Revisited: 15-minute broadcast delay

by Frederic Friedel
9/14/2022 – When the organisation of the 2022 Sinquefield Cup decided, after Round 3, to implement a fifteen-minute delay for the broadcast of moves, we felt some gratification. Hadn't we suggested exactly this to FIDE, seventeen years ago, as one possible measure to counteract cheating in chess? At least to make it more difficult? Not everybody was happy with the proposal and with its implementation in Saint Louis. What do you think?

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The idea was first proposed – at least by me – on October 17th, 2005. It was departure day after the FIDE World Championship tournament in San Luis. Towards the end of the event there had been suspicions, expressed by some of the players, that there may have been signalling going on during the event. FIDE officials were worried and discussing the matter in their board meetings.

I got into a long and intense conversation with FIDE Vice Presidents Zurab Azmaiparashvili and Israel Gelfer, and proposed a simple solution – one that was designed to make it harder for players to cheat during a top-level event. It involved delaying the live broadcast of moves over the Internet by fifteen minutes. The proposal was enthusiastically greeted by the two VPs, who asked me to write it up and submit it to the FIDE Presidential Board. This I did, on at least three separate occasions, over the years.

You can read about the contents of the proposal and it's genesis in this report. A full version of my formal submission is given in the links below.

Objections

Now, after sudden cheating allegations arose in Saint Louis, the organisers decided, after round three, to suddenly implement a 15-minute delay in the game broadcast on the Internet. I felt quite gratified to hear this. But a good friend, one who is normally very astute, and whose intelligence I deeply admire, reacted critically. He wrote:

Your solution to cheating at chess reminds me of a famous quote from a US General made during the Vietnam war, “In order to save the village (from the Vietcong) we must first destroy it.” Therefore we get a new Friedel directive, “In order to save chess from would be cheaters we should first destroy the enjoyment derived from broadcasting the games live.”

This left me stunned. Was the friend suggesting that the enjoyment of live chess was based entirely on seeing each move in the exact instance it was played? If I, sitting here in Hamburg, 7500 km from Saint Louis, realize the moves I see in the broadcast were actually executed fifteen minutes earlier, then that would destroy my enjoyment of the game? As it would for someone in Sydney, 14,000 km away? And destroy it for the rest of the 99.9% of the spectators watching the games. They are located all over the world and, like me, watch the game on the Internet?

Would that mean that with the 15-minute broadcast delay it would only be the people in Saint Louis, who were present in the playing rooms of the tournament venue, that would be really enjoying the games?

In any case, in my proposal to FIDE, described to FIDE seventeen years ago (and formally delivered soon after) I suggested we needed to take steps to address a looming problem. "These steps do not eliminate the problem completely," I said. "They just make it much harder to cheat." The measures I proposed, in summary, were:

  1. No electronic devices should be allowed in the playing hall at top-level tournaments. There must be clear penalties for transporting electronic devices, even if they are obviously not intended for illegal purposes.
  2. Seconds and associates of the competing player should not be allowed to be present in the playing hall; or they must be adequately sequestered from the players.
  3. Most importantly: the transmission of moves outside the playing hall must be delayed by a certain period of time (15 minutes for classical games).
  4. Rest rooms during matches are only arranged if both players agree to it. Common toilet facilities must be used.
  5. There must be serious, predefined penalties for players caught cheating.

The delay in the broadcast (3) was of considerable importance. It would be implemented by building a relay loop in the transmission of the moves from the boards to the outside world. Albert Vasser of DGT was able to implement this in a few days. The sensor boards could display the current board position locally inside the playing hall, but a delay module (software) would pass it on to the Internet after a given amount of time. The moves would appear in the broadcast at exactly the tempo in which they were played, just 15 minutes later. It would be hardly noticeable for the world-wide Internet audience.

Installing this mechanism means that any outside assistance to the players would be greatly hampered. Even if a cheater is equipped with a very sophisticated reception device, something that would even elude metal detectors, his accomplices have the problem of receiving the moves from the playing venue in time to analyse and pass their results on to the cheater.

