Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The fifteen-minute solution

I'm not terribly interested in a quarrel between New in Chess and ChessBase, but the idea of a fifteen-minute broadcast delay to make cheating more difficult is interesting.

This doesn't just affect grandmasters.  I'm half a class below master level, and I've had four of my games broadcast live on Monroi in the past three months.  On balance, I'm against the delay: the overwhelming majority of players wouldn't dream of cheating.


Sevan Muradian said...

Actually I think the delay, if properly utilized, can be a great tool for popularizing chess and making it more marketable among the mainstream chess players.

So think of what can be done during the 15 minute delay with a competent broadcaster / analyzer (either a single person or a combination of two). I'm not thinking of deep variations to be going over but more general concepts, etc. This is the time that you can capture the attention of non-hardcore chess lovers. Sure at some point in time you go into deep variations but that is the exception and not the rule.

Yes while 97% of the chess playing population won't cheat, the 3% will and we'll end up transforming the experience to try to compensate for that 3%.

Bill Brock said...

Intersting idea.

Sevan Muraidan said...

Maybe they end up in an endgame that us regular chess players know it won or drawn, but for the rest of the world it's explained how it's won or drawn.

You educate in terms of chess but also throw in some chess history or history of where an idea came from.

Might also be time to be able to sell a few advertisements - this update brought to you by [insert advertiser name]

Keith Ammann said...

Sevan's got a great point. Foreknowledge of the move about to be broadcast allows for so much more in the way of thoughtful commentary. Jennifer Shahade and Maurice Ashley have done some excellent work commentating on championship-level chess events without the delay, but I do recall a few occasions on which they had to backtrack and correct themselves after their analysis ran into a dead end. They could hash that stuff out during a commercial break, then come back and know exactly what to say as the move is finally shown to the viewing audience. (Although I'd hope that this wouldn't result in a commercial break after every move! Just critical ones, let's say.)

Sevan Muradian said...

Forget foreknowledge. That's no fun! Guess the move - you can make it more interactive that way - contests, etc.

You don't want to go down into variations. You'll lose mainstream players and most class players. Let's be honest - that's the audience.