WPPR nationality exclusion rules discussion

This morning, while following the Swedish Championships on Twitch, (congrats x2 to Marcus H!) I saw a post in the chat room that puzzled me. It said something along the lines of “This tournament is only open to Swedish players, that’s why there aren’t any other nationalities represented. We were given an exemption from the IFPA.” It’s not an exact quote, but that was the gist of it. So, it made me wonder, does the IFPA endorse tournaments that exclude players based on their nationality?

I know that you can’t exclude anyone based on gender, race, religion, height, etc., but if you in fact can exclude someone based on their nationality, there are many questions that come to mind. This discussion if of course predicated on a tournament being endorsed by the IFPA for wpprs.

  1. Under basic rules on the IFPA website, this is what I found on the subject: “Only open tournaments are included in the WPPR system. However, depending on circumstances, exceptions can be made.” What are these exceptions?
  2. Can someone actually be denied to play in the Swedish Championships if they are not Swedish?
  3. Can someone play the Swedish Championships, but be denied wpprs based on their nationality?
  4. What about the European Championships? I know there were a few players there playing for the U.S. It would appear that this tournament is in fact, open to all.
  5. What are the jurisdictions that can exclude certain players? Can the people of Amsterdam say that their city championship is for Amsterdammers only, and still get wpprs?
  6. How would someone with multiple citizenships be handled? Does this person have to choose one or the other, or are they free to switch depending on their whereabouts?
  7. My goal with this is to get clarity, not to bash anyone or any country. I think it would not be bad for the IFPA to update their rule section to include all the exceptions for greater transparency.

@JimiWolf Let’s create the San Francisco Scandinavian Championship!


Can I come?

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I’m unfamiliar with the event and the specifics, but perhaps they misspoke? And it’s similar to the USA (er… N American) SCS/PCS, where participation is limited to those players that have earned enough SCS/PCS points (at open events) to qualify?

If not, that’s a bummer for David Dahl-Hanson and Karyn, etc. and any Norwegian and Finnish players that travel to Sweden events.

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It’s an open tournament… all one has to do is ditch their current citizenship and become a Swedish citizen :grin:

Maybe @pinwizj wants to chime in?

I think 310 players competed too. Not bad for a closed tournament!

I was under the impression that Sweden has an exemption from the open-tournament rules for the annual championship tournament because it predates the IFPA rankings by something like 15 years.

I believe the general rule is that you have to live in Sweden for at least a year or be Swedish to participate.

It’s this.

Back in the day the Swedish Championships represented pretty much the largest event with respect to # of participants that existed - this goes back to 1991 when only 4 events existed in the world :slight_smile:

The Swedes were a huge part of making the WPPR system what it is today, and this is/was their “biggest” event. We made the exception for this particular tournament, and left it open to the other IFPA Country Directors that they were allowed to host a Country Championship that was only open to players from that country if they so desired. To this day I don’t think anyone outside of Sweden actually does this . . . I’m sure someone can correct me if I’m wrong.

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Sweden! Anybody got a link for the pinball story over there? Is it just a coincidence that Illinois has a lot of people from Sweden? My dad, Mr. Carlson, is from St. Charles, IL. I am 1/4 Swedish. What happened over there?

Maybe you can apply for inclusion under the same idea that World Cup players use to gain eligibility for their countries. I think FIFA rules say you have to have a parent or grandparent born in the county to be eligible. :slight_smile:

The vast majority of Scandinavian emigrants ended up in the midwest because of agriculture (cheap, good farmland). The reasons were the same as everyone else left Europe at the time: Poverty, politics, religion.

Nowadays us Scandinavians have other reasons for emigrating to the U.S. :slight_smile:


The Danes do it - no where near the size of the Swedish thing though


IMO that is fucked and actually makes me actively think less of the Swedish scene. Imagine if we tried to pull that dumb shit in America.

Not sure if serious… It’s not that ridiculous is it? If you wanted a tournament to crown the best Swedish player, seems like you may as well make sure only Swedes enter?

In that regard surely it’s a bit like having a competition to find the best baseball team in North America

It’s not ridiculous but I think if you want World Pinball Player Ranking points your event should be open to the world.

Seriously, imagine if the US had a tournament with 300 players that was restricted to US citizens worth points. There is no way in hell that would ever fly.

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I think josh just said above that it is totally fine to do that.

It’s up to the US Country Director… Which is me. Stay tuned for REALLY BIG NEWS! (Or not) :slight_smile:

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Thanks for your answer @pinwizj. I’ll try to answer my own questions just to wrap that part of this discussion up.

One annual country tournament exclusive to citizens of that country. Not clear if there are other exceptions.




NO, the exception is only for countries.

Switch away and play wherever they’ll let you!

If I interpret Josh correctly, he will set aside an hour to do just so this very week!

* fixed by @keefer to improve readability, no content change

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I can’t see why not? It’s up to someone to organize it. The country director (Josh) would not have to organize themselves, but only approve it. At least that seems to be the way in Sweden, where they rotate being at the helm of the Swedish Championships.

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I wonder if the tournament count toward the European championship then?