On 10 December, Franck Riehm, President of the French Bridge Federation (FFB), spoke to his licensees to present them with the system put in place to respect ethics in the practice of online bridge.
We report here the letter to Mr Rona, President of World Bridge Federation(WBF):
To the attention of Mr. Gianarrigo RONA President – WBF
Paris December 7th, 2020
The Executive Committee of the French Bridge Federation (FFB) has carefully examined the new disciplinary code of the WBF which was attached to your letter of November 28th. The FFB’s ambition is to develop an online bridge offer (initiation and teaching, friendly games, competitions of all levels…) as complete and attractive as for bridge played “at the table”. The FFB teams are fully committed to the service of clubs and players, aware of the urgency created by the health crisis, but also aware that in the future online bridge (and more generally digital bridge) will necessarily play a large part, supplementary to “at the table” bridge.
As you point out, such a development is only possible if the conditions of online play are secure. Detecting and fighting against breaches of ethics, punishing them if necessary, is essential. The FFB is fully aware of its responsibilities and duties in this area.
We are fully in line with the principles and procedures of the new WBF Disciplinary Code. We also reaffirm that the FFB will always respect the Laws and Regulations (French and International), as well as the fundamental principles of Law (presumption of innocence, respect of the cross-examination procedure).
The FFB acts: the Statutes, Codes and Regulations of the FFB are already (or will be very soon) adapted and completed, with the agreement of the Federal Council. A Group of Experts, called upon to organize inquiries on suspicious cases, is already set up and ready to take action if necessary. Disciplinary procedures have been defined.
We have drawn up an “Ethics Guide” for the attention of FFB licensees, which you will find attached to this letter. The Guide informs the players of their rights and duties and of the procedures set in case of breaches. The WBF Disciplinary Code will also be made available online to all licensees.
For the enforcement of these new disciplinary principles and procedures, the FFB will collaborate fully with the continental and national federations, and of course the WBF within the scope of its own legal and regulatory environment.
Finally, we wish to conduct open talks with online gaming platforms and organizers of private online events, so that all players under the jurisdiction of the FFB may be subject to the same disciplinary rules and procedures.
The FFB, its governing bodies and all its licensees are sure that online bridge is an important part of the future of the game we love so much. We will work with you to make it
attractive and totally secure, a necessary condition for its development.
Please believe, dear Gianarrigo, in the expression of my warmest greetings, also hoping to meet you very soon as soon as the sanitary conditions allow it.
President of the French Bridge Federation (FFB)