Ideally, masterpoint awards would be proportional to merit. Then players who want masterpoints would play at the clubs they enjoy most and enter the tournament events that they enjoy most. Or maybe a player is better at one event than another, say IMPs over matchpoints. That player could enter the events he or she is good at.
But to the extent that players are interested in masterpoints, and to the extent that they can perceive inequities, players will tend to participate at club and tournament events that award the most masterpoints. These of course will not necessarily be the clubs and events that they enjoy most. Apparently players are not very sensitive to small inequities. But the current inequities are huge.
One regional happened to offer a Swiss Teams and an Open Pairs on the same day. 92 players played in the Open Pairs; 212 played in the Swiss Teams. From this data alone, we cannot say if the players preferred the Swiss because it was more enjoyable or because it offered more masterpoints per person. However, if Swiss teams are so popular with players, why aren't they offered more often in club games? In club games, Swiss Teams do not award more masterpoints per person.
There is also an issue of variety and progress. For team events, the board-a-match has been joined by Swiss teams and knockouts. In pair games, the trend is to a decreased variety being offered over the last 40 years. In the online pairs tournaments I see, IMP scoring is more popular than matchpoints. Why isn't IMP pairs offered in sectionals and regionals? We can't know for sure, but one plausible culprit is that there is not that much interest in developing new pairs events. The only new event I see is the Senior Pairs.
Frankly, I would like to play in an individual. I don't need to play in one every day. But I haven't played in one in 35 years. I also think that a lot could be done to develop them. For example, techniques have been developed for ad hoc partnerships to play on line together, and those techniques are adaptable to invitationals. If masterpoint reform ever occurred, and individuals awarded as many masterpoints per person as team games, I would probably try to stir up interest in an individual. But with the masterpoint differential the way it is now, that would be a waste of my time.
The club formula, on the other hand, rewards fields for being close to 15 tables. When attendence is larger than that, the field can be split into two sections. But when it is smaller, fewer masterpoint per person are awarded.
So the question is, do ACBL members prefer larger clubs to smaller clubs because the larger clubs offer more masterpoints per person? At this moment, I am actively pursuing masterpoints on a limited budget, so as a matter of strategy I do not attend the small night games at the local club. I suspect that other players do the same, though I could not say how to document it. Does the ACBL really want to punish small clubs? I would think that small clubs could turn into big clubs and the last thing the ACBL would want to do is discourage people from attending small clubs.
So, bottom line, perceived inequities in masterpoints generate dissatisfaction. (For example, see the letters to the Editor of the ACBL Bulletin.)