Karpov releases platform, ticket to be announced

by ChessBase
6/16/2010 – It's been a few days since we looked in at the race for the FIDE presidency. Ilyumzhinov already announced his ticket and platform, now it's Anatoly Karpov's turn. Eight pages of policy includes finances, federalism, and, of course, the World Championship. He's also made known almost all of his ticket and we're sure you'll recognize the latest addition.

ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024 ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024

It is the program of choice for anyone who loves the game and wants to know more about it. Start your personal success story with ChessBase and enjoy the game even more.


Alisa Maric Joins Karpov Ticket

One of the top female players in the world, Serbia's Alisa Maric, has joined Anatoly Karpov's presidential ticket as a candidate for vice-president. Along with being one of the most accomplished women in chess since she was a tot, it's not only IM Maric and WGM Maric, but also Professor Maric. She holds a PhD in economics and teaches at the Faculty of Culture and Media at a Belgrade University. We're not sure where she found the time for all this, but now she's dedicating herself to a new challenge, taking on Kirsan Ilyumzhinov in this year's election.

Alisa also sends in some remarkable statistics about the Serbian Federation, which has endorsed Karpov. With a population of 7.5 million they have amassed 51 GMs, 12 WGMs, 97 IMs, 14 WIMs, 291 FMs, 24 WFMs. In total: 489 titled players and 2717 rated players! And of course this is only Serbia, not the country many older folks remember, Yugoslavia. How many other countries do you think have so many Grandmasters? Serbia is the latest major chess power to formally endorse Karpov's candidacy. The last time we checked the full list was: Angola, Bosnia & Herzegovina, DR Congo, Czech Republic, Egypt, El Salvador, England, Faroe Islands, France, Germany, Guernsey, Honduras, Iceland, Ireland, Malaysia, Monaco, Morocco, Nicaragua, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine, USA.

WGM Alisa Maric, taking her two minutes of daily rest. Born in New York, she's the answer
to the trick trivia question, "Name the strongest female chessplayer born in the USA."

Karpov, his new ally Garry Kasparov, and other members of his campaign team are barnstorming various continents with an intimidating itinerary. Karpov is headed to Cuba at the moment, then Puerto Rico and Peru are coming up, and several stops in Africa already scheduled. And here's a report in Spanish that says Karpov is going to play a game against Bolivian president Evo Morales in the Bolivian capital. Our delicate constitution does not permit us to travel to the 4,000m altitude of La Paz, so we will have to take their word when it happens.

Any chess trivia expert would know the answer to this one: which grandmaster served as chief economist of the International Monetary Fund? American Ken Rogoff, of course, now a professor at Harvard and a member of what appear to be dozens of councils and think tanks, and also a bestselling author. He gave up chess at the tender age of 27, but we have it on good authority that he still relaxes with online blitz games now and then. Clearly he's still interested in the chess world, because he just signed on as a member of Karpov's campaign advisory board. Does a FIDE president need a macroeconomic policy? Well, it couldn't hurt. Mr. Rogoff will be speaking in the United Arab Emirates this month, with the Crown Prince himself in attendance, but the topic appears to be the "dismal science" and not the Royal Game.

Karpov2010 Platform

The Karpov campaign has also released its platform, a lengthy document we bring you after sharing that of the Ilyumzhinov campaign earlier. We are told that Karpov is almost ready to announce his completed ticket, as well.

1) Return FIDE to Its Federalist Origins

1.1) FIDE must serve the Federations, not the other way around. Many of the problems faced by FIDE today originate with the over-centralization of authority to the Presidential Board and the President. FIDE has lost touch with its membership and lost the essential input of the Federations, the organizers, and the players FIDE is supposed to serve. Leadership must be responsive and accountable. We are committed to a policy of open doors and public debate. The Karpov administration will lead, but lead with the contributions and consensus of FIDE's membership. Our policy will be one of enhanced regional empowerment, based on the philosophy that those closest to the situation are best aware of the challenges and opportunities they face. Regional leaders should be provided with greater autonomy and resources. Resources must be provided consistently rather than once every four years on the eve of FIDE elections. Past practices contaminate the electoral process.

