How We Conduct the Drawings

Discussion in 'Winners Circle' started by TDPRI, Oct 28, 2016.

  1. TDPRI

    TDPRI Retired

    Mar 2, 2003
    Admin Post
    Seems folks are always curious about the mechanics of picking the lucky people that will win a guitar during the Fundraiser Giveaway. So, here's the method we use:

    1. We download all of the donation transactions from the Fundraiser store into an Excel spreadsheet.

    2. We create separate spreadsheets for each entry level. $25 donations are one spread sheet, $50 donations go in another, etc, etc.

    3. For those entry levels with multiple entries we double, triple, etc each row of the spread sheet. If you donate $75 we will copy and paste your entry into the spread sheet two times to show a total of 3 entries in the drawing.

    4. We take all the mail-in entries and manually type them into a spreadsheet, too.

    5. We combine all of the spreadsheets into one large Master Entry List. If you entered 4 times your name and email address will be on the list 4 times.

    6. Next, we let Excel assign a totally random number to each entry row on the Master List. When completed every row has a unique number on it- this is used for sorting only.

    7. We sort the Master List by that random number - so now, all of the entries are spread out all over the spreadsheet. If you entered multiple times, your multiple entries are randomly placed all over the list rather than grouped together.

    8. Using the total number of cells in this now randomly sorted Master List we then use a True Random Number generator to gen out a random number - the numbers chosen by the number generator correspond to a cell number on the list. The True Random Number generator is a project from a Canadian University. You tell it the first and last number of the list and it spits outs the selected numbers. Rather than run all numbers at one time. We run the number generator as many individual times as there are items to giveaway.

    9. For Major Prizes with more than one winner to be chosen we choose the numbers in reverse order of prizes - starting with the least expensive guitar prize and ending with the #1 prize as determined by the cost of the guitar and it's placement on the Prize Giveaway pages. Starting with the least expensive guitar and ending with the most expensive guitar.

    10. We match up the selected numbers to the Cell Numbers in the spread sheet. If the random number generator spits out number 399 then we go to the master list, look for row #399. The name and info of the entry at row #399 WINS.​

    We think this is eminently fair way to stage the drawing and gives every one an equal chance at winning.

    The amount of work involved means it can take a number of hours to conduct the drawing. There is too much work for us to do this "Live" but we usually finish pulling all the names of the winners about 30 mins before the drawing announcement time. Which just gives us enough time to look up the TDPRI Member names and shipping addresses for each of the winners prior to the big announcement.

    Hope this helps enlighten you to this not so mysterious process.
    bromdenlong and TELE_BLUES like this.
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