How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

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How likely are you to take part in a buy-in tournament?

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How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Raph on Tue Mar 11, 2008 5:52 am

Everything is in the question.

If you take part in the poll, try to add some comments about your answer:
Does it depend on where the tournament takes place? How much the buy-in is? What if you can qualify online?

Merci!

Raph


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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Millimbar on Tue Mar 11, 2008 7:15 am

A buy-in is essentially what playing on the pro tour is for some people. They invest in traveling to X PTQs before they win the slot machine and get to go to the pro tour. The pro tour is like a tournament with a buy in around six hundred dollars or so going towards the purse. This is why I suggested increasing the PTQ entry fee by a nominal amount ($5 would be an enormous boost) to vastly increase the prize funding.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  gleemax on Tue Mar 11, 2008 7:01 pm

Lots of factors depend on this on. I would have to do a cost analysis to determine if I'd buy in or not. Are we talking about buy in only (which is pretty much what you do for non PT tournaments anyway) or do you mean in addition to PTQs? If it's in addition, I would have to factor in the airfair cost vs my familiarity with the format+ Buy in cost. Airfare is a huge factor here. It's much cheaper to go to Paris than it is to fly to Hawaii. I'm not sure what the buy in might be, but in some cases in might be more reasonable to simply buy in than even try to win a PTQ. For example, if you live in Germany it would be cheaper to buy into PT Paris then to go around attened multiple PTQs to try and get in. (According to the figrues above anyway).

I suppoert the idea of a buy in if only to make PT more profitable and thus self-sustaining. Sure once in awhile some buy in guy might win the whole thing, but how often is someone who hasn't practiced the format really gonna have a chance? If they can't win a PTQ they won't have anymore luck with the PT. So why not let them pay money to try? It's like the old movies where they let crowd memebers pay to fight the boxing champ only to get their arses kicked. Never the less, if you opened it up to buy ins you'd at least have hundreds of locals try their luck (format depended). This would also open up the real possibility of being able to use outside sponsers and not have to depend on WotC for everything.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  mercenarybdu on Wed Mar 12, 2008 1:16 am

The reason why I have to go with location, location, location is because for a guy like me up in SF to go to a PTQ, we have to drive 1 or 2 hours from our home from the bay to SJ or the State Capital just to play in a PTQ or an event that isn't just FNM. I'd go with a Buy in tourney just to toss more money into the pot to give the company soe break on how to come up with that prize money after factoring everything else.

Everything has it's tax.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  kcolloran on Wed Mar 12, 2008 9:21 am

It depends. I suppose so, but it would have to be in addition to PTQs. The chance at free airfare is the only thing that makes it possible for me to even think about attending a Pro Tour. But to get more things like Grand Prixs is a horrible idea. Grand Prixs are basically non events. If it's a small amount I suppose I'd be ok with that. $50 or $100 would be about the max I'd be willing to put in. Also I wonder how successful a buy-in would be for increasing the number of Pro Tours, which at least from my perspective is more important than increasing the payouts.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  RArends on Wed Mar 12, 2008 7:27 pm

As everyone's said so far, it'd have to be in addition to PTQs. The only things that would get me to travel to a foreign pro tour (or one on the other side of the US) would be winning a plane ticket and invite (which would be a paid buy in) via a PTQ. However, a buy-in PT within three hours I'd certainly be willing to attend as long as the buy-in isn't too high; I'd probably be unwilling to go if it were more than 200USD.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Wed Mar 12, 2008 11:05 pm

I'd like a clarification on the original question: is this talking about adding a buy-in option to the Pro Tour, making a separate buy-in tournament, or perhaps both?

I think buy-ins to the PT would be great for WotC.

The problems from their point of view

1) They'd have to make the buy-in expensive enough that it wouldn't completely gut the PTQ system

2) They'd have to place some limit on the number of people who buy-in so they don't unexpectedly have 5000 players show up.

They could do something along the lines of requiring someone to play in at least two PTQs before being allowed the option to buy-in. It'd keep the buy-in players in PTQs at least part of the season. And it might give second-tier PTAs to keep playing in hopes that the top unqualified players will buy-in later in the season rather than continue to show up and play.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  mercenarybdu on Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:55 am

Reindeercards wrote:I'd like a clarification on the original question: is this talking about adding a buy-in option to the Pro Tour, making a separate buy-in tournament, or perhaps both?