1.2) Use technology to unify FIDE. A worldwide organization such as FIDE must maintain communication with all its members as well as facilitate communication among its members. Online discussion forums and federation mailing lists hosted by FIDE will provide an efficient means of achieving this. Standardized web pages under the FIDE domain will be available for every member federation.

1.3) FIDE can no longer be run for the benefit of FIDE. Taking money from the Federations and distributing a fraction back to Federations is not a business model. As discussed below in more detail, that model must change. We will reduce dues and fees paid to FIDE and develop programs to waive fees for certain Federations suffering financial hardship until they can stand on their own. No one should be deprived of the ability to promote or to play chess due to a Federation's sincere inability to sustain itself financially. At-risk Federations must be helped by FIDE, not punished. Also, we will not rely exclusively on Federations to support FIDE. Past policies ignored broad outreach for sponsorship thereby dramatically reducing FIDE's potential revenue. Reliance on income from Federations while failing to cultivate sponsorship has driven many Federations to the brink of bankruptcy. 1.4) How FIDE can help

1.4.1) Facilitate regional cooperation. Strength through unity and Gens Una Sumus are more than slogans; they have the practical advantages of combined resources, shared knowledge, and healthy competition. Neighboring Federations will receive support to host events and to develop training programs and sponsorship packages across borders.

1.4.2) Direct logistical support. Some Federations have little experience in organizing events, establishing clubs and scholastic programs, and coordinating team activities. Many more require assistance in advocating these activities in a way that can generate state and municipal support as well as commercial sponsorship. FIDE must provide such expertise. We will establish a directorate for logistical services staffed by professionals who are available to go on-site to provide assistance.

1.4.3) FIDE must provide material support and FIDE-directed development funds. As described below, a commercial and market-oriented global FIDE will develop several new sources of revenue. A substantial part of that revenue will be dedicated to assisting Federations with financial difficulties. FIDE currently takes more from many developing Federations than it gives in assistance funds, a counter-productive situation that must be reversed if chess is to thrive globally.

1.4.4) Commercial partnerships. FIDE must forge partnerships with vendors and service providers to leverage economies of scale and the FIDE brand to the advantage of member Federations. The global industry of manufacturers and vendors of chess supplies, books, software and online services are eager to reach every player in the world. At the same time, many financially at-risk Federations cannot afford to pay market rates for these products. In discussions with our campaign administration, several of the world's largest chess vendors and service providers have already expressed a willingness to partner with a new FIDE to offer discounts. Not out of charitable sentiment, but because it will be good business and enable them to reach broad groups of new customers and expand the popularity of chess.

2) The Development of a New Financial Foundation

2.1) A solid financial base. Much more money is needed in chess both to promote it at the national level and to create opportunities for professionals and amateurs to support themselves. We need to broaden dramatically the revenue base of support for chess by attracting sponsorship of several types. This will happen only after FIDE management is changed. Sponsors want to deal with people of proven integrity and reliability who have the experience and business acumen to deliver.

2.2) Image matters. Corporations become sponsors because they wish to be associated with chess. For years FIDE has been led by a person about whom much has been written and broadcast, almost all of which has damaged the image of the game. It is not surprising that sponsors have stayed away. We must improve the image of chess (our "Brand") to make chess more attractive to sponsors. Here is what we propose to do to achieve this goal.

2.2.1) Win-win for chess and for sponsors. Lead FIDE with integrity and through a team of skilled professionals located in major business centers throughout the world. Our team has the relationships to contact sponsors and the credibility to deliver. They also have the geographical proximity to deal directly and easily with major sponsors. Please note that we have already attracted significant sponsorship during our campaign stage. (These include a major computer software company and a leading broadcast network reaching thirty million people daily.) Once we control FIDE, we can enter into contracts on behalf of FIDE for additional sponsorship.

