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Plowboy
08-24-2007, 05:46 AM
This has come up in a couple of threads. We know that the occasional "celebrity" or VIP is tossed onto judging tables from time to time. Selling judging spots has been mentioned, but I've never heard of it actually being done until now.

http://partners.dubuque365.com/throwdown/index.html

What's even worse is that a sponsor can enter a team and two judges for the right money.

I'm amazed that KCBS allows this.

parrothead
08-24-2007, 05:53 AM
Who proof read that thing for them? Obviously no one did.

Bigdog
08-24-2007, 06:14 AM
Welcome to corporate America Todd. This is yet another reason that I do not compete.:roll:

drbbq
08-24-2007, 06:25 AM
I really don't mind this at all. I think it brings judges that view it as an honor to judge instead of thinking they are doing us a favor.

I think you guys put way too much faith in CBJs. All they do is sit through a few hour class. Nobody has ever failed the class.

It's really not that bad BD. If you're a competitive kind of guy who likes to BBQ, you should give it a try sometime.

eurycea
08-24-2007, 06:44 AM
I don't think what they are doing is that big of a deal. I think the GAB did the same thing.

pigmaker23
08-24-2007, 07:08 AM
This happens more often than you would think, especially with larger comps that involve corporations and multiple sponsers, like Ray said, the corporation forking over the 10K for the prize pool wants to feel special and it is an honor for some to be a judge. Memphis in May had a program where you could pay $500 to be an "ambassador" to the contest which also let you be a judge for the day. The people putting on contests have to find all kinds of ways to raise money, i have no problem with the practice. Now if somebody was selling there judging spot the day of a contest that would be a problem...

ique
08-24-2007, 08:01 AM
Ideally every contest would be judged 100% by 'professionals'. But if I have a choice of cooking a contest with 10k prize money and a couple celebrity judges vs a contest with no prize money... I'll take the prize money contest. Heck, the contest everyone is trying to get into, The Jack, is chock full of celebrity type judges.

Plowboy
08-24-2007, 08:14 AM
I really don't mind this at all. I think it brings judges that view it as an honor to judge instead of thinking they are doing us a favor.

I think you guys put way too much faith in CBJs. All they do is sit through a few hour class. Nobody has ever failed the class.

It's really not that bad BD. If you're a competitive kind of guy who likes to BBQ, you should give it a try sometime.


I don't recall mentioning CBJ's? :confused: Must be a personal issue, Doc.


I guess this happens more than I realized. I've just never seen it in writing. I have no problem with sponsors judging or having a team in the contest. Putting BOTH into a sponsorship package just looks odd to me. I realize that any team could easily have their OWN judges in the pavilion. But if that sponsor's team would happen to win, let's see how many cooks claim that those two sponsor's judges were major influences.

I can see where it is good for us cooks by bringing more money to the table or at least keeping our entry fees down.

What also seems ironic is that many have problems with judges with coolers citing that their only desire is leftovers. Doesn't seem much different than a judge from a corporate sponsor who is there for personal or corporate exposure. CBJ's or not, I'd rather have people who want to be there for BBQ, as Chris has said.

Not a perfect world, but selling judging spots to sponsors seems a hair over the line for where I would draw it. I guess I'm more conservative leaning on this one.

Plowboy
08-24-2007, 08:15 AM
Ideally every contest would be judged 100% by 'professionals'. But if I have a choice of cooking a contest with 10k prize money and a couple celebrity judges vs a contest with no prize money... I'll pick the later. Heck, the contest everyone is trying to get into, The Jack, is chock full of celebrity type judges.

Later = No prize money?

