Telegraph report about Austria

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:01 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:I don't know if anything should be read into it, but the parallel thread on the Streatham blog attracting something like 25 comments is now suspended.

http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... ia_12.html
All I see (above a link to a YouTube clip of the BBC test card) is:

a) "What happened in Austria?" (the blog title);

and

b) "JMGB writes: This post temporarily removed pending EJH's return to the internet."

The original blog post was dated "Sunday, August 12, 2012". The JMGB bit seems to to have been added at 7.55am, though it is not clear what date that refers to. Hovering on the link suggests 7.55am on 12 August 2012.

I've not looked to see if the same has been done to any other of EJH's posts, and I never saw the original or any of the comments. No doubt other blogs will speculate, but it does seem unhelpful to not state why this has been done, or at least to say that the reason will be given later or will not be given at all.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:05 am

Christopher Kreuzer wrote: I've not looked to see if the same has been done to any other of EJH's posts, and I never saw the original or any of the comments. No doubt other blogs will speculate, but it does seem unhelpful to not state why this has been done, or at least to say that the reason will be given later or will not be given at all.
I don't know how widely read is the Streatham blog. In some cases the comments can be more interesting than the original article. It (or perhaps just ejh) does seem to something of an obsession with the theory that the Times Chess Correspondent is a Lucifer, behind all strange goings on.

As far as can be seen, all the other ejh posts remain, including the one below which is hostile to the ECF CEO but in praise of the forum. Again the comments are an interesting summary of how the actions of the ECF Board can be seen.

http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... ndrew.html

Mick Norris
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Mick Norris » Wed Aug 22, 2012 11:03 am

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
Roger de Coverly wrote:I don't know if anything should be read into it, but the parallel thread on the Streatham blog attracting something like 25 comments is now suspended.

http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... ia_12.html
All I see (above a link to a YouTube clip of the BBC test card) is:

a) "What happened in Austria?" (the blog title);

and

b) "JMGB writes: This post temporarily removed pending EJH's return to the internet."

The original blog post was dated "Sunday, August 12, 2012". The JMGB bit seems to to have been added at 7.55am, though it is not clear what date that refers to. Hovering on the link suggests 7.55am on 12 August 2012.

I've not looked to see if the same has been done to any other of EJH's posts, and I never saw the original or any of the comments. No doubt other blogs will speculate, but it does seem unhelpful to not state why this has been done, or at least to say that the reason will be given later or will not be given at all.
It seems perfectly sensible to me - Justin is away and as we know Jonathan has gone to Venice, so they won't be able to react to any developments in the story, and they want to be careful given the content of it

Also, it is their blog, and they are free to do what they wish :!:
Any postings on here represent my personal views and should not be taken as representative of the Manchester Chess Federation www.manchesterchess.co.uk

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:59 pm

Mick Norris wrote:It seems perfectly sensible to me - Justin is away and as we know Jonathan has gone to Venice, so they won't be able to react to any developments in the story, and they want to be careful given the content of it

Also, it is their blog, and they are free to do what they wish :!:
I wasn't aware of either point you raise, that Justin is away or that Jonathan has gone to Venice. But that might be because I've been away for a few days as well. In any case, I'm sure nothing posted there would have assumed anything like that level of knowledge on the part of the reader. When I first read it, my initial reaction was to fear some sort of pressure had been applied (remember, I've not seen what the post or comments said). If it's just caution, than that's good.

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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:34 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:I don't know if anything should be read into it, but the parallel thread on the Streatham blog attracting something like 25 comments is now suspended.

http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... ia_12.html


Evening all. Venice was lovely, thanks for asking.

Since this seems to have sparked some interest, I'll give a quick account of what happened.


Shortly before I was due to go away (Monday afternoon) I became aware that there might be an issue with the post mentioned. Even more shortly before I was due to go away (approximately half an hour) I was in contact with a person connected to the events to which the post referred. It's hardly satisfactory not to explain precisely who this was, I know, but in the circumstances I think it's prudent not to.

Anyhoo, since I knew that Justin was away for several weeks and without a guarantee of internet access throughout that time, it fell to me to take some action as a holding measure. It wasn't (and isn't) entirely clear to me that it was necessary to suspend any or all of the post but, once again, in the circumstances it seemed the prudent path to follow. Btw, no additional comment or further explanation was given at the time at the request of the person with whom I was speaking.

Bear in mind that if Justin hadn't happened to have gone away a few days before this would probably have all been sorted by now. Had a I had longer at my disposal I might well have acted differently.

In any event, the post remains 'suspended' until Justin has a chance to do something about it ... and since I'm now in Twyford for the Berks & Bucks congress, that's going to be it from me until Tuesday next week.


Arrivederci.
Last edited by Jonathan Bryant on Thu Aug 30, 2012 1:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Keith Arkell
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Keith Arkell » Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:43 pm

Andrew Camp wrote:
Keith Arkell wrote: I sent an inoffensive text message to an insane girl once
My tired, sun-frazzled brain initially read this as, 'I sent an insane text message to an inoffensive girl once.'