2.2.2) Revive the chess brand. Chess must become more visible to attract sponsors. In turn, sponsorship drives more people to chess, creating a positive cycle. First, we must reach out to our stars to help attract sponsors. We are already doing so with great success. Numerous meetings have occurred worldwide with potential sponsors as well as with other cultural and entertainment celebrities to enlist their support. Many have committed by joining our campaign or providing support to it. Second, we must organize events to link stars and the business community. Again, we have already begun doing this successfully, as with our kickoff party in NYC. Third, we must run FIDE professionally and with promotional skill to transform it (as has been done in other sports, from tennis in the 1970s to poker today) to appeal to a broader audience. We have already demonstrated in this superbly run international campaign our team's ability to function professionally at a very high level and to promote the game at the same time. Watch us continue to do this in the coming months as we promote chess worldwide using the campaign as a springboard.

2.2.3) Create programs worthy of support. Corporate, Individual and Government sponsors are more likely to support chess if we in the chess world create programs that attract them. Linking chess with education is one example. It is a natural fit for corporations, individuals and governments. We will propose to Federations specific chess programs for schools that our team has found successful already in several countries. If a given Federation wishes to implement it, we will work with that Federation to attract both international and national support. Similarly, we will propose training programs (discussed below) and will assist in attracting local sponsorship for the benefit of Federations.

2.2.4) Market chess, and chessplayers, as a desirable segment. Taken from a professional marketing perspective, the chess community is irresistible. We are global in reach, constantly online, affluent and educated. We are frequent travelers, early technology adapters, and avid consumers of every sort of media from video games to novels to internet news. But because of a lack of interest and ability, FIDE has never leveraged its unique position to market the sport and our greatest human resources: the players and fans. FIDE, through the regional and local knowledge of the Federations, must reach out and become the bridge that allows sponsors to reach the chess community in exchange for realizing the huge financial potential they offer.

2.2.5) Develop joint ventures. We must extend the FIDE brand offline and online into partnerships with successful and entrepreneurial companies. While FIDE has stood still and missed the vast opportunities of the internet age, many private companies have become profitable in the chess sector. Instead of seeking to tax them, compete with them, or seek rents from these companies, FIDE must learn from them and find out what we can offer each other in commercial partnerships. The entrepreneurs of the chess world are a tremendous asset. FIDE's global reach and, with a professional team in place, the ability to leverage the chess brand will make for many lucrative opportunities. Members of our team have already opened fruitful dialogues with several such companies and we look forward to sharing the benefits with the Federations and the entire chess community.

3) Chess Education and Training

3.1) Expand the base to elevate the peak. For FIDE, its member Federations, and players to thrive, we must expand the base of players, not focus only on the elite. Expanding the base increases the overall power of the chess brand, with all associated marketing and sponsorship opportunities. The larger the body of new and improving players, the greater economic opportunities will exist for professionals, from organizers to authors to coaches to Grandmasters to World Championship candidates.

3.2) Chess for its own sake. It is our passionate belief that the game of chess, both an art and a science, bestows many benefits for the young and old, and as such FIDE's mission should be to promote the game as widely as possible on its own merits.

3.3) Our players are also teachers and ambassadors. Many of the goals of our platform are perfectly complementary, and none more so than the link between promotion of the teaching of chess and the elevation of the popularity and status of chess in the world. Our elite players are our greatest ambassadors, as has been demonstrated throughout history and by this very campaign. And yet this resource has been squandered by the current FIDE administration's adversarial relationship with most of the chess elite. This must change, and it will change by giving the players an opportunity to give back to the game they love while giving them the recognition they deserve.

3.4) Sharing knowledge and promoting the game. A visit from strong Masters and Grandmasters is a dream for many regions and Federations. Accomplished players can provide both practical training skills and immeasurable inspiration. They also bring media attention that can produce lasting benefits. At the same time, many chess professionals are eager for an opportunity to travel and participate in training programs but have no idea where to start. FIDE, along with regional representatives, must fund and coordinate these missions. A number of well-known players have already pledged to us their participation in such programs.

