Totaly agreed. As a volunteer robot inspector for FRC, it was the most humilating experience to be yelled at by a team mentor, in front of his team, for their robot being over weight and saying that it was my fault for not passing them. I believe that all volunteers in key positions have read and understood the rules before accepting that role. Does this make us perfect? No, but we are not machines either. We do strive to do the best possible job. We only want success for all teams.

You can also come talk to our team. All seniors, who will not have this chance again, ever…


Rich -
A hearty congrats for winning WF at DC this year. I also read 1712’s CA submission. Awesome!

I echo this statement. Be grateful that you had the opportunity to be there. This is the first year for robotics at my school. We offered it as an elective class in engineering. We maxed out the enrollment before all of the seniors had a chance to pick electives.

I mentored/taught two teams of students… all seniors… all graduating in a month. They poured their hearts and souls into this competition only to have it canceled the day before our flight.

My students earned the opportunity to participate in the World Championship, and that is an honor they should cherish for a long time, if not a lifetime. Attending the event would have changed their lives forever!

Only 3 of my VEX students participated in FRC this year. Only those 3 know what it is like to be at a World Championship event. They went into Atlanta knowing they didn’t have the best looking robot or the best working robot, but went out there every match and played their hearts out.

You might be upset or frustrated with the outcome of a match or two (I’ve been there, too), but I haven’t encountered anything worse than telling a room of seniors that they can’t compete.

It’s been almost a week since I had to do that… it still hurts.

Please consider your participation has an honor and privilege. Don’t let one match sour your experience.


First of all, I think it is a shame that you would let what you think to be a mistake ruin the entire competition and the whole VEX program for you.

I also think it is very inappropriate for you to come onto this forum and open up a thread solely for the purpose of pointing out “mistakes” by refs. The refs and all of the volunteers are definitely some of the hardest working people I’ve ever met. All of them deserve to be shown some respect, and this is definitely not the way to do it.

I was a ref at the event, and I believe I am one of the ones you are talking about. The matter was dealt with at the competition. There is no reason to keep going on about it. There’s nothing to be gained.

I think one of the larger issues being discussed in this thread is the amount of responisbility the referees have for the correct scoring of a match. Currently, the


If the referees were responsible for correctly scoring matches, then it would follow that they would do everything reasonably in their power to accurately score the match. These actions might include watching recorded replays pertaining to scoring. However, acording to rule T01 a.

This rule most likely exists to reduce the time spent arguing/correcting scores, but in some cases, like this one, it might have been quicker for the referees to watch the recorded replays and make any needed corrections.

I disagree. The way to save time is for the team to make their case, hear the referee’s decision, and then leave. Continuing to argue after the decision is made is counter-productive and unprofessional. If I have the facts wrong here, I apologize, but I get the sense that the team involved continued to argue their case long after the referees had rendered their decision.

Perhaps we need a new rule: “Any team continuing to verbally disagree with a referee on a field call after the head referee has delivered the final decision may, at the head referee’s discretion, be removed from the tournament and disqualified in all their matches, including those already played.”

I don’t want referees being badgered by teams after they’ve heard all the evidence and made their decision. I also don’t want them changing their minds on calls all the time. Make your case to the refs, get the decision, and then say “thank you” and get off the field – no matter the decision. Whining about a bad call makes you look unprofessional. Besides, if your team is good, you’ll get picked for eliminations whether you go 3-3 or 4-2. Good scouting is about ability, not your W-L record.

hopefully vex comes up with a much more efficient way of judging matches. especially something as big as the world competitions. like an actually 20 second video clip of the ending goals ina match.

Consider this Rich, as u say u are the ref that was there

IF it did take 30 minutes to get this entire dispute settled and leave 3 teams very fustrated. why didnt u just replay the video, which at most would take 2min.

or is it a bit too much for sumone like u to admit u might have been wrong.

and oh of course, your responses to our questions.
all epic “1 question at a time” excuse…pathetic
saying u were a ref for quite a few years, shouldnt it be assumed that u can handle more than 1 question every 15-30 minutes.

and what is this , trying to gain sympathy by saying ur team 1712 couldnt pay for world? that u were devoted to helping out? thats a completely separate issue, or are u implying that YOU are a 1 man team. building the robot for them? and another thing i do feel bad that ur team couldnt show up, but seems to me ur trying to use that to justify what u did.

“Let me be entirely clear here. I’ll assume by “judges” you mean on field referees. Our judges were in charge of our judged awards and not the on-field play. Now, with that clarified, about the referees.”

-dont u feel good acting like Mr. Awesome.

in case u havent noticed this team hasnt been around for that long.
~5 months

soo plz cut the theatrics.
and yes my grammar here is poor, as i feel editing this would be a waste of time.


I’m still waiting for an explanation on how a video can tell the difference between touching or being a paper’s width away.

Then why did you post it in the first place? Your refusal to edit has influenced how your peers think of you and your abilities and, worse, this example of your abilities is now a permanent public record.

Seriously, you should have a discussion with your mentor on “positive and negative interactions”. You’ve done nothing here that will result in a positive outcome and much that seems designed to produce a negative outcome.

At this point, there’s a serious chance of at least one team being remembered next year as “that team”, and that’s something they probably neither want nor deserve.

Sarcasim will NEVER get you anywhere but disrespect from others. I am sorry that you can not accept the fact “that the Ref’s decision is final”. This is the case in ALL robot compettions. Again, to echo what has been said multiple times in this thread, sometimes there are things that are not fair in life, but who said that life would be perfect. If that was the case, we would never have left the Garden…

You also need to read what Gracious Professionalism is all about. That should be your creed.