After reading it properly, I'm quite disappointed.
Haha Andrew :lol: but my message was sufficiently sane to leave the police questioning the sanity of the complainant!

I only return to this because I just saw on the CJ interview that apparently '''two people have been reported to the police''.
I now now that, while this statement can have significance, it can also carry no weight whatsoever.

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Aug 30, 2012 7:16 am

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:
Mick Norris wrote:It seems perfectly sensible to me - Justin is away and as we know Jonathan has gone to Venice, so they won't be able to react to any developments in the story, and they want to be careful given the content of it

Also, it is their blog, and they are free to do what they wish :!:
I wasn't aware of either point you raise, that Justin is away or that Jonathan has gone to Venice. But that might be because I've been away for a few days as well. In any case, I'm sure nothing posted there would have assumed anything like that level of knowledge on the part of the reader. When I first read it, my initial reaction was to fear some sort of pressure had been applied (remember, I've not seen what the post or comments said). If it's just caution, than that's good.
(I only just noticed the post Jonathan made above, as I was away that weekend as well and not fully following some of the threads around here.)

I'm following up this point here to note that it seems (from Jonathan's post above) that the suspension of the blog post was not purely precautionary or pre-emptive, but was in direct response to contact being made. There are a number of people from several sides of this issue who could have made such an approach - who it was doesn't matter for the point I'm making here, which is that it is now clearer what happened, and it doesn't appear to be what Mick suggested (i.e. my concerns about why the blog post was removed were somewhat mollified by what Mick suggested, but from what Jonathan said it appears that the concerns were justified). Suspending the post was probably the right thing to do (and entirely understandable), but some follow-up questions are needed here, and I'll do that below.
Last edited by Christopher Kreuzer on Thu Aug 30, 2012 7:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Aug 30, 2012 7:44 am

Jonathan Bryant wrote:
Roger de Coverly wrote:I don't know if anything should be read into it, but the parallel thread on the Streatham blog attracting something like 25 comments is now suspended.

http://streathambrixtonchess.blogspot.c ... ia_12.html


Evening all. Venice was lovely, thanks for asking.

Since this seems to have sparked some interest, I'll give a quick account of what happened.


Shortly before I was due to go away (Monday afternoon) I became aware that there might be an issue with the post mentioned. Even more shortly before I was due to go away (approximately half an hour) I was in contact with a person connected to the events to which the post referred. It's hardly satisfactory not to explain precisely who this was, I know, but in the circumstances I think it's prudent not to.

Anyhoo, since I knew that Justin was away for several weeks and without a guarantee of internet access throughout that time, it fell to me to take some action as a holding measure. It wasn't (and isn't) entirely clear to me that it was necessary to suspend any or all of the post but, once again, in the circumstances it seemed the prudent path to follow. Btw, no additional comment of further explanation was given at the time at the request of the person with whom I was speaking.

Bear in mind that if Justin hadn't happened to have gone away a few days before this would probably have all been sorted by now. Had a I had longer at my disposal I might well have acted differently.

In any event, the post remains 'suspended' until Justin has a chance to do something about it ... and since I'm now in Twyford for the Berks & Bucks congress, that's going to be it from me until Tuesday next week.


Arrivederci.
Hi Jonathan, I'm glad Venice was nice. Twyford as well. As I said below, I only just noticed this (I was away in Hinckley the same weekend you were in Twyford). Firstly, many thanks for taking the time to post the above. I wanted to follow up with some questions. The main question I wanted to ask was whether there will be any updates to this? It is not the issue of what happened in Austria, but the issue of how the suspension of blog posts is handled. I ask because I never saw the original blog post and the only description of it I've seen is the one by Steve Giddins on his blog.

Since both you and Justin are back now (I saw Justin post in another thread here, but maybe that was only him popping in briefly), what I was hoping to find when I went to the blog was some indication of what had happened, along the lines of what you posted here. Is anything like that going to be posted there? And even though Peter Sowray's post about a timeline may have been in jest, he may have a point. Some here have been insistent on detailed timelines for certain events. Will such timelines be available here, or is it the case that sometimes it is better not to publish such timelines even if there are calls for such?

I'm not after a timeline, but more an update on the blog post suspension, and an indication of how such things would be handled in future. Or indeed any thoughts you might have on how easy or hard it is to respond to a request that you seem to have received along the lines of: "no additional comment of further explanation was given at the time at the request of the person with whom I was speaking". Is this still the case, that you are being asked to not say too much about all this? This is understandable, but I think it is reasonable to only accede to such a request by saying that you will need to add a coda at the time specifically stating that you have been asked not to say more on the matter. Anything less ends up being cryptic and could be misleading.

One final question: is this the only post that has ever been suspended or removed in the history of the blog?