MoKanMeathead
08-24-2007, 08:17 AM
The Blue Springs, Mo contest has been doing this for at least 10 or 12 years. There is a corp. sponsor for every judges table - and someone from that sponsor is seated at that table. I think we have bogger things to worry about than non-CBJ's judging our Q. Just my 2 cents

Plowboy
08-24-2007, 08:20 AM
The Blue Springs, Mo contest has been doing this for at least 10 or 12 years. There is a corp. sponsor for every judges table - and someone from that sponsor is seated at that table. I think we have bogger things to worry about than non-CBJ's judging our Q. Just my 2 cents

Read my second post, Wayne. This wasn't about CBJ's.

I guess my eyes are open now. :shock: I have an idea to resolve the cooler issue: Judge's Cooler Fee! :wink:

ique
08-24-2007, 08:26 AM
Later = No prize money?
No coffee, yet, former.

:-)

Dale P
08-24-2007, 08:56 AM
For 5 grand they ought to get a cooler too.

that one cracked me up.

jbrink01
08-24-2007, 09:19 AM
If I was coughing up the cash, to be used as prize money, I would expoect to be able to judge as well as get a few leftovers. In my mind the question is, as a cooker, do you want less prize oney and all CBJ's, or bigger money and one wild card judge at each table?

I think KCBS should have apolicy, like maybe a mandatory 1 hour training for every non-CBJ (no, the 11 minute CD is not enough) and sell the heck out of judging spots so we get a bigger potential purse.

Plowboy
08-24-2007, 12:06 PM
If I was coughing up the cash, to be used as prize money, I would expoect to be able to judge as well as get a few leftovers. In my mind the question is, as a cooker, do you want less prize oney and all CBJ's, or bigger money and one wild card judge at each table?

I think KCBS should have apolicy, like maybe a mandatory 1 hour training for every non-CBJ (no, the 11 minute CD is not enough) and sell the heck out of judging spots so we get a bigger potential purse.

For $5000, you get everyone who sees, hears, or attends the contest also seeing your name. You may also get exclusive rights for vending, in the case of Budweiser, for example.

The question is, for my entry fee, WHAT DO I GET? I want a space to cook in that is all mine. I want a fair contest. Water. Security. Quiet hours. And 6 judges that are there FIRST for BBQ. They don't have to be CBJ's as far as I'm concerned. Fair Queens are not there for BBQ.

I guess its common place. I never realized that.

Greendriver
08-24-2007, 02:29 PM
well dang might as well drop my 2 cents in here. why is it that these issues always do more toward dividing the camp rather than finding solutions? and why is it that anybody and I mean anybody can't see that cbj's would always be preferred over celebs because they would be judging more than that one time they got thrown in the ring by the boss or whoever. Some of the same ones that jumps on the wagon of not caring whether celebs are used or not in order to increase prize money are the ones saying that we have to do these type thing to become more professional - just seems like a contradiction to me. One of the main concerns going is consistency in judging, right? Hello. Anyway what about the minds coming together for solutions rather that taking sides. Surely to goodness some perks other than actually being a judge can be found. What about making them table captains or a peoples choice judged by them. old teacher I had was famous for saying "can't never did do nothing".

Sawdustguy
08-24-2007, 04:19 PM
I think you are all missing the point. I don't think it is fair for a sponsor to cook a contest when we is providing judges also. I would love to cook a contest and then send my wife and brother to judge. Doesn't sound fair does it?

Bentley
08-24-2007, 04:36 PM
I think you are all missing the point. I don't think it is fair for a sponsor to cook a contest when we is providing judges also. I would love to cook a contest and then send my wife and brother to judge. Doesn't sound fair does it?


In a true double blind it should not matter, maybe you are saying your turn in meat is so distinctive or your presentation so well known they could pick that out?

Greendriver
08-24-2007, 05:37 PM
I must be missing something cause I haven't heard any argument much from anyone seriously worried about cheating by the celebs and I certainly would not be concerned with that at all. What I thought the issue centered around was good and consistent judging that comes from judging over a period of time and from people that is associated with bbq already which most cbjs are.

The_Kapn
08-24-2007, 05:41 PM
I see this question was posted here a few minutes before posting on another forum. That is encouraging.
I also see the responses are very similar on both forums.

