Judge Academy 2022 Demographic Survey

WHAT IS THE “DEMOGRAPHIC SURVEY?”

One of the challenges of a global organization like Judge Academy is knowing who our members are and what’s important to them. This survey will create an understanding of the judge program that hasn’t really existed before. While we’ve always known how many judges there are of each level and how many there are in each region, there has never been a comprehensive understanding of the financial impact of judging, event experience, advancement interest, or personal identity.

The whole survey, and every question within the survey, is entirely optional. Also, we don’t ask for any explicitly identifying information such as name, email, or date of birth. In the circumstances where your answers are unique, we will make no effort to identify individuals through their responses.

THE SURVEY

We’ve had the survey translated into several languages for ease of understanding. All data will be aggregated and looked at comprehensively. Please take the survey in only one language.

HOW IS JUDGE ACADEMY PROTECTING AND USING YOUR INFORMATION?

This survey is anonymous and no attempt shall be made to identify an individual respondent from their answers. The original, unprocessed data will only be available to specific individuals employed by Judge Academy, and only as needed.

We also intend to share aggregated data with the judge community as a whole. This may include elements such as a chart depicting the distribution of ages of judges or a correlation of data, such as judge level by age. We can’t make any guarantees regarding the format or timeframe in which this data will be shared, but we hope to make it available as soon as possible. No individual responses will be shared at all.

We have consulted with experts to verify that our collection and sharing of data meet or exceed various privacy laws on a global scale (such as the European Union’s GDPR privacy laws).

WHY ARE WE DOING THIS?

As an organization, we currently have very little data or information regarding the demographics of our members.

The purpose of this survey is threefold:

  1. Better understand who our members are. While we can sort the judge program by geo-regions or levels, we don’t have a complete picture.
  2. Discover the needs of our community. Many of the questions about judge experience will help us focus our resources on projects and content that will be useful to you.
  3. Identify and support underserved or underrepresented groups. One of Judge Academy’s values is inclusiveness – and we endeavor to make everyone feel welcome.

As part of this initiative, we plan to release this survey again next year, and in future years.  Gathering this information over time will allow us to see shifts in demographics and interests, as well as gauge the success of the content that we’ve released, especially content targeted at specialized audiences.

Some of what we’ll be doing is correlating pieces of data. Are judges in a particular region particularly interested in rules? Do judges of a certain age focus on different types of events? We don’t yet know what links may appear. However, even if no correlation exists, the general information we’ll receive gives us a foundation that we can build upon.

HOW LONG IS THE SURVEY AVAILABLE?

The survey will be open for all of December, closing on Dec 31, 2022. We hope to process and share our findings in early 2023, ideally in January, but possibly February or March.

As we launch initiatives to help grow the judge program, we will re-launch this survey to gather information and track the impact of our changes. This initial survey will serve as the foundation from which we can understand how our decisions impact the community on a global scale. Our aim is to re-launch this survey once every two years.

WHAT ELSE IS COMING?

We understand that this survey is limited in scope. We intend to launch another survey in a few months, collecting information on our educational content including modules, broadcasts, articles, conferences, and more, as well as gathering other more general feedback, more closely focused on Judge Academy’s performance and the services we provide.

We truly appreciate your responses to this survey. If you’re interested in the intent of questions or anything else please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Questions@JudgeAcademy.com.

OTHER RESOURCES

Judge Roles and Topics


Community Judge: Judges who are motivated by forging connections with other people, and taking responsibility for the overall gaming experience of those around them. At an event, you might hear them say, “Everyone wants to enjoy this event.”

Event Logistics: Judges who are motivated by learning and improving the physical logistics of events and providing elegantly functional gaming environments. At an event, you might hear them say, “Everyone wants this event to run smoothly.”

Event Policy: Judges who are motivated by justice and order, often concerned with tournament rules and preventing cheating. At an event, you might hear them say, “Everyone wants this event to be fair.”

Rules Expert: Judges who are motivated by understanding and appreciating the complexities of the rules and intricate card interactions. At an event, you might hear them say, “Everyone wants to learn from this event.”

Gender Identity


Agender: An adjective used to describe someone who does not have a gender or does not identify with any gender in particular.

