamphlet. Players using one of these methods will be required to download the defense to that method from the database and have it available for the opponents, who may still elect to use their own defense. If there is no defense noted, users will be required to submit their method and written defense to ACBL, a committee of expert players, for approval. When and if approved, a description of the method and defense will be placed in the database. Then and only then will use of that method be permitted.
These changes level the playing field by making sure that participants have adequately described their methods and have provided complete and adequate defenses. It places the responsibility to provide a complete, written defense on the user. It also makes the user responsible for insuring before use that the defense and explanation are complete and adequate by having them approved.
This method also enables any player to become familiar with new and unusual methods by reading about them in the database even if not playing in events conducted using the Mid-Chart.
3. In order to permit players to use a method not formally permitted by the Mid-Chart, a similar procedure will be put in place. A player wishing to play an unapproved method in a Mid-Chart event may:
a. Submit a complete written explanation of the method and a complete and rigorous defense.
b. The submission will be examined by a panel of experts.
c. If approved, the method and defense will be added to a database on the ACBL home page, and a letter of approval sent to the player who submitted the method.
d. A person desiring to play that method must ask the sponsor of the event/tournament conducting the Mid-Chart event for permission to play the method and present a downloaded copy of the approved method and defense to the Director-in-Charge (DIC) and the sponsor.
e. If the sponsor approves, the player may use the method as long as its use is pre-Alerted and the explanation and defense are available for the opponents.
f. The DIC will report any problems concerning the use of the method to ACBL Headquarters.
g. After a year's use, consideration will be given to adding the method to the Mid-Chart or withdrawing approval to use the method.
and as accurately as possible.