Sad day, FIRST now FIRLP

For those who haven’t seen the thread,

FIRST has been charging FTC teams higher registration fees the past few years out of an agreement with Lego/Pitsco.

Basically, FIRST is now FIRLP (at least to me)
For Increased Revenue of Lego Pitsco

I’m so mad right now. Bad decisions are one thing, corrupt decisions are another. So mad, so disappointed. Don’t even know what else to say.

How is this thread different than the one referenced?

I thought the one referenced was about the FIRST annual report and cash reserves, at least that seemed to be the focus of the thread. I thought FIRST and Lego having an agreement to increase school and team fees for the intermediate program is a totally different discussion. Isn’t it?

I can’t be the only one that thinks FIRST should be trying to get partners to lower fees and costs for teams, not making deals to sell out schools to help Lego or anyone else. I’d be pissed if they did the same to FLL to help Vex or anyone else, it’s just not right.

I’m not exactly sure what you are referencing, but if you are complaining about a $275 per team fee for FTC, think about it again. I doubt that comes anywhere near what it actually costs to provide the infrastructure to have the FTC program.

Daviddavid is one of several new accounts created in the last 30 days making unsupported accusations of non-specific malfeasance on the part of FIRST officials. Since this is replicative of at least two other threads that have been infested by this anonymous posting activity I would like to ask the mods to shut down this thread and (please) look into whether or not there is an ongoing violation of the prohibition against multiple anonymous accounts. The other accounts I suspect were created just to parrot the same thing are “JeffJ,” “Mary,” and “Chicago1st.”

(This isn’t about censorship, by the way. Other non-anonymous posters have made some of the same points.)

The accounts in question are being looked into.

Wow - shouldn’t surprise you, but I take great offense to your post. So you’re telling me I’m a fake account just because I disagree with you and am questioning FIRST? Is that what this site is, just a priase FIRST site, anyone who questions it should be cutoff and censored? If so, fine, I’ll stop reading these forums or posting, since it doesn’t seem to be a free sharing of ideas anyway. Seems more like a post here if you’re a FIRST groupie and won’t ever question what they do or how things can be done better for teams.

So let me get this straight Rick - Does everyone need to use their last name on here? I see hundreds of users without full names, are they annonymous and should be looked into also? Or just the ones who question FIRST or diagree with you? How am I annonymous? I use my first name, I even state where I go to school and I’m looking at starting or metnoring an FTC team (or I was, now I won’t). Seems like you have no problem with all the single name users who don’t disagree with you or challenge FIRST.

What do you want - my full name, my social security number, my phone number?

Let me save you the time of looking into my account - I’m sitting here at the Orchard Valley Cafe in Campbell, CA, where I normally am when back home. If you want to know I’m here, call the clerk and ask who’s next to the couch on their computer. Why am I at home, because I’m going back and forth from school to home because my mother is very ill and in the hospital, so I wish my reality was fake. You hit a nerve, and I would like to call you a name right now, but I won’t. I’m sorry you don’t like my views and you think FIRST can do no wrong. But claiming anyone who disagrees with you or questions FIRST should be looked into and moderated? Are you serious? Is that what FIRST has taught you? Sorry, but this is a joke. I can’t believe that anyone who questions FIRST is slammed on these forums.

Its not that he’s directly accusing you of anything, but there have been a number of users with no team affiliation, and a very low post count in the last few days all accusing FIRST of this LEGO/Pitsco conspiracy. I make no comment as to its truth or falseness. Larger post counts, a reputation behind them, and team affiliations are all things that increase believability of what someone is saying.

Just to play Devil’s Advocate…

They could now finally be posting stuff because… A)They have had enough and finally decided to say something in public. B)They are newer to FIRST or the “community” behind it.
Also…one can feign most of the above. Larger post count can’t be driven up through the chit chat area (although thats easily trackable for all), reputation can be boosted easily by doing a “Reputation Ring” in which a group of 10+ people just constantly rep each other, you can also fake your team affiliation and make up a name.

I think many of the newer accounts are because they were recently referred to the CD community from the FTC blog. I see many of the same names in comments over there.

Also, if these newer members are coming from FTC that may explain why they have vested interested in FIRST’s dealings with LEGO/PITSCO/IFI/Other educational robotics platforms. We all tend to get uppity when FIRST changes things on us.

Oh dear lord, there is a rash of people joining, making provacative posts, then leaving; stop putting words into other’s mouths. Nobody asked for any information, they’re doing normal moderation duties since we’ve never had a wave like this before. Don’t take it personally.

Chill, relax, worry about your mom, a bloody robotics competition isn’t as important as her.

