Tuesday, 31 December 2013

PWC 2014 - Whats new and what to do

Over the course of the 2013 PWC we realised that there were perhaps one or two small tweaks we could make to the rules, to make things run a little better. Don’t worry – the competition is almost exactly the same as it was last year – there are no big changes and you won’t have to worry about doing anything different day to day. If you want to have a look at the rules from last year, see here.

Here’s what we’re proposing.

Comparative Scores – the comparative score competition is still the main focus of PWC but, as things developed over 2013 we realised that plenty of the scores that people were playing against were not particularly comparative, due either to people not knowing their patches too well, or, more likely, increased effort due to the competition. As a result, were going to have to take a pretty tough line on comparative scores. That line will be that your score from 2013 will be your comparative score, and if you didn’t take part in 2013 you can’t enter a comparative score.

Scoring – Scoring will be exactly the same, apart from a very slight tweak to what subspecies will score extra points (see this blog post for details). A few people have proposed changes to the scoring system but most people seem to think it works, especially in the context of comparative scores. You can download your scoring spreadsheet here

Patches – again there are no changes proposed here. The only thing we think needs to be said is that if you’re playing off a comparative score then your patch needs to remain the same – no tweaking!

When you can enter – You can enter whenever you want, but if you enter later in the year, it’s important to think about whether your coverage before you signed up will be sufficient to build up a suitable comparative score for the following year. When you sign up, you can add your patch to our map of patches by following the instructions here.

And finally, submitting your score - keep an eye on the blog, or watch out for the alerts on Facebook and Twitter for the score forms. Then it's as simple as filling out a similar form to the one you've already filled in when signing up. Every month we'll take the species and points totals you enter on the score form and use them to update the leagues, and use the details you enter for highlights and best finds for our blog posts and pieces for Birdguides.

All that remains to be said is to wish everyone who takes part the very best of luck!

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