At the time I was severely taken to task by a journalist of the magazine New in Chess. First of all he reminded me that the vast majority of players had no wish to cheat at all. And:

In any case any 'cure' should be avoided that is much worse than the disease. Such as the 15-minute delay of the transfer of the moves that once again was promoted on the ChessBase website. On the surface the idea doesn't sound that bad (the cheaters will not get the moves signalled in time, because their buddies lose precious minutes), but in fact it lacks all logic.

Mr. Friedel knows full well that the 15-minute delay only makes sense if you take substantial additional measures [all of which I had included–ff]. But if you apply all these extra measures (such as searching the players, blocking radio signals, not allowing anyone in or out of the hall while the round is in progress) there is no reason whatsoever why you should have a 15-minute delay in the first place! Why rob the people at home of that wonderful luxury of following the games in realtime?

Honestly, now that we have all watched six rounds of the Sinquefield Cup in Saint Louis with the 15-minute delay implemented, has it really ruined your enjoyment of the games? Did it fatally detract from the excitement you felt during the first three rounds, when the moves were displayed on your screen the exact moment they were played?

The 15-minute broadcast delay was most relevant in 2005, when I first proposed it. At the time, and in the following years, it was necessary to use a large desktop computer in order to see deeper than a player in his game. Typically, the computer assisting a player would be halfway around the world – and organisers would be delivering the moves of the opponent in real time to it. That is what the delay was meant to prevent. With it in place, the assistant would have to exit the playing hall after every move to relay it to the conspirators. That would be quite easy to spot.

Today the situation has changed somewhat. It is entirely possible that my smartwatch could play in Saint Louis and stand up to the world elite GMs there. It follows that a member of the audience who is wearing a watch could signal a player when an extraordinary chance, a brilliant move, is displayed. This could be seen with a glance at the watch. I have not actually tried following a game and seeing 3000+ engine analysis on a smartwatch. It may be pure speculation that this is feasible. But if it is not, let me assure you it will only take months or a year for it to become a very real possibility. 

So how will that influence chess, the game well all love. I asked a friend who is an expert on electronic communication, to attend a top tournament, and a championship match. He snooped around, saw how people were screened at entry, how a glass screen prevented the players from seeing the audience. I also showed him that before the start of a round we had access to the stage, the restrooms of the players, the passages and the toilets. He was devastated. The report he filed for me after studying all conditions started with the statement: "What a pity, it was such a wonderful game!"

But all is not lost. Another friend, a security expert who worked for the US government, a chess enthusiast and a contact magician, has promised to give me a catalogue of the measures that should be taken today. They will not be as harsh as the following "solution":

When Andrew Paulsen was alive and staging a World Championship for FIDE, he consulted me. We decided that ultimately it would only be possible to rigorously prevent cheating by staging the match in a Faraday Cage, in a remote location, without spectators. Andrew actually started negotiating with the state of Bhutan to stage the championship in the Himalayas. He wanted to make it a pure Internet event. But that didn't materialize. So the match was held in the traditional way. It relied on scanning for metal on entry, but mainly on trust in the honesty of the players.

Links

A history of cheating in chess (1)
Hardly a month goes by without some report of cheating in international chess tournaments. The problem has become acute, but it is not new. In 2001 Frederic Friedel contributed a paper to the book "Advances in Computer Chess 9". It traces the many forms of illicit manipulations in chess and, a decade later, appears disconcertingly topical and up-to-date. We reproduce the paper in five parts.

A history of cheating in chess (2)
Coaching players during the game is probably the most widespread form of cheating (rivaled only perhaps by bribery and the throwing of games). Although this practice began long before the advent of chess playing machines, computers have added a new and dramatic dimension to this method of cheating in chess. You will never guess: who were the pioneers of cheating with computers?

A history of cheating in chess (3)
In January 1999 the main topic of conversation amongst top players like Kasparov, Anand and others: who was the mysterious German chess amateur, rated below 2000, who had won a strong Open ahead of GMs and IMs, with wonderfully courageous attacking chess and a 2630 performance? How had he done it? Turns out it was with unconventional methods, as subsequent investigation uncovered.