I think buy-ins to the PT would be great for WotC.

The problems from their point of view

1) They'd have to make the buy-in expensive enough that it wouldn't completely gut the PTQ system

2) They'd have to place some limit on the number of people who buy-in so they don't unexpectedly have 5000 players show up.

They could do something along the lines of requiring someone to play in at least two PTQs before being allowed the option to buy-in. It'd keep the buy-in players in PTQs at least part of the season. And it might give second-tier PTAs to keep playing in hopes that the top unqualified players will buy-in later in the season rather than continue to show up and play.

Na the more the merrier like what happened in Valencia before the hall was flooded. If 5000+ show up, let them have it as I know that people have travel from far and wide for a shot for the title and some money to take home so turning people away will only make matters worse over space.

It benefits the company, it benefits the leasers, and it benefits the dealers with the artists who plan to show up on site. At least the event will have something better to do with all of that space other than hold a ton of side events and PTQs for the pleasure of the other players who didn't get into the event.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:06 am

mercenarybdu wrote:
Reindeercards wrote:I'd like a clarification on the original question: is this talking about adding a buy-in option to the Pro Tour, making a separate buy-in tournament, or perhaps both?

I think buy-ins to the PT would be great for WotC.

The problems from their point of view

1) They'd have to make the buy-in expensive enough that it wouldn't completely gut the PTQ system

2) They'd have to place some limit on the number of people who buy-in so they don't unexpectedly have 5000 players show up.

They could do something along the lines of requiring someone to play in at least two PTQs before being allowed the option to buy-in. It'd keep the buy-in players in PTQs at least part of the season. And it might give second-tier PTAs to keep playing in hopes that the top unqualified players will buy-in later in the season rather than continue to show up and play.

Na the more the merrier like what happened in Valencia before the hall was flooded. If 5000+ show up, let them have it as I know that people have travel from far and wide for a shot for the title and some money to take home so turning people away will only make matters worse over space.

It benefits the company, it benefits the leasers, and it benefits the dealers with the artists who plan to show up on site. At least the event will have something better to do with all of that space other than hold a ton of side events and PTQs for the pleasure of the other players who didn't get into the event.

The content of the previous post is solely the responsibility of mercenarybdu and not that of the Mtgplayersunion or mtgplayersunion dotcom. Viewer discretion is advised.

<j/k>

I can't think of any greater disaster for the integrity of the PT than for it to either

1) turn people away who have traveled for hundreds or thousands of kilometers to attend the PT or side events or

2) to not be able to run the event(s) in a professional and somewhat timely manner due to having five times more people show up for the PT than was planned for.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  kcolloran on Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:28 pm

Do you really think 5000 would show up? I don't see why numbers would be that much more greater than for GPs. I mean isn't a GP a buy-in tournament? I guess I'm unclear as to what's being envisioned here.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  gleemax on Thu Mar 13, 2008 9:07 pm

Well it's a bigger pay out and it's a PT, so there's the street cred. However, I also don't see 5000 people showing up. It will probably be more than a GP, but not that many more. Also, this might prompt them to go to three days. They would also have to set up some kind of bi-system similar of GPs if they open it up like this. Maybe all PTQ winners go straight to day two or three and all buy-ins have to play though day one of three.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:27 pm

kcolloran wrote:Do you really think 5000 would show up? I don't see why numbers would be that much more greater than for GPs. I mean isn't a GP a buy-in tournament? I guess I'm unclear as to what's being envisioned here.

Obviously it depends on how expensive the buy-in happens to be and where the PT is located. But look at it like this:

We know a GP in a popular format in a good location can draw 1500 people. The entry fee for a GP is somewhere around $30. A Grand Prix pays off $3,500 for winning and pays down to $200 for 64th place.

A PT in the current structure pays off $40,000 for winning and pays down to $400 for 64th place. That's eleven times as high as a GP for winning ranging down to double payout at 64th place.