4) Protecting and Upholding the Traditions of Chess

4.1) Preserve what makes chess special. It is no surprise that, as a former world champion who has dedicated his life to the game, Anatoly Karpov cares deeply about the traditions of chess at every level. It is not the intention of our administration to attempt to turn back the clock. The world changes and even a game as old and respected as chess can and must adapt. But we are committed to reviving and maintaining the traditions that have made chess a universal symbol of human thought as well as a popular pursuit that bridges the gaps of age, gender, language, and society. We can learn from the successes and failures of other sports, but we must also preserve the absolutely unique elements that give chess its special place in global culture.

4.2) The World Championship. For well over a century, predating FIDE itself, the crown jewel of the chess world has been the World Championship. Few titles are as hallowed in the history of sport. Even a mainstream, non-chessplaying public that has heard little of chess in the past dozen years has an instant and profound respect and fascination with the game of chess and our champions. This invaluable mystique has been damaged greatly during the last 15 years, as attempts to randomize results and a failure to promote events has dramatically reduced the profile of world championship matches. We will lead the way toward rebuilding the World Championship aura that captivated the world when Bobby Fischer took the title in 1972 and when Karpov and Kasparov battled through five consecutive world title matches.

4.2.1) The world champion, the championship title, and the championship cycle will be promoted consistently and treated with respect. Championship events must be scheduled well in advance so that proper promotion is allowed. This is essential for any serious sponsor and for the players.

4.2.2) The world championship match, as well as the qualifying and candidates events that lead to it, must be accorded special attention and respect. This means, but is not limited to, scheduling candidates events to allow for promotion as well as for preparation and recovery by the players, and holding matches of sufficient length to produce victors who will be credible world champions.

4.3) Excellence and credibility matter. The quality of the games should not be reduced nor chess results randomized by the drastic shortening of time controls or by the use of formats in championship events that cheapen the title. Chess cannot survive in a viable commercial form if it is trivialized to a simple pastime, governed by confusing or degrading rules, or made to appear as if the luckiest player is the victor. The perception of chess as a thinking person's game, as a crucible of the human mind, is an asset not a liability. For the world to take chess seriously as a sport, it must be taken seriously by us, the organizers and players.

4.3.1) An example of an arbitrary and damaging rule is the so-called "zero-tolerance" rule FIDE implemented last year that forfeits a player if he is not seated at the board when the clock is started. This has resulted in several high-profile embarrassments, including one in which the result of the Chinese national championship was affected when a participant was forfeited while present but unseated. We support high professional standards of behavior for players. But the players, and the game, must also be treated with respect.

4.3.2) FIDE must avoid the appearance of impropriety in competition. Even the remote possibility of receiving outside assistance during a game can lead to rumors and accusations that are damaging to the reputation of the sport and thus to the sponsors we need to attract. Preventative measures will be taken, severe penalties for violations will be established, and unfounded accusations will have consequences.

4.4) Time to play your best. Classical chess should maintain its preeminence at the professional level. Rapid and blitz formats will no doubt retain a degree of popularity with organizers and the public. They have their place as popular and entertaining forms of the game and FIDE should exploit these opportunities fully on a commercial level. But the struggle for excellence and the rigorous nature of the classical chess contest should remain the hallmark of the game.

4.5) Pride, Trust, and Unity. FIDE must take pride in our greatest players and work with them to develop into the ambassadors essential for the success of any popular sport. Players rightly feel as if they have been left to sink or swim by the world chess federation and their own Federations, which are often incapable of providing support and guidance. FIDE needs to assist with media outreach, media training, and a support structure for the players who have devoted their lives to the game. We believe professionalism, trust, and unity will produce great dividends. Working together, with World Champion Anatoly Karpov as the president of FIDE, there is no limit to what we will achieve.

Campaigns in the News

The battle for the FIDE presidency continues to make news around the world. A few recent headlines.

ChessBase reports on the 2010 FIDE Elections

Karpov on his FIDE presidential campaign
13.03.2010 – Yesterday the twelfth World Champion Anatoly Karpov announced that he was running for FIDE President. Today he addressed the extraordinary meeting of the European Chess Union (ECU), which was meeting during the European Individual Championship in Rijeka. Karpov had hash words for the current FIDE leadership and outlined his own program for change in FIDE. Video interview by Europe Echecs.