A history of cheating in chess (4)
Las Palmas 1996: Garry Kasparov is agonizing over his 20th move against Vishy Anand. He calculates and calculates but cannot make a very tempting pawn push work. Immediately after the game he discovers, from his helpers, that it would have won the ultimately drawn position. The point that became clear to him: a single bit of information, given at the top level in chess, can decide a game.

A history of cheating in chess (5)     
A few weeks ago FIDE took first executive steps to combat the most serious threat that the game of chess currently faces: the secret use of computer assistance during the game. In a paper written fourteen years ago Frederic Friedel had first drawn attention to the dangers that are lurking. Here is the fifth and final section.


Editor-in-Chief emeritus of the ChessBase News page. Studied Philosophy and Linguistics at the University of Hamburg and Oxford, graduating with a thesis on speech act theory and moral language. He started a university career but switched to science journalism, producing documentaries for German TV. In 1986 he co-founded ChessBase.
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shivasundar shivasundar 9/25/2022 12:11
@Frederic, I would like to point out that you broke the rule yourself by posting the link to a previous article:
https://en.chessbase.com/post/chess-returns-to-india. Hence my posts on that.

You also broke the rule, by insinuating that cheating in chess is more widespread in India - without evidence - in your comment. Guess I am - *and India is* - not getting any apologies for that either.

(I had already posted feedback about the delay - subject of the article - in detail as well.)
Jacob woge Jacob woge 9/24/2022 05:46
Chess has this dual existence, as sport and as an art form. For lack of better word.

The more you are focused on the result, the more of a problem a broadcast delay may be to you. And, the longer delay, the bigger problem.

The more you focus on the game itself, the less of a problem.
Frederic Frederic 9/24/2022 02:31
This article was about the possible merits and the claimed destruction of chess brought about by a 15-minute-broadcast delay. I would urge readers to stick to the topic in the feedback. If that doesn't work I shall have to publish articles without a feedback section. It was an experiment which I would have to admit was a failure.
arzi arzi 9/23/2022 10:19
This thread is not any more interesting because you made it some kind of racist thing, shivasundar. I get it you see that in your world but you should also know that not everybody is that what you think. I am not going to ask forgiveness what I just told. It is all up to you. Be well.
shivasundar shivasundar 9/23/2022 08:05
@Frederic, On the *origin of chess* - most historians, FIDE (for a looong time) and the *accepted view* (from the time of Murray, the early chess historian) is that it originated in India.

I find that these lines are still unclear (you have not clarified it): "The game was invented in the 6th century in north-western India, from where it migrated to the west and conquered the world. *The country of origin, however, descended into mediocracy* – until it in the 1980s it suddenly produced its first grandmaster and World Champion. " I would hope you mean to say "In India, chess" descended into mediocracy. If so, that's unoffensive (but debatable: Indians played by "Indian chess" rules at the time, thanks for changing the rules on us Europe :-); Sultan Khan *still* dominated British championships several times...; also Indians probably never really had opportunities to play Europeans a lot...). If not, the line is still offensive since India was a leading economy in the world (25% of the world economy!!) till Britain came and looted it (when they left India was contributing only 4% to the GDP of the world!) *Big difference, huh!*

To even *suggest* a non-Indian origin was surprising. So I have a big problem when there are even "loose maybes" in the article (*and comments!*) (Egyptian references, when it is clearly *not* an 8x8 board that Queen Nefertari is playing!) - and in the links to the article (The "India" link). You quickly moved along to your credit, so that was fine.

That this suggestion was made when the torch relay tradition started in the Olympiad, to me, was a bit of an affront to the Indian civilization and heritage. I admit I got a little wound up: seeing all the hard work people (including the Prime Minister) put to showcase the return of Olympiad after Covid - that too in just 4 months!

1/2
shivasundar shivasundar 9/23/2022 07:41
Overall Frederic, the article did mention that India invented chess and I thank you for the overall tone of the article in recognizing Chaturanga as the progenitor for Chinese chess (indeed it *is* the progenitor for Japanese chess and all forms of chess).