Cisgender: An adjective used to describe someone who identifies with the gender they were assigned at birth.

Gender fluid: An adjective used to describe someone whose gender and/or gender expression can change over time or depending on the situation; someone whose gender is not fixed.

Genderqueer: An adjective used to describe someone whose gender expression, presentation, or behavior that doesn’t adhere to the gendered norms that are expected of them.

Intersex: An adjective used to describe someone with one or more innate sex characteristics, including genitals, internal reproductive organs, and chromosomes, that fall outside of traditional conceptions of male or female bodies.

Man: An adjective used to describe someone whose gender identity is masculine.

Non-Binary: An adjective used to describe someone who experiences their gender identity and/or gender expression as falling outside the binary gender categories of man and woman.

Transgender: An adjective used to describe someone whose gender identity differs from the gender they were assigned at birth.

Two-Spirit: A term used by and for Indigenous and First Nations people to describe people who are not straight and/or cisgender.

Woman: An adjective used to describe someone whose gender identity is feminine.

Definitions for these terms have been sourced from GLAAD.org and The Trevor Project. You can find more in-depth explanations for these words on those websites, and we encourage you to do so if you have more questions.

Sexual Orientation


Asexual: An adjective used to describe someone who experiences little to no sexual attraction.

Bisexual: An adjective used to describe someone who has the potential to be physically, romantically, and/or emotionally attracted to people of more than one gender.

Demisexual: An adjective used to describe someone who  experiences sexual attraction only after building a deep emotional connection.

Gay or lesbian: An adjective used to describe someone whose enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attractions are to people of the same gender.

Heterosexual or straight: An adjective used to describe someone whose enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction is to people of a gender different than their own.

Pansexual:  An adjective used to describe someone who has the capacity to form enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attractions to any person, regardless of gender identity.

Queer: An adjective used to describe someone whose sexual orientation is not exclusively heterosexual. Today, this term means many different things to many different people. The term is considered derogatory in some contexts, but some people have reclaimed it as a descriptor for themselves.

Definitions for these terms have been sourced from GLAAD.org and The Trevor Project. You can find more in-depth explanations for these words on those websites, and we encourage you to do so if you have more questions.

Which Judge Region is your primary area of residence?

This question is asked almost entirely for context. We have the data on how many judges there are from each region, but it’s important to understand how judges in different regions have different experiences. This added context helps us better serve regions that have different expectations and needs.

How old are you?

We’re looking primarily for two things here – how life experience correlates to judge experience and how age impacts how judges are treated by other members of the community.

In 2022, which Judge Regions did you judge events in or participate in the judge community?

Like the first question, this lets us know what areas your other answers may touch upon, but also gives us information about how much judges travel, and what judges are more likely to travel outside of their region.

When did you first certify as a judge?

As with the age question, this lets us broadly look at judging experience. Judges who joined the program at different points during it’s life may have different outlooks and experiences.

What certification do you currently hold?

This is another piece of context – are most judges who are willing to travel at a particular level? We can ask and answer questions like that with this information. It also helps us see if there are biases towards certain demographics or regions for certain levels. Once we can see these biases, we can begin to work to create less biased systems.

Are you currently pursuing a judge certification?

It may be that biases that have existed previously are less prevalent, but judges haven’t caught been able to advance yet. This will help us predict what the future might hold, as well as identify where there are roadblocks to progression.

How much do the judging roles or topics appeal to you?

This can help us focus our elective educational material, as well as seeing if there are any surprising correlations between this and other data points.

How many Judge conferences did you attend in 2022

Conferences are an important part of judge education, and while we know that some areas have been overserved and others been underserved, this may give us a better look into other demographics that need additional attention. It also will let us provide feedback to various conference organizers on the general attendance of their attendees, so that the conference experience improves for you.

What Judge Academy social media platforms do you use for Judge News?

It’s important for us to know how to communicate with you. If there are significant changes or information that we need to convey to various audiences, we need to know how to best share that information.

What Judge Academy social media platforms do you use for Judge Community engagement?

This is another question to help us focus our resources and see where various groups engage with other members of the community.