I just cook--Organizer puts up the judges from wherever--we all get judged the same based on the "luck of the table"--I wind up DAM (dead ass middle)--I get PO'ed and swear to never compete again--I calm down and do it again! :lol:

It don't matter!!!

TIM

Sawdustguy
08-24-2007, 07:59 PM
Guy's

Here is a hypothetical situation.

John owns a BBQ resturant and has a bbq team that competes to promote his resturant. All his team members know his flavor profiles. He sees there is a contest where for $500 he can be a sponsor, cook in the contest and provide two judges for the contest. The GC pays $5000. John decides to become a sponsor and asks two team members to Judge. He tells them to stay away on the day of judging and not to wear any team garments. The day of the contest comes and his judges sit at the same table. His chicken, ribs and pork have done well and he has a real chance to become GC if he does extremely well on brisket. His brisket shows up at the table where his two teams are judging. The other judges rate the brisket above average but his two team mates recognize the flavor profile and give him 9's across the board edging your team out of the GC by one point.

How many of you would be happy with that? While this is a remote possibility, it is possible. My team is not good enough to worry too much about this but I would find it difficult cooking a contest where this hypothetical situation is possible. I would hope all contests are run without reproach. The practice of letting a sponsor cook and choose two judges for a contest is not the way to build integrity for your contest. While it would have little effect on a team of our calibre is could have an effect on a team with a real shot at a GC.

Bentley
08-24-2007, 08:59 PM
Guy's

Here is a hypothetical situation.

John owns a BBQ resturant and has a bbq team that competes to promote his resturant. All his team members know his flavor profiles. He sees there is a contest where for $500 he can be a sponsor, cook in the contest and provide two judges for the contest. The GC pays $5000. John decides to become a sponsor and asks two team members to Judge. He tells them to stay away on the day of judging and not to wear any team garments. The day of the contest comes and his judges sit at the same table. His chicken, ribs and pork have done well and he has a real chance to become GC if he does extremely well on brisket. His brisket shows up at the table where his two teams are judging. The other judges rate the brisket above average but his two team mates recognize the flavor profile and give him 9's across the board edging your team out of the GC by one point.

How many of you would be happy with that? While this is a remote possibility, it is possible. My team is not good enough to worry too much about this but I would find it difficult cooking a contest where this hypothetical situation is possible. I would hope all contests are run without reproach. The practice of letting a sponsor cook and choose two judges for a contest is not the way to build integrity for your contest. While it would have little effect on a team of our calibre is could have an effect on a team with a real shot at a GC.


Possible yes, probable no!

I still agree with you on your other points, it just makes me hinky! It's the perception, you will always have teams that question the judging in this type of competition, and there will be plenty that will not care and compete anyway, and thats what they are counting on!

Bigdog
08-24-2007, 09:58 PM
It's really not that bad BD. If you're a competitive kind of guy who likes to BBQ, you should give it a try sometime.

Thanks for the reply Ray. Given your credentials, I am sure that your perspective is correct. Maybe I will some time then.

Chris Nickelson
08-25-2007, 09:55 AM
Sawdust,
I agree possible but unlikely.

The problem goes back to not enough cbj's at every event.
Alot of times reps are scambling to get judges to the tent.
This is just another avenue that they use to put butts in seats at the judging tent.
As others have said The system is setup to not allow for "ringer's" Even if 2 judges are sponsored along with a team, they cannot affect the score as much as percieved, remember there's five others at each table. And a good rep would seperate those two celeb judges.

just my thoughts.

eurycea
08-26-2007, 09:32 AM
Guy's

Here is a hypothetical situation.

