Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

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JustinHorton
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by JustinHorton » Wed Feb 04, 2015 12:36 pm

Chris Rice wrote: Let me put it another way that mentioning it nine times in his column, since Steve Giddins book was published on August 13, 2014, because RDK liked the book, is not statisically significant enough to draw conclusions about RDK's entourage.
Nine times is a remarkable number. It would raise eyebrows even if we knew nothing else about Ray's journalistic habits. But we doh.
Chris Rice wrote: The prime reason for this is that he did not even know Nunn had written a book on Lasker, because the publisher, Gambit, never send him review copies.
You know, I actually don't believe that Ray was unaware of the existence of this book. I'm aware of it, and I've neither seen it, nor been sent a rview copy, nor have payeall access to Chess Café. Still, if Ray really is sufficiently unaware of what's going on in the world of chess that he didn't know about it, then he really shouldn't be a chess journalist - it's like, I dunno, perhaps a cinema journalist not knowing that Richard Linklater had a flm out last year because they personaly didn't get invited to a screening. (Or perhaps Birdman might be a better example, given its subtitle.) It's laughable.

This level of performance wouldn't be accepted in any other field. No other field would accept a daily columnist who used that columns to boost his chums (like the buffoon Tony Buzan) who weren't even connected with the subject matter of te column. So why do we accept it in chess?
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Clive Blackburn

Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Clive Blackburn » Wed Feb 04, 2015 12:47 pm

JustinHorton wrote: This level of performance wouldn't be accepted in any other field. No other field would accept a daily columnist who used that columns to boost his chums (like the buffoon Tony Buzan) who weren't even connected with the subject matter of the column. So why do we accept it in chess?
If we don't find it acceptable then presumably we don't read his chess column!

Simples! :)

O.G. Urcan
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by O.G. Urcan » Wed Feb 04, 2015 12:50 pm

Chris Rice wrote: Yes I know what you said because I read the note. You did not make reference to the quality of either book, I understand that. I made reference to the quality of the books to make the point that if both the books were good it was not surprising that both authors praised the other. Whether nine times is a few or not is open to debate because there is no rule as far as I am aware. Let me put it another way that mentioning it nine times in his column, since Steve Giddins book was published on August 13, 2014, because RDK liked the book, is not statisically significant enough to draw conclusions about RDK's entourage.

Your second paragraph of this post infers that RDK should have been aware of John Nunn's book but as Brian Towers has already pointed out Chess Cafe is behind a paywall and RDK may not be a New In Chess subscriber either. Besides that is it his job to write book reviews? That may be a different argument about whether he's a good chess journalist or not and I'm arguing that point. What I'm simply saying is if you are going to criticise him at least be reasonable. How may other chess journalists have mentioned the John Nunn book in their columns. Are you going to villify them too?

PS Just like to add that anything Matthew Sadler writes is gold.
The Chess Café's paywall is irrelevant to the discussion of Raymond Keene's failure even to mention a book by Nunn which was published in April 2014. The only "involvement" of the Chess Café is the fact that this year it held a Book of the Year contest, and announced two days ago (openly, and not behind its paywall) that Nunn had won.

To explain away Keene's claim of ignorance of the existence of Nunn's book there is speculation that he does not subscribe to New in Chess and therefore did not see Sadler's three-page spread. Next, someone may care to suggest that Keene also does not see CHESS, whose July 2014 issue had a four-column review of John Nunn's Chess Course ("very much one of the books of the year").

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JustinHorton
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by JustinHorton » Wed Feb 04, 2015 12:55 pm

Clive Blackburn wrote:
JustinHorton wrote: This level of performance wouldn't be accepted in any other field. No other field would accept a daily columnist who used that columns to boost his chums (like the buffoon Tony Buzan) who weren't even connected with the subject matter of the column. So why do we accept it in chess?
If we don't find it acceptable then presumably we don't read his chess column!

Simples! :)
And then, hey presto, it doesn't get replaced by a better one!

Genius!
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Chris Rice
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Chris Rice » Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:04 pm

O.G. Urcan wrote:
Chris Rice wrote: Yes I know what you said because I read the note. You did not make reference to the quality of either book, I understand that. I made reference to the quality of the books to make the point that if both the books were good it was not surprising that both authors praised the other. Whether nine times is a few or not is open to debate because there is no rule as far as I am aware. Let me put it another way that mentioning it nine times in his column, since Steve Giddins book was published on August 13, 2014, because RDK liked the book, is not statisically significant enough to draw conclusions about RDK's entourage.

Your second paragraph of this post infers that RDK should have been aware of John Nunn's book but as Brian Towers has already pointed out Chess Cafe is behind a paywall and RDK may not be a New In Chess subscriber either. Besides that is it his job to write book reviews? That may be a different argument about whether he's a good chess journalist or not and I'm arguing that point. What I'm simply saying is if you are going to criticise him at least be reasonable. How may other chess journalists have mentioned the John Nunn book in their columns. Are you going to villify them too?

PS Just like to add that anything Matthew Sadler writes is gold.
The Chess Café's paywall is irrelevant to the discussion of Raymond Keene's failure even to mention a book by Nunn which was published in April 2014. The only "involvement" of the Chess Café is the fact that this year it held a Book of the Year contest, and announced two days ago (openly, and not behind its paywall) that Nunn had won.

