Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:These are allegations. Regardless of whether the allegations are true or not, turning a sponsorship with real tangible benefits for quizbowl away because of politically motivated demands seems like a pretty bad look, especially if those political stances aren't ones that everyone in the community is inclined to agree with.
It's pretty tortured to portray "turning a sponsorship away" as "a bad look" given that turning away the offer -- at the first opportunity -- would have meant nobody at all hearing about it to begin with. "A bad look" is accepting it. Canceling it now would be no worse than acknowledgment of a mistake.
We have no information as to the supposed "tangible benefits" to quizbowl from this sponsorship. So far we know only that NAQT is publicly promoting LetterOne and there's a larger ICT field. Not even the mechanism linking the one to the other has been described so far.
I oughtn't to need to remind you that LetterOne/AlfaGroup head Mikhail Fridman is also on the Treasury Department list of Putin associates under consideration for sanction in relation to (known, not conjectured) human-rights violations and interference in the 2016 election.
This is not about domestic political allegiances. This is about good corporate citizenship, full stop. "Real tangible benefits for quizbowl", even if demonstrated, don't justify engagement with deleterious special or interests of any sort.