2019 NHBB Online scandal

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Revision as of 00:25, 12 May 2019 by Kevin Wang (talk | contribs) (Once again reverting to an edit I made, which was previously removed without explanation in favor of a significantly more biased article)
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See also: Question recycling

The 2019 "NHBB" Discord Tournament, also known colloquially as "NHBB Online", was an online history bee-style "tournament" held during April 2019 on Discord. The brainchild of 8th grade Laurel Springs NHB player Ameya Singh, the "tournament" was won by Sam Brochin in a small field. The event attracted controversy after it was revealed that a number of questions it used were knowingly plagiarized from existing packets, rendering it not a true tournament, but instead a scrimmage.

The Scrimmage Begins

The event had promoted itself on the forums as a housewrite "based off of NHBB/IHB packets." After its preliminary stages had concluded, attempts were made to upload the first three packets onto the packet archive, leading observers to note that comments on the Discord had implied that the questions had been adapted from existing questions, which would have barred them from being posted. The packets in question were instead posted to the forums for review, where many of the tossups were verified to have been directly copied from past tournaments. Other writers participating in the project provided chat logs that indicated that this plagarism was intentional.

There was also additional concern over the choice to explicitly label the event as the "NHBB Discord Tournament", despite not being affiliated with NHBB or International Academic Competitions (IAC) in any way outside of using their questions. Though such connections were denied, such denials were only found in niche areas of associated discussion, preventing many from accessing them.

The Scrimmage Concludes

In the midst of this controversy, the organizer of the event elected to continue, indicating that they would continue to draw questions from existing packets, but not post them. This drew additional censure, as did a later attempt by the organizer to run multiple other such events. Ultimately, the final round was run on a packet of housewritten tossups.

As a direct result of these events, a new category on the forums was created to advertise for and organize scrimmages using clear packets.

Packets used

Samples from the prelims include: