Re: Christian Tissier's 8th Dan promotion (or not)
Years ago we welcomed a French student to our club for a while. Over drinks I asked her how testing was conducted in her dojo, as I was curious.
She went on to explain that both aforementioned Federations tested their students at the same time, with a board comprised of an equal number from each Federation. If I remember correctly, she stated that your testing partner was from the other Federation (and yes, this meant each Federation had to present the same number of students for testing), and that the board had to agree that either both passed their tests or both failed. Yes, this meant that sometimes you should have passed but you and your partner were failed because you partner sucked miserably, or that you passed though you sucked but your partner shinned.
With the above in mind, this all makes sense, and I am most impressed with Tissier Sensei's tact in this matter.