John owns a BBQ resturant and has a bbq team that competes to promote his resturant. All his team members know his flavor profiles. He sees there is a contest where for $500 he can be a sponsor, cook in the contest and provide two judges for the contest. The GC pays $5000. John decides to become a sponsor and asks two team members to Judge. He tells them to stay away on the day of judging and not to wear any team garments. The day of the contest comes and his judges sit at the same table. His chicken, ribs and pork have done well and he has a real chance to become GC if he does extremely well on brisket. His brisket shows up at the table where his two teams are judging. The other judges rate the brisket above average but his two team mates recognize the flavor profile and give him 9's across the board edging your team out of the GC by one point.

How many of you would be happy with that? While this is a remote possibility, it is possible.


I wouldn't be happy, but this can happen at contests where the cook doesn't have to spend $500 to buy the spots.

Sawdustguy
08-26-2007, 10:10 AM
I am really surprised at the responses here. There is no problem with a sponsor cooking and supplying two of his own judges (possibly team members) but have a judge spend a little too much time with a team on Friday the complaints come out of the woodwork in force. Sounds a little funny to me.

BBQchef33
08-26-2007, 12:03 PM
Double blind, to me, is enuf to negate someone knowing who cooked what.

As far as a flavor profile being so recognizable that it can be 999 across the board?? IMO. is TOO RISKY. The risk being, your tastebuds are wrong and you just gave 999 to the wrong team with a similar profile. I believe appearance can be a better flag to a team member than flavor. Putting the box together is just as much of a give away and there too lies the same risk.

Im with chris, I'd prefer the bigger purse with a few celeb judges than all cbj and a puny purse. The luck is at the table anyway.

Where I believe the problem alot has is if the judge thats in there, has no clue what BBQ is, and is rating it against the stuff he gets at famous daves, or his moms kitchen. Even a brief lesson prior to the event is better than going in cold. One experience I have had while judging that sticks with me is a "celeb" judge asking for "white meat" from the table captain because she did not like thighs. She was 'grossed out' when having to judge the thighs, and she DID NOT judge fairly. Needless to say, yes, that angered me as a judge, and a cook. But this was not a purchased spot, it was an empty seat filled by a family member. So it can happen no matter what. Purchased, lottery, raffle, or eenie, meanine minie moe, this has been going on forever.

As far as a judge hanging out in the camp the night before, i dont see a problem there, I dont think anyone does... but hanging out in between entries, or the morning of the event? No good.. (and against the rules after being sworn in). Perception is reality, and no matter how much integrity someone may have, your looking for trouble hanging out with the teams that morning.

Sawdustguy
08-26-2007, 12:53 PM
Phil,

Wasn't is just last month that someone complained about Sledneck hanging out with Purple Turtle on a Friday night? I just think it's strange when every one is okay with a sponsor cooking and providing two judges while we hear of complaints when a Judge hangs with a team the night before turn-in. The moral of the story is: If you want to keep your contest above reproach, let a sponsor select two judges, but don't let that sponsor cook the same contest.

we'll smoke u
08-26-2007, 01:15 PM
For $5000, you get everyone who sees, hears, or attends the contest also seeing your name. You may also get exclusive rights for vending, in the case of Budweiser, for example.

The question is, for my entry fee, WHAT DO I GET? I want a space to cook in that is all mine. I want a fair contest. Water. Security. Quiet hours. And 6 judges that are there FIRST for BBQ. They don't have to be CBJ's as far as I'm concerned. Fair Queens are not there for BBQ.

I guess its common place. I never realized that.

I agree with you Todd I just want the same as you. I think to much is put on CBJ's Just because you sit thru a class don't make you know more then anyone else. I understand why the class is there to try and get everyone on the same page when it comes to judging. But I don't care how many classes you sit thru you still have your own opinion of good BBQ and thats how they judge it.
I didn't post this to hammer CBJ's it is just my thought on paper so to say. We need judges to compete just like we need teams.I think the top teams have found that happy medium in there cooking methed that all judges and for that matter non judges Like and or love.

I hope to achieve(spell mod) that level someday.

