Dear Chris,


I noticed your new intro paragraph and just wanted to provide feedback.  I think your efforts to create power ratings are fantastic and the ratings provide an unbiased indicator of pairs performance over the last 24 months.  I was a serious chess player in my youth and relied on ratings to monitor my progress.  Chess ratings were extremely accurate once a player no longer had a provisional ratings.  


I took up bridge four years ago and am working hard at the game.  I found your power ratings website about 2 years ago and love it.  I've been able to track my performance and get good feedback on progress and a sense for my relative performance.  I visit your site all the time looking for updates, checking the strength of opponents I will be playing in a knockout...  I even found an old friend from chess with a very high power rating and hired him as a playing coach -- he has been great and our results have been great even though he isn't a "big name".  Why?, because power ratings work.  There is no bias and good results don't come from luck.


I have had many discussions about the ratings with friends who played tournament chess for years and ignore or bad mouth power ratings.  I think the bottom line is they probably ignore or  bad mouth the mirrors in their house as well.  They just can't accept that they aren't better than the people with higher ratings.   Study after study has shown that it is human nature to see ones own ability in a biased way -- everyone thinks they are stronger than they are and has a biased view of the ability relative to their peers.  Unfortunately, most people don't see the truth and use it to work harder and grow.


It seems like the main argument against power ratings is anecdotal.  How can you say these work when "Jimmy" has a power rating of 63% -- they try to disprove the whole thing based on one outlier, and frequently, that outlier is an outlier and "Jimmy's" rating drops down with time.  I counter argue that, how can you ignore 2 years of empirical fact, don't you want feedback on growth...  But, most don't listen.


I'm sure you have thought all of this, heard all of this, and argued all of this.  You are providing a really valuable service and many do not appreciate it.


I wanted to tell you that I really appreciate your ratings, use them frequently and am a big fan.  There are others like me who feel the same way.  This is an uphill battle, but don't stop.  


With appreciation,


Phil Goulding

Wexford, Pennsylvania