We are in the process of putting together the material for this year’s (virtual) CBAI Newsletter, and felt that this represented a good opportunity to seek some feedback from members on a topic that many of us knew nothing about this time eighteen months ago but which has now become an essential element of life for anyone who wanted to keep playing bridge during the pandemic – online, or digital, bridge. We realise that there are many divergent views on this topic – some have embraced digital bridge and now enjoy it as much as the in-person game, some have turned to it reluctantly, and others have resisted its charms completely. And as well as virtual clubs and competitions, we have also seen bridge classes, at all levels, go virtual.

So we are seeking your feedback, with a view to putting together a short, and not at all scientific, article for the newsletter. We would therefore welcome your views, comments, and criticisms, by email to info@cbai.ie. There’s no prescribed format but we’d be interested in your thoughts on any of the following topics:

  • Did you play online bridge at all? If not, why not?
  • If you did, how much did you enjoy it in comparison to the face-to-face version? Which aspects were better, which were worse?
  • Did you play on any other platform than BBO, such as RealBridge or Funbridge? If so, how did they compare?
  • If you could change one thing about online bridge, what would it be?
  • Did you play in CBAI competitions or congresses as well as in your local virtual club? If so, how would you rate that experience?
  • Did you take bridge classes online? If so, how did you find them?
  • If you took classes as a beginner, did the classes give you a good sense of what face-to-face bridge will be like?
  • Do you hope that your club, and/or the CBAI, keeps some form of online bridge going even when in-person bridge is possible again?
  • How would you rate the CBAI’s performance during the pandemic and the move to online bridge? Was there more we could have done to help?

Finally, we recognise that many people devoted a great deal of time and energy to learning about online bridge, and then to setting up and running virtual clubs and competitions so that we could all continue to enjoy our regular fix of bridge; if there is someone specifically that you would like to see thanked for their efforts on behalf of bridge players, please let us know. We can’t promise to use all the material we receive, but we will do our best to represent a cross-section of views from the Irish bridge community on digital bridge.