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Forfeit Updates

New forfeit guidelines to improve player experience

Oct 27, 2021
To PlayVS Coaches, 

We've spent some time analyzing league health data, and it's come to our attention that 30% of Fall '21 leagues have a 50% or less match completion rate. By contrast, 12% of Spring '21 leagues had less than 50% match completion, and most traditional sports have virtually no forfeits or no shows. This behavior is abnormal for organized competitions and considerably impacts students from the opposing teams’ programs. Much like traditional sports, we expect Coaches to display good sportsmanship and true commitment when enrolling their program into a season. Solving this issue requires effort from us all. 

At PlayVS, we think of our role in your competitive experience as the platform. It's our job to make sure you have access to esports competitions, functional technology to enable matches, the buy-in from key stakeholders (e.g., NFHS, State Associations, or game publishers), and hands-on technical support for moments when help is needed. We feel that it's the job of a Coach to ensure teams show up for matches weekly and, at the very least, provide enough notice to inform the opposing team and for us to identify a replacement match in your team's absence. We ask that Coaches who've consistently forfeited matches and find themselves unable to meet the basic expectation of participation request the removal of their teams from the league here. This way, we can ensure a positive experience for other programs and students alike. 

In addition, we're continuing to explore broader solutions that we can deploy this Fall and Spring '22 to reduce the rate of forfeits and no-shows. For example, we've already shipped two tools that we encourage Coaches to use: Match Check-Ins and Match Reschedule. Match Check-Ins are available the day before a match and provide an early signal of attendance to the opposing team. Match Reschedule offers the capability to propose a date/time change to the opposing Coach but requires responsiveness and respect from each party. We highly encourage Coaches to utilize and learn more about these tools. 

Forfeits and no-shows are no fun for the students, and ultimately, that's who this experience is for. We hope this letter provides context to the situation and promotes the shared sense of responsibility required to improve the issue moving forward.

— Delane