BBQchef33
08-26-2007, 01:40 PM
Phil,

Wasn't is just last month that someone complained about Sledneck hanging out with Purple Turtle on a Friday night? I just think it's strange when every one is okay with a sponsor cooking and providing two judges while we hear of complaints when a Judge hangs with a team the night before turn-in. The moral of the story is: If you want to keep your contest above reproach, let a sponsor select two judges, but don't let that sponsor cook the same contest.

Nope, that was a judge hanging out with a team in between turn-ins. Unrelated to this.


I noticed that in between turn ins (which were an hour)one of the judges would come out of the tent and hang out with one of the teams the entire time in between until he had to go back and judge.

Roo-B-Q'N
08-26-2007, 04:10 PM
This does sound odd. KCBS prohibits organizers from entering a team into their contest, but allow the corporate sponsor to filed a team and supply judges.
I agree that it would be very remote that they would actually be able to sway the vote all that much due to the double blind judging.
We just held a CBJ class here in an effort to ensure we would have enough CBJ's for our event next month. In the class were two employees from SAM'S club. SAM'S is our corporate sponsor and they have footed the prize money and are donating alot of incidental products to be used during the contest. They wanted to judge and we told them they would have to be CBJ's in order to judge. That served two purposes 1. we will have all CBJ's and 2 we will not be accused or have the contest be percieved of showing favoritism to our sponsor.
As this thread is running parallel issues, (the corporate sell out and CBJ's) my only comments to the CBJ issue is that one class is not enough, they should have to cook with a team and participate in ongoing training. At every judges meeting I have attended the Contest Rep stressed you are their for the teams so judge accordingly and fairly. That does not happen a lot of the times and I would say that several judges should be excused from judging at contest and even banned from judging altogether.
Ok I am getting off my soap box now.

The_Kapn
08-26-2007, 05:46 PM
There have been a lot of interesting issues and ideas raised here and in the parallel threads on other forums.
I may, or may not, agree with or support all of them. But, they are well thought out and interesting.

So--my question is......
How many of you have articulated this in writing to a member of the BOD?
Forums are fine, but they do nothing whatsoever to improve things in the real world.

If you believe it is a problem, articulate it to the BOD along with some rational method or change to correct it.

Just a thought.

TIM

BBQchef33
08-26-2007, 06:43 PM
Good point..

I guess I take for granted that Merl and Jim are watching. :oops:

Sawdustguy
08-26-2007, 08:35 PM
There have been a lot of interesting issues and ideas raised here and in the parallel threads on other forums.
I may, or may not, agree with or support all of them. But, they are well thought out and interesting.

So--my question is......
How many of you have articulated this in writing to a member of the BOD?
Forums are fine, but they do nothing whatsoever to improve things in the real world.

If you believe it is a problem, articulate it to the BOD along with some rational method or change to correct it.

Just a thought.

TIM

You are right Tim! My feeling is that contests must be run so there is no question about thier integrity. I love this sport and if I see the possiblity of it getting a black eye, I will be vocal about it. At your suggestion I will write a message to the BOD. Thank you Tim for the well thought out reply and suggestion.

HoDeDo
08-26-2007, 10:02 PM
In a true double blind it should not matter, maybe you are saying your turn in meat is so distinctive or your presentation so well known they could pick that out?

I know several folks turn in boxes, and how thier food tastes. As a judge, I know I would be impartial if i were to run into someones food I do recognize -- but yes, I think when you spend so much time paying attention to the details as a cook you can pick out lots of things.

For example - If you put Plowboys, Big Creek, and Mokan chicken on random plates -- I bet I could tell you who's was who's.

I have yet to run into that dilemma, but I think it is possible.

HoDeDo
08-26-2007, 10:22 PM
I know that one organizer in MO has been bashed for trying to raffle judging tables. I thought KCBS ruled that he could not do it. It is an interesting topic.

I know contest reps that have fallen on both sides of this also... It would be nice if Jim or Merl could come back with what the KCBS soundbyte is on judging: - i.e. Sponsor provided judges vs. raffled judging tables .... and if there is an stance on sponsors being allowed to judge and cook.