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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Thu Aug 30, 2012 1:37 pm

Hi Chris,

I'm at work so I'm going to have to be brief. I will answer more fully when I get home (or possibly this afternoon if the boss pops out!). A couple of quick points wil have to do for now.

Justin's not back yet, but will be so by the weekend I think.

I haven't read Gidders' piece - wasn't even aware that there was one until now - so I can't comment on his descrption of the post. I am delighted to hear that we can still count him as an avid reader, however.

As I've mentioned elsewhere this is not quite the first time that we've suspended a post. It's certainly true, though, that the circumstances in which I pulled the one about Lev Aronian looking like Rumplestiltskin were entirely different.

Lastly, I've just noticed a typo in my post above which I've now corrected. It was supposed to read,
no additional comment or further explanation

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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by IanDavis » Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:51 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote: It is not the issue of what happened in Austria, but the issue of how the suspension of blog posts is handled. I ask because I never saw the original blog post and the only description of it I've seen is the one by Steve Giddins on his blog.
I would ask other things. Why do you read something like that and fail to see the word TROLL flashing before your eyes? If the writers of the S&B Chess Blog were comparable to the ECF, then I'd be rather surprised.

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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Thu Aug 30, 2012 10:02 pm

Hi Christopher,

First of all, thanks for your interest in the blog. I'm always happy that anybody is reading and am genuinely amazed that somebody has expressed an interest in how the blog comes together.

I'll try to respond to your post the best that I can, but you'll appreciate that my hands are a little tied at the moment. As I said earlier, this is not because I have no wish to say more.


First of all the question of "timelines". I'm not sure I totally understand the point here.

For a start, there's really nothing to add to my earlier post. Perhaps I could add that it was around 4:30pm on the Monday afternoon (20th) that I suspended the post, but I'm not sure that aids understanding that much.

OK, I Know that there's much more that I *could* say, but I'm not really at liberty to do so at the moment, as you know. That may change at some point in the future and if it does and if you're still interested I'll say more then.

Secondly, with regard to ECF/FIDE legals the issue was about whether a particular ECF Official (or perhaps officials) was/were accountable to the board/council and whether the ECF as a whole was accountable to its membership.

The members (now by compulsion) must pay a subscription and be part of the ECF otherwise it is not possible to play a serious game of chess anywhere in the world. With that background, and given the discrepancy that had been observed, I think it's entirely reasonable that an account of the circumstances that led to the lawsuit was asked for and that it was also entirely reasonable that it was provided.

Writers, on the other hand, are accountable to nobody but themselves and nor should they be. Well, the law of the land - like any other citizen - but that's it. This applies however humble the level of their output.

The S&B blog requires a subscription from nobody, takes money from nobody and represents nobody. You may read it or not read it as is your want. Whatever your choice it has absolutely no impact on the rest of your life whatsoever.

Feel free to criticise the blog and what it does if you so choose, or praise if you so choose or be massively indifferent if you so choose. It's up to you. We choose to publish and therefore you have the right to an opinion on what we publish.

With respect to the issues raised above, though, the blog is the exact opposite to the ECF and therefore the issue of accountability simply doesn't arise.

Bottom line: if you don't like the blog and how its writers behave you (by which I mean 'a person' not you specifically) can just decide not to have anything to do with it. The same can't be said for the ECF. That's the fundamental difference.


Moving on, I've no idea how such an event would he handled in the future. I hope we won't be in this position again, but then you never can tell because it's not just about us, is it?

We've been going for six years, give or take, and have published 1748 posts (as of yesterday). I'm really not sure it's worth making detailed plans for such a rare event - especially if they could be thrown completely awry by something as mundane as somebody going on holiday.

That said, I completely agree with you that what we have ended up with in this case is far from ideal. I don't want to say much more at this stage because what appears on the blog at present is what was requested by the person that I spoke to. OK, not the testcard clip - that was my contribution - but the text.

I think I can say, however, that I haven't had any further contact with the person that I spoke with on Monday 20th and nor do I expect to.



I hope that this has helped in some way.

regards,

Jonathan

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Telegraph report about Austria

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Aug 30, 2012 10:12 pm

Jonathan Bryant wrote:I hope that this has helped in some way.
That does help somewhat. And thanks for being so open and willing to answer questions.

The post by Ian Davis made me pause and think a bit more about this, and what struck me as strange about it all is the dynamics of the whole situation. The way the internet allows some people to say what they like, and push the boundaries (sometimes into outright trolling as Ian pointed out). Some people have blogs with no comments enabled. Others have blogs with comments enabled. Others post to places like this forum (though there is some moderation here as well). Others (the most sensible of the lot) stay out of it altogether. Some use the press or pressure groups to publish their side of things. Others are in positions of responsibility within the ECF and are constrained by that. But trying to avoid these different dynamics clashing and causing tensions is almost impossible. Which leads to some of the awkward situations you allude to. Anyway, I hope you don't find yourself in a situation like that again any time soon.

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