Karpov to run for FIDE President
13.03.2010 – Fifteen years ago Kirsan Nikolayevich Ilyumzhinov was elected President of the World Chess Organisation. At the next election during the General Assembly of the FIDE Congress, which will be held during the 39th Olympiad in Khanty-Mansiysk in September this year, he faces a challenge by former World Champion Anatoly Karpov. Press release.

Video report: Yazici and Danailov running for ECU President
14.03.2010 – So far two candidates have declared their intention to run for President of the European Chess Union: the President of the Turkish Chess Federation Ali Nihat Yazici, and the Bulgarian IM and manager Silvio Danailov. GM Robert Fontaine from Europe Echecs spoke to both candidates. Danailov also revealed that at the World Championship match against Anand Topalov will not accept or offer draws.

FIDE Elections: Turkish Chess Federation supports Ilyumzhinov
25.03.2010 – During the 39th Chess Olympiad, which takes place in September in Khanty Mansiysk, Russia, the elections for FIDE President will be held. Two candidates are running: the incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov seeking reelection, and a challenger, the twelfth World Champion Anatoly Karpov. The Turkish Chess Federation has announced its support for the former. Press release.

FIDE Elections: Support for Ilyumzhinov
26.03.2010 – Two days ago we published a statement by the Turkish Chess Federation supporting the candidacy of the President of FIDE Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, who is seeking re-election, during the General Assembly in Khanty-Mansiysk this September, for the term 2010-2014. Four FIDE Continental Presidents have joined the TCF in declaring support for the incumbent. Public statements.

German Chess Federation nominates Karpov for FIDE Presidency
12.04.2010 – One month ago Anatoly Karpov announced his candidacy for President of the World Chess Federation (elections in September). The former World Champion was nominated by the French and Swiss Federations. Now the President of the German Chess Federation, Robert von Weizsäcker, has come forward with a nomination and unanimous support. Press release and information.

FIDE Elections: Karpov's mission statement
15.04.2010 – "After a lifetime dedicated to playing and promoting the game of chess, 12th World Champion Anatoly Karpov is running for the office of President of the International Chess Federation." This is the beginning of a formal announcement, released by Karpov's New York campaign headquarters. It outlines the main goals and themes of the campaign and is available in Russian, English and Spanish.

Russian Chess Fed nominates Ilyumzhinov – sort of
22.04.2010 – A candidate for FIDE Presidency needs the nomination of his Federation, and the Russian Chess Federation has announced its support for the incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. Does that end rival Anatoly Karpov's chances for the post, as one commentator suggests? Not quite. The nomination appears to have conditions, and Karpov has struck back with a fighting statement on his new campaign site.

David Kaplan's revolution in chess
04.05.2010 – 200-300 million people play chess, one million in a professional environment – but the interest is not increasing. David Kaplan, CEO for Development in FIDE, wants to change that, amongst other things with $64 million as prizes for online chess. If he doesn't succeed in rebranding chess in the next five years, the Israeli business tycoon says, no one will for the next fifty. Interview.

FIDE Election: Yazici to Karpov – show me the facts
06.05.2010 – Recently Anatoly Karpov, candidate for the Presidency of FIDE, suggested that the incumbent President had yet to receive official support from any major chess federation. Wrong, says Ali Nihat Yazici, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov had received support from his, the Turkish Chess Federation. Meanwhile Ilyumzhinov has moved into the international news spotlight with a story of alien abduction.

FIDE Elections: the match for FIDE President heats up
08.05.2010 – After publishing an interview with FIDE’s Development CEO David Kaplan, we were contacted by Karpov’s campaign headquarters in New York. They responded to some of Kaplan’s statements and presented the case for change in FIDE. They are also preparing a fundraiser in New York with two former world champions and a near certain future one. Can you guess who?

Breaking news: Karpov nominated by Russian Chess Federation
14.05.2010 – Three weeks ago the chairman of the supervisory board of RCF, Arkady Dvorkovich, stated that the Federation had nominated incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov as its candidate for FIDE presidency. A quick response by rival Anatoly Karpov said this was a unilateral decision by an Ilyumzhinov ally, not the formal vote that was required. That took place today and nominated Karpov. Details.

