Originally Posted by J_R_B
I understand how the math actually works, but it's still a flaw when the formula bumps you for losing every match. One of the adult losses is to me. The guy is an average 4.0 who drew a couple short straws in adult play (I was 14-2 at 4.0 and the other guy is actually a 4.5 player who was sandbagging last year). He could easily compete in 4.0, but the system has just pretty much excluded him from playing adult again (unless they grant an appeal since he would have to self-rate again with an M-rating for adult).
I agree it appears odd and like I said earlier, if I was formulating a rating system myself, I'd include something about winning/losing, but at least he does have just an M rating and he has options to self-rate/appeal down.
But, I'd also argue that a rating system should not preclude one's rating from improving when you lose. If you are a 4.0 playing up at 4.5, and play very strong 4.5 players to very close matches, even if you lose every one, you've demonstrated that you can play competitive at 4.5 and should probably be at that level and it is likely that had you had the opportunity to play weaker 4.5s that you would have won matches against them.
This is really no different from a 4.5 that goes winless at 4.5 against very strong 4.5s not being bumped down. If this 4.5 and the 4.0 playing up have identical records, shouldn't they be rated the same and that be 4.5? Ok, I'm sure you'll argue that the winless 4.5 should be bumped down, even though he played tight matches against the best 4.5s.
And for the guy you referenced, he was effectively playing up (7.5 combined with his partner playing at 8.0) and we all know playing up is the best way to get bumped up. And this "playing up" is analogous to what I described above with the 4.0 playing up at 4.5.
Now, obviously the specifics of his partner's rating and the opponent's ratings that they played are key. Not every player that goes winless playing up should be bumped up. But a good system has to allow for the possibility.