PTs (excluding Worlds) last year average attendance was 381 which is less than half the attendance of the average GP. Consider having a $100 buy-in to the PT, as was suggested earlier in the thread. At that cost, buying a guaranteed seat at the PT is very competitive with the cost of attending two PTQs (entry fee plus expenses) which has no guarantee of getting the seat. And paying a $100 entry fee to the PT is roughly three times the entry fee to a GP but a first place finish payoff is, at a minimum, eleven times as much.

But we aren't talking about keeping the payoff the same, we're talking about increasing it substantially.

PT Valencia's payout was $240,245 total. If the average PT attendence only doubled due to a $100 buy-in, that'd add $38,100 to the prize pool making first place pay off close to $46,500 rather than $40,000. Going back to the earlier comparision of GP vs PT, winning instead of being eleven times as large is now more than 13 times as large with the entry fee/buy-in still being only three times as large.

But doubling the attendance of the PT still makes it smaller than the average GP.

If the PT is instead the size of a large GP, say 1200, that'd add $81,900 to the prize pool. That'd make first place pay $53,650 which is 15 times the payout of a GP.

In short, the plan rapidly increases the payoff which increases the financial incentive for players to show up. And the more players who show up, the greater the financial incentive becomes for more players to show up...creating a feedback loop.

And at the same time, the plan completely guts attendance to any PTQ within convenient travel distance since the airline ticket prize is meaningless. Its much more cost efficient to get a guaranteed seat with the buy-in than to chance a PTQ. That factor alone if the PT were held in some central spot such as Paris could bump up PT attendance by hundreds.

So, yes, I think 5000 could show up easily since that's roughly three times as many people as your typical (ha, ha) 1500 player GP. By the way, with 5000 attendance would increase the prize pool by $461,900 and make a first place finish worth $116,980. Assuming, of course, that WotC could run a tournament with 5000 players.

And increasing the buy-in, at least up to a certain point, doesn't necessarily discourage attendance. A $150 buy-in vastly increases the prize pool compared to a $100 buy-in. Payouts could stay proportioned as they currently are or WotC could choose to extended prizes down further than the top 64 making sure many more players more than break even on their buy-in.

I'd earlier suggested putting a condition on being allowed to buy-in because I'm not sure how WotC feels about running really masive tournaments. Of course running a massive tournament would increase WotC's costs significantly for large facilities, more judges, etc. so I suppose they'd have to take a cut of the buy-in money rather than put it all into the prize pool. I hadn't considered that in my earlier post.

Anyway, a massive tournament wouldn't have to stay massive. Changing over to a skins payoff like 2005's PT Philadelphia would be an option. Wasn't it two losses and you're out of the tournament? And a $100 payout extended down to 271st place. A similar skins payout in with a $100 buy-in creates a vastly larger prize pool... it could theorhetically pay out hundreds to the top 271 finishers. And all the eliminated players would be paying to play in side events all weekend so WotC could make their money there rather than take a cut of the buy-in.

Like I said, I think this would be a great deal for WotC. The only parts which I can see absolutely not working for them is

1) the gutting of attendance to PTQs within convenient travel distance of the PT site and
2) calling it a "buy-in", which might conflict with some locale's gambling laws, rather than an "entry fee"


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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Thu Mar 13, 2008 10:51 pm

gleemax wrote:They would also have to set up some kind of bi-system similar of GPs if they open it up like this. Maybe all PTQ winners go straight to day two or three and all buy-ins have to play though day one of three.

Turning PTQs into the equivalent of GPTs would certainly keep PTQs relevant and answer my concerns about a buy-in gutting attendance to PTQs within convenient travel distance of the PT site. However, I personally really hate the GP bye system because of the tie-breaker issue. Smile

If you combined a skins payout with a bye system, it might be interesting. For the first couple of rounds you have everyone playing except those with byes. When people get their two losses and are kicked from the tournament, then the people with byes come in for the third round.

WotC could reduce payouts for all the rounds slightly then pay all players with byes as if he had won the round. It would create a defacto "appearance fee" which could partially replace the old level 3 appearance fee. They'd have to fiddle with the numbers to figure out how to award byes whether based on rating, pro points, or a PTQ win plus figure out how many rounds (1, 2, or 3) to award byes, plus how much to pay out for each of the early rounds. But that should be doable for someone on the inside of WotC who has access to all the numbers.

edit:

For anyone from WotC who might be reading this: my consulting fees are extremely modest if you want me to put in some work thinking about this rather than coming up with all this great stuff off the top of my head. Feel free to pm me. jocolor

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Raph on Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:46 am

WotC made it clear that they would NOT EVER organize buy-in tournaments... When we talked about that issue in KL, they told us they would let us do it if we wanted, but would not cover any of it anywhere.

