I follow most of what you say, Gecco. My suggestion of having everyone lose equal points for 2nd 3rd 4th was too hasty, and not expanded upon. I would also whole heartedly agree that the lost points for losses and the gained points for winning should still be relative to the person's rating going into the game.
If a 1500 loses to a 1600 they SHOULD lose more than if a 1400 loses to a 1600. Similar to the way it is calculated now. So, not everyone loses the same amount but same amount and then tweaked for their rating.
This way, you are incented to play higher or equal to yourself, which I believe is best for all, and keeps the competition strong, and improving.
Now for those that say, this is something only for the high rated, I will argue that this will toughen it for the higher rated, also. If you notice, what do the highest of the high play with their highest nics? They play singles. Why? Because, perhaps they enjoy it more. And, perhaps they are limiting their risk. If they play singles they have 25% chance of losing substantial points by coming in 4th. If they play a pards game, the risk is 50%.
Food for thought.
and yes, gecco, on your parting note - if i wanted to get into tourneys, i probably could get some of what I am asking for. however, i have never done it cuz my schedule doesnt allow me to absolutely definitively say i can commit to a specific time and then be there to play. aka busy. but its a good point that you make.