New York Times axes chess column

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David Robertson
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by David Robertson » Fri Oct 17, 2014 12:41 pm

Is the arbiter still living?

And if so, what was her father doing?

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Simon Brown » Fri Oct 17, 2014 1:30 pm

She was quite elderly....

Her father had been banished from the tournament hall, with all the other parents, and after consoling the distressed daughter, confronted the "arbiter" before withdrawing a round later and warning all the people he was coaching at the time that the standard of arbiting at said tournaments was abysmal.

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Rob Thompson
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Rob Thompson » Fri Oct 17, 2014 1:52 pm

I can confirm that the arbiting standards in these events are pretty poor. A memorable example is trying to blitz out an ending against Basman himself in resolution of my opponents 10.2 claim.
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Jonathan Bryant
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:51 pm

Francis Fields wrote:People love newspapers ....
May be true, but fewer and fewer people are buying them. I wonder if any of the children at the chess clubs I run - some of whom know all about chess.com and other sources of free chess material on the internet - will ever buy a newspaper in their lives. I doubt it.

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Arshad Ali » Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:57 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote:May be true, but fewer and fewer people are buying them. I wonder if any of the children at the chess clubs I run - some of whom know all about chess.com and other sources of free chess material on the internet - will ever buy a newspaper in their lives. I doubt it.
As I seem to recall, NYT is running at a loss. It's not newspapers and subscribers who made newspapers profitable in the old days but advertisers. But both readers and advertisers have moved online.

There is still a market for printed material -- I do buy printed books as I don't like reading online and in any case don't trust the proprietors of Kindle and Nook to not pull the plug arbitrarily.

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Stewart Reuben » Fri Oct 17, 2014 6:18 pm

Jonathan > I wonder if any of the children at the chess clubs I run - some of whom know all about chess.com and other sources of free chess material on the internet - will ever buy a newspaper in their lives. I doubt it.<

They don't necessarily all need to buy a newspaper. Today I went to Waitrose. Looked at the chess column in the Spectator and will send off the puzzle by email in order to enter the competition. Tomorrow, The Times. Sunday, The Sundy Times. (The last two I buy regularly.) I send all 3 entries off one after the other.
I started doing that when Marketing Manager to boost the number of entries. Now I really I like the occasional win.
A portion of the children you teach may be intrigued to do the same.

I still don't understand why somebody would access an online chess site unless they are already players. I think people above have defined 'commited' much more strictly than me. Stephen Moss expressed it very well above.

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Fri Oct 17, 2014 6:30 pm

Stewart Reuben wrote:I still don't understand why somebody would access an online chess site unless they are already players.
Perhaps because you’re not 12?

And nor am I. People do a lot online that I don’t understand either - but they do it.

That said, whether you’re 12, 22, 32 or whatever, the internet seems to me to be the obvious place to look when you’re starting out on something.

I did that last year when I was beginning piano. Why not chess?

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Stewart Reuben » Fri Oct 17, 2014 6:40 pm

Jonathan >I did that last year when I was beginning piano. Why not chess?<

Our whole culture is imbued with music as it is with football and other activities. Chess has to fight for its place in society as a minority activity. It is very much a minor sport in the english-speaking world.
Rubbishing newspaper chess columns, as one way of bringing chess to the notice of people, is unproductive.

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Fri Oct 17, 2014 6:48 pm

Stewart Reuben wrote: Rubbishing newspaper chess columns, as one way of bringing chess to the notice of people, is unproductive.
I wasn’t rubbishing newspaper columns. In fact, given that I said nothing at all about newspaper chess columns, I find it hard to understand your response.

What I was do was pointing out the absurdity of the claim that only people who already play chess seek out material about the game online.

As it happens, I think your last point again demonstrates that you’re rather out of touch with how and why people use the internet. I would say the more niche the activity, the more likely it is that the internet will be a starting point for engagement with that activity.

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Stewart Reuben » Fri Oct 17, 2014 7:07 pm

Jonathan >I wasn’t rubbishing newspaper columns.<

I didn't say you were. It is others.
Of course I may be out of touch. It's always easy to say that of somebody of mature years.
Try introducing the children to competitions as I described. Of course only a small fraction will show an interest. A parent would be surprised if a child said, 'Why not buy the ... I am told it has a good chess column.' I know I had to suffer with The Daily Express and News of the World for years.

How would somebody have got to So Duku except the written word or word of mouth? Can you see it on TV?

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Rob Thompson
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Rob Thompson » Fri Oct 17, 2014 8:49 pm

I got to Sudoku via the internet, as it happens.
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Stewart Reuben » Fri Oct 17, 2014 9:13 pm

Rob >I got to Sudoku via the internet, as it happens.<

Do ou really mean you had not learnt about it is the newspapers, or by word of mouth first? News stories about the game on the internet news services is just another form of word of mouth.

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Rob Thompson
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Rob Thompson » Fri Oct 17, 2014 9:30 pm

I heard about it from friends on the internet. I played my first game of Sudoku before talking to anyone in meatspace about it.
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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Stewart Reuben » Fri Oct 17, 2014 9:51 pm

Rob >I heard about it from friends on the internet.<

To me that is word of mouth. I am trying to think of somebody coming to So Duko withut anybody ever communicating that it was an interesting pursuit. I include reading about it in newspapers.
One can imagine a teenager thinking, what is this game called chess? I will look it up on the internet. I did wonder how people in The Gambia got together about their interest in chess. But it seems much more likely there was some type of stimulus such as simply looking at carved sets. They had never heard of the Swiss before I arrived in 2013. What an achievement that they now have a player who is a Candidate Master.

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Re: New York Times axes chess column

Post by Francis Fields » Sat Oct 18, 2014 3:04 pm

All forms of chess are good. 'Rubbishing' whatever people think is in decline or not 'accessible' won't take away someone's interest.
"Politics is the enemy of the people who said that?" Samuel Johnson (the playwright not the architect)

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