The WMT (World Magic Tour), would be a "buy-in tournament", independent from WotC, that the MTGPlayersUnion (which will now have a good reason to change its name) will take care of. It would give a huge boost to a slowing down tournament scene.

I am currently asking for advice to a lot of competent persons as well as Wotc to see what is possible.

There are a lot of legal issues to overcome, but I am sure with some help we might be able to find all the solutions.

If anyone has suggestion or is willing to offer his help, feel free to do so!

Oh, and by the way, don't get overexcited about it, it is just a project, that I would like very much to see completed and that I will put a lot of efforts in, but nothing is concrete and there is a long way ahead before anything can happen.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  mercenarybdu on Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:17 am

Perhaps expanding into other formats would help increase revenue to keep the tour alive and rolling....

Other than just Legacy, perhaps it is time for other formats to be thrown into the pool like those seen at the invitational. I assure you that it will bring in people, revenue, and allow the secondary market to thrive even more as players search for cards that would sometimes never see play at all.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:28 am

Reindeercards wrote:I'd like a clarification on the original question: is this talking about adding a buy-in option to the Pro Tour, making a separate buy-in tournament, or perhaps both?

Raph wrote:WotC made it clear that they would NOT EVER organize buy-in tournaments... When we talked about that issue in KL, they told us they would let us do it if we wanted, but would not cover any of it anywhere.

The WMT (World Magic Tour), would be a "buy-in tournament", independent from WotC, that the MTGPlayersUnion (which will now have a good reason to change its name) will take care of...

If anyone has suggestion or is willing to offer his help, feel free to do so!

Thanks. I'm not terribly shocked at that.

As I mentioned earlier, I think it would be best to avoid commonly-used poker terms such as "buy-in". WotC struggled with organized play at the beginning trying to avoid getting in trouble with local ordinances against gambling. It eventually ended up having to drop the concept of "ante".

A lot of US communities are adopting laws, due to the rising popularity of buy-in Texas Holdem Poker, which prohibit the prohibits a house take and fees going to the Tournament Organizers. Other law limit the buy-in fee. Springfield, for example, does both and has a buy-in fee upper limit of $5. They also charge an annual $100 fee to be licensed as a buy-in event organizer.

But it doesn't have a problem with a Magic tournament with a $30 "entry fee" rather than a "buy-in".

And by "best to avoid commonly-used poker terms such as buy-in", I mean never use the term in public or private and don't allow its use on our official website. It'll just be easier to avoid as many problems as possible with the busybody city councilmen of the world rather than try to shove our way through them.

WotC is ducking the problem by having absolutely no association with a buy-in tournament. If we want to go a different route and do buy-in tournaments, we need to appear as innocuous/innocent/harmless as possible.

I don't remember who all the top players were back at the beginning of the DCI but I know many of them were interested and knowledgable about what WotC was dealing with on the "don't nail us for gambling" issue. Even the ones who have been out of Magic for years might have ideas to contribute if you ask them.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Raph on Fri Mar 14, 2008 3:08 am

That's why I kept "buy-in" between "-"s.

I'll keep you posted on the evolution of this project.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Fri Mar 14, 2008 3:12 am

Raph wrote:That's why I kept "buy-in" between "-"s.

I don't think the dash would protect us in legal terms. Laughing

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Raph on Fri Mar 14, 2008 3:23 am

I guess I can just delete the post after a while then...!

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  kcolloran on Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:40 am

I'm still not clear on what you mean by a buy-in tournament. How would this be different from a Grand Prix? In my view a Grand Prix is a buy-in tournament.

As for the idea of an entirely separate circuit apart from the pro tour I'm both intrigued and concerned by it. On the one hand it would be nice to have more tournaments not under Wizards' thumb. It could allow for more varied events and the like. But I worry that it could just end up diluting both tours without making one strong one.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  gleemax on Fri Mar 14, 2008 10:53 am

if you really want to do something like this you might try contacting starcity games. they hold a very large cash tournament every so often and might be able to give you some good advice.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Reindeercards on Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:19 pm

kcolloran wrote:I'm still not clear on what you mean by a buy-in tournament. How would this be different from a Grand Prix? In my view a Grand Prix is a buy-in tournament.