Thanks for all the good banter on this.... I'll keep reading.

Plowboy
08-26-2007, 10:38 PM
There have been a lot of interesting issues and ideas raised here and in the parallel threads on other forums.
I may, or may not, agree with or support all of them. But, they are well thought out and interesting.

So--my question is......
How many of you have articulated this in writing to a member of the BOD?
Forums are fine, but they do nothing whatsoever to improve things in the real world.

If you believe it is a problem, articulate it to the BOD along with some rational method or change to correct it.

Just a thought.

TIM


Tim,

I personally didn't even know it was allowed until Friday. I've had this discussion with Reps and other cooks in the past and we were told by the reps that organizers couldn't sell or otherwise promise tables or seats to paying sponsors. This is why I was surprised to see this from an upcoming contest and started the thread.

Little did I know that it was common place.

EDIT: I plan to chat with the reps at my next contest in two weeks just to see what they say. I'm not convinced that it is a problem or not. I'm still listening to everyone.

HoDeDo
08-27-2007, 07:43 AM
Tim,

I personally didn't even know it was allowed until Friday. I've had this discussion with Reps and other cooks in the past and we were told by the reps that organizers couldn't sell or otherwise promise tables or seats to paying sponsors. This is why I was surprised to see this from an upcoming contest and started the thread.

Little did I know that it was common place.

EDIT: I plan to chat with the reps at my next contest in two weeks just to see what they say. I'm not convinced that it is a problem or not. I'm still listening to everyone.

This is EXACTLY what I am doing too... I thought it was a Taboo, but I've never seen anything "official" about it. I'd like to get some futher input.

River City Smokehouse
08-27-2007, 07:56 AM
If an organizer wants to sell spots for raising money I'm all for it but still I think it is important that a KCBS sanctioned event do everything to ensure certified judges are the priority and put the non certs on the back burner and use them only if it is necessary. Why not stipulate that if a spot or table is sold that the certification class is part of the package. Just sitting down and trying to listen to the 20 minute cd isn't enough. Last weekend they were playing the CD over top of the music entertainment at Paola and you could not hear it. If I couldn't hear it no one else could either. OOPS! that's another thread!

benjet
08-27-2007, 04:21 PM
If an organizer wants to sell spots for raising money I'm all for it but still I think it is important that a KCBS sanctioned event do everything to ensure certified judges are the priority and put the non certs on the back burner and use them only if it is necessary.

Playing devil's advocate here -

Other than for the sake of making the cooks happy (which I'm all for, btw), to the best of my knowledge there is no direct REQUIREMENT to have any CBJ's (or any given % of judges = CBJs) at a KCBS contest.

Given that, I'm sure it's unlikely that teams would return to a contest a 2nd year after they found out none of the judges were CBJs....I'm just saying there is nothing in writing stipulating CBJs (or any level thereof) from KCBS.

If I am wrong someone please show me.

Some contests do have a hard time getting enough CBJs....

River City Smokehouse
08-27-2007, 07:15 PM
Playing devil's advocate here -

Other than for the sake of making the cooks happy (which I'm all for, btw), to the best of my knowledge there is no direct REQUIREMENT to have any CBJ's (or any given % of judges = CBJs) at a KCBS contest.

Given that, I'm sure it's unlikely that teams would return to a contest a 2nd year after they found out none of the judges were CBJs....I'm just saying there is nothing in writing stipulating CBJs (or any level thereof) from KCBS.

If I am wrong someone please show me.

Some contests do have a hard time getting enough CBJs....

You are correct, there is no rule that says there has to be 100% CBJ's. Most events try to get as many as they can but I know of instances where a organizer will not use an inquiring CBJ because their(the organizer) head is so far up the local celebrities arses that if they turned a corner they'd break their nose. I believe that contests like that will eventually suffer.