There are a lot of teams who have only been around for ~ 5 months. We are one of them…

THIS is not how you should be acting on this forum. Judges work their butts off and the last thing they need is some punk arguing with them. In case you haven’t noticed members of this forum are kind to one another. You do not seem to be showing any appreciation for what judges are doing for this competition. WITHOUT THEM THERE WOULDN’T BE ONE. Please, what is it that you are looking for? You are not conducting yourself in an appropriate manor by speaking about the people how make the competition work this way.

I wouldn’t think this needs to be repeated every other post but it appears it does. You must remember this is a friendly competition. The refs are there to keep it a friendly competition. This is not football or hockey where you try and push the rules as far as you can in order to get an advantage. I have never meet a ref who has done a bad job. Have I disagreed with refs, yes, have I been upset, yes, have I gone on to continue to complain after the fact, no. It’s over, deal with it. Keep in mind that in the end it’s all what you got out of the competition. You can write on your college app that you won such and such competition and that might help. However if you right on there that you learned a lot about teamwork engineering and the design process you probably have a much better chance.

Note: I have experience with this I just completed my freshmen year at Northeastern University. All the essays I wrote for applications were about robotics. I was accepted into every college I applied. I also got a few scholarships for robotics.

I would suggest at this point this thread be closed. Enough bad things have been said about people who you should have the greatest respect for.

He is right winning is cool. but learning about something you care about is even better. Lets face it only 1 alliance will win out of tons of teams. However most people who participate will gain an unforgettable experience of learning about robotics in a fun semi competitive way. And even if a team doesn’t win or even win a single match if they have a true love for robotics they will stick with it.

Corpralchee, If I may briefly count myself in the group you are referring to (and hopefully express a sentiment shared by that group), I would like to suggest moderating what you wrote here, just a bit.

“Respect” - Yes.

“Greatest respect” - Well, in my case at least, I would prefer you reserve your greatest respect for the many past and present role models out there who deserve it far more than us hard-working robotics refs and judges.

We put our pants on one leg at a time, just like you all do; and you all can choose to do what we do, and more.

We don’t need to be on pedestals; but we are pleased when our example to others occasionally lets us pay-forward the inspiration we received from the women and men who were our role models.

Instead of thinking of what we do as being “the exception”, let’s all make it “the rule”.

Service before self… Is it your turn today?

Thanks for listening,

have respect?
for the guy that ruined it for us?

sounds great.

and tis true, the older u are…the more stubborn.

btw, is was called thta the robot was touching the cube, that matter was settled before the field reset.

Have a nice life…

I’m done for now.

Then you are misunderstanding what the posts are trying to explain. Yes, there were some unfortunate incidents that happened, but the end result should be the knowledge and team work that was put forth for this season. This should be carried over to the next year’s competiton in a positive manner, and not a negative way. Winning isn’t everything, yes it’s a great feeling, but that is not what the overall objective is. Again I point to what Gracious Professionalism is. This should be everyone’s motto.

There is absolutely nothing wrong in questioning a call from an official or a referee. However, when all of the sarcastic remarks and the personal attacks on a targeted individual happen, then that is where the community loses respect for that person and his/her ideas.

Actually, the issue going forward was addressed on page one. Since then it mostly appears to be a desire to retroactively change what happened.

In addition to the suggestions on page one, you will notice that this year’s game manual states:
“<G13> Replays are at the discretion of the event organizer and head referee. Possible reasons for a replay could be attributed to an error or failure of official field personnel, the scoring system, the field controls, or the field itself”

I’m not sure what else the people want that can be considered “positive” for the community.

The rules explicitly state that the team has the right to challenge a decision within 2 matches, which they did. The rules state that the ref will review the decision (and that video replays are not allowed), which he did. The rules also state that the ref’s word is final. While I wouldn’t quite call the last statement a “free pass”, it does mean that the ref is a higher authority than the team. In agreeing to play this year’s game, participants all agreed to accept that condition. Since allowable avenues have been exhausted, there is nothing that can be done to change the ruling.

The team does not have to like the ruling, and they have the right to feel however they please. Most of us would feel frustration in the same situation, which is what others have been trying to communicate. However, the team’s feelings translated into the action of speaking unkindly against the ref, who acted according to the rules. Many of us object to this unkind treatment of someone who was not merely “doing his job” but has gone far above and beyond the call of duty to serve us.

No further actions can be taken to change the outcome of this year’s season but the team has a number of choices for the future:

  1. Appeal to the game committee to change/modify the “ref’s word is final” rule for future years.
  2. Choose not to enroll in future years. When I don’t like a product, I generally vote with my feet and my wallet, and there are plenty of other robotics competitions out there.
  3. Decide, “I didn’t like ___ aspect of the experience, but I’ll accept it because ___ was good enough to offset the negative parts.” Then accept it.

Exact same thing happened to our alliance in the World FTC semifinals last year. Video and pictures showed our alliance won the match by 3 points, but the field referees counted an additional 5 point ring (that was not rung at the end of the match) for the other alliance. Their reason was that our alliance knocked the ring off during the match.

After reviewing video, talking with other alliances who watched the match, and being bombarded by webcast viewers who all said the score was incorrect, it was clear that the “knocked off” ring was non-existant, since our entire alliance did not go near the tall posts the entire match.

It’s the worst way to lose, but the refs are just volunteers who sometimes make mistakes. I know there was nothing malicious about the call, and it just inspires me to work harder next year.

there are things you can control and things you cant.

you can not really control the rules.

just try really hard to perfect the things you can control. if you make a bot that wins by 50pts then there is no way a small mishap in counting will effect the outcome of the match. let it go and start designing a great bot for this year.