Which non-official social media platforms do you use for Judge news or community engagement?

This helps us create resources or tools that integrate positively with other social media platforms, and lets us support judges who are bringing together their community.

In 2022, how often did you judge various types of events?

Event experience is pretty straightforward – it’s helpful to know how active our judges are and what kind of events they are working. Again, it lets us focus our resources to different demographics to support different types of events. It also helps us see if any demographics are under or overrepresented at various events.

How often would you like to judge various types of events?

This is an extension of the previous question. Sometimes reality doesn’t meet our desires or ambitions, and so we want to be cognizant of the difference. If there are groups of judges who aren’t working certain types of events, but also don’t want to, then no changes need to be made. However, if there’s a discrepancy between what’s happening and what people want to happen, we can begin to address that.

Would you like to be judging more Magic events than you currently are? If so, what factors make it harder?

This gathers similar information to the previous question, but on a different axis, with more particular information about what is preventing the idealized state from coming about, rather than just its absence.

How far are you willing to travel to judge different types of Magic events?

A lot of senior judges travel frequently for larger events, but it’s important to understand judges who have fewer opportunities to travel to larger events and get insight on their experiences.

Which type of Magic events do you apply for or judge when you have the opportunity?

This question gathers similar information to the former questions about what sorts of events you would like to be working. However, this focuses on more detail regarding what type of events you’re interested in judging.

Before COVID-19, how financially impactful was judging for you?

There’s a broad spectrum of impact from judging, and this can put into context what kind of events are important to you, and why they’re important. This question in particular is important because the landscape of events has changed dramatically since before COVID-19. This establishes a historical baseline.

During 2022, how financially impactful was judging for you?

We’re asking this question for the same reason as the former – this lets us understand the impact of various events and lets us establish a baseline for the current environment.

In the future, how financially impactful would you like judging to be?

Same idea, but again allowing us to understand what your goals are, so we can develop resources and education to better suit program needs.

What is your current employment status?

This helps understand the importance of judging from another perspective, as well as indicating how much time you have available.

How would you describe your cultural, ethnic, national or racial identity?

This is the first of several questions that are primarily to help us understand the demographics of our membership. In particular, we later ask how these traits impact your experience, which is fundamental to us helping underserved and underrepresented demographics and communities.

Which of these terms currently best describe your gender?

This is the first of several questions that are primarily to help us understand the demographics of our membership. In particular, we later ask how these traits impact your experience, which is fundamental to us helping underserved and underrepresented demographics and communities. We don’t want to know your gender in particular – we want to know the demographics of our audience in aggregate. And, we’re asking this question so that we can see if it has a negative impact on your experiences because it’s frequently a concern in other groups and organizations, and we want to either avoid it if possible or provide education and help realign if it’s an existing problem.

Which of these terms currently best describe your sexual orientation?

This is the second of several questions that are primarily to help us understand the demographics of our membership. In particular, we later ask how these traits impact your experience, which is fundamental to us helping underserved and underrepresented demographics and communities. We don’t want to know your sexuality – we want to know the demographics of our audience in aggregate. And, we’re asking this question so that we can see if it has a negative impact on your experiences because it’s frequently a concern in other groups and organizations, and we want to either avoid it if possible or provide education and help realign if it’s an existing problem.

Do any of the following physical or mental conditions apply to you?

Individuals who are affected by various mental or physical conditions can experience the world differently, and we want to make sure that we’re aware of the impact on our members who have these conditions, to make sure that the program is accessible and welcoming as possible.

How do you feel each of these aspects of your identity factor into how you engage with the judge community?

It’s important for us to not only understand your demographic profile but how you feel it affects you personally. In this case, we’re interested how it impacts your actions, and how you engage with other judges.

How do you feel each of these aspects of your identity factor into how you are treated by the judge community?

As with the previous question, this gathers a lot of contextual information that helps see any areas of improvement in the program at large. However, this time we’re looking at how your demographic profile impacts other judges’ interactions with you.

Is there anything else you would like to share regarding your demographics or experiences as a judge?

While this isn’t a short survey, it can’t be comprehensive, so we wanted to make sure you had the opportunity to share additional perspectives or opinions.