[In fact, I read more recently... and there is a reference in the ancient Indian epic of Mahabharata (paintings) which show people playing on an 8x8 board...!!]

2/2
shivasundar shivasundar 9/23/2022 06:45
I would urge all to be more kinder in posts, and look at everybody's sensibilities and sensitivities... people like us face a bit of racism in daily lives, so that is something to keep in mind as well. Please do not throw out allegations "in a fit of emotion" - you may be damaging an entire culture, civilization, or country. This is the definition of racism.

1. CB should have better editorial standards - the person that found "some researcher" talk about Indian chess should have caught the "objectification" of Hindu Gods in the article linked to Frederic's original article.
2. CB should act better to have moderators remove trolls and/or comments, and obvious racist content possibly.

I thank Frederic for the engagement, and like I mentioned, stellar and yeoman service to emerging talented Indian kids (including some stars today). I also warmly and sincerely thank Frederic for changing the Chessbase NFT page to correct Anand as the 5-time world champion: https://opensea.io/assets/ethereum/0x495f947276749ce646f68ac8c248420045cb7b5e/18627775078347694306977894164278931476360760490356097331485901893662284972033

What a relief that at the top of Indian chess at least (among the top 50 or so) - there have been no cheating allegations!
shivasundar shivasundar 9/23/2022 06:10
It is personally very very painful for me to read, for example, that "online cheating is so widespread". I certainly pray that of the many caught already, a majority would not be Indians. Cheating is *clearly a much bigger problem* in chess, and I worry about chess as a fan, and occasional player. May be naming and shaming is the way to go - chesscom , lichess and all other platforms should release the lists forthwith. They should keep up reporting to all of us every month I think. Privacy and data protection regulation should be suitably amended.

2/2
shivasundar shivasundar 9/23/2022 06:07
Thanks for the reply @Frederic. My problem is not with somebody "figuring out" (quite easy with the handle) that I am Indian. But using that "info" to "throw accusations" (incidentally, *just* like Magnus - using stars for emphasis because "caps" might be considered yelling, and sometimes I AM, sorry :-)). So, what Frits Fritschy said comes under that category when he said - really objectionable things about Indian chess - and somebody backed him up.

Now, this comment from you is again disturbing: "Regarding cheating in India, sure they have more than average. Because there are more than average chess players. If 0.001% cheat in India, it is many more than 1% cheating in Holland or Norway. " I *never* said there was no cheating in India - I am glad you pointed out this guy who had 2 cell phones packed to his leg. He *was* caught, and *was* banned permanently!! Now, we can say that is already a LOT harsher than what Feller got (for example)!! It is _possible_ (italics) that cheating is more widespread in India - but I am yet to read anything online concretely to *make the accusation*. So, even if half the world of all chess players were in India - *making an accusation without solid evidence* (like Magnus did!!) - could be construed as racism in the instant case. Also, UNLIKE what Frits Fritschy alleged, the punishment was *swift and harsh* in the case you mentioned!

Thanks for correcting the introduction to the article like I requested. Your predictions are "prescient" no doubt - just like Bharat Singh Chouhan's prediction about Arjun - in 2018 - that he would be one "on the same level as Nihal and Pragg"!!

1/2
Frederic Frederic 9/23/2022 11:55
Yes, Shiva Sundar is Indian, as I can somehow tell by the name. Like Alois Friedel, my father's name, which reveals 100% that he was German (Bavarian). Frits Fritchey is unclear - in German that would be Fritz Fritschy or something. Regarding cheating in India, sure they have more than average. Because there are more than average chess players. If 0.001% cheat in India, it is many more than 1% cheating in Holland or Norway. I think that in the near future about 50% of all chess players could be Indian. Certainly, two or three will be found in the World's top ten. "Isn't that overly optimistic?" Indian TV asked me a couple of years ago? "How can you be so sure?" My reply: if you want me to NAME four candidates today, I can do so." And I did. Two of them are already around 2725 today.

https://en.chessbase.com/post/chess-returns-to-india
shivasundar shivasundar 9/23/2022 05:33
@arzi,
I think this entire twitter thread must answer all questions (please read the entire thread including replies):
https://twitter.com/reachvsara/status/1572889746338361344
arzi arzi 9/20/2022 06:28
shivasundra:"Sutovsky..but what's an alternative? Magnus fining Magnus for pulling Magnus in Magnus Tour?"

