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Gearing up for TRIVIA NIGHTS. Here are the rules we will play by:

General format: Anyone ringing in to answer a question (or to steal a bonus if the answerer canít get it) will type "X." The host will ask for answers in the order that is shown IN THE HOSTíS CHAT WINDOW. Sorry if itís shown in a different order on your screen. You have a time limit to answer your question - the host will prompt and then declare time if no response is given (with a -1 penalty if applicable). If no one has a correct answer, the host will give a warning and then announce time is up for that question. That way we get out by midnight.

Rule #1: You MAY NOT use the Internet, atlases, maps, or ANY other resource besides your own head to answer. No messaging, texting, or calling a friend. It's not fair or fun otherwise. EXCEPTION: If someone is physically in the room or house with you, you can collaborate. Cheating isn't fun for you or anyone else. It's just a chat.

Rule #2: The official host will use one particular font color. Everyone else must choose a different shade to avoid confusion.

Rule #3: REGULAR QUESTIONS: Respond with "X" to ring in. DO NOT give your answer until the host says your name. Correct answers get 1 point and wrong answers lose 1 point unless otherwise stated by the host. NOTE: Don't blurt out (OR LOOK UP) information missing in the question. For all you know, there might be a bonus afterwards asking for that information.

Rule #4: CLOSEST GUESS QUESTIONS: Respond directly with your guess. Your first guess is the ONLY one that counts. There's no such thing as "going over" - it's up to the host to decide how to break ties, or split points. Once someone types a guess, you cannot type the same answer as that person. Typically, the closest guess gets 1 point, an exact guess gets 2 points, but if the answer is large or hard to guess (such as decimals), an exact answer may be worth 3 points, and 2 points may be assigned for being within a certain range of the answer. The host has discretion in this regard. Wrong answers are always 0 points. There is NO PENALTY, so there is NO REASON not to ring in.

Rule #5: BONUSES: If a question has a followup bonus, whoever answered the question correctly gets a free shot at the bonus - just go ahead and give the answer. However, everyone ELSE can ring in with an "X". If whoever answered the question misses the bonus, itís treated like a regular question in the order that people ring in. There is NO PENALTY, so there is NO REASON not to answer or ring in. If no one answers the original question correctly, it's up to the host as to whether the bonus gets asked as a separate question, or after the next correct question, or just dropped entirely.

Rule #6: ALL QUESTIONS: If you are the first person to ring in, you MUST give an answer or else lose 1 point. If you are not the first person, you may pass for 0 points if the person before you gave your answer. Passes are NOT penalized, but you donít get a chance to answer. Note that if you ring in late on a question, you cannot pass unless someone gives an answer AFTER you ring in.

Rule #7: MULTI-PART ANSWERS (OR BONUSES): If there is more than one answer, only give ONE ANSWER AT A TIME and WAIT for the host to say ďyesĒ or ďno.Ē You may stop after any answer. (For example, you may give 2 answers for a 5-part question and then pass the remaining 3 answers.) If you give an incorrect answer, your turn is immediately over. You get 1 point per correct answer and lose 1 point for the incorrect answer unless otherwise stated by the host.

There may be additional house rules set by each host, such as allowing people to ring in 2 or more times on a question or cancelling the -1 penalty if no one gets it right. The format will also vary by host. Traditionally, there is one question per state (or province, etc.), and breaks every 15-20 questions. Often, there are a couple of high-value questions at the end to shake things up and give more people a chance to win. The host decides the format and number of questions. If you donít like it, volunteer to host and set your own format!

BANNED TRIVIA QUESTIONS (either as answers or question topics):

CA: I-238
IA: Carter Lake / IA 165
ID: I-184
MI: M-185
ND: I-194, ND 1804, ND 1806
NM: NM 597, 4-digit routes (1113, (2001), 5001, 6563)
NV: NV 318
OH: I-271+I-480 overlap
SD: SD 1804, SD 1806
WY: I-180
Multi-state route 200 (ID-MT-ND-whatever)

(Note: If you have a really creative way that somehow avoids the obviousness of asking about these overused topics, you can try it.)

If you can think of an overused trivia question to add to this list, please contact me through whatever medium you know me.


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