Technically any tournament with an entry fee which finances some or all of the prizes could be called a buy-in.

But the most common usage for the term refers to a tournament with an entry fee much larger than a normal entry fee...and that this larger fee specifically exists for the sole purpose of pumping up the size of the prize to convince more players to attend.

Take the old-style PTQs which had a $25 entry fee and a few hundred dollars as a prize. I mean, that's nice and all but there's a limit to how far someone will travel to attend.

You take the same location with the same people running it and the same format but make the entry fee $175 and put all the extra money into the prize pool...people from all over the globe will show up to play.

The only reason that doesn't happen on a regular basis are laws against gambling. The people making the law worry that an outrageously large prize (in comparison) will lure in rank amatuers to play the game...people who are so hopelessly inept that they are giving their entry fee in exchange for zero chance to win the prize. Someone who doesn't know which hand beats which in poker has no business spending a large amount of money to enter a professional poker tournament.

We're still going to get the occassional idiot who has no business being in the tournament regardless of what we do. But we need as much as possible to not give the impression that we're intentionally stealing from people who are too ignorant to know any better.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  Becks84 on Fri Mar 21, 2008 5:01 pm

I am very likely to partecipate to this kind of event, BUT the problem is that it would not be worth it because of all the connected costs that you cannot amortyze in any way.
You have to add the "entry-fee" + flight costs (no ptqs for the event) + hotel costs + everything else.
I mean there are more advantages for the winner/runner-up/top8/top16 maybe but for whoever goes in the money it's probably even more difficult to break even.
AND you cannot say "Oh, I made top64, I didn't break even in terms of money but at least I got some PTPoints to level up".
It's like living the dream one-shot to a lot of money but nothing behind it.
And you do want ptqs to be important as they boost sales and diffusion of the game.
With no "satellytes" that would be a great one-shot event but that's it.

I'm trying to say that it's a great idea but that wouldn't solve any kind of problem related to major tournaments and to the PT circuit.
Probably we could try something like that near a PT event, to minimize travel expenses for players.
And even if Wotc doesn't want to be related to something like that, they can see the result of a unique tournament with entry-fee.
The entry fee in my opinion could be bigger than 100$, for some reasons:
- to qualify to a pt everyone is spending lots more (going to all ptqs or paying flights if qualified on ratings or ptclub)
- the tournament is not likely to be 5000+ ppl but much less (not so easy to organize it for so many people)

Ah, we could do it in Las Vegas Nevada not to have problems with law Laughing

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  noticen24 on Thu Jul 22, 2010 2:21 pm

As everyone's said so far, it'd have to be in addition to PTQs. The only things that would get me to travel to a foreign pro tour (or one on the other side of the US) would be winning a plane ticket and invite (which would be a paid buy in) via a PTQ. However, a buy-in PT within three hours I'd certainly be willing to attend as long as the buy-in isn't too high; I'd probably be unwilling to go if it were more than 200USD.

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Re: How likely are you to take part in a "buy-in" tournament?

Post  nirvana on Sat Dec 18, 2010 5:50 pm

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The current parliament, which is dominated by the president's supporters, is in the last few weeks of its session.

A new congress will begin sitting in January with many more opposition members following elections last September, which would have made it more difficult for Mr Chavez to pass laws.

The opposition fear Mr Chavez will use the powers to move Venezuela closer to a left-wing dictatorship.

Newly elected opposition congressman Julio Borges said the enabling law had one single aim: "to give more power to the government and take power away from the people".

But the opposition would keep fighting to make sure the "Cuban project" would fail, he said.

Mr Chavez has dismissed these concerns, while making it clear that he is determined to deepen his "socialist revolution".

"We are building a new democracy here that can't be turned back," he said on Thursday.

His new powers extend beyond relief and reconstruction to cover areas including infrastructure, banking and finance, rural and urban land use, telecommunications, defence and security.

The 18-month period means the opposition will be largely excluded from policy-making until the middle of 2012, months just months before Venezuela's next presidential election.





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