If Magnus does not play according to the rules in Magnus Tour, who else needs to do that if not Magnus himself? Maybe Magnus Tour will be finished if rules does not count for Magnus?
shivasundar shivasundar 9/20/2022 01:58
@Frederic, here is the latest tweet from our golden boy Sutovsky:
"People wonder whether
@FIDE_chess
should review the case. Not sure - must be checked. But what's an alternative? Magnus fining Magnus for pulling Magnus in Magnus Tour?"

Who is this guy? Do you talk to him?
Jacob woge Jacob woge 9/19/2022 09:05
All ambiguity removed.
arzi arzi 9/19/2022 12:26
https://theweekinchess.com/chessnews/events/julius-baer-generation-cup-2022

Niemann is playing there with Carlsen and performing quite well. Is he (Niemann) cheating there? If not, did he cheat in Sinquefield Cup? If not, did Carlsen blunder in his action when canceling his rest of games after his defeat against Niemann? Should we (Fide and other important persons, except me) punish Niemann because of his winning game against Carlsen or should we just forget this small incident and wait for another to become? So many questions and so little time.

What if Niemann wins again against Carlsen? Should Niemann abort his tournament with cryptic words?
lajosarpad lajosarpad 9/19/2022 11:24
@shivasundar

Frits Fritschy said: "@shivasundar,
Statistics please. I guess your federation is the Indian one. How many cases have lead to sanctions by your federation? "

Based on your name and earlier comments (where you have made it very clear that you are Indian and what you think about White people) I do not guess, but know that you are Indian, so Frits Fritschy had a reason to guess your federation is the Indian one. You have not answered Arzi's question: if Frits Fritschy would have guessed Finland in the same comment, would you have considered it a racist comment?

As about the actual question Frits Fritschy directed to you: it was merely wondering whether there were many or few cases in your federation that led to sanctions. He was merely wondering whether you had any basis to say that

"There can be no disagreement that cheating is a *real* problem in chess (even top level chess)."

Instead of attacking his person, you could have simply answered his question. As about "there can be no disagreement", I do not understand why. Why is it not possible to fathom that some people genuinely think the opposite of what you think. I do agree that there were cases, so I don't disagree with you here, but I find it very strange that you say there can be no disagreement with you here.
shivasundar shivasundar 9/19/2022 10:41
Exactly my point @Jacob Woge. Agreed. Hence my comment that "it is a very complex issue": I was simply making points to illustrate, like @Frederic did with his Electronics expert, who was 'devastated' that (paraphrasing) "journalists (and presumably some friends of organizers?!) and others *had* access to hallways and approaches to the players' restroom and refreshments area before the games (!)"

Again, possibilities are endless (to cheat :-)) There will always be possibilities *outside* even a 15 or 30-min delay.... that will hardly make a dent is my overall point!

You should really see the Hikaru-Naroditsky chat recently, like I have been suggesting... it's scary... he says things like (paraphrasing) "anybody could 'signal' from below the St Louis balcony"; "I have seen players talking a lot in (player) restrooms of big Opens... and was always suspicious of some..."; "cheating is so common online, there have been soooo many bans" etc. etc.
arzi arzi 9/19/2022 09:13
shivasundar, did you answer my question? "If Frits Fritschy had used Finland instead of Indian would you have accused him being a racist?"

Are you accusing me of racist writing? Chill, healthy and emotional! :)
"Mirror mirror, tell me tell me, who is the most racist in the country?"
shivasundar shivasundar 9/19/2022 08:53
@Arzi, if this comment "Statistics please. I guess your federation is the Indian one. How many cases have lead to sanctions by your federation?"
does not scream racism to you, you need to check YOUR racist bone, my friend.

