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ICC News Item #1907

NEWS 1907 (16-Oct-08)Next Previous
Revised policy for World Chess Championship coverage


To:     ICC members and staff   
From:   Joel Berez, President
Re:     Revised policy for World Chess Championship coverage

I'd like to advise all of you about a change in policy regarding ICC
relays and commentary of the Championship games whereby we will
eliminate the delay in showing moves, effective as of Game 3 tomorrow.
Those of you who have been following our otherwise-excellent coverage
know that the one flaw has been a 30-minute delay before we showed
the moves or discussed them as having been made. This delay had been
imposed upon us as a condition of allowing access to the venue for our
on-site correspondent, Macauley Peterson.

ICC had been led to believe that all major chess sites would be
subject to the same condition--which was intended to enhance the
perceived value of the official coverage service by Foidos--thereby
causing minimal negative impact for our own members.  Unfortunately
this proved not to be the case, leaving ICC in the peculiar position
of possibly being the only site honoring--or even expected to honor--
this restriction, resulting in a great deal of angst and confusion and
doing a major disservice to our members.

Many long time ICC members are aware of our view that chess moves are
not protectable property and our track record of successfully fighting
anyone who tried to claim otherwise, so they have been particularly
surprised by this concession.  However, the growth in the last couple
of years of high-quality event coverage on ICC, including on-site
interviews of top players as well as online qualifying events for
major tournaments, has been facilitated by our shift from a sometimes
adversarial relationship with tournament organizers to a more
collaborative approach.  In exchange for special and possibly unique
access in these events, ICC will naturally try to accommodate any
reasonable organizer requests.

As it turned out, though, the 30-minute delay proved to be neither
reasonable nor workable.  Therefore we will no longer delay the moves.
Whether or not this will adversely impact our on-site access remains
to be seen, but we feel that it is more critical to bring our members
the timeliest information possible and, in any case, this will not
impact our excellent live commentary or popular game-of-the-day
videos except to bring them to you 30 minutes earlier.

Please accept my apology for any discomfort that the previous policy
may have caused you in the last two days and know that ICC continues
to work hard to offer the best available coverage of any major chess
event.
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