FYI, I’ve challeneged, questioned, and called out FIRST on these forums, in public, and on podcast. Saying anyone is silenced who calls them out is as bad as saying everyone here is just a bunch of whiners; it’s not true, it’s a blanket statement, and is usually written out of passion of the moment.

Again, CHILL.

You are essentially trolling right now. You have no idea why it is a bad decision. If FIRST and Lego are conspiring to make a more powerful version of the NXT controller Im all for it. The NXT controller is so powerful compared to the IFI’s the only problem with it is the limited IO.

Am I the only one that finds it suspicious that Daviddavid just jumped up 5 dots right after someone suggested that he might be taken more seriously if he had them. If this is truly 1 guy with many accounts, odds are that all of his fame came from the other new accounts that were recently made. If the admin, are seriously interested in seeing if there was any fowl play involved, then that would be a good place to start.

Also, Daviddavid… Are you saying that this is your only account? If not, do you know the owners of the other accounts that have been making similar threads? Did you read the user agreement? If you read the agreement and follow the rules, people will generally go easy on you.

Foul play is too difficult to pull off, in the manner you’ve described it, without those other accounts running into the rep limiter (i.e. ‘spread the reputation around’). And yes, you’re probably the only one that finds it particularly suspicious.

More likely, people sympathize with his explanation, and have accepted his stated intentions at face value, until actual evidence to the contrary becomes available.

Edit: Just to be absolutely clear, I’m talking about accepting his reasons for posting, not necessarily his allegations.

All I’m saying is that it takes a long time to get fame. Also, the ‘spread the rep’ limiter is only to ensure that you don’t constantly give it to a single person. If he truly has four accounts. He could alternate the account that he gives the rep to and in turn give himself far more then the limiter would normally allow.

Go ahead and call me paranoid, I just don’t see a single person getting that much that fast with the limited number of posts that he has used. Even if he does get a good deal of sympathy. Besides, I don’t hear a great deal of sympathy coming from the general community. Especially, considering that a fair percentage don’t even give rep. It is just very unusual which makes it suspicious.

The reputation given to Daviddavid since his last few posts are valid.
Ease up, guys. Please.

I must admit to being very intrigued by the general response to this thread. Such an intense focus on the validity (or not) of the account assigned to the thread-starter. So little discussion about the question that the originating post raises.

As a FLL team parent, an FTC team sponsor, and FRC team participant, I must admit to cocking an eyebrow at the notion that the costs associated with participation in some programs may be influenced more by a sweetheart deal with one specific supplier than they are by the justifiable costs of running the program. If such a situation should exist, as it has been reported that FIRST has indicated, then I would be abandoning my duties to protect the pecuniary health of my team if I did not seek to fully understand the reasons why this situation may (or may not) exist.

Are we spending too much time shooting the messenger, while ignoring the message?



Folks, Brandon will take care of anonymous accounts. Please talk about the thread topic.

As to the thread topic, I have a hard time believing it is corruption. There is a difference between corruption and poor management. Unless there is proof, please call it poor management, not corruption, if it is your opinion that things are being done improperly.

I must remind you that the costs of everything are going up right now. Your food, your clothes, all prices are going up because of the oil issues (the discussion of which are for another thread). LEGO, based on these ideas, may be having to raise their prices (which are likely discounted to begin with) based on that, or to be able to supply less because of this. Gas prices are hitting everyone. I don’t know if anyone has noticed, but you can’t even get a candy bar for less than $.50.

Now I don’t know if this is the reason or not, but I’m just saying that is a reason that prices are going up. So much as our ideals may be in a different world than the rest of society, unfortunately our pocketbooks are directly effected by the economy…

For the record, I have not gotten a chance to run the financials for this year to make an opinion on the issue

Lavery has spoken. I do not think that the costs rising are our’s to worry about. If you can’t afford it, then find a different competition. If my team can’t afford it… We will probably look into battlebots or one of the many other robotics competitions to choose from. I do not question the grocer over the price of milk. I buy it, or I go elsewhere. Why should this be different? FIRST is a great organization, but it is not like it does not have competitors.

How is Battlebots cheaper unless you go for the smaller robots?

As a FLL team parent, an FTC team sponsor, and FRC team participant, I must admit to cocking an eyebrow at the notion that the costs associated with participation in some programs may be influenced more by a sweetheart deal with one specific supplier than they are by the justifiable costs of running the program. If such a situation should exist, as it has been reported that FIRST has indicated, then I would be abandoning my duties to protect the pencuniary health of my team if I did not seek to fully understand the reasons why this situation may (or may not) exist.

If we had more proof I would be singing a different tune but right now all we have is “non denials” and an anonyomous poster. Right now the best I can admit to is saying that there can be multiple reasons why.