Did any of my previous posts accuse any other federation or other people, deliberately, unreasonably? Without evidence? Or did I throw up insensitive or deliberate ad hominem attacks (meaning "personal" attacks)? On what basis is he basically implying that the Indian federation sucks at punishing any cheats?! This is obvious racism AND bullying...

I hope you would just chill and stick to facts and keep discussions healthy/respond to points without getting emotional.
arzi arzi 9/19/2022 06:58
shivasundar:"As for the "Indian" angry (and admittedly RACIST) comment...Try not to be racist/otherwise offensive and don't do ad hominem attacks Frits Fritschy!"

Try not to accuse of being racist. If Frits Fritschy had used Finland instead of Indian would you have accused him being a rasicst? He deduced India from your name. Is the conclusion itself racist or is your name racist?
arzi arzi 9/19/2022 06:27
Carlsen and Niemann both are playing now in the same tournament. Julius Baer Generation Cup 2022. Carlsen is leading and Niemann is the 5th. Carlsen´s performance value is 3041 (3,5p) and Niemann´s 2848 (3p). Which one is NOT cheating?
https://theweekinchess.com/chessnews/events/julius-baer-generation-cup-2022
shivasundar shivasundar 9/18/2022 09:28
@Ellrond and others... the video I was referring on Hans' 3rd GM norm - using ACPL analysis (Average Centi Pawn Loss):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AG9XeSPflrU (ZERO to 4 ACPL I think I remember hearing...)
Poiuy Trewq Poiuy Trewq 9/18/2022 06:28
Among the many "mainstream" articles regarding the impact that computers have made in chess is this recent one in The Atlantic magazine with the title "Chess Is Just Poker Now": https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2022/09/carlsen-niemann-chess-cheating-poker/671472/. If this is true then I'm sure Nakamura is well positioned to benefit! :-))

Perhaps ChessBase would like to highlight this article in a posting, Frederic?
SunriseK SunriseK 9/18/2022 01:19
@Ellrond: as one of the analysis that I made is about Niemann's performance, I'm curious to know a thing.
The starting data you cited (round Opponent Elo etc.) are correct and the same I also used; still I've got a bit different performances in both cases (before 15 min delay and after). To obtain my performances I used the logistic curve (i.e. same type of function used to get the expected value when calculating a new Elo); may I know which formula did you (or FM Punin) use, please?
lajosarpad lajosarpad 9/17/2022 11:48
@Ellrond if you play the tournament of your life and then you are accused of being a cheater, wouldn't that affect your performance? Just askin'.
Nelba Nelba 9/17/2022 09:36
Buying a game is as much or even worst a problem..
Ellrond Ellrond 9/17/2022 09:33
Please look the blog of FM Andrii Punin. Clear Picture. temporary turbo for 10-20 moves at 3400 ELO, otherwise at 2500 ELO

Look at Niemanns Performance Hans Moke Niemann at Sinquefield Cup 2022:
First three games with live transmission.
2,5 from 3; Elo average opponent: 2792; Performance 3.375 !!
Next 6 games with relay:
2 from 6. Elo average opponent: 2767; Performance 2533

round Opponent Elo result remark
1 Aronian, Levon 2759 0,5
2 Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar 2757 1
3 Carlsen, Magnus 2861 1
4 Firouzja, Alireza 2778 0,5
5 Dominguez Perez, Leinier 2745 0,5
6 So, Wesley 2771 0
7 Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime 2757 0,5
8 Caruana, Fabiano 2758 0
9 Nepomniachtchi, Ian 2792 0,5
Jacob woge Jacob woge 9/17/2022 07:50
“How do you prevent "friends talking" (..)”

The player-to-player interaction has always been possible. As long as computerized assistance is not involved, both players relying on their own minds, that problem remains what it always was, or less, since adjournments became obsolete, and does not require an escalation of countermeasures.
shivasundar shivasundar 9/17/2022 02:13
The Kasparov "wow" story is interesting (part 5 of your 'attached articles')... Naroditsky mentioned something recently that alluded to the same point: he said (paraphrasing): "We top GMs probably need help to cheat only in 2 or 3 critical moves - and we can play 'suboptimally' making mistakes in other moves and still win!" This would even defeat the algorithms as a forensic technique, which rely on accuracy analysis mainly!