To explain away Keene's claim of ignorance of the existence of Nunn's book there is speculation that he does not subscribe to New in Chess and therefore did not see Sadler's three-page spread. Next, someone may care to suggest that Keene also does not see CHESS, whose July 2014 issue had a four-column review of John Nunn's Chess Course ("very much one of the books of the year").
What you are arguing now is that RDK is not a very good chess journalist. I don't seek to defend that. You may well be right and very much like Jon Bryant I don't really care. I like Clive's advice above, if you don't like his stuff don't read it or you could write to The Times or RDK himself. One further thing he did say yesterday was that he does know of you but doesn't know what your problem is with him as he's never met you. You could perhaps usefully put your grievances in writing? However, the main point is that this is not pertinent to using a false circumstance, that he knew about John Nunn's book and somehow deliberately didn't mention it, when this is not true. To simply imply that he must be lying because the truth is inconvenient to your narrative is a bit sad really.

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JustinHorton
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by JustinHorton » Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:06 pm

Chris Rice wrote: One further thing he did say yesterday was that he does know of you but doesn't know what your problem is with him as he's never met you.
This is a very Ray-like thing to say: the assumption is that whoever is criticising his, ah, journalism must have a personal grievance against him for which the criticism is merely a mask. I've had the same thing is the past.
Last edited by JustinHorton on Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Clive Blackburn

Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Clive Blackburn » Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:10 pm

JustinHorton wrote:
Clive Blackburn wrote:
JustinHorton wrote: This level of performance wouldn't be accepted in any other field. No other field would accept a daily columnist who used that columns to boost his chums (like the buffoon Tony Buzan) who weren't even connected with the subject matter of the column. So why do we accept it in chess?
If we don't find it acceptable then presumably we don't read his chess column!

Simples! :)
And then, hey presto, it doesn't get replaced by a better one!

Genius!
I'm not sure. The powers that be will see that the column is not getting very many hits and they might attribute this to a lack of interest with chess in general or they might realise that the writing leaves a great deal to be desired and hire a new correspondent.

Being an optimist, I would hope for the latter outcome (especially if they have actually looked at the column on a regular basis) :)

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JustinHorton
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by JustinHorton » Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:13 pm

You'd have to be an optimist to think that the Times remain in any way unaware of the reputation and practices of their chess correspondent.

Why they tolerate it is a mystery. (Of course I'm well aware that that particular media group have many other sins to answer for, but this particular one and its particular reasons intrigue me nevertheless.)
Last edited by JustinHorton on Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Jonathan Rogers
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Jonathan Rogers » Wed Feb 04, 2015 1:55 pm

a propos nothing in particular, Keene gave a very positive review in the Times to my small book on the Elephant Gambit, when it was published in 1994! Which was very much appreciated. I don't think he mentioned it on a further eight occasions, but one would have to be some kind of journalistic genius to find reason on nice occasions to refer to a book on the Elephant Gambit!*

* Actually maybe it's quite easy. Eg

"This series of sacrifices reminds one forcibly of the combination played in Dodson v Rogers, one of many sacrificial feasts to be found in the author's recent remarkable work in the Elephant Gambit"

"Black relies on his kingside pawn majority to create an attack, as is typical in this line of the Sveshnikov Sicilian - though other Black openings also rely on this theme. Readers are referred to Jonathan Rogers' groundbreaking work on the Elephant Gambit"

"It turns out that I haven't used all my space - but it is possible to fill the book with a random final chapter "Miscellanous items of interest", a device used masterfully by Jonathan Rogers in his fascinating work on the Elephant Gambit"

etc, to p.94

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JustinHorton
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by JustinHorton » Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:04 pm

1. e4 e5 A recent game Nakamura-Topalov, Gibraltar 2015, deviated at this point, the continuation being 1...c5 2.Nf3 d6 3. Bb5+ Nd7. I will be giving this game in full in a forthcoming column, as well as others from this world-class event to which I was invited as a special guest.
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Brian Towers
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Brian Towers » Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:05 pm

JustinHorton wrote:You'd have to be an optimist to think that the Times remain in any way unaware of the reputation and practices of their chess correspondent.

Why they tolerate it is a mystery.
Perhaps they agree with Oscar Wilde -
There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about
For all we know RDK is a fan as well -
The only thing that sustains one through life is the consciousness of the immense inferiority of everybody else, and this is a feeling that I have always cultivated.
Ah, but I was so much older then. I'm younger than that now.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Thu Feb 05, 2015 11:39 am

Clive Blackburn wrote: If we don't find it acceptable then presumably we don't read his chess column!

Simples! :)

Not really.


s**t journalism harms everybody whether they read it or not. Even if that harm is limited to a missed opportunity for good journalism. Not that it ever is limited to that. Ray’s bull**it chess and dementia tweets, for example, don’t suddenly become true just because I don’t read them.

O.G. Urcan
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by O.G. Urcan » Thu Mar 12, 2015 1:12 pm

It seems that the organizers of the Varsity match have no qualms about Raymond Keene's presence: http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... smell.html

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Roger de Coverly » Thu Mar 12, 2015 2:12 pm

O.G. Urcan wrote:It seems that the organizers of the Varsity match have no qualms about Raymond Keene's presence
This picture from John Saunders featuring the Times chess correspondent prominently
https://twitter.com/johnchess/status/57 ... 36/photo/1
is headlined
Varsity Chess Match: both teams and organisers before the match

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Re: Keene's claim to have won "22 national championship titles."

Post by Tim Harding » Thu Mar 12, 2015 2:30 pm

O.G. Urcan wrote:It seems that the organizers of the Varsity match have no qualms about Raymond Keene's presence: http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... smell.html
There was also a sighting of the Penguin at Bunratty where he was introduced at the prizegiving as SIR Raymond Keene OBE.
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