Ilyumzhinov: 'I will run for FIDE President once again'
16.05.2010 – On Friday we reported that the Russian Chess Federation had nominated Anatoly Karpov as its candidate for FIDE Presidency by a quorum vote of 17/32. The incumbent, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov said that this "decision" was shrouded in clear deceit – "it makes a mockery of Karpov and his team, who believe they are capable of running a future FIDE." Open letter.

Big Karpov fund-raiser in New York
18.05.2010 – Karpov, Kasparov and Carlsen – two former and one very likely future world champion – took part in a launch party and fundraiser in the spectacular Trump SoHo Hotel in New York. It is for Karpov's bid to become President of FIDE. There were chess games as well as entertainment and champagne, which introduced a slight complication in the festivities. Pictures and video.

Fundraiser in New York – echo in the press
19.05.2010 – A one-night binge in the Trump SoHo Hotel brought chess into the highlights of the international press. Karpov, Kasparov and Carlsen [memo: he must change that to Karlsen!] generated a large number of international reports, almost outshining the World Chess Championship in Sofia. Not unexpectedly the stories reflect the challenger's side of the ticket. Press links.

Breaking news: Kremlin seizes Russian Chess Federation
21.05.2010 – Last week the RCF nominated Anatoly Karpov as their candidate for the Presidency of FIDE. This was verbally contested by the supporters of incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. Today black suited men from the private security firm “Peper” arrived at the Federation’s offices, kicked out the regular security guards and sealed off some rooms in the building. Report in True/Slant + Karpov's reaction.

Election news: Yazici on the attack
22.05.2010 – The battle for FIDE presidency is getting more vicious. Leading the battle on the side of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov is the President of the Turkish Chess Federation, Ali Nihat Yazici, who has published a number of pieces on the TCF web site against challenger Anatoly Karpov. In his latest piece Yazici states his reasons for switching from opponent to friend and ally of the incumbent President. Excerpts and links.

'FIDE – An Inglorious Inventory'
26.05.2010 – Any idea which are the most active chess playing countries in the world? Did you know that 43,000 people in the world have a 2000+ rating, while around the same number are rated below that mark? The top seven countries have the same number of players as the remaining 136 members of FIDE? The French Chess Federation's Léo Battesti presents us with some eye-opening statistics.

FIDE Elections: Campaign sites and international news
29.05.2010 – It's been many days since we last touched on the subject – the upcoming election to FIDE President, which pits the incumbent Kirsan Ilyumzhinov against challenger Anatoly Karpov. The latter has had a campaign site in operation for a while now, Ilyumzhinov has launched his own under the name One FIDE. Meanwhile international press organs are having a field day. Links and excerpts.

The 'Inglorious Inventory' debate
03.06.2010 – Last week we published an article, submitted by the Corsican chess organiser Léo Battesti, which drew far-reaching conclusions from the statistics of rated players in different countries. The article was strongly criticised on the Ilyumzhinov campaign site. Now the French Chess Federation sent us its reply to this piece. Here are both articles and the feedback from our readers.

Electoral Ticket of FIDE President
07.06.2010 – "I am pleased to announce our electoral ticket for the upcoming FIDE elections in Khanty-Mansiysk," writes the incumbent President. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov lists the achievements of his presidency, his plans for the future and the six-member team of his electoral ticket. In addition the campaign has published a list of 35 federations that they say are supporting the re-election bid.

Interview with Ilyumzhinov, letter from FIDE
10.06.2010 – The Russian newspaper Gazeta has published an indepth interview with FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, who says that he is suing rival Anatoly Karpov – but would shake his hand. And more remarkably assures us that he is "not an agent of any extraterrestrial intelligence." We also received a letter from FIDE Deputy President Makropoulos on the support Ilyumzhinov has received. Long read.

Reports about chess: tournaments, championships, portraits, interviews, World Championships, product launches and more.


Rules for reader comments


Not registered yet? Register