Anand has previously mentioned as well, in relation to 'Advanced Chess' I think (computers+humans matches) (paraphrasing) "I wish I was just told - now is a critical moment: that would be enough to find the best continuation some times :-)"
shivasundar shivasundar 9/17/2022 01:52
Specifically @Frederic, your points (page 5 of proposal pdf): "2. Make it a breach of etiquette for spectators to enter and leave the playing hall repeatedly.
... an opera or movie theatre where this is also not possible. "

and (page 6): "8. The players in matches can only have private rest rooms ... toilets should be common for both players."

Require:
1. Extensive redesign of several open tournament halls and playing venues. They spoil the beauty and may even turn out to be unworkable in libraries, museums, etc.
2. For large events (>8 players) we cannot have "dozens" of "private toilets".
3. How do you prevent "friends talking" - so if Anish is not playing Magnus one day, what if they both are talking "in code" in the toilet :-)?! (not suggesting anything, simply an example with the famous Anish-Carlsen 'bromance').
4. What if a different sector arbiter happens to help out a GM using 'verbal/non-verbal cues' :-)?
5. The players are behind a glass wall, if it is one-way-glass then they cannot see human beings for 6-7 hours. Will they not be psychologically affected? In St Louis they can go to the balcony, are we banning fresh air too...?!
6. What about "VIP visitors" like ministers, ambassadors, etc. can they not see players at all then? How will the sponsors feel about all this, and how difficult is it as a spectator sport? Why would people pay for such tickets... they might as well watch from home...

1/2
shivasundar shivasundar 9/17/2022 01:46
So, yeah the possibilities of cheating are endless, the issues are quite complex... it is a very difficult problem to solve.... and suspecting every spectator militates against the simple need to 'catch cheaters' - I mean imagine the poor fans who wait 6-7 hours behind 'a glass wall': all to take a pic or get an autograph with their heroes!! How are we serving chess then?! Out of 8 billion people in the world, hardly a few million may be 1200-plus rated and "understand" whats fully going on... them "giving up" cell phones for 7 hours is already a BIG sacrifice...

2/2 (end long comment - specifically to your PDF @Frederic)
shivasundar shivasundar 9/17/2022 12:38
I also think, @Frederic, the punishments desperately need overhauling and standardization - hopefully by FIDE. I am surprised that Feller got a 3-year ban, while the captain got a life ban (against "duties of captain"!!)

https://www.chess.com/news/view/sebastien-feller-can-play-chess-again-2037
shivasundar shivasundar 9/17/2022 12:07
Woww.. Frederic! I just looked at *how tiny* that speaker was that Kakkar used in 2015!! Yeah... apparently, you can have something tucked into the soles of your feet nowadays (Narodistky) - I got ratings *refunded* because somebody *cheated against me* in chesscom, and I didn't even complain :-)

Go figure....
shivasundar shivasundar 9/17/2022 12:01
Sorry if I offended your ego Frits Fritschy :-), but the 2010 Olympiad incident is well-documented and there were cases and a lot of sanctions.. it was a very very serious case with even Peter Heine talking about it recently buddy... go see the videos my friend: Youtube is your friend.

It surprised me TOO (I had not heard of it before unlike Toiletgate), with the level to which people can go (and sad and unfortunate at the same time...)
https://archive.nytimes.com/gambit.blogs.nytimes.com/tag/sebastien-feller/?gwh=86FE54B55D3E3B8913B470C467206413

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C3%A9bastien_Feller

As for the "Indian" angry (and admittedly RACIST) comment, I guess you are referring to this player "Kakkar" who had cheated in 2015 - that Frederic has chosen to share for some reason... I have not heard of this guy recently - I wud assume he would have been banned for a while (if not permanently)... in fact a google search for "Dhruv Kakkar chess" leads me to his FIDE page which confirms he has not been playing since 2015!!

Try not to be racist/otherwise offensive and don't do ad hominem attacks Frits Fritschy!
shivasundar shivasundar 9/16/2022 11:40
HOWEVER, like I had said in an earlier comment in an earlier article, this is not *to automatically let somebody suspect somebody, just because 'somebody' is the world number 1 player*! Effectively, we should remember that, after
"Toiletgate" [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Chess_Championship_2006#Bathroom_controversy], Topalov lost a bit of respect, since suspect evidence was submitted (cable wire in the common bathroom, seriously?!!). I believe this is a matter for the Ethics Commission, hopefully with Anand heading it with some good experts (including from the news media and neutral journalists) to assess the ENORMOUS damage this whole thing has done to chess.
a. Why did Magnus "not shit, and not get off the pot" either?!!! Also, why did he quit the tournament; after all he would never face Hans again after all?!!
b. Why should Sutovsky not be similarly investigated? The FIDE Director General put out some "amazingly" supportive tweets of Magnus when the allegations were just EMERGING!
c. Hans: Why did the organizers invite a "known cheater"?!: Naroditsky - as an employee of chesscom - has further alleged in a recent video with Hikaru that Hans *has* cheated in Titled Tuesday during "the whole tournament". There are now allegations of his 3rd GM norm as well (I have seen said video on youtube)... Whatever said and done, *the man himself* admitted to cheating TWICE!
d. Why did chesscom announce his "perm ban" conveniently after he lost against Magnus? Let us not forget that Magnus is now *part owner* of chesscom.

So yeah, ALL the parties (organizers, chesscom, arbiters' conduct (why no interviews?! are they what Greek gods or something so they can "stay up in the clouds in Olympus"?! sheesh...) and the players with their teams; need to be TRANSPARENTLY investigated with their responses also put out in full for full-on accountability.

2/2 (end of comment...)
Frits Fritschy Frits Fritschy 9/16/2022 11:38
@shivasundar,
Statistics please. I guess your federation is the Indian one. How many cases have lead to sanctions by your federation?
shivasundar shivasundar 9/16/2022 11:33
There can be no disagreement that cheating is a *real* problem in chess (even top level chess). For people uninformed, I learned of cheating by the captain(!!) of the French team in the 2010 Olympiad! Here is a recent article covering cheating over the last decade or so:
https://web.archive.org/web/20220907141432/https://www.playmagnus.com/en/news/post/chess-cheating.
I still maintain that the "delay" may not even solve the problem entirely. Have you looked at Naroditsky in his video where he says he sees other GMs "talking" in his restroom visits in some top Opens like Aeroflot, or Biel. Yes, also, it will definitely NOT bring in more publicity, or sponsor dollars, or accessibility to chess (and fans) and I am not sure what "the solution" is. However, like cricket with standard cameras and technology, the "standards" of anti-cheating need to be uniform. For example, why was the "RF-metal detector" used AFTER the 3rd round of Sinquefield Cup - and a "regular metal detector" before?!

1/2 (comment continues...)
genem genem 9/16/2022 11:05
Back around 2007 I received a copy of Frederic Fiedel's report to FIDE. To me the 15 minute delay idea seems both effective and noninvasive. I routinely record American baseball games to watch a few hours later at a more convenient time (plus I can then skip advertisements). I am careful to avoid viewing any webpage that might tell me the outcome of the game. When I view the game recording, the game feels fully live and now to me. I must reject the criticisms of the 15 minutes delay which claim the delay would reduce the spectators' fun. Besides, those who reject the delay should also state their better solution - yet most critics offers no serious alternative.
Frits Fritschy Frits Fritschy 9/16/2022 04:51
@fgkdjlkag
Okay, googling Martha_lawson + chess indeed gives zero results... Sorry for the misunderstanding.
Jacob woge Jacob woge 9/16/2022 04:38
“About chatters spoiling things, it's simple to avoid this: simply shut down chat stream or use websites without a chat (...)”

I say, print out and publish as a booklet. “Sinquefield 2022, round 4 chat”

Or, just suggest you might do it. After